It used to be that no trip to Hayes Valley was complete without a stop in Alabaster, a store filled with all sorts of beautiful objects for the home, a wonderful selection of books, and of course Fanny, the owner's adorable French bulldog. So imagine our disappointment to hear that after 10 years in business, it had closed its doors. The silver lining is that owner Nelson Bloncourt, whose pitch-perfect aesthetic made the store what it was, has taken a tour of the old neighborhood to share some of the best the area has to offer.
There are all sorts of design shops to see in Hayes Valley, but if you aren't a regular visitor, many of its hidden gems can go unseen. Take for example Tazi Designs, which is tucked down a tiny street (more of an alley, really), a spot Bloncourt recommends for its Moroccan imports. Getting shopping recommendations from someone with impeccable taste is a rare treat, indeed, so if you're heading to Hayes we urge you to check out all his picks.
• Hayes Valley: Furniture and Design Shop Tour