Best Urban Retreat - 2005
1074 Folsom (at Seventh Street), 503-1100, www.onetastesf.com
This self-described "urban retreat center" is a rare slice of heaven crammed into a decrepit South of Market corner. A community center that focuses on mindful living in all its manifestations, One Taste offers a marketplace for physical and spiritual well-being that includes a cafe full of wholesome treats, an art gallery, a metaphysical bookstore, and airy yoga and massage studios. Its calendar is chock-full of community events, such as a popular monthly massage soiree that allows guests and their aching muscles to sample a variety of different styles from seasoned therapists. Other offerings range from the common (such as meditation) to the more obscure (bioelectography, raw food happy hours, and conscious cuddling). The plush yet simple décor is a cross between industrial chic and transcendental calm -- the perfect setting in which to wind down over a pot of brewing tea, or to have a conversation about gemstone therapy -- and a refreshing reprieve from the urban anxiety that awaits you just outside the door.