120 Cedar St, San Francisco, CA 94109
Phone: (415) 334-1072
Parking: Garage, Lot, Free
Specialties: Marine Fish, Salt Water Fish, Tropical Fish
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06/13/2011Provided by Citysearch -
This shop is clean and the fish look alive and healthy. If you visit here often, you will see that they sell everything and get fresh stock regularly.
I have been to a few other places that do not have lively fish and they don't bother to remove them.
This place is clean and the staff very kowledgeable and friendly.
05/03/2011Provided by Citysearch -
i love ady and his wife so helpful. i came all the way frome sanjose 1hourdrive. my friend told me about this place.its so green and healthy fishes and plants inside.
i used to come ada store in fillmore but now i got hook at ocean aquarium. they are very helpful. i have to try his technique and i will see him in fourth week to buy his plants.
i willl update the review next time to see how it work
06/26/2009Provided by Citysearch -
I've been keeping aquariums for over 40 years. My very first job was at an aquarium store, at 13, and I hope my last job will also be at an aquarium store. I managed The Aquarium, in Pleasant Hill and Concord for many years, and we were proud of our store. It was big, clean and modern. Ocean Aquarium is small, clean and low-tech.
And the fish Love it there! I'll tell you why.
Justin and his family show the love they have for this hobby from the minute you walk in the door. You see green everywhere. It's the color of the plants reflecting out from all the aquariums, glowing in a healthy kind of radiance that no big store can ever match. The attention is focused on a naturalistic type of environment that encourages health in the animals, rather than the ""get 'em in and out fast"" approach that dominates most aquarium stores. I've always been told that it is simply the only way to make a store profitable and Justin and family proved to me that it just isn't so.
The selection of fish is amazing, offering species that you will never see in other stores. I even saw a few I have only seen in books! If you are really into aquariums, you will be in awe of what you see in this store. Plain and simple, much like the store itself. The health of the fish is better than almost any store I have ever seen, and I've been to hundreds all over the country.
As for the one review I read here claiming that the owners were rude, the writer must have been talking about other people. The family I met were joyful, passionate and friendly, giving me a tour and showing me highlights. I would suggest that one merely need ask, and Justin or one of the family will be happy to accommodate you.
This review is long, and it needs to be. As a professional aquarist, a store like this is simply a rare delight. I encourage anyone looking for amazing smaller freshwater tropical fish to visit Ocean Aquarium. If you're merely curious about aquariums, even better! This store may give you just the push you need to get hooked, and reel you in to a lifetime of enjoyment from a simple, natural hobby. Fish weather recessions just fine, thank you. Fish food is cheap.
Am I glowing yet?
P.S. If they had 6 stars, these guys would get another one.
11/16/2008Provided by Citysearch -
I went here based on the previous reviews, and was so glad I did! I have a sick fish and called ahead to see if I should bring him in, and the owner was friendly and to the point, ""Bring him in! I'll tell you what's wrong!"" Turned out to be an excellent precursor to the place - knowledgeable, efficient, to the point.
As previous reviews have said, it's definitely in an unexpected area. You're basically driving down a trashy, dark, empty alley with a scattered bum or two wondering ""Is this the right place?"" But then you see a bright friendly doorway, the only one around, and the sign.
Justin knew immediately what was wrong, and was honest in his assessment of my chances of recovering the fish. When I said I wanted to try anyway he got me everything I needed, told me exactly how and when to administer everything and the reasons behind it, asked insightful questions about my setup and offered tips, and even tested my water. When I wanted to buy additional things he cautioned against it and did not try to upsell or mislead me in any way as I've almost come to expect from retail.
Even at 6:30 PM Sunday evening he took all the time I needed to make sure my questions were answered and I knew what to do. Like another reviewer said, you can just *tell* walking in and looking around that the fish there are happy and healthy. Even if my fish doesn't make it, it would be no fault of theirs and I would definitely come back.
11/17/2007Provided by Citysearch -
I've been going to Ocean Aquarium for over ten years and would never buy fish anywhere else. Justin, Ady and their daughter Josephine are all very friendly and knowledgeable about the hobby and are always happy to talk to you or help with any problems you might be having. A lot of other stores are just businesses trying to make a buck but Justin truly loves the hobby and is always busy maintaining his tanks, which are all planted, or reading about something new in the hobby. He takes pride in stocking rare fish and plants you won't find in most other shops and goes out of his way to provide you with information on how to keep and even breed these exotic gems.
06/10/2006Provided by Citysearch -
I have been to a lot of fish stores - this is the best for fish health and abundance of useful information. The fish are so happy there - you can immediately tell the water, plants anf fish are in perfect condition. Justin has told me how to care for fish, tend to them when they get sick, and even how to manage the breeding season for my difficult African cichlids. He also helped me spot problems with my live plants in my Amazon tank. He makes me feel so at ease about my hobby that I sometimes find an excuse to go there just to get some free ""counseling""!
So the beef is: go here to buy freshwater fish. For supplies, sometimes you can find some more variety elsewhere, but regardless, always ask Justin first on medications. Do not buy any fish in another commercial store, where the fish are not cared for properly. The only exception might be for certain varieties that Justin does not stock in abundance (e.g. cichlids). Check in with him every few months because he will get amazing new stocks of fish and will make sure they are in tip-top health before selling them.
04/24/2006Provided by Citysearch -
This is like an underground place for real fish geeks that know about this place. Justin and Ada have been amazing to me, they always know what kind of fish I have and what I'm looking for. Their quality is 2nd to none (#1) good variety, healthy fish and plants, never had a problem, and I've been shopping ther for years. Thanks Justin!
01/28/2006Provided by Citysearch -
Went to this store on a recommendation from this site. It is exactly a hole in the wall, but open every day from 11 Am to 7PM and the couple who own it are very sweet, passionate and excited about what they do with fish. When you walk in, it is dark, a little dog may greet you as you step over him, but there are fish everywhere! We went with my 4 year old son, and walked out full of knowledge for our 10 gallon tank, live plants, and a fully set up Betta for my son's room. We know that we will never go anywhere else because they took care of us so well without ripping us off. We were witness to people come in and ask about expensive filters, and directed to a better quality for less money without being condescending.
10/30/2005Provided by Citysearch -
store is small cramped hole in the wall, but the staff was exceedingly helpful/ knowledgealbe. Unlike most larger fish stores I saw NO sick or dead fish in any of the tanks. They even gave us a free bag of water from the aquarium our fish came out of to help set up our new tank's bacterial balance. Overall awesome, everything you need to set-up a new aquarium was there, and all my questions were answered.
10/25/2005Provided by Citysearch -
Justin and Ady pay the same amount of careful, friendtly attention to novice and experienced aquarists alike. They believe in the simple cheap solution whenever possible. Their fish are always healthy, and they will not sell fish until they have had them for a few weeks and know that they are healthy.
09/17/2005Provided by Citysearch -
Ocean Aquarium is a hole-in-the-wall freshwater aquarium store run by husband and wife Justin and Ady. They specialize in planted tanks, rare, exquisite and small fishes. Justin is in business out of love for the hobby, and goes out of his way to help clients learn the joys of fishkeeping. He is a wealth of practical knowledge, and is free with his advice on request. You get very knowledgeable and patient attention on fish keeping and aquatic gardening. They never try to sell you equipment you don't need, and prices are very reasonable, almost insane sometimes.
07/31/2005Provided by Citysearch -
This family owned business takes great pride in the fish they sell and in the environment that they will be placed in. Even so, the owners can be incredibly rude -- and seem to delight in revealing customer ignorance. Rather than helping or providing education, they are dismissive and condescending. I hope places where they shop don't treat them the same way. Life is too short!