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Shopping for someone who lives in a small space can be a daunting task. It's hard to find the perfect gift, and no one wants to be responsible for adding clutter to a friend's already-cramped home. Still, there's no need to panic or disown your storage-limited friends. Why not set someone up with a service or experience instead of a traditional boxed gift? From black cars to blowouts, we've rounded up some unique ideas that won't occupy real estate.
Parking in San Francisco is scarce, Muni is unreliable, and waiting is a pain. If there's one gift everyone can use, it's a free ride. Uber makes finding a car simple, and everyone you know is already using the app. An Uber gift is sure to be a hit, though it's not the easiest gift to procure. To send Uber credit to a friend, you'll have to go through the Uber community team. You can either log into your account on your computer, or make it easier by tweeting the community team (@Uber_SF) prompting a direct message exchange, culminating in gift purchasing power on your Uber account. It's complicated, but totally worth it.
Spa services are lovely, but a little pricey. If you want to give a girl the gift of pampering at a lower price point, consider a day pass to the Nob Hill Spa. A day pass will give her access to spaces like the pool, steam room, and zen room at one of the most luxurious spas in San Francisco. Facilities-only day use passes are available for use Monday through Thursday (excluding holidays) for $45, or a series of 10 passes for $400. Order a gift certificate online or call the spa at 415-345-2888.
And while we're on the subject of pampering, let's not forget about tresses. Give a girl a gift that will blow her mind, or at least her hair: A Drybar blowout coaster. (Yes, the company's hair-meets-drink theme even extends to the gift cards). Though the chain's blowouts are regularly $40, the Joy to the Hair holiday special will save you $10 by offering a blowout/scalp message combo for the price of a blowout. Order online by December 22 and select next day shipping for Christmas delivery, or pop by one of the two Drybar locations in SF.
To complete the trifecta of pampering prezzies, we obviously have to talk about brows and lashes. Every girl is looking for shortcuts to her beauty routine, and the Benefit Brow Boutique trio package (brow shape + brow tint + eyelash tint for $45) is one helluva time saver. No more tweezing. No more filling in. No more mascara. Tint will last about a month, and save you from the icky under-eye mascara crease line. Gift cards are not sold online, but the lovely staffers at the Brow Boutique can hook you up.
If you're concerned that your friend or loved one's clutter is out of control, help her address the problem: Get her a professional organizer. A company like SF Organized Interiors can provide information, products and services for efficient space planning, implement organizational systems, and otherwise turn a sad pad into a rad pad. And they offer gift cards. Founder Brandy O'Dell says gift certificates can be delivered within San Francisco within a couple of days, or mailed to the recipient. O'Dell recommends a four-hour package ($95 per hour) to really make progress within a room, but suggests that even a gift certificate for one or two hours can give someone the push they need to begin organizing (or book a follow-up session). Purchase an organizing package before December 31 (for use any time in 2014), and you can take advantage of her holiday special: Six hours of organizing with one free hour or eight hours with two free hours.
The girl who loves art will also love a membership to the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco. An individual membership is only $99, and it includes access to both the de Young and the Legion of Honor. (If you're feeling extra generous, consider the $149 ArtPoint membership, which includes discounts to glam ArtPoint events and invites to additional social functions. To purchase a gift membership, call the museum membership line at 415-750-3636.
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