March 2012

John Flores, Hilton Palacio del Rio - San Antonio, TX

What service can you provide to groups that they normally might not receive?

We have built relationships with various ticket broker agencies that allow us to offer groups tickets to sold-out city attractions, sports venues, concerts and shows.

We can also arrange custom tours to various local attractions, Texas wine tours and a tour of ranches in the surrounding areas.

What are your group restaurant recommendations?

Our very own Ibiza restaurant is located right on the River Walk and its menu has great variety for groups.

Aldaco’s Mexican restaurant located in Sunset Station has a shuttle to transport groups to the restaurant.

Ruth’s Chris is a classic steak and seafood experience with an excellent private dining room offered at no charge.

Bohanans is a great independent and very upscale steak house. The service here is truly exceptional.

Ostra is another great River Walk location that has great fresh seafood, and they are known for their oysters.

Paesanos is great for groups because the Italian food is fantastic and it is also located on the river.

What are your bar or nightclub recommendations?

Our very own famous Irish Pub, Durty Nelly’s is a local favorite with friendly wait staff, a piano player, lots of singing, and free peanuts.

Tex’s Sports Bar is the only sports bar on the river, and has many TVs and serves a great Bloody Mary.

The Landing is all about live Dixie land jazz music.

Howl at the Moon is San Antonio’s famous dueling piano bar and is a fun place for groups.

Cowboys is the place to be if you’re looking for live bands and Country music.

Can you recommend a good place to take a stroll?

On the San Antonio Highlight route, you can see a lot of downtown attractions such as Travis Park, Buckhorn Saloon and Museum, Rivercenter Mall, the Alamo, Tower of America’s HemisFair Park and La Villita Historic Arts Village, and the stroll is only about 1 mile.

Are there any quirky places we should check out?

There is an event called “First Friday”  where every first Friday of the month all the art galleries in the King William District have outside activities and live acoustic bands.

Esquire Tavern has a claim to fame as the “longest bar in Texas.”

Nightmare on Grayson is a Haunted House not to miss if you want to be scared.

If you had an hour or two, what should we definitely check out nearby?

The new Museum Reach is the newest section of the River Walk and features native landscaping and public art installations. This urban river park begins at the Lexington Avenue Bridge and continues 1.3 miles to the newly renovated Pearl Brewery complex.

What is an unusual request you’ve received from a group or a member of a group?

We’ve had quite a few interesting romantic requests. We were once asked to purchase rose petals and spread them all over a guest room. We also assisted a gentleman in placing a banner reading “Will you marry me?” across the River Walk bridge next to the hotel, while his future fiancé strolled along the river. And we also assisted in getting a Justice of the Peace and a marriage license for a couple staying with us.

A party of 12 wants to have dinner right away.  What restaurant can accommodate last-minute requests of this size?

A party of 12 is not very difficult to make reservations for and usually all River Walk restaurants will accommodate the party. However, with a party of 10 or more, there is usually a fixed menu.

What’s a unique event that has taken place at your property?

We once held a “Day of the Dead” themed wedding, which honored the bride and groom’s heritage and personalities. The wedding was very dark and featured skeletons, paper flowers, and blood red candles.  Definitely an unusual and memorable wedding!

To discover more eye-opening insights from top concierges, just visit our Concierge Insights section!

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12 Years a Slave is a 2013 British-American historical drama filmand an adaptation of the 1853 slave narrative memoir Twelve Years a Slave by Solomon Northup, a New York State-born free African-American man who was kidnapped in Washington, D.C. in 1841 and sold into slavery.