Reel SF

San Francisco movie locations from classic films

San Francisco movie locations from classic films

The Man Who Cheated Himself - A Meeting In The Park

  A liquor store owner has been shot in a robbery.   The ballistics results show that the bullets match those that killed Frazer, but no gun has turned up.  Cullen is understandably puzzled; after all, he tossed the gun from the Golden Gate bridge into the bay.  He arranges to meet Lois at a park.

Then ...  He makes his way up a path. Behind him a cable car rolls down the hill past a large mansion.

... and Now,  this is Lafayette Park and the stately home is the Spreckels mansion at 2080 Washington Street (map), one of San Francisco's famous buildings and a city landmark.  Sugar magnate Adolph Spreckels built the French Baroque limestone home in 1913 for his trophy wife Alma deBretteville.  Alma was still living there when the movie was filmed; today it is the home of novelist Danielle Steel - she added the unsightly privacy hedge, below.  The cable car rolls by no longer, this line having been discontinued six years later, in September, 1956.


Then ...  Lois is waiting for him by a park bench.  Across the street is the mansion's circular driveway.

... from the 1950s ...  The over-the-top hedge now hides the driveway from this spot but this 1953 photo captures it.  The original Washington Street entrance was abandoned in favor of the side entrance during Alma's tenure.  Incidentally, the Spreckels mansion was featured two years later in the movie The Sniper and again five years after that in Pal Joey.


Then ...  Cullen tells her about the latest ballistics evidence but she's more interested in asking him if he would marry her.  Knowing she's been married twice before, he's reluctant to commit (er, and didn't she just shoot her last husband?).  The view looks past Pacific Heights to Fort Mason and across the north bay to Alcatraz and Angel Island. 

... and Now,  Ms Steel's hedge is being sculpted but still gets in the way of the view across the Bay for passers-by at street level.


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