Buzzing with boutique hotels, art galleries, and award-winning restaurants, Downtown San Antonio is so much more than just the River Walk.
If you’ve lived in San Antonio for any length of time, you’re probably a seasoned pro at the whole River Walk thing by now. But while we love the San Antonio River Walk as much as the next Texan, it’s not the only thing to do downtown. Check out these 5 local hotspots that prove just how much is happening in SA's urban core!
Image Courtesy of Hotel Emma's Facebook Page
1. Visit The Pearl Brewery + Hotel Emma
Originally Texas’ largest brewery (and the only one in San Antonio to survive the prohibition era), The Pearl has since been transformed into a mixed-use space featuring foodie-approved restaurants and cafes, luxury and boutique retailers, a stunning boutique hotel, and over three hundred apartments (not to mention a regular Farmers Market). Needless to say, The Pearl Brewery is always humming with vibrant San Antonio charm. Skip the River Walk and relax in Hotel Emma's gorgeous lobby, sip a glass of vino at High Street Wine Co, and listen to tunes at Jazz TX.
2. Check out Southtown + King William
The happy, eclectic intersection of three distinct San Antonio neighborhoods (King William, Lone Star, and Lavaca), Southtown is a historic arts district with plenty of new
Image Courtesy of the San Antonio Museum of Art Facebook Page
3. Explore The Cultural Corridor
Perched just above the Alamo City’s buzzing downtown, San Antonio's Cultural Corridor has blossomed over the past decade. Stocked with outdoor green spaces, art galleries, cultural icons, and museums galore, this might just be our favorite part of San Antonio. Head to the DoSe um (a wildly creative place for kids), The San Antonio Museum of Art, The Witte, or The Mc Nay for a dose of culture. Then, head outside to the San Antonio Zoo, the Japanese Tea Garden, the San Antonio Botanical Gardens, or Brackenridge Park!
5. Venture to the South Flores Arts District
Looking for some outside-the-box sights? The South Flores area stands as a sort of local bohemia, complete with galleries and art collectives striving to think outside the box. Galleries like Gravelmouth showcase contemporary artists “with a bias for street culture”, among other influences. Besides the art scene, you can explore the urban landscape around the old Lone Star brewery. South Flores is an area that might be showing early signs of gentrification...but we kind of hope it keeps its weird brand of charm, complete with post-apocalyptic street murals that will leave you scratching your head.
Image Courtesy of Historic Market Square
5. Browse The Market Square District
Arguably the liveliest section of downtown, the three-block outdoor plaza known as "Market Square" is lined with shops, restaurants, food stands, produce, and (obviously) plenty of culture. If you weren’t already convinced, Market Square boasts the title of “largest Mexican market outside of Mexico! Start off your visit with the "El Mercado" section of the market (home to over thirty specialty shops selling anything from handmade candies to beautifully embroidered garments and leather goods), then head out to Farmers Market Plaza, which boasts eighty locally-owned shops and stands.
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Note: This blog was originally published in April 2016 and has been updated to reflect current info.