Monday, May 7, 2018

Inside the Hotel Emma ~ Industrial meets Texas


When my husband asked where I wanted to stay to celebrate our anniversary, the hotel choice was easy. We just wanted a one night staycation in San Antonio so I immediately said, "Hotel Emma."

The jewel of the Pearl complex, the former brewery, originally built in 1894, has been transformed into a beautiful hotel. The hotel is named after Emma Koehler who took over the brewery after her husband, the former president and CEO of the brewery, died. She saved the brewery during prohibition by converting it into other businesses and by making near beer, ice cream and soda. Thanks to her leadership during this time, the Pearl was the only brewery in San Antonio to survive after Prohibition.

Enough history. Now some eye candy...


My favorite space in the hotel is the library. How many hotels have one of these? With everyone leaving real books for computers, it just gives the same feeling as the hotel itself, embrassing history and not giving up the old for the new but paying homage to it.


The bar is also fantastic with exposed brick and machinery,


enormous concrete pillars and beams,


cozy furniture and lighting,


high ceilings and beautiful finishes.

As I understand it, all of the rooms are unique as I would expect of this hotel. Everything is special and authentic. I was only able to capture the room we were in but I fully expect to be going back again!


The rooms are much like the rest of the hotel with exposed brick and pipes and imperfections on the walls where you can see remnants of what used to be.


Being on the top floor has its advantages with extremely high ceilings.


No small detail was overlooked in the bathroom with brass faucets and handmade ceramic tile.



The hallways upstairs are even impressive with custom wool runners, exposed concrete columns and brick, embossed leather wainscoting and antique brass fixtures.


The outdoor spaces are as cozy as the indoors. This little coutyard greets guests as they enter the hotel.


If you come to San Antonio, even if you don't stay here, you need to come by the Hotel Emma and see this reimagined beauty. I wish I had more pictures for you but it was my anniversary after all. I promise to get more next time!

Sunday, May 6, 2018

Post Wedding Fiesta

I love to plan parties so when I was asked to help with the planning of a post wedding fiesta for my brother and his new wife, of course I did!
The happy couple Madelyn and Benjamin
The party planners ~my mom on the right and me

The location was easy. A mexican restaurant with a casita in the back with a private patio, bar and outdoor fireplace. For those that know San Antonio, this is the La Fonda on Main.

Private courtyard ~ La Fonda on Main

We chose simple centerpieces with gold pottery from Anthropologie filled with assorted colors of Kalanchoes and votives with fiesta colored candles.

Custom made Papel Picado


A framed papel picado with the date of the wedding greeted guests and also served as a gift for the bride and groom to hang in their home.


No proper fiesta would be complete without mariachis!


For a fun activity, we provided a polaroid camera for guests to take photos of themselves and add to a photobook with advice for the newlyweds.


For those unable to make the trip to New Orleans, we made a collage of pictures from the wedding.




The bride and groom's table was decorated with special china from Anthropologie, hand painted tin love birds and a tissue flower bouquet.




A little whimsy on the bar ~ a picture of the groom passed out on the wedding night after being overserved at the reception! Good times!




Having a theme makes the planning so easy but for any theme the basics are the same. Location, decorations, music, food, drinks and a fun activity all make for a great party!