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Thursday November 15th 2018

Pal Joey | 1957

Pal Joey location: Coit Tower, Telegraph Hill, San Francisco
Pal Joey location: the entrance: Coit Tower, Telegraph Hill, San Francisco

Richard Rodgers and Lorenz Hart's musical about shifty nightclub entertainer Joey (Frank Sinatra), seriously sanitised for the screen, is set in San Francisco.

The art deco frontage of the mansion of wealthy widow Vera Prentice-Simpson (Rita Hayworth) is the entrance to the Coit Memorial Tower, 1 Telegraph Hill Boulevard, atop Telegraph Hill. It's extended and enhanced with quite a bit of pre-CGI matte painting.

The tower was built with a bequest left to the city by Lillie Hitchcock Coit (no relation to Alfred), a Bay City pioneer woman apparently fascinated by firemen, ‘to beautify the city of San Francisco’. You can take the elevator to its 210-foot observation deck for wonderful views of the Bay.

A year later, the tower was to feature in another Kim Novak movie, Hitchcock's Vertigo.

The 'Chez Joey' nightclub is the Spreckels Mansion, 2080 Washington Street overlooking Lafayette Park in Pacific Heights. It's a private home, bought in 1990 by writer Danielle Steel and every year its privacy hedge gets a little taller.

The mansion is also seen in1969 thriller Eye Of The Cat, with Gayle Hunnicutt and Michael Sarrazin