San Antonio Journals

San Antonio Traditions

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A November 2005 trip to San Antonio by Idler

Detail from inside the Alamo complex Photo, San Antonio, Texas More Photos
Quote: So you've seen the Alamo and strolled along the famous River Walk. Now take a deeper look at one of Texas' most vibrant and culturally diverse cities.

Emily Morgan Hotel

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Hotel | "The Emily Morgan Hotel "

Emily Morgan Hotel Photo, San Antonio, Texas
Quote:
A popular Texas tale recounts how a striking mulatto woman named Emily Morgan "entertained" General Santa Anna in his tent just before the Battle of San Jacinto in 1836. According to the story, the amorous general was so smitten that he neglected pressing military matters – and thus Sam Houston and his ragged troop of pioneers were able to defeat the Mexican army and gain freedom for Texas. While many contend that there’s little evidence to support this story, others are equally adamant there is. Whatever the case, the hotel that now bears Emily’s name is every bit as charming as the legendary "Yellow Rose of Texas" herself was reputed to be. The Emily Morgan was origina...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on August 17, 2006

Emily Morgan Hotel
705 East Houston Street
San Antonio, Texas 78205
(210) 225-5100

Zuni Grill

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Restaurant | "The Zuni Grill"

Riverwalk Photo, San Antonio, Texas
Quote:
In a city renowned for its Mexican restaurants, the Zuni Grill wisely avoids head-to-head competition by focusing on Southwestern cuisine, with a menu that looks westward rather than southward. Without setting out to do so, I ate breakfast at Zuni on three separate occasions. And while I can’t speak with any authority about lunch or dinner, I can testify that breakfast is a very popular meal here. Part of the appeal is the location – right along one of the busiest stretches of the Riverwalk, in a picturesque spot near a lovely stone bridge, where putdoor tables are set up in the shade. Crested herons perch in nearby cypresses, and ...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on August 17, 2006

Zuni Grill
223 Losoya
San Antonio, Texas 78205
(210) 227-0864

Institute of Texan Cultures

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Attraction | "The Institute of Texan Cultures"

Institute of Texan Cultures Photo, San Antonio, Texas
Quote:
I had no idea. Really, I had no idea that the Lone Star State was so ethnically diverse. Even though I was born and partly raised in Texas, I assumed the Texas "cultures" on display at the Institute of Texan Cultures would run the gamut from cowboy to Mexican and then maybe to, well, Tejano and rancher. Boy, was I in for a surprise. The institute is housed in a spacious building which originally served as the Texas Pavilion at HemisFair in 1968. While I can remember being taken to HemisFair as a child, I have no real recollection of this hall, which ultimately proved to be so successful that it conti...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on August 17, 2006

Institute of Texan Cultures
801 South Bowie St
San Antonio, Texas 78205
(210) 458-2300

Preserving a Rich Architectural Heritage

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Story/Tip

The Nix Professional Building Photo, San Antonio, Texas
Quote:
Preserving a Rich Architectural HeritageSan Antonio was one of the first cities west of Mississippi to make a concerted effort to preserve its historic buildings, beginning back in 1924 with the foundation of the San Antonio Conservation Society. Not only has this guaranteed that the city’s architectural riches are left intact for future generations, but the preservation of these structures has added considerably to San Antonio’s appeal as a tourist destination. In a particularly clever move, many of the graceful older buildings have been converted, or are in the process of being converted into visitor-friendly attractions and hotels, while others are entering a second...Read More

Traditions Live On

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Story/Tip

At the Buckhorn Saloon & Museum Photo, San Antonio, Texas
Quote:
Traditions Live On in San AntonioOne thing that becomes immediately apparent to even a casual visitor is that San Antonio is a composite, blending diverse ethnic groups and heritages. German, American Indian, Eastern European, African-American, Southern, Western, but above all a vibrant Hispanic legacy combine in a rich cultural mélange that sometimes yields surprising results. The best traditions in San Antonio are a blend of the old and new, and the city is at its finest when its ethnic diversity shines through the tourist façade. Musical Traditions San Antonio hosts a rich musical scene, especially when it comes to conjunto, a boisterous accordio...Read More