The Audiffred Building
Hipolyte d’Audiffred built this commercial waterfront building in a Parisian style to remind him home.
It is one of the few downtown commercial buildings to survive the 1906 Earthquake and Fire. According to legend, it was saved by the resident saloon keeper of The Bulkhead. As the great fire approached the waterfront, the dynamite crew was about to create a firebreak by blowing up the building. The saloon keeper offered the crew a hose cart full of wine and two quarts of whiskey each to spare the building. The building was spared by both the crew and the fire.
The building’s luck held true for the next significant quake, Loma Prieta in 1989. For nearly half a century, poor Audiffred had hunkered down in the dark squalor of the Embarcadero Freeway, unlovely and unloved. The quake damaged the freeway to the extent that it was eventually demolished after the years of political posturing mandatory for all matters of San Francisco public policy.
Since 1993, the Audiffred Building has occupied by the restaurant Boulevard.