After the passing of George Whitney, the Playland property was sold for development to Jeremy Ets-Hokin, who kept Sal out of the path of the wrecking ball. A sheltered environment lacking the gaudy glitz to which she was accustomed didn't quite appeal to her, though. She needed a more vibrant place to call home, with a carnival-like atmosphere that she could readily identify with.

Sal had her own brand of ice cream sold at Playland.
That desire would be fulfilled with the appearance of another suitor in the person of John Wickett. A wealthy collector of curiosities and artifacts from such far-off locales as India and Nepal, Wickett soon charmed Sal into taking up residence in his South Market exhibition hall, The San Francisco Museum of Exotica. This was Wickett's own private Xanadu, a three room invitation-only collection of the arcane, mysterious and bizarre. Sal quickly assumed a lofty position overseeing Mr.Wickett's chaotic conglomeration of esoterica.

Sal resided for over 30 years among the thousands of colorful objects and oddities. And there were stories about how Wickett, reputed to have been an active socialite, would trundle her
off in his limo to accompany him on his rounds of merrymaking. Many nights on the party circuit resulted in a few bumps, scuffs and dents, but by all accounts Sal provided her usual lively companionship. When Wickett passed away at age 87, the contents of his museum were to be sold at auction and Sal's future whereabouts were again shrouded in uncertainty. Wickett had expressed a desire that Sal's next owner make her available to be enjoyed by the public, but that decision would ultimately be made by the person who cast the winning bid. And Sal proved to be a highly coveted prize as several serious bidders strived for the privilege of becoming her new owner. Not only was she one of only about a dozen original Sals still in existence, she was the Playland Sal, the one that everyone remembered when they were growing up, the one who held the key to all of those fond memories of the good old days when San Francisco had an amusement park called Playland-At-The-Beach.
Among the bidders was another California park that recognized the value of Sal, and that acquiring her was the "Chance of a Laff-time".