RH Bets on Retail, and Its Luxe New San Francisco Gallery Is Here to Prove It

The 80,000-square-foot pleasure dome features an atelier, two wine bars, and a first look at RH Contemporary
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A dramatic new RH gallery in San Francisco makes a destination out of shopping and specifying.Photo courtesy RH

The opening of the latest RH gallery in San Francisco this week might be described as a homecoming. With revenues of nearly $3.8 billion in 2021 and 27 ne plus ultra design spaces across North America, the brand has always had a strong presence in the Bay Area. But this stately pleasure dome in the Dogpatch neighborhood boldfaces the fact: Born here as a hardware store in 1979, RH has matured into a purveyor of dreams, not just of dressers and drapery. This location follows the brand’s typical template, blurring residential and retail, indoors and outdoors, and integrating art and antiques into wide-ranging furniture collections. But it offers more than its siblings—more luxury, more hospitality, and more resources for design professionals and their clients.

The RH gallery—the term the brand prefers over “showroom”—has taken over a historic building: Bethlehem Steel’s Classical Revival–style Building 101, designed by Frederick H. Meyer.

Photo courtesy RH

Wares and amenities spread across five floors and 80,000 square feet.

Photo courtesy RH

The Dogpatch space involved the restoration of Bethlehem Steel’s century-old, Classical Revival–style Building 101, designed by local architect Frederick H. Meyer. Its refurbishment has notable moments: The grand stair rotunda, carved limestone fireplace, period oak paneling, and rose marble surfaces. Once the offices of industrial magnates, draftsmen, and naval architects, the space is now a palatial emporium.

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Through an ornate wrought iron door, the gallery is stacked across five floors and 80,000 square feet. It showcases RH Outdoor (Level 4), RH Modern (Level 3), RH Interiors (Level 2), and an exclusive preview of RH Contemporary (Level 1), a collection bridging classic and modern that is set to launch later this spring. At street level, two bars flank a live-fire restaurant called The Palm Court. On the rooftop, an RH park inspired by the parterre designs of the French Renaissance. The location’s many levels connect through the original stair rotunda, a cylindrical volume 20 feet in diameter, rising from an elliptical passage off the lobby. From the second floor, a new grand spiral staircase ascends to skylit Levels 3 and 4 toward a 13-tier Serenella chandelier.

Visitors can use the building to experience glamour. Copious and diverse furnishings—as well as sumptuous materials and scenography—recall the city’s Gilded Age. But for professionals and their clients, there’s much more to the space than browsing wares and sipping local cabernet. On the building’s hard-working lower level, the 10,000-square-foot RH Interior Design Firm & Atelier is the brand’s largest professional resource to date. A creative workspace for collaboration and ideation, it hosts RH’s rug gallery and voluminous libraries of fabrics and leathers, furniture and lighting finishes, along with a jewel-box space dedicated to bath and cabinet hardware.

The Palm Court restaurant, which sits at street level.

Photo courtesy RH

RH Outdoor gets a moment in the sunshine—literally—on the RH roof.

Photo courtesy RH

These gems share the floor with three private presentation rooms. While working, designers and their clients can order lunch or dinner from The Palm Court to enjoy in-studio. Its menu runs the spectrum of indulgence—from wagyu ribeye to birthday cake. How better to celebrate a homecoming?