San Antonio celebrated 300 years of progress in May 2018. With a clear vision following that anniversary year, the Texan city set its sights firmly on 300 more. While commemorating this milestone, the city underwent a major overhaul to prepare for the next phase in its history.
Travelers arriving at San Antonio International Airport see some of the latest improvements immediately upon arrival. The newer, 1.8 million-square-foot Consolidated Rental Car Facility, located just steps from the terminals, offers convenient car rental service from 11 companies in one location. The CONRAC welcomes visitors with an expansive mural by local artists Suzy Gonzales and Michael Menchaca depicting the details of the aviation history of San Antonio.
The Henry B. González Convention Center experienced a $325 million overhaul. With an eco-friendly and energy-efficient design, state-of-the-art technology, 70 meeting spaces and one of the biggest ballrooms in the country (54,000 square feet), the HBGCC is ready to host conferences and events of all sizes when that business returns to the city post-pandemic and is prepared to meet the needs of generations to come.
In addition to the artwork on display at the CONRAC and HBGCC, public art flourishes all over the city. A visit to the Witte Museum on the banks of the San Antonio River proves a great way to unwind and enjoy some of the local culture, thanks to a $100 million renovation and expansion project that included numerous artistic, historical and health-related exhibitions.
The San Pedro Creek area is developing into a first-rate park. Here visitors and locals will also be able to enjoy public art. With the first half-mile of the revitalization complete, art complements the landscape. The Rain from the Heavens art installation depicts the night of the city’s founding in 1718. Murals throughout the park highlight the rich culture of San Antonio. Public art installations and murals additionally line the World Heritage Trail in the Mission Reach neighborhood.
Hemisfair, the site of the 1968 World’s Fair, is currently in its second of three phases to become the city’s Central Park. An installation, Alas de México (Wings of Mexico) commemorates the tricentennial. A popular spot for Instagram photos, the area also proves family-friendly, with its Yanaguana Garden boasting a water jet section and children’s games with ropes and slides.
Nicknamed River City, San Antonio is ideally situated along the San Antonio River and home to River Walk, a winding path of hotels, businesses, shops and eateries along the beautifully landscaped riverbanks. With its centralized location, River Walk offers a convenient way for visitors to get to know the city’s personality by enjoying lunch at a riverside café or by partaking in the local nightlife. Explore the waterway while on the river with GO RIO. The narrated tours take place on a new fleet of eco-friendly, electrically powered boats.
Learn more about the importance of the San Antonio River at the newly opened Confluence Park, established to teach about the river’s vitality to the region. The park sits on the pathway connecting San Antonio Missions UNESCO World Heritage site and functions almost as an outdoor classroom for the region, offering education, ecology, recreation and entertainment.
With more than 31 million visitors to San Antonio each year, quality hotel accommodations abound. In May 2020 the River Walk area welcomed Canopy by Hilton San Antonio Riverwalk.
Hotel Valencia, also along the picturesque River Walk, debuted a $10 million renovation that pays homage to San Antonio’s Spanish Colonial heritage.
Find one of the city’s top culinary and cultural destinations north of downtown at Pearl, a mixed- use space with retail, dining, green space, an amphitheater and the third Culinary Institute of America. A brewery from 1883–2001, Pearl combines culture and modernity, and with the CIA located there, it’s no wonder its culinary outposts shine. Aside from the year-round Pearl Farmers Market, restaurants include Hotel Emma’s Supper; CIA’s Savor; and The Bottling Department, San Antonio’s first food hall.
The city’s ongoing improvements embody the essence of San Antonio — a diverse population with a strong sense of history and culture that takes pride in its city. As the seventh-largest city in the nation, San Antonio is perfectly poised for an upsurge in business and tourism.
To get out of the city for a while, head into Hill Country for breathtaking scenic drives. If you are short on time, drive about an hour and a half north on U.S. Highway 87 to Fredericksburg and take State Road 16 toward Willow City. There you’ll find the 13-mile Willow City Loop on Ranch Road 1323, a two-lane trail through rolling meadows of wildflowers, meandering creeks and rocky cliffs. The loop, open year-round, is best visited in spring or fall. Take this trip on a weekday, as it gets crowded with tourists on the weekends.
If you’ve got more time for exploring, head deeper into Hill Country to view the Texas Swiss Alps in Leakey. From Bandera, about 50 miles out of San Antonio on State Road 16, this beautiful drive through verdant mountains and several Hill Country towns can run anywhere from 80 to 130 miles, depending on your route. The best path heads south from Bandera to Hondo, then over to Concan before turning north to Leakey for some of the best vistas. From there turn back to Bandera along Highway 337, and be sure to stop and enjoy the scenery along the way.
The Four Seasons Resort and Residences Anguilla is opening its acclaimed doors Oct. 22 to celebrate its fifth and most exciting season. The resort will introduce new programming including culinary, fitness and music.
History and culture are etched into every corner of Greece. Beginning with its language, the oldest written language still in existence, and moving from the traces of passing civilizations and religions to pre-historic findings and works from many movements, there’s a wealth of culture to discover on your next trip to Greece.
Seabourn recently announced the name of its second new ultra-luxury purpose-built expedition ship: Seabourn Pursuit. The name reflects the passion of expedition travelers to seek out and explore natural wonders and destinations through activities around the globe.
Though the Chicago area has been my home for decades, the view from the Water Tower Suite on the 26th floor of The Ritz-Carlton, Chicago made me gasp. I had admired Chicago’s dramatic skyline many times, but never from this angle. Through expansive windows, the skyscrapers of 900 N. Michigan Ave. and the John Hancock Center, now named 875 North Michigan Avenue, rose to my right. Far below, the landmark Chicago Water Tower nestled in a ring of trees. One of the few survivors of the Great Chicago Fire, a turning point in the city’s history being remembered on its 150th anniversary in 2021, the Gothic Revival relic resembled a fairy-tale castle in a children’s playset.
GBTA’s Convention 2021 will bring the business travel industry together for the first time in a long time. Once again, you’ll learn and connect with experts and each other, along with discussions with leading thinkers, entrepreneurs and change makers addressing the issues that matter most.
President Biden signed H.R. 2278, bipartisan legislation to designate a September 11th National Memorial Trail. The trail route will link the National September 11th Memorial and Museum in New York; the Pentagon Memorial in Arlington, Virginia; and the Flight 93 National Memorial in Somerset County, Pennsylvania.
In April 2021, I was skimming Facebook when an ad for a blind-folded dining experience popped up on my newsfeed. The event was hosted through a company called Fever that offers fun, interactive events in major cities and virtually for people to enjoy. Intrigued, I clicked the link to learn more. The description made the event sound exciting and mysterious. When I give someone a present for their birthday, the holidays or a wedding, I like to give the gift of an experience that the recipient can learn something from. My boyfriend’s 30th birthday was in June, when the event was to be hosted, so I thought this would be a great surprise for him.
This holiday season, escape to the Caribbean with Celebrity Cruises and reconnect with family and friends in luxurious accommodations that make you feel right at home. Savor globally inspired cuisine designed by our Michelin-starred chef, paired with the most awarded wine collection at sea. Elevate “me time” with a soothing spa treatment sure to renew. With both long and short cruises to celebrate in December, and even three special Ultimate Holiday Cruises that sail over Christmas and into the New Year, the time to gift an experience and create unforgettable memories is now. Celebrity Cruises’ Always IncludedSM pricing — drinks, WiFi and tips — ensures a seamless, carefree vacation with the ones you love.
It’s time to start dreaming of your next trip. Here’s some destination inspiration for you. Take a visual journey through Austin, Texas, with us.