When you head to King William, you’re visiting one of San Antonio’s coolest + delightfully quirkiest communities. The neighborhood has grown since our city’s early days, so we wanted to check out what’s currently brewing here. If you haven’t explored in a while, it might be time to rediscover why so many people — maybe even you — love to call it home.
💡 Need to know
You’re not the only one with your eyes set on Southtown. In 1968, the area’s became San Antonio’s first designated historic district. It was around this time that the neighborhood began to attract a large creative community along with a mix of artists, locally-owned bars, coffee shops, boutiques, museums, and art galleries.
📜 The early days
During the mid-nineteenth century, many German immigrants settled in the area, creating impressive houses designed in the Greek Revival, Victorian, and Italianate styles. This would then be known as “Sauerkraut Bend” to the rest of San Antonio. The main street was given the name King William in honor of King Wilhelm I, King of Prussia in the 1870s.
After a short decline in the 1930-1940s, the area began to attract those interested in restoring the old mansions and smaller cottages. Slowly, it once again became a fashionable and desirable place to live. Since its designation as a historic district, The King William Association was formed — that is dedicated to the preservation of the architectural heritage of the area.
📍 Can’t miss
Running low on time? A trip to King William isn’t complete without stopping by Blue Star Arts Complex, so be sure to factor it into your day. You’ll thank us later.
Local is all the rage in Southtown — discovering unique finds is a breeze with plenty of local craftsmen, artists, and vendors at ever corner.
- Find unique gifts as vibrant as our city’s culture by shopping at The Artisan for apparel, accesories, and home decor.
- Get your groove on with Southtown Vinyl’s impressive collection of records and turntables.
- Shop small while looking chic in jewelry, handbags, and apparel from Bohemian Gemme.
Just because you’re near the heart of bustling city doesn’t mean you can’t get in touch with nature.
- Head to the King William Paddling Trail for whatever floats your boat.
- Pack a picnic and head over to Chris Park, founded in memory of the late philanthropist and artist Linda Pace’s son.
- Take a (river) walk on the wild side with a stroll along Mission Reach.
- Explore Southtown’s vibrant community every First Friday with a monthly nighttime street festival.
🍽️ Eat + drink
Dig in to these spots that are sure to make any foodie proud.
- Breakfast and brunch served up in a Victorian parlor — Guenther House, yes please.
- A pick-me-up cup of joe from Poetic Republic Coffee Co. is always a must.
- Let’s keep this a secret — Bar 1919 is your go-to Prohibition era-inspired speakeasy.
- Grab a burger, margarita, and a paleta all in one place: Burgerteca.
- If you’re looking for a pink, bohemian dream, the Liberty Bar is your spot.
🖼️ Arts + culture
As the 210’s official arts district, every kind of arts enthusiast is sure to find something in Southtown.
- Explore over 1,400 works of contemporary art in Linda Pace Foundation’s collection at Ruby City (for free, might we add).
- Stop by the newly named Contemporary at Blue Star for four onsite galleries, featuring over 12 exhibitions annually.
- Bring the whole family over every Second Saturday for a monthly artwalk full of music, food trucks, and, you guessed it, art.
🚲 Getting around
Oftentimes, there’s no better way of getting to know the community than by exploring it on foot, bike, or scooter. Luckily, getting around King William (and most of Southtown) is a breeze. King William is the No. 5 most walkable neighborhood in the 210 with most errands being able to be accomplished on foot.
If you’re traveling by car, where can you leave it? On most days, you can find parking next to Blue Star Arts Complex. Ruby City also offers free parking for those looking to tour the museum or Chris Park.
🏠 Where to live
If you’re sold + looking to buy a home in the area, here are some housing options currently on the market:
- 320 Cedar St. | 5 BD, 6.5 BA | $1,795,000 | This stunning early 1900s home was completely renovated with soaring ceilings and refinished hardwood floors.
- 619 Barbe St. | 2 BD, 2 BA | $575,000 | Imagine living in the heart of King William in this immaculately renovated 1913 craftsman style home.
- 324 Adams St. | 2 BD, 2 BA | $945,000 | This delightfully quirky “Casa Azul” makes for a lovely home with a unique flair.