Three Hidden Gems in Liberty Station

May 8, 2023

Liberty Station is a place full of places you wouldn’t know were there unless you walked into a building where you felt you weren’t supposed to be! They’re called Hidden Gems, and they’re all quite unique. 


Liberty Station used to be known as the Naval Training Center. After The Cold War, the Navy that occupied the space gradually moved out of the area and was eventually closed in 1997. Slowly it became what we know today as Liberty Station after the city of San Diego took over and gained ownership of the property in 2000. Now it is known for being a center for the art of entertainment.  


As you know, Writers, Ink, is in Liberty Station. For anyone new to the area, it would be a good idea to visit these three places here.



Mi Gallery Tu Gallery: Barracks 19, Suite 20


I left my internship site and figured I might as well explore the area. All the barracks, especially when the doors are closed, look like you’re not allowed to go in, but you are. I ended up in Barracks 19, looking for a friend who I knew was interning close by. I couldn’t find them, but I did find something interesting. I noticed a woman sitting and beginning to paint on a blank canvas. I watched with intensity. Painting has never been easy for me, nor has it been challenging. It was simply an impossible task to make something other than a blob of colors mixed with what only someone with a wild and weird imagination could see, but I’ve always strived to not only express myself through art but also communicate through my creations. This went on for about five more seconds before the woman tilted her head, and at that moment I flung my body back through the door and into the hallway. Before leaving, I grabbed one of the cards to her website in a basket near the door.


Mi Gallery Tu Gallery is run by a woman named Rosa Huerta. Rosa Huerta plans to push and feature the work of Latino artists all over California.


“What inspired me to create art is expressing my thoughts and feelings within image, and my background as a Latino woman is represented strongly in my work with the color and textures of my culture.”  — Rosa Huerta


Milk Oolong Studio — Barracks 19, Suite 203


Milk Oolong Studio is focused on pottery and holds classes for all types of clever clay-made items that include ramen bowls, mugs, vases, and hand-made items without the use of a pottery wheel. Milk Oolong itself is owned by Leah Schaperow. She teaches pottery classes along with three others, Laura Hershey, Nancy Barbour, and Hannah Horner. They’re located in Barracks 19, Suite 203. 


An intern at Milk Ooling Studio had some positive feedback to give.


 “I started doing pottery back in August/September, and I actually first learned in the exact studio I’m interning at right now. I was learning underneath a different teacher who isn’t a mentor, but Milk Oolong Studio is a really welcoming place for everyone of all ages and experiences on the wheel. When I first started my teacher was really kind and encouraging… I really love the studio. Everyone who comes through the studio has been very kind to me, but since starting to intern, I’ve been viewing the entire studio a little bit differently. Pottery, it’s something that helped me be more patient with myself. You can’t rush it, or else it’d be an utter mess, and things can go very wrong very quickly.” 



AG Ambroult — Barracks 14, Suite 210


AG Ambroult consists of handmade jewelry. rings, earrings, necklaces, and bracelets, and all are in eight categories of how they look. The categories are classics, cellular loops, forest, high desert, one-of-a-kind, ripple, celestial, and link collection. They are all made by Amy, a jeweler and metals teacher who runs her entire space. 


“It’s always been in the details when I felt like I was truly showing people who I was. That time I thrifted a fits-like-a-glove dress for $2 or when I popped on a couple statement rings before the parent-teacher conference. Those soulful moments made AG Ambroult. Since opening in 2007, I’ve wanted to give women (and the guys) the chance to show their loved ones, co-workers, friends, and strangers on the street a glimpse of their own personal style and perspective.” — AG Ambroult



Overall, Liberty Station has much more to offer than one might think. Taking time to go explore and discover something new and interesting won’t hurt. The three places listed are just a fraction of what Liberty Station has to offer.

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