The mix of old and new structures is not only with the flagship Hotel Emma. Here, we see an old brick building converted into a restaurant. Most are human-scaled, not overwhelming the balance in this livable neighborhood.
People who know Austin and San Antonio might compare the Pearl District to The Domain in Austin. While there are similarities, there are also notable differences. The most obvious is the ornate brewery turned boutique hotel in the center of the Pearl, with other remnants of this industrial redevelopment. The Domain is new except for a few one-story offices that remain from the once IBM-owned land. The historical industrial detailing is unmatched by the recent buildings in Austin.
However, there’s a more subtle difference. The Domain is ultimately a shopping mall with hotels and apartments — retail dominates. In contrast, the Pearl feels like a neighborhood with shops and restaurants. Retail is less of a component of the overall development, and there seem to be more apartments.
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