History Meets Hip at Pearl

San Antonio definitely had to grow on me. Despite the fact that the city is big in terms of population (ranked second largest city in TX), the city is not so big on being progressive. When an area of downtown that is home to the historic Pearl Brewery began displaying a rebirth with creativity, community and foodie flair, I got excited! The location is right next to the river, hosts a fantastic farmer’s market and eclectic restaurants and shops continue to open.

Throughout Pearl’s complex in the areas that have now become stores, restaurants, living or working spaces, materials and pieces from Pearl’s former life as a brewery have been repurposed and integrated into the artistry of the design. It’s awesome to see.

“The shelving at the Tiny Finch gift shop? Made from old roof joists from the 1881 brew house….The lighting at Arcade? Old yellow Falstaff crates. The chandelier outside Blue Box? That’s material from an old bottle labeler. And just about all the wood in the new Local Coffee was salvaged and reused.” source

San Antonio is definitely getting its cool on in this little part of town. Here is a look at history meets hip through photos of my trips to Pearl.


I love the juxtaposition of the historic buildings and contemporary design.


Latin American deliciousness served at Nao with a contemporary flair.


Just inside the doors of Nao.


Enter the brewhouse–now the site of a lively farmer’s market.

Pearl San Antonio

Pearl is also home to The Culinary Institute of America.


Saucepans turned light fixture outside The Culinary Institute of America.

culinary institute

The pipe in the background is covered in colorful knitting. I love how the green chairs become a part of the landscape.


Green Vegetarian Cuisine reused an existing building (circa 1896). Fresh herbs are grown in the landscape.


The light fixture is repurposed from tubing and glass from the former brewery. This little space makes me swoon.

Pearl elevator

Shop windows all dressed up for Fiesta. I love it when San Antonio gets its color on!

Fiesta windowIMG_0762

Residents getting in on the decorating.


Dogs getting in on the action too!

Dog in sombrero

My favorite place for barbecue has become The Granary. Chef Tim Rattray has created deliciousness here with his brother, the brewmaster. It is served in a beautiful historic home with a contemporary vibe.


I love the wallpaper outside of the Granary’s bathroom.


Shopping anyone?


The repurposed wood incorporated into the design of Local Coffee is a beautiful site to see.


They offer several different brewing methods, which I find delightful.


Unique roller conveyer turned table kept this guy occupied the entire time we were there.


Spring has sprung in Texas!


Talk about great design for a public restroom.


I love the colors in the gorgeous mural on the side of the restaurant La Gloria that we pass coming and going to Pearl.


Pearl has become a great place to hang out, get outdoors, support your local farmers and shops, enjoy delicious food and get inspired about great design. I look forward to going each time and it’s exciting to see the area continue to flourish!