Al and I find ourselves strolling the paths that meander along the river passing stone archways, fountains, and lush vegetation. I can’t help but wonder about its history. When was it built and why? During lunch, I scoured through all the booklets and info on the area that I picked up at the visitor center and I found just the information I was looking for.
Robert H. H. Hugman, an architect and a native of San Antonio, first conceived the river project in 1929 after a series of floods prompted the city to consider paving over the river, thus creating a concrete storm sewer system.
Can you imagine what a travesty that would have been? Thank goodness Mr. Hugman had the vision to create such a beautiful masterpiece.
Initial construction began in 1939 and due to disagreements with the city Hugman was fired a year later. It wasn’t until 1961 when the city brought in some designers from Disneyland to determine the commercial potential of the river. Hugman’s original details were used and the river was slowly transformed into the River Walk we know today. Improvements and expansion continue to this day.
This is probably one of the cleanest, well-maintained downtowns I have ever visited. Its beautiful, tranquil, and fun. Al and I enjoy lunch at Casa Rio, a restaurant serving Mexican food along the River Walk since 1946. We choose to dine inside as do most of the other guests. At 45 degrees, it was just a tad too chilly to enjoy a meal outside along the river. Outdoor seating at Casa Rio shown in the photos below.
We thoroughly enjoyed our day in downtown San Antonio exploring The Alamo and the River Walk. We wanted to take in some of the Missions and had a list of other things we wanted to see and do as well, but Mother Nature had other plans. During our week-long stay, the weather was a roller coaster of breaking record low temperatures with on and off rain, occasionally freezing.
Next stop Fredericksburg……