What's New, What's Renovated, What's Happening
When you plan a meeting in San Antonio, you’re crafting an unforgettable attendee experience that stretches beyond the conference room. And since San Antonio is a city of constant transformation, with new attractions, revitalized historic sites, and exciting events popping up all the time, there’s always something unique and thrilling to discover.
Hemisfair, site of the 1968 World’s Fair, is well into the second of a three-phase development plan to become San Antonio’s very own Central Park, a place where you can meet, eat, play and relax. Located steps outside of the Convention Center, Hemisfair is the perfect location for various group events. The first phase of the project, Yanaguana Garden, is complete and open to the public. It features a 4.1-acre play environment designed for all ages and abilities, a splash pad and eateries including Paleteria San Antonio, Dough Pizzeria Napoletana, Chocollazo, and Commonwealth Coffeehouse. As the redevelopment moves forward, visitors will see the addition of new buildings and offerings, including a hotel, retail shops, workforce housing, cultural and educational amenities and additional restaurants.
Adding to San Antonio’s repertoire of exceptional hotels, the Thompson San Antonio Hotel and The Arts Residences opened in February 2021 and is a $116 million mixed-use hotel-condominium tower on the San Antonio River Walk. The 20-story 337,000-plus-square-foot mixed-use development is across the River Walk from the esteemed Tobin Center for the Performing Arts. This 162-room Thompson Hotel is one of a collection of design-forward, boutique lifestyle hotels and resorts. It features amenities including a high-end restaurant, 20th floor rooftop bar with panoramic views of downtown, a 5,000 square-foot pool deck with pool bar on the fourth floor, a fitness center, spa, valet parking and 24-hour concierge and in-room dining services
Canopy by Hilton
Another highly anticipated hotel opened in March 2021. Canopy by Hilton integrates the Civil War-era Alamo Fish Market building into its 20-story design. Incorporating the building into the hotel is not only an integral element of the authenticity of the Canopy brand, but also maintains an important historic element to the corridor. Canopy San Antonio River Walk features 1,102 square feet of meeting space, 195 rooms and a restaurant with an outdoor terrace overlooking the River Walk.
Estancia del Norte
The Estancia del Norte opened in the Uptown district in April of 2021. Originally constructed as La Mansion Del Norte in 1978, Estancia Del Norte transforms a piece of San Antonio history into a modern space for celebration, designed to showcase the vibrant traditions of Mexico, Spain, and Texas. The hotel offers 277 guest rooms including 12 luxury suites, the Grand Courtyard replete with a luxury pool and gardens, local artwork throughout the hotel, conference center including the over 7,000 square-foot Estancia Ballroom, the Paseo Bar and Lazo with Don Strange, the first restaurant from renowned San Antonio catering company, focusing on regional South Texas cuisine.
The Red Berry Estate
Just minutes from downtown, The Red Berry Estate is a storied lakeside mansion that was lovingly restored and reopened in late 2020. The Red Berry Estate now has 15,000+ sq. ft. of entertaining space, including a Mansion Ballroom, a spacious Lakeside Ballroom, and a Casino with Bar & Lounge, as well as new outdoor spaces capable of hosting large groups, including a new Lakeside Veranda, Lakeside Lawns and Lakeside Fountain areas. The restored 12-acre lake provides an unrivaled event backdrop, featuring in-lake fountains and views of downtown. The venue accommodates motor coaches and is supported by the award-winning event professionals at Rosemary’s Catering and The RK Group.
San Antonio Botanical Garden
The San Antonio Botanical Garden completed the first phase of its expansion in early 2018. New additions include the Goldsbury Foundation Pavilion & CHEF Teaching Kitchen where groups can take part in interactive cooking activities that incorporate the bounty of the surrounding garden. In 2020, the Botanical Garden unveiled the all-new Betty Kelso Center, an education and event center with an additional 9,000 square feet of rentable space featuring huge windows, sliding glass doors and a wraparound patio.
One of the most exciting additions to the art world, Ruby City is part of Linda Pace Foundation’s contemporary art center. Conceived by Linda Pace (1945-2007), and designed by Sir David Adjaye, the modern crimson-hued building has transformed San Antonio’s skyline. The museum houses the Foundation’s growing collection of more than 800 paintings, sculptures, installations and video works by contemporary artists from around the world.
The Transformed Witte Museum
The Witte Museum has debuted its once-in-a-century transformation, bringing more than 170-thousand square feet of renovated and expanded exhibition space to the banks of the San Antonio River. The new Witte offers meeting planners something great to work with including the Mays Family Center with a majestic 10,000 square-foot space designed to host blockbuster exhibitions and special events. The museum also features the Naylor Family Dinosaur Gallery, numerous galleries that explore the story of Texas through art and diverse collections, the H-E-B Body Adventure, and The South Texas Heritage Center, among other historic and cultural attractions on its 10-acre, garden-laden campus.
San Pedro Creek Culture Park
The first segment of the much-anticipated San Pedro Creek Culture Park – a one-of-a-kind urban greenspace located on the western edge of downtown San Antonio. The world-class linear park transformed San Pedro Creek into a restored natural creek habitat and greenspace. Combining purpose with beauty, San Pedro Creek Culture Park offers group friendly public spaces and venues.
South of downtown, Confluence Park is a new $13.7 million park designed for learning and recreation, inspiring visitors while teaching environmental science and sustainability. Featuring several pavilions, venues and green space, Confluence Park is a popular place for group events.
San Antonio’s restaurant culture has moved into the limelight as acclaimed chefs, as well as talented new chefs from the Culinary Institute of America San Antonio, continue to make their mark. In fact, in 2017 San Antonio was designated ‘Creative City of Gastronomy’ by UNESCO for its rich and confluent culinary scene. With the perfect combination of quality, variety and hospitality, dining in San Antonio offers incredible food served everywhere from upscale steak houses to humble food trucks.