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Valentine's Day: San Francisco to bring 'cable car' to L.A.

February 14, 2013|By Mary Forgione | Los Angeles Times Daily Travel & Deal blogger
  • Amtrak's Coast Starlight will be wrapped with this cable-car facade through April 30. The decorated train pulls into L.A. on Thursday.
Amtrak's Coast Starlight will be wrapped with this cable-car facade… (San Francisco Travel Assn. )

San Francisco wants to spread the love on Valentine's Day. The city deemed "most romantic" on several travel surveys plans to bring some of its charm to L.A.'s Union Station with an entire train wrapped as a cable car — and even a bit of fog too.

The deal: The train is really Amtrak's Coast Starlight that travels from L.A. to Seattle via San Luis Obispo, Santa Barbara, Oakland and other cities. Through April 30, it will be covered with a scene of riders on a San Francisco cable car and views of the Golden Gate Bridge and Coit Tower at each end.

To hail the train's arrival, San Francisco Travel will host an event at Union Station with characters dressed as Snow White, star of a current exhibit at the Walt Disney Family Museum in the Presidio; and the "Girl With the Pearl Earring," from the Vermeer painting on display at the De Young Museum. Free Ghirardelli chocolates will be handed out too.

When: The event will be held 7 to 10 a.m. Thursday (today).

Details: The "cable car" will arrive at 9:30 a.m., begin boarding around 10 a.m. and depart for points north at 10:25 a.m. Analilia Barajas of Los Angeles will be the first to board for writing the winning Twitter love letter to the city in a tourism association contest: "Jubilation wrapped in bewildering cloak of orange radiance, coolest of breezes on the stifling heat staggers my mind; my beloved SF." Her prize includes the train trip and three nights at the Fairmont San Francisco.

Passengers traveling on the 10:25 a.m. Coast Starlight will be joined by the characters and may participate in giveaways during the trip.

Contact: San Francisco Travel, (415) 391-2000
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