This Spanish-accented city throws on the largest market outside Mexico and boutiques in former breweries.Less
North of downtown San Antonio, you’ll find the former Pearl Brewery, that’s been turned into a retail and dining space. Every Saturday, the Pearl turns into an open-air farmers market filled with seasonal South Texan produce, such as Santa Maria steak grilled over an open fire. With over 45 vendors and counting, the Pearl’s buzzing grocery store is full of local goodies, from honey and dairy to homemade salsas and gourmet candies.
The heart of downtown San Antonio is Historic Market Square: the largest Mexican market outside of Mexico. The Market, or El Mercado, encompasses two blocks of plazas and historical buildings filled with more than 100 locally owned stores and stalls. Enjoy the sights and flavors of Mexico in this vibrant labyrinth of vendors as you search for authentic souvenirs and multi-cultural merch, such as handcrafted pottery and colorful clothes.
For high-end stores and upscale restaurants, look no further than The Shops at La Cantera. This award-winning, open-air retail space in the northwestern part of San Antonio features several major department stores, such as Nordstrom and Neiman Marcus, as well as on-point clothing, accessories and beauty brands. When the weather is nice – and, let’s face it, it probably is – La Cantera’s shaded pathways and landscaped courtyards are perfect for meandering around while you window shop.
Across the highway from The Shops at La Cantera lies The RIM, a massive temple of commerce with over 100 stores and plenty of dining options. You can drive around to favorites like Target, Macy’s and TJ Maxx among many others. There are also plenty of entertainment venues, including sports bars, a bowling alley and the Santikos Palladium IMAX Theater: arguably the best movie theater in the country.
La Villita, or “the little village”, is one of San Antonio’s oldest neighborhoods, with more than 300 years of history. it’s now home to more than 25 quaint boutiques and local art galleries. Located on the downtown’s San Antonio River Walk, La Villita’s charming cobblestoned streets and historic architecture make it all the more inviting for visitors looking for one-of-a-kind trinkets to take home, such as handmade accessories, artworks and artisanal goods.
Minutes away from San Antonio Airport is the Alamo Quarry Market. This premier lifestyle center is a great place for casual dining and strolling through trendy stores like GAP, Bath & Body Works, Sephora and more. After a few hours of retail therapy, catch a movie at the Quarry’s Regal 16-Plex Cinemas, or tap out with a treatment at The Woodhouse Day Spa.
If you’re looking for an escape from the Texas heat, head indoors to the North Star Mall near the San Antonio airport. Upon arrival, you’ll be greeted by a larger-than-life cowboy boot sculpture at the mall’s entrance, welcoming you to an air-conditioned shopping oasis, where you’ll encounter all the latest stores, including H&M, Apple and Steve Madden.