Remember the thriller Pacific Heights? About a yuppie couple (Melanie Griffith and Matthew Modine) who renovate their Pacific Heights house only to have their psycho tenant (Michael Keaton, possibly trying to stretch his acting chops after two rounds of Batman movies) terrorize them and ruin their home improvement bliss? It was a bit of fun schlock. More unintentional giggles than thrills. The biggest laugh was that the couple’s dream house wasn’t located in the Pacific Heights at all, but Potrero Hill. Only San Franciscans would know the difference and appreciate the irony. Pacific Heights was (and still is) a very upscale area whereas Potrero Hill in the early 90s was a working class district. Gentrification has since kicked it up a rung; it’s now an upper-middle class neighborhood.
I thought about the movie last October when I was driving around the area looking for examples of Edwardian houses that were the inspiration for Love Match character Joe Trigoboff’s place. The view is still spectacular when it’s not obscured by all the construction. There’s tons of renovation going on. Rumor has it the budget for one home remodel is around $10M. It’s completely sheathed in white plastic to keep the flying debris and dust at bay. All those dotcom millionaires have to spend their money somehow.
There were plenty of Victorian, Mission revival and Chateau styles but fewer of the less ornate Edwardians. Did I imagine they were plenty in this neighborhood? Would I have to be like the movie’s location manager and go to another area for good examples? After much searching I found a few, but the intricate green terrazzo steps with red jewel-like granite … I found those in the Mission.
Jessica leapt up the terrazzo steps of a stately Edwardian house in Pacific Heights and rang the doorbell. Even though a few lights glowed from inside, nobody answered. “Mr. Trigoboff!” She banged on the door. “Joe! It’s Jessica Durrell!” Still no one came. She turned to go, her hopes fading, when she heard the deadbolt snap.