The Pearl is named for the former Pearl Brewery which operated for over 100 years until it closed in 2001. The site was purchased by Christopher Goldsbury and his Silver Ventures investment firm. Mr. Goldsbury--one of six billionaires who call San Antonio home--made his money from Pace Foods, the company which helped make salsa America's number one condiment. Now that The Pearl is coming together, I am amazed by his vision and community investment which has created a wonderful urban destination for locals and tourists.
Let's get walking around the new plaza. The Second Empire style former brewhouse built in 1894 is now a guest room tower at Hotel Emma. Photos of guest rooms show those awesome curved windows from the inside and the cupola is now a two-story guest suite.
Recycled pieces from the brewery form a tiered fountain in the plaza. Just ahead is the entrance to Southerleigh a new restaurant adjacent to the hotel.
Shady seating set on gravel invites relaxation.
Austin-based Christy Ten Eyck designed the Texas casual landscape.
Cement planters with wood form imprints sport cascading purple heart, fluffy bamboo muhly, and silvery palms. Drought tough plants that are common to local residential landscapes make hard-edged concrete comfortable. Wood form imprints are visible on walls and ceilings throughout the hotel as well.
Existing screen structure left in place as focal point and sculpture
Brightly blooming Bougainvillea at its feet provides a softening effect.
Familiar, yet unique. A typical San Antonio tiered fountain courtyard rendered differently with recycled industrial metal instead of traditional concrete.
Color echoes unify plaza and buildings.
More of those important color echoes in recycled industrial metal placed as sculpture.
I loved this. Converted tank planters serve as bollards to keep vehicles off the plaza or walkers from accidentally stepping into the roadway since there's no elevation change and few visual clues.
Across the road hardscape and gravel gives way to a lawn with softening plants at the corners.
The old Pearl Brewery admin building dated 1904 is now Cured, a popular restaurant.
Those same warm color echoes from the plaza unite shops with apartments above for convenient urban living.
That iconic Pearl smokestack is visible from I-35 and the river.
The old stable building is now used for special events.
Silvery cones form on bald cypress.
The Pearl, it has become a real destination in San Antonio.