If San Francisco does something well, it’s converting spaces into brilliant places that locals can come together, and Onsen is no exception. What was a garage in the Tenderloin, is now a Japanese Bathhouse combined with a tea room. 

The husband and wife owners, Sunny Simmons and Caroline Smith, envisioned a space that brought the community together to connect. With this in mind, Sunny took his pieces of wood and fixtures that he has collected over the years, and created the beautiful space that Onsen is today. Onsen is inspired by a traditional Japanese bathhouse, and includes a sauna, steam room, communal bath, treatment rooms, and a restaurant. 

When I heard Onsen was opening on November 11, I couldn’t help but smile at the idea of this bathhouse. Spending time in Japan when I was 18, my favorite memories was the bathhouses we went into. There’s something magical about a community going to dine together and relax together. It brings people together, and creates a bond. Onsen does exactly that with a space that provides an opportunity to experience a Japanese tradition. 

The restaurant at Onsen is designed for you to come together with your friends before or after a soak, to enjoy traditional cuisine with a flare of Northern California. The rice porridge with miso kimichi and quail egg, daily sashimi, udon noodles, and maitake dumplings are a few of the stars on the menu. 

Image by Grace Sager
Image by Grace Sager

With an opportunity to relax in the heart of the city, Onsen offers a home to be rejuvenated and experience the rich culture of Japan.

Good to know

Price:
2 hours is $30, and $10 every hour after.
Bath with treatment: $16 hour.

Bathing Schedule:
Monday & Thursday 10am–10pm Women Only
Wednesday 10am–10pm Men Only
Friday & Sunday 10am–10pm Coed (Bathing Suit Required)
Saturday 10am–1am Coed (Bathing Suit Required)

Reservations:
Baths are first come, first serve. Reservations are provided with a treatment.

Amenities:
Redwood and cedar sauna, steam room, cold plunge shower, communal tub, ad showers. Hot tea and bath products provided. 

2 Comments

  1. Yes! I’m so glad you found this place too! I live right next door on Hyde, and can’t wait to try it out. It looks so beautiful.

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