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Sutro's Glass Palace: The Story of Sutro Baths

4.6  ·  Rating Details ·  20 Ratings  ·  7 Reviews
Like a majestic ocean liner or a grand hotel, the Victorian-era Sutro Baths dazzled visitors with its over-the-top opulence and its many attractions: seven swimming pools filled with filtered and heated seawater, a museum, restaurants, tropical plants, promenades, and seating for thousands of spectators, all covered by more than 100,000 square feet of glass. The creation ...more
Paperback, 140 pages
Published January 31st 2014 by Hole In The Head Press
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Mandy
Jan 01, 2014 Mandy rated it it was amazing
This painstakingly researched and beautifully illustrated book is a fascinating glimpse into one of San Francisco’s lost landmarks – The Sutro Baths. I certainly have never heard of them, and I doubt many other UK readers have either, so it’s a real delight to discover this small slice of history. Millionaire Adolph Sutro built the baths as the world’s largest swimming pool complex. It opened in 1894 with 7 pools with slides, trapezes and diving boards, restaurants, and places to sit and relax. ...more
James
Feb 17, 2014 James rated it it was amazing
Sutro's Glass palace is one of those special books - one you want to keep on hand because not only is it a part of you and your history, it's a beautiful, well-written book. I knew Sutro's Baths. I learned to ice skate there & spent time wandering the galleries and immersing myself in the museum artifacts the the mechanical wonders in the Musee Mecanique.
As someone familiar with this history, I'm impressed by John Martini's in-depth research, his concise, clean writing, the crisp images, th
...more
Judy Egnew Ness
Oct 23, 2016 Judy Egnew Ness rated it it was amazing
When we first discovered the ruins of Sutro Baths in 1989, we explored them with our young children and had no idea what those intriguing foundations had once been. My husband and I are avid amateur historians and we did our research and gradually learned a bit of the history. We returned repeatedly over the years to hike, play, and imagine what had once been an incredible beach-side playground. It was one of our children's favorite places in San Francisco and many epic games of imaginary ...more
Colored Ink
May 23, 2014 Colored Ink rated it it was amazing
This is a fun and fascinating look at a whole other world--that once existed in our backyard (or, more accurately, on our beach!)

As a life-long resident of the Bay Area, I grew up wandering (and wondering) about the remains of the famous Sutro Baths--and imagining glass, and glamor, palaces and parasols, and funny-looking, old-fashioned swimsuits. This book brings it all to life. I read it on my Kindle, so it was sometimes hard to align the photos and diagrams (but nice to have the option to enl
...more
GT
Aug 29, 2014 GT rated it really liked it
Everything I was hoping to learn was included here in this book with beautiful photographs, detailed illustrations, and the rich history of San Francisco's Sutro Baths. I never had the opportunity to swim here, but my Dad did. He even went down one of the slides (I think he was 6 years old).

Can't wait to go explore the ruins where the book's 'Field Guide' should prove most helpful.

4 Stars.

= Horrid waste of time
= May be enjoyable to some, but not me
= I am glad I read it
= Very enjoyable and so
...more
Ed Bierman
Feb 03, 2015 Ed Bierman rated it it was amazing
This is a beautifully illustrated history of one of the most interesting lost San Francisco treasures - the Sutro Baths. Sitting at the edge of San Fran, the baths were a grand glass structure with ocean pools and the collected oddities of Adolph Sutro. This book illustrates what it looked like and has many dozens of historical photos that give you a sense of what it was like to visit. A must have for those who like the history of San Francisco.
Leila Kern
Sep 04, 2015 Leila Kern rated it it was amazing
Wonderful book outlying the history of Sutro's Palace. Nice book for a coffee table. Growing up in San Francisco, I always wished I had visited, but, alas, Sutro's was gone when I was old enough.
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John Martini is a retired NPS park ranger who was curator of Military History at the Golden Gate National Recreation Area. He served as a ranger at Fort Point National Historic Site, Alcatraz Island, the Presidio of San Francisco, and Sagamore Hill National Historic Site. He is the author of numerous books and articles on military history.
More about John A. Martini...

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