August 1977 – PIER 39 breaks ground. Authentic 1910 wood from Piers 34 and 3 are used to erect the new structure.
October 1978 – PIER 39 opens on schedule to fanfare in San Francisco. Originally, PIER 39 had 50 stores, 23 restaurants, a diving pool and street performers.
May 1979 – Blue & Gold Fleet launches its first Bay Cruise.
August 1981 – Moor + South acquires property, forming the PIER 39 Limited Partnership.
May 1983 – Diving pool at Bay End of The PIER replaced with Venetian Carousel from inside Palace of Fun Arts.
January 1989 – PIER 39 is named the third most-visited attraction in the country by USA Today.
January 1990 – California sea lions begin arriving in droves on PIER 39’s K Dock, creating a local and international sensation. To date, the population has grown as high as 1,701.
April 1996 – Underwater World (now Aquarium of the Bay) opens to the public.
October 1996 – Bubba Gump Shrimp Co. Restaurant & Market opens at PIER 39.
July 1998 – PIER 39 is named “Best Place to People Watch (San Francisco)” and “Best Video Games Arcade” as voted by the San Francisco Chronicle’s Readers’ Choice competition.
July 1999 – PIER 39 is named “Best Place to People Watch (San Francisco)” as voted by the San Francisco Chronicle’s Readers’ Choice competition.
May 2002 – Riptide Arcade family entertainment center (now Players Sports Grill & Arcade) opens with more than 100 video games, virtual reality units, novelty and prize-redemption games.
August 2002 – Hard Rock Cafe opens.
October 2003 – PIER 39 celebrates its 25th Anniversary on San Francisco’s historic waterfront.
December 2008 – Arrival of the new, two-story San Francisco Carousel. The Carousel was hand-crafted in Italy and featured paintings of famous San Francisco landmarks.
May 2009 – Blue & Gold Fleet officially debuts RocketBoat, the high-speed thrill ride on San Francisco Bay.
July 2009 – Riptide Arcade is remodeled into an arcade and restaurant, and renamed Players Sports Grill & Arcade.
November 2009 – A record 1,701 Sea Lions haul out on PIER 39’s K-Dock. Six new floats are added to accommodate the sudden influx of these marine mammals. San Francisco Whale Tours also joins the PIER 39 Marina.
January 2010 – Aquarium of the Bay obtains non-profit status after it is acquired by The Bay Institute.
May 2011 – PIER 39 is ranked most-visited attraction in San Francisco by San Francisco Travel Association’s 2010 Visitor Profile Study.
October 2012 – 7D Experience – a simulated roller coaster and laser blaster attraction – opens their doors at PIER 39.
June 2013 – Musical Stairs by Remo Saraceni, creator of the famous piano from the Tom Hanks movie Big, are installed at PIER 39.
October 2013 – PIER 39 celebrates its 35th Anniversary on San Francisco’s historic waterfront.
January 2014 – The Sea Lion Center, owned and operated by Aquarium of the Bay, opens at PIER 39. The Sea Lion Center is a free, interpretative learning center focusing on the California sea lion.
July 2014 – PIER 39 unveils Open Heart—part of San Francisco General Hospital Foundation’s 2014 “Hearts in San Francisco” collection—at the Bay End of The PIER.
January 2015 – PIER 39 celebrates the 25th Anniversary of the sea lions’ arrival to PIER 39.
April 2015 – PIER 39 once again ranked most-visited attraction in San Francisco by San Francisco Travel Association’s 2014 Visitor Profile Study.
October 2017 – PIER 39 celebrates its 39th Anniversary on the San Francisco Waterfront.
March 2018 – PIER 39 once again ranked most-visited attraction in San Francisco by San Francisco Travel Association’s 2017 Visitor Profile Study.
June 2018 – The “Skip The Straw” Campaign launches at all restaurants and eateries on PIER 39.
July 2018 – PIER 39 partners with Alipay to create a seamless payment experience for Chinese visitors on The PIER.
September 2018 – PIER 39 named a Legacy Business by the City of San Francisco.
January 2019 – The Flyer – San Francisco, an immersive flying theater attraction, opens at PIER 39.
January 2020 – PIER 39 celebrates the 30th Anniversary of the sea lions’ arrival to PIER 39.
February 2020 – PIER 39 once again was named the most-visited attraction in San Francisco by San Francisco Travel Association’s 2019 Visitor Profile Study.