SF LIFE: Pools for Rent, Chinatown, Whales, Books

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SF LIFE: Pools for Rent, Chinatown, Whales, Books

Who knew? Maybe you, but definitely not me. If you are longing for a dip in a cool refreshing pool but don’t have access – there’s a site for that. Rent a pool with swimly!  Chinatown is walkable now, not a car in site, and yum for outside dumpling dining. Whale sightings are in abundance, jump in your car and check it out. And, Berkeley’s well known Book Festival heads to where else – online of course!

Rent a Pool

SF LIFE: Pools for Rent, Chinatown, Whales, Books

Swimply – where you can find a pool for rent – is an online marketplace where you search by location for pools to rent by the hour. If you live in San Francisco and are craving a warm and sunny pool day, there are several options in the South Bay, East Bay, and up north where the temps actually feel like summer.

For instance, there is a cold pool in San Mateo where you host a pool party for up to 30 guests (although we aren’t supposed to have that many gathering, remember?). It’s only $60 an hour. And then there’s a funky pool in Santa Clara – adults only for $45 an hour. Check out all the offerings wherever you may want to splash. Some are kid friendly, some are adults only. A few are more secluded than others, but hey, if it’s hot enough, who cares? Swimply.com

The Three Tomatoes Happy Hour Pocast


SF LIFE: Pools for Rent, Chinatown, Whales, Books

Chinatown’s iconic Grant Avenue is now closed off to traffic every Thursday – Sunday. Enjoy a pleasant open walkway under the vibrant red lanterns every weekend through September (maybe longer, we can hope!) Take your time as you stroll the historic streets. Grab some dumplings or your favorite dish at several of our favorites offering outdoor dining. You may even get to have Asian shopping experience depending on our store regulations so check first.  Here are a few of our favorite places open for outdoor dining.

Mr. Jiu’s – Chinese-American chef Brandon Jew’s delivers some classic Cantonese dishes with a Bay Area twist, like sourdough scallion pancakes, salt & vinegar shrimp chips, and dutch crunch BBQ pork buns, all crowned with a Michelin star. Tues – Sat 2:00p – 6:30p. Accepting reservations for outdoor tables. 28 Waverly Place. Misterjius.com

China Live! – A daily changing menu that often includes roasted Peking duck with seasonal fruit glazes, Taipei braised beef noodle soup, sheng jian bro dumplings, pan fried pork dumplings, and my fav, chrysanthemum salad with star fruit. Outside dining, delivery and pickup only 4-8:30pm. 644 chinalivesf.com

Boiling Shrimp Restaurant -Reasonably priced off the beaten path at 150 Waverly Place, this authentic spot serves up with Northern Chinese comfort food and quick bites including Pot stickers, fried rice, wonton noodle soup, and fried seafood noodles. Theboilingshrimpsf.com

Grand Place Restaurant –You may recognize this Chinatown staple for its hanging ducks in the window. They specialize in rice porridge soups, Chinese donuts, roast duck, and wonton noodle soup. But try their cashew nut prawns and steamed flounder. Oh yes. Grantpalacesf.com


These days, should you venture out in Monterey Bay you will see droves of whales about seven miles from shore. The humpback beauties are migrating south down the Pacific coast and these huge marine mammals need to feed as much as possible as they swim to pack on blubber before reaching warmer waters in Mexico with little to eat for months. It’s usually the calves feeding at this time, but there are plenty of anchovies and sardines in the ocean now to feed the adults. Apparently that’s a good sign of a healthy ocean.  Many tours are operating with limited capacity due to social distancing of course.

Here are a few tours that come recommended




Book Festival

Designed to inform, inspire, console, and engage, #UNBOUND, the online incarnation of the annual Berkeley-based Bay Area Book Festival, is presenting a lively array of 50+ virtual programs featuring world-class authors and thought leaders. Each program) pre-recorded) has a premiere chowing, which allows for live audience chat, then remains on the site for free viewing. Up on the site now and recorded for you to view at your leisure is a conversation with Sue Monk Kidd, Lisa See, and Aimee Phan: Braving Deep Waters Female Fearlessness & Friendship. Visit the site for upcoming live and more recorded videos. Baybookfest.org


  • Kim Selby

    Kim Selby, the SF life editor of The Three Tomatoes, is your gal for info on what’s hot and happening in the beautiful bay area. Having lived on the Left Coast for 27 years, after almost a decade in NYC, she has explored and continues to have adventures all over the San Francisco area. Passionate about fashion, formerly with GLAMOUR magazine and Fashion Director at Saks Fifth Avenue , Palo Alto, Kim produced fashion shows in the bay area for over 20 years. She now creates events to empower, delight and inspire women, aka “Tomatoes”. Learn more about Kim at www.kim-selby.com

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