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Unless you’re particularly thick skinned, it can feel awkward to merely browse inside a store. I have, more than once, purchased a thing I didn’t originally plan to buy because I felt like I was paying rent to the space, the time I’d spent there, and the staff that had qualified me as a consumer. But, sometimes, you just want to look around. Get ideas. See rare and radical things. I rather like the idea of a store conceived in a way that it might as well be a park, a playground of art and antiques, and you can just explore. Or check out books, even. Maybe see some music and drink a beer. And go home, electric with experience. Viracocha is such a place...

Mission / Viracocha - by Leslie

August 28, 2013

Where beautiful artifacts, music, poetry, literature, art and design come together in the Mission. Browse the collections on the main level, hole up in the lending library, or catch a live performance in the hidden venue below. Not only is this one of the coolest places in the city, but their warm and welcoming staff makes it’s one of the friendliest, too.

 

Viracocha: Celebrating Culture & Community - by Max Gibson

December 09, 2010

Embracing products from years past, stepping into Viracocha is half retail experience half museum visit, as early 20th century products line the walls and tables. From vintage royal typewriters, to Tom Jones vinyl, Viracocha maintains their eclectic assortment of products through their commitment to presenting unique items of quality...

 

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SF Papers

Mission's Viracocha: Not Just A Glorified Garage Sale - by Aidin Vaziri

October 09, 2011

Stepping into Viracocha is like stepping into a different time and place. Since opening its doors last year at 998 Valencia St., the space formerly occupied by the spiritual emporium Botanica Yoruba, this eclectic vintage store has become one of the Mission District's most popular destinations - and not just for its breathtaking selection of beautiful old typewriters...

Viracocha Is Legit - by Emma Silvers

September 12, 2014

As you may have heard by now, Viracocha — everyone's favorite Never-Never Land of a music venue/spoken word performance space/speakeasy/antiques store/beautiful place to stop and use the bathroom should you find yourself having to pee on Valencia — has gone legit...

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Shopping Accolades

Top 5 Creative Boutiques in Mission - by Tristan Pollock

June 25, 2014

Walk into Viracocha and be enveloped by the mood created by wooden walls extending up to high ceilings. Comforting objects: antique sewing machine tables, typewriters and record players, are illuminated by cozy lighting. Why does it smell so good in here? Palo Santo—which looks like bits of kindling—is burning. Take a peek into the lending library where you can tuck in for a read. Downstairs is the most beautiful room where indie bands play intimate shows...

 

Our Favorite Places To Shop: Top 100 Shops - Hyper Curated

July 16, 2012

This eclectic vintage store contains everything that makes the Mission District so wonderful under one roof: vintage clothes, underground literary journals, one-of-a-kind pieces of furniture, records and, in a charming backroom library, an astounding selection of reading material. Meanwhile, the wood-lined performance space makes it a haven for local artists, writers and musicians.

 

36 Vintage Shops To Visit In San Francisco - by Christine Giglio

September 13, 2010

This community operated retail space is dedicated to the exploration of vintage design and fashion as well as that of local arts and performance. While they sell vintage goods, they also serve as a community space for interactive art performances. “By focusing mainly on vintage and antique products, in fun, creative, and interactive ways, we hope to offer new perspective on reused and redesigned materials.”

 

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Bathroom Praise

5 Bathrooms We'd Consider Renting - by Mia Sullivan

March 08, 2012

In a city with so many artistically adept individuals, perhaps it’s only natural for great design to extend to the toilet. Here’s a list of five bathrooms around town you’ll want to squat in for a while...

 

 

Let The "Bowl Games" Begin

September 02, 2013

From the outside it’s an inviting, rustic looking boutique. Once inside, Viracocha’s quaint and cozy charm come to life beneath the high-beamed ceilings that house vintage clothing, antique furniture and other unique collectibles. Nestled in San Francisco’s oldest neighborhood, Viracocha is a haven for local artists, writers and musicians. This eclectic vintage store has become one of the Mission District’s most popular destinations – predominantly for its posh potty – which patrons say resembles a “Zen retreat” so magical you will wish you could live in it. Featuring vintage table lamps, a Victorian bath tub, and a cozy white arm chair, it comes as little surprise to locals that Viracocha’s ornate, spacious bathroom has been called “one of the top 10 places in the city to take a date” by several San Francisco bloggers and named as a finalist in this year’s America’s Best Restroom contest...

 

Best Bathroom Designs - by Krista Payne

October 01, 2013

Have you ever experienced a public bathroom that was so cool that you actually took a picture of it on your cell phone? I know, its strange but I have. I actually went back to my friends at the restaurant and said "you guys have to check out their bathrooms!" Weird yes, but this years nominated bathrooms are so unique and intriguing that they are actually are up for best public bathroom of the year...

 

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Some Staff Love

Typewriter Talents, A Love Story - by Mike Kepka

January 08, 2012

Often distracted by flashes of color and style outside his window, Duo Von Dagrate looks away from a client's Royal just for a moment. Text messaging and social media networks have largely replaced hand-delivered correspondence, but Von Dagrate appreciates typewriters more now than ever. "When I see a typewriter, I see a real way to send a message to someone," he said. "You have to think about every keystroke."...

 

A Poets Home - by Kp Kaur

July 21, 2013

Ourshelves, a communal library curated by a group of editors and readers lives inside Viracocha in the Mission. Elizabeth, one of the librarians, has the heart of a poet.

 

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Ourshelves Lending Library

Ourshelves Library at Viracocha - by Heath Kessler

August 16, 2011

Ourshelves is a donation-based library that recently opened in the back of Viracocha. It offers a lovingly curated selection of international writings, new releases, and titles chosen by local authors — a collection that has been gifted by collectors, non-profits, and local literary icons such as Michael Chabon. For a $10 monthly membership, you get access to books that are not readily available from the public library, titles that can be a serious investment to purchase. The volunteer staff working Ourshelves is made up of writers, editors, and longtime booksellers, who see the library as a place to celebrate and share their passion for the written word. 

 

Lit Love at Ourshelves - by Caitlin Donohue

September 08, 2011

Perched on a wooden bench built into the salvaged redwood walls of the back room of Viracocha, surrounded by the Ourshelves lending library she’s created in the nook, the soft-spoken Kristina Kearns reads “literary heroine.”...

 

Shelf Life - by Caitlin Donohue

December 06, 2011

On a Wednesday night in a Mission basement, a group of new friends has gathered to celebrate a library. Onstage, a man and a woman struggle to maintain their solemnity while reading a passage from David Foster Wallace's Infinite Jeston the fallacy of video phone calls. In the dimness, the rest of the members of Ourshelves sit in chairs and on benches, everyone doubtless reflecting on the power of the written word...

 

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A Fond Farewell