SFOpera - Visiting Us for the First Time

Visiting Us for the First Time

Welcome! We are thrilled to have you join us at the historic War Memorial Opera House.

Know before you go

What should I wear?

We don't have a dress code. Some opera-goers prefer suits and gowns, others jeans. Wear what makes you feel comfortable. But please avoid wearing strong scents. Many people (including singers) have allergies.

Where should I eat?

Hayes Valley is home to iconic classics and trendy new hot spots. Give yourself plenty of time to get here and book a table in advance. We also have great dining options in the Opera House.

Is there late seating?

As a courtesy to performers and our audience, we don't offer late seating. If you do arrive late, you can relax with food and drink in one of our bars and watch the performance on a TV until intermission. 

How can I encourage my friends to join me?

We have special discount ticket offers for groups of 10 or more!

 

How should I get to the Opera House?

We recommend public transit. We are conveniently located in Civic Center and BART and MUNI have stops within a 10-minute walk of the Opera House. Visit Directions and Parking for information on where to park. And to have the best experience possible, give yourself plenty of time to get here.

 

How do I brush up on my opera knowledge before the show?

Hear the music, see the artists, learn the story and more on each opera's page.

How early should i arrive?

Patina Restaurant Group's Café at the Opera opens two hours before curtain (it's a good idea to make a reservation). Otherwise, you may enter the Opera House up to one hour before curtain. Don't miss our free Pre-Opera Talks, held in the auditorium 55 minutes before the performance.

While you're here

Can I get food and drinks during intermission?

Yes! From salads to sparkling wine, sandwiches to chocolate truffles, Patina Restaurant Group offers numerous food and drink options for intermission(s). Pre-order online in advance of your performance, or pre-order when you arrive to skip the lines at intermission. You may also make a reservation for one of Patina's seated dining areas by calling 415-861-8150.

 

How long is intermission?

Opera intermissions are usually 20–25 minutes. It's enough time for artists and crew to prepare for the next act, and for you to relax and enjoy the Opera House. You'll know it's time to return to your seat when you hear the bells chime. Chimes sound eight, four and two minutes before the performance begins.

 

Who do I ask for help?

Our friendly usher staff is ready and waiting to help you! Look for them on each floor of the Opera House.

AFTER THE SHOW

How do I stay updated on new events?

Follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram to get behind-the-scenes access, special offers and future event information. 

 

How do I learn more about opera?

We can recommend some great books and recordings. We also offer interactive evening workshops, opera in an hour film screenings and whole lot more. And of course, coming to another opera is the easiest way to learn!

What is the next opera that I should see?

Do you love comedies or dramas? Epic tales or rom-coms? Our Box Office staff are true operatic matchmakers and they love to help. Give them a call at (415) 864-3330 and they will help you find that perfect opera at the right price.