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Hotel Listings Hotel Map Nov '03 Rates May '04 Rates Nov '04 Rates My Preferences

Hotel Listings

Rates quoted during last of August for a Friday and Saturday night stay from November 19-21, 2004

Below is a listing, in random order, of San Antonio Riverwalk and other downtown hotels I think worthy of consideration, along with my personal comments.  I checked out all their room rates for you and I selected the weekend nights of November 19-20.  They are different than those of my prior checks of Nov. 2003 and May 2004.  One thing I've learned from this effort is how much the rates change based on the individual hotel's expectations for the weekend.  Most all the rates are much higher than the last survey.  Talking with some of the reservation people I suspect there is a convention in town that weekend, especially considering the Crockett Hotel is sold out.  That's not a prime hotel.  I am really amazed at the number of hotels that report being sold out.  And to think I specifically picked the non-thanksgiving day weekend too.

My basic inquiry is for rates for two adults in the cheapest room with two beds.  It is fairly standard practice that the hotels hire reservation taking staff that principally ignore what you've just told them and quote you a single King size bed in a suite over looking the river walk.  And then surprisingly some hotels say they don't have two beds in their cheapest rooms but a King.  You're on your own.  Most of the rates listed are for queen size beds but you never really know what they've just quoted me.  Also, everyone asked if I was part of a convention, was a frequent guest of the hotel, had some special code or card (like rental car  card) or was traveling for business or pleasure.  I responded to all that I was traveling for pleasure and had nothing special but cash to get me a room.

The rates were quoted to me as of the end of August, so they're likely to change by the time you see this, but it will give you a snapshot of hotel pricing at that time.

Here is a big plus you get nowhere but here.  I made just for you a map of all the recommended downtown hotels.  This will be a great help in refining where you wish to stay.

 

Hotel listings

Room price for 2 adults for Fri & Sat night Nov 19-21, 2004

Comments

--o--
Cost of Parking

Menger Hotel

210-223-4361
$119
Much ballyhooed historical hotel.  No doubt it's got history and a better location than the St. Anthony, but certainly not the class.  Normally I would prefer the St. Anthony over the Menger, but at this price difference stay with the Menger. 
(316 rooms)

 

$17-valet only

Sheraton Gunter Hotel

210-227-3241
$189
The third of the trio of historic hotels in town.  It's o.k. but there's nothing real special about it.  It's across the street from the theater that hosts all the traveling Broadway plays, The Majestic.  Also catercorner to the new and expensive Hotel Valencia.

$15 valet only

La Quinta Convention Center

210-222-9181
Wow, sold out!
Probably the best situated motel downtown, right across the street from the Marriott Rivercenter Hotel.  They say pets are o.k.

They just completed a high rise hotel next door to their motel.  I'll get data on it soon.
(190 rooms)
No charge for parking

Crockett Hotel-A Holiday Inn Hotel

210-225-6500
Sold out
This hotel was at one time on its death bed, but the creation of RiverCenter Mall, next door, breathed new life into it.  Because RiverCenter Mall offers 2 hours free parking many San Antonians park next door when we go downtown.  I pass it often but I've never known anyone to ever stay there.  Although it's old, it's not poorly located.  Personally, I think the hallways smell.  Wouldn't stay any further east of this location except to stay at La Quinta.
(204 rooms)
$18-valet only

Crown Plaza Hotel
formerly the Adam's Mark Hotel

210-354-2800
$179 for Fri the 19th
$139 for Sat the 20th
A convention hotel with big ballrooms and meeting rooms.  As it used to be a bank and office building it wasn't built to be next to the tourist areas.  You can do better.
(410 rooms)
Didn't even check, but I know they have to charge.

The Fairmount-A Wyndham Hotel

210-224-8800 
$159
A rather charming and quaint boutique hotel.  The building was actually moved down the street to it's current location.  It's small and intimate.  Not on the river but on a well lit major thoroughfare so no problem walking to it at night.  The bar and restaurant have their local admirers. I wouldn't mind staying here if I couldn't get into the Drury Inn or the price differential elsewhere was too great. 
(37 rooms)
$17-valet

Holiday Inn Riverwalk

210-224-2500
$162
This is right next door to the Hotel Valencia.  It's on the river but there's nothing on the river at this spot to see or do.  If the price is not too different go 2 doors down the street and stay at the Drury Inn
(313 rooms)

 

$19-valet
$14-self

Havana Riverwalk Inn

210-222-2008
$249-1queen
A small intimate inn.  I've heard the rooms are lovely.  But if you're a regular site-seeing tourist it's too far from the main drag.  Plus their rooms are normally too expensive regardless of how nice the rooms are.
(27 rooms)

 

$10/day -a real rip off since the lot is an open unsecured and uncovered lot

La Mansion del Rio 

210-518-1000
$219
Built on the site of, and using part of the structure of, the old St. Mary's law school building.  The is a well run, locally owned and well situated hotel.   If you get a river view suggest you stay a few floors up from river level to avoid any night reveling.
(337 rooms)
$25-valet
Public lot across st.

Hilton Palacio del Rio

210-222-1400
$169-King
Pretty decent location, on the river.  This hotel was built in 1968 for San Antonio's HemisFair.  A 21 story building built in nine months!  The fifth through 20th floors are comprised of individually built concrete rooms which were raised into place as construction ensued.  But normally too expensive when compared to alternatives.
(481 rooms)

 

$27-valet
$14-self

Emily Morgan Hotel

210-225-5100
$159
Formerly known as the Medical Arts Building, it used to be occupied by medical offices.  The building was sold and remade into an hotel.  Across the street from the Alamo.  Nothing special about this place. However, having said that, their rooms with jacuzzis are really great rooms with good city views.  I've know locals who have spent romantic weekends in those rooms.
(177 rooms)

 

$16 valet
Public lot nearby $8/day

St. Anthony Hotel-A Wyndham Hotel

210-227-4392
$148-told me rates are cheaper booking online
One of my personal favorites.  Built in 1910 it has the elegance and grandeur of the old line hotels of a bygone era.  Not on the Riverwalk; it is an historical hotel that I would stay at.  Certainly a distinguished address.  But this pricing is too much.  Normally it should be comparable to the Gunter at about $99/night.  Try to negotiate down.
(352 rooms)

 

$17-valet
$12-self

The Riverwalk Vista

210-223-3200
$160/day-1 queen bed $30 for rollaway
req. 2 nights stay
I must confess it took a friend in Dallas to tell me about this place.  It opened after 9-11 and hasn't advertised.  The location is perfect!.  It is better viewed as a B&B, not a hotel.  One room I inspected the a/c wasn't working.  It's on the 2nd & 3rd floor of a small (former office) building you enter by buzzer or key card.  They have no valet.  And no parking, nor restaurant.  Only continental brkfst in the a.m.  I'm convinced in the summer the south and west sides of the building are going to be scorchers.  Nevertheless I'm intrigued by the place because of its location and intimacy.  The hard wood floors in the hallway may (only my educated guess) make anything you do heard by everyone else.  If you stay there let me know what you think.  And I'm curious to know if you can hear the traffic noise throughout the night as you are on a very busy corner.  P.S. don't be wooed by the fitness center, it's several blocks away.
(17 rooms)
No parking

Drury Inn & Suites San Antonio Riverwalk 

210-212-5200
$142-King
$153-2rm suite
This is a jewel of a place.  Used to be the Petroleum Commerce Bldg.  Situated at a perfect spot on the river; one would hardly know it's there.  For a small and intimate hotel setting this is perfect!  It's not near the rowdy noisy part of the river, but I would still get a room several floors up from street level.  Without a river view room, you'll be looking at a another building 50 ft away.
(150 rooms)
$8-self parking in hotel lot part of bldg.  Cheapest rate

The Westin

210-224-6500
$219
Along with the new Watermark Hotel probably the most lavish hotel in town.  Built by one of San Antonio's own billionaires.  It's a convention style hotel with a large ballroom, etc.  If you are celebrating a honeymoon or wedding anniversary, their basic rooms are probably some of the most luxurious rooms in town.  But it's a big hotel.
(473 rooms)
$22-valet
$10-self

Hyatt Regency Hotel

210-222-1234
Sold  out!
Best located hotel in town.  But you will pay for the privilege.  No doubt a fine establishment but just a block or two away and you can get a much better bargain.
(632 rooms)

 

$21-valet
$15-self

Hotel Valencia

210-227-9700 
$174-1 King
Amazing what money can do.  The location is on the river but at the end of the main restaurant strip.  I've got many friends in town that like this place.  But I don't.  It tries for an intimate/ exclusive feel but comes off as pretentious.  The entrance is literally on Houston St., so if you come by car you unload almost in traffic.  Personally, I'd save my money and go elsewhere.
(213 rooms)
$25-valet
$15-self

Marriott Plaza

210-229-1000
Sold out!
Formerly a Four Seasons Hotel.  Has nice grounds but is several blocks away from the Riverwalk.  You will pass the Fairmount to get here, so I would stay there before staying here.
(252 rooms)

 

$19-valet
$14-self

Watermark Hotel & Spa

210-223-8500
$229-std dble
This place just opened Jan. 2004.  I've toured the place and it's nice!  It's owned by the owners of La Mansion del Rio, so I know it's going to be very well run.  It intends to be an exclusive small hotel and will be very expensive.  Be aware of your view.  All the west views face a building wall 3 ft. away from your window!  Ouch!  The east side is not much better.  Best is the river side.
(99 rooms)
$25-valet

Marriott Rivercenter

210-223-1000
Sold Out!
1000 rooms!  Need I say anymore? A good location, but just a big convention style hotel.  If you're here for a convention, it and it's sister hotel, the Marriott Riverwalk,  are well situated. 
(1001 rooms)

 

$19-valet
$14-self

Marriott Riverwalk 

210-224-4555
Sold Out!
A good location, right across the street from the Marriott Rivercenter.  Just another run of the mill big hotel.
(512 rooms)

 

$19-valet
$14-self

The hotels listed below are alternatives for comparison only.  They would not normally be on my recommended downtown hotel listing.

Red Roof-San Antonio Airport

210-340-4055
$49-2 dble



No charge for parking
O.k., I put this hotel in for all those people who are like me.  Cheap.  If you have a car this hotel is a viable alternative to staying downtown.  It has a lighted sign posting rates along the highway and is about the cheapest place that is in a good area.  In fact, the area is in the affluent north side of town, essentially suburbia.  And the area is really good.  And it's really a straight shot via the expressway to downtown from here, about a 12 min drive.  Suggest you drive to town like the rest of us who live here and park for the day and sightsee.

For that matter, any hotel along Loop 410 between Nacogdoches (on the east) and Blanco Rd. (on the west) is o.k. to stay at.  There are many to choose from so you'll have to do the work yourself.  They are all near  the airport, which is now located in town (the city having grown around it) and in a very nice area.  I think you will feel at home along this stretch of town, it's where all the local action is.  

La Quinta Inn Market Square

210-271-0001

$99-2 full

Against my better judgement I'm listing this motel and the Motel 6 below.  I don't have any problem with La Quinta other than it's not where the action is by the Riverwalk area.  However, having said that, if you are as cheap as me and don't want to spend the money for any of the above mentioned hotels, and don't have a car to stay at any of the hotels on the north side of town (see comments on Red Roof Inn above) then this is the next best place to stay that is cheaper than the rest.  It is directly across the street from Market Square which is a normally crowded two mexican restaurant attraction.  You can't stay any closer to Market Square than this motel! I think it a safer nighttime spot than any other hotel in the Market Square area (which is on the sleazier side of town).  But at only $16 cheaper than its sister motel at this date's pricing I would stay at the other.
No charge for parking

Motel 6 - Downtown

210-225-1111

$58

 

Boy, once I started on the slippery slope of listing cheaper hotels/motels I feel forced to list just one more.  This is for those who are even cheaper than the people referred to above at the listing of La Quinta Market Square.  If you are just destitute, without a car and somehow have access to a computer to read this, then the cheapest downtown place that I would direct you to is this place.  It's a block away from Market Square.  It's on the edge of a day labor area and not too far from the County Jail.  So you figure it out.  But, it's cheap.  If you feel you have to stay here I don't want to know about it.
No charge for parking
I fully realize I've listed a lot of hotels to choose from.  I did so because not all the hotels I recommend will always be available (this is a convention town) and this way you will have some options to fall back upon.  Note: Unless it's a matter of cost, I wouldn't stay at hotels other than the ones mentioned above.  Yes, there are cheaper hotels/motels but they will not be where you will want to be.  There are the Super 8's, Motel 6's, Red Roof Inns, Microtel, Ramada's, Days Inn, Rodeway Inn and others that are all downtown.  But if they are going to charge you anywhere near what the above charge, I would not stay there.  Only if it's a matter of economics.

Note: there are a whole slue of hotels near the west side around Market Square.  They are off the beaten path.  Don't stay there unless it's a matter of costs.    The tourist literature makes it look as if Market Square is a big deal but everything you want to do at Market Square can be done in one hour.

Further note: there are also some new hotels on the east side of downtown, just east of IH37 around what is known as Sunset Station or the St. Paul area.  At present this is a dead area that just can't quite yet admit it.  People are throwing money into the area to develop it, in fact, Ruth Chris Steakhouse opened a place there (someone must have begged and made a deal they couldn't refuse).  But until the area catches on I wouldn't suggest you stay there.  Too many other good places.

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