ABOUT SAN ANTONIO
SAN ANTONIO REALTOR
San Antonio captures the spirit of Texas. Now the eighth largest city in the United States, the city has retained its sense of history and tradition, while carefully blending in cosmopolitan progress. The city has always been a crossroads and a meeting place. Sounds and flavors of Native Americans, Old Mexico, Germans, the Wild West, African-Americans and the Deep South mingle and merge. Close to twenty million visitors a year delight in the discovery of San Antonio's charms.
Texas History 101For history buffs, San Antonio is a mecca. Native Americans first lived along the San Antonio River, calling the area "Yanaguana," which means "refreshing waters," or "clear waters." A band of Spanish explorers and missionaries came upon the river in 1691, and because it was the feast day of St. Anthony, they named the river "San Antonio."
The actual founding of the city came in 1718 by Father Antonio Olivares, when he established Mission San Antonio de Valero, which became permanently etched in the annals of history in 1836 as The Alamo where 189 defenders held the old mission against some 4,000 Mexican troops for 13 days. The cry "Remember the Alamo" became the rallying point of the Texan revolution against Mexico. Located in the heart of downtown, today The Alamo is a shrine and museum. A tour of downtown San Antonio will uncover centuries of history, including:
San Antonio For KidsSan Antonio provides the picture-perfect setting for great family vacations, beginning with the San Antonio Children's Museum , where kids are encouraged to explore a miniature version of the city. The Magik Theatre provides family, professional theater, in the heart of downtown. The Downtown All-Around Playground at HemisFair Park and the newly renovated Milam Park (across from Market Square) provide excellent stops for kids to burn off excess energy. And don't' forget the Tower of the Americas , which offers a spectacular view of San Antonio from 750 feet above the ground. Steps away from the Tower of the Americas is UTSA's Institute of Texan Cultures , San Antonio's experience museum, featuring interactive exhibits and activities for families that celebrate Texas's multicultural heritage!
The Plaza Theatre of Wax houses more than 225 life-like characters in four themed sections -- Hollywood, Horror, History and Religion. Ripley's Believe it Or Not! has more than 500 unique curiosities from around the world.
Brackenridge Park , a 433-acre refuge in the heart of the city, offers a full day of family fun. The San Antonio Zoo , with a collection of more than 3,000 animals, is ranked as one of the best in the country.
The Witte Museum 's philosophy is hands-on learning, with exhibits exploring Texas history and science. The Brackenridge Eagle Miniature Train, and Kiddie Park will round out a day of fun and education.
Six Flags Fiesta, Texas Theme Park is a non-stop celebration of San Antonio and South Texas. It's created around four themed areas: the Mexican town of Los Festivales, the German village of Spassburg, the 1920 cowboy boom town of Crackaxle Canyon, and the small Texas town of Rockville during the golden age of rock'n'roll, which includes Fiesta Bay Boardwalk, a '50s-'60s seaside boardwalk complete with a 90-foot ferris wheel.
Van Gogh, Mozart and TrevinoSan Antonio has two impressive art museums. The McNay Art Museum is set in a Mediterranean-style mansion and has wide-ranging collections, including post-impressionist and modern art, theater art, Medieval art, Native American art and more.
The San Antonio Museum of Art (SAMA) is housed in the castle-like former headquarters of the Lone Star Brewery. This museum is noted for its antiquities collections, Mexican folk art, modern art, pre-Columbian art, Spanish colonial art, and the 30,000 square foot Nelson A. Rockefeller Center for Latin American Arts.
The Guadalupe Cultural Arts Center provides a venue for Hispanic artistic endeavors - literary, dance, music and drama. Signature events of the center include the San Antonio CineFestival, a celebration of conjunto music, a South Texas original.
The Carver Community Cultural Center mounts a stellar season each year, with performing groups from around the world, with an accent on African-American artists. The Carver Jazz Festival is famous for presenting the hottest new stars and the masters of American Jazz each year.
The opulent Majestic Theatre downtown, built in 1929, is a memorable setting for touring Broadway shows and concerts and is also the permanent home of the San Antonio Symphony, now in its 54th season.
The Spurs, Golf and Hill Country AdventureWith over 300 days of sunshine annually and an average temperature of 68.8 degrees Fahrenheit, visitors to San Antonio will find an abundance of outdoor sports and recreation to challenge them.
Rivers in the Texas Hill Country, which forms an arc around the northern edge of San Antonio, provide venues for canoeing, tubing and white-water rafting. Area lakes attract fishermen, as well as water skiing and sailing enthusiasts. Working ranches throughout Central and South Texas are available as hunting leases for wild game, while dude ranches offer a taste of the Old West, complete with horseback riding. Numerous state parks offer opportunities for hiking in the rugged terrain of the Hill Country.
San Antonio also offers a wide variety of spectator sports -- the San Antonio Spurs , San Antonio Antonio Rampage of the International Hockey League and the San Antonio Missions minor league baseball team.
No. 2 Combination PlateDining options in San Antonio run the gamut from fine French cuisine to Chinese to Soul food and Cajun, but the one not to miss is Tex-Mex. Tex-Mex is a passion with local residents of all ethnic backgrounds, and numerous restaurants are open 24 hours.
The Stars are Big and BrightWhen the stars come out over the South Texas Plains, it's time to head to the nightclubs and dance halls, two-stepping to a country-western band or swaying to a Tejano super group. Or maybe it's traditional jazz or a sing-along at an Irish pub or piano bar? What about Hard Rock Cafe on the River Walk? San Antonio offers a wide range of entertainment options when the sun goes down.
Y'All Come BackFrank Tolbert, a noted Texas historian and journalist, once said, "Every Texan has two homes his own and San Antonio." After your visit to San Antonio, we hope that you will consider San Antonio your second home and return again and again to experience all the city has to offer.