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San Francisco: SkyStar wheel on Fisherman’s Wharf to stay for another 18 months

Nalynn Dolan Caine |
San Francisco Mayor London N. Breed is proposing to extend the stay of the SkyStar wheel on Fisherman’s Wharf for another 18 months after a successful initial six month run at the Port.

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The SkyStar Observation Wheel moved to the City’s iconic waterfront in November 2023 just in time for the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation Leaders’ Summit (APEC), after first spending three years in Golden Gate Park’s Music Concourse.

Since arriving in Fisherman’s Wharf, the SkyStar has entertained riders with unparalleled views of the City’s waterfront. The Port of San Francisco’s initial six-month special event license with SkyStar Wheel LLC is set to expire on April 30, 2024.

Since opening in November last year, the SkyStar has welcomed more than 90,000 riders, and has doubled ridership compared to the same time in 2022.

Additionally, SkyStar will continue distributing 500 complimentary tickets every month to underserved community groups to ensure equitable access to one of San Francisco’s most iconic attractions.

To date, more than 1,000 tickets have been comped to various nonprofit groups including the Chinatown Community Development Center and Boys and Girls Club of San Francisco.

SkyStar Wheel is located near the famed Bistro Boudin and Pier 39 attractions, helping draw thousands of visitors to the area daily, offering riders unmatched views of San Francisco and the Bay, including Alcatraz Island and the Golden Gate Bridge.

The Wheel’s presence at Fisherman’s Wharf, which attracts about 13 million people each year, adds to the area’s fun environment that will delight visitors and residents alike.

The SkyStar Wheel arrived at Golden Gate Park in early 2020 as part of the park’s 150th anniversary. The Wheel closed to the public in October 2023 so crews could begin carefully dismantling and preparing for its installation at the new waterfront location.

At Golden Gate Park, the wheel’s proximity to popular spots such as the de Young Museum, the California Academy of Sciences, the Bandshell, and the Japanese Tea Garden made it an instant favorite.

During its three-year stay, more than 650,000 people enjoyed the wheel and its breathtaking views. Of those rides, Rec and Park distributed nearly 14,000 free tickets to children, families, and seniors through its partnership with more than 100 schools, camps, and community organizations.

Pier 39 ranks among the City’s most visited attractions, second only to the Golden Gate Bridge according to the San Francisco Travel Association’s 2022 Visitor Profile Study. The SkyStar Wheel was the 9th most visited out of 35 sites included in the study.

Skystar Ferris Wheel is 150-feet high and features 36 gondolas that can accommodate a maximum of six people.

General admission to the ride is $18. Seniors (65+) and children 12 and under $12. People who are two years old and under ride free.


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