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  #81  
Old Posted Jan 8, 2019, 8:56 PM
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The property seems very cold and "standoffish" along the Riverwalk level. I wish more could have been done to make it more inviting to pedestrians.
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  #82  
Old Posted Feb 16, 2019, 6:21 PM
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[IMG]Home 2 Suites by Raul Medina III, on Flickr[/IMG]
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  #83  
Old Posted Feb 16, 2019, 7:44 PM
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Cool! I really like the arches & palms on the river. The pool look like a fun place to be also!

Last edited by UltraDanPrime; Feb 18, 2019 at 12:28 AM.
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  #84  
Old Posted Feb 16, 2019, 9:48 PM
Rynetwo Rynetwo is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by babysal View Post
The property seems very cold and "standoffish" along the Riverwalk level. I wish more could have been done to make it more inviting to pedestrians.
I agree as a resident, but as a tourist I’m torn... This seems like a very casual pathway to be immersed in the chaos of the Riverwalk. At the very least when a pedestrian is enjoying the Riverwalk walking by this hotel will provide a pleasant experience.
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  #85  
Old Posted Feb 17, 2019, 4:16 AM
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That's a good point. There are times the Riverwalk gets so crowded that it's a relief to walk under a bridge or some other place without a restaurant. I'm... actually touting... lack of retail.

:

Oh yeah. I kinda like the building. Not spectacular, but it works.
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  #86  
Old Posted Feb 17, 2019, 1:37 PM
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Originally Posted by JACKinBeantown View Post
That's a good point. There are times the Riverwalk gets so crowded that it's a relief to walk under a bridge or some other place without a restaurant. I'm... actually touting... lack of retail.

:

Oh yeah. I kinda like the building. Not spectacular, but it works.
I love the glass, especially the all glass enclosure of the balcony.

I don't love the color of the building or the height. It should be at least 300, but it is what it is.
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  #87  
Old Posted Feb 17, 2019, 1:47 PM
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I think the height is appropriate for the Riverwalk. In places where there are taller buildings, it has a bit of a canyon effect. This height gives it a little room to breathe. Put the tall buildings in the rectangular blocks that are currently parking lots.
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  #88  
Old Posted Feb 17, 2019, 7:45 PM
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Originally Posted by JACKinBeantown View Post
I think the height is appropriate for the Riverwalk. In places where there are taller buildings, it has a bit of a canyon effect. This height gives it a little room to breathe. Put the tall buildings in the rectangular blocks that are currently parking lots.
True. Not long ago I was reading a review on the Embassy Suites Riverwalk. The lady stated she did not like how you couldn't see the river from her "river view room". I thought it was nice - pictures were added, but I could tell she was on the highest level.
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  #89  
Old Posted Feb 20, 2019, 8:49 PM
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I still don't understand why they thought it necessary to pull away from the Riverwalk with nondescript, shapeless space and a zigzag PoMo podium behind an arcade screen with grated window security bars. Pulling back from one of the most successful pedestrian river fronts in country, and for something ultimately so banal! Yes, its nicer than the old retaining wall, but that was a low bar.

Stone arches and some pretty plantings are not enough, and this is what I though of after seeing the latest overhead:


(Photo from Davis Kane Architects)

We'll have to give the river level arcade wall and its plantings time to grow back in and see if plantings in combination with the pedestrian density of the Riverwalk can hide the architectural failings, but the danger is that it could easily end up a nice-but-scripted dead space like this:


(Photo from NACE - Alamo Chapter)

That is was what happens when "nice" and "okay" are the standards and we are desperate for anything new, even if it is pigeon-holed from standard design manuals of cheap suburban motels. Ironically, that dreary scene is just a few minutes walk upstream. They should have looked more downstream, where the inspirational models of the classic Riverwalk look like this:


(Photo by Greg L. Jones on Flickr)
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  #90  
Old Posted Feb 21, 2019, 5:15 AM
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Originally Posted by Hindentanic View Post
I still don't understand why they thought it necessary to pull away from the Riverwalk with nondescript, shapeless space and a zigzag PoMo podium behind an arcade screen with grated window security bars. Pulling back from one of the most successful pedestrian river fronts in country, and for something ultimately so banal! Yes, its nicer than the old retaining wall, but that was a low bar.
The wall was there. The compromise with historic was to leave the wall but to create some openings to make a restaurant inside functional.

I’m cautiously optimistic that once a restaurant goes in there and they do some landscaping, it will look a little better. Hopefully not a TGIFridays or something.
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  #91  
Old Posted Feb 21, 2019, 7:49 AM
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I wasn't too clear on this point, but I actually think the arcade wall is the better element, as it conforms to the path of the Riverwalk and it hides that gormless, double-height glassy stuff behind. The Riverwalk actually has a pedestrian "streetscape" that is not unlike that of the actual street level, making certain urban design techniques applicable to both. Instead of suburban-style setbacks and zigzagging broken massing, it is better have build-to lines that create façade walls. The arcade helps to rectify this, but it is obvious that the building has no relation to this arcade and was pulling back from the Riverwalk with the arcade added as an afterthought. Pigeon-holed brand architecture is like that, leaving the center view of the building when facing the arcade being a 7-story blank tan wall flanked by dull windows with no sills or lintels on a cheesy building with superficial cornices. Yes, better than what was previously there, but still...

The bleak Embassy Suites wall also tells us its not enough to conform to the path of the Riverwalk and that the wall has to be porous, humanely scaled, and lively to be interesting. Ironically, they actually have a gem of an arcade portal for someone brave enough to venture down past all the bare channel walls:


(Photo be Aaron Hockley on Flickr)

Too bad they couldn't bring the same treatment along the full stretch of their Riverwalk façade. Maybe the Hampton Inn & Suites will be similarly as good with their larger arcade and shifting Jenga steps, but as those were a forced compromise and not the original plan on a section of the Riverwalk rife with previous mistakes, I'm much more hesitant in my optimism.
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  #92  
Old Posted Feb 21, 2019, 3:14 PM
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OK, I'm back on the "retail everywhere" bandwagon. I had temporarily stepped away for this one instance, but I have been proven wrong. Now I'm back. What a short, strange trip it's been.
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  #93  
Old Posted Feb 21, 2019, 10:36 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by babysal View Post
The property seems very cold and "standoffish" along the Riverwalk level. I wish more could have been done to make it more inviting to pedestrians.

Another possible factor in design is that on the main channel, the flood plain level is several feet above the riverwalk sidewalk level. So the floor of the restaurant space needs to be higher, and then you have to have room for an ADA ramp to switchback between the riverwalk and the restaurant so that the riverwalk restaurant entrance is accessible.

Just pointing it out, because from the outside it’s not always obvious all of the many code constraints that force a particular design.
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  #94  
Old Posted Feb 21, 2019, 11:11 PM
Montirob Montirob is offline
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Originally Posted by Txdev View Post
Another possible factor in design is that on the main channel, the flood plain level is several feet above the riverwalk sidewalk level. So the floor of the restaurant space needs to be higher, and then you have to have room for an ADA ramp to switchback between the riverwalk and the restaurant so that the riverwalk restaurant entrance is accessible.

Just pointing it out, because from the outside it’s not always obvious all of the many code constraints that force a particular design.
This is very true (and I'm NOT defending the boring beige design). La Mansion and the other hotels are in the "bend" area of the Riverwalk that can be closed off from the San Antonio River itself during a flood event.
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  #95  
Old Posted Feb 23, 2019, 3:43 AM
txex06 txex06 is offline
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Walked this area of the river tonight with visitors from Chicago. They loved the limestone arches and questioned what hotel it was. One visitor immediately commented that they liked it wasn't glass or stucco fronting the Riverwalk. The interaction of the hotel and Riverwalk does look nice at night.
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  #96  
Old Posted Mar 1, 2019, 1:45 AM
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I've heard similar statements from people that
have seen it in person. I think the negativity twords it is because it's a Hampton Inn & suites. If it was something less chainy, it would get more love!
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  #97  
Old Posted Mar 17, 2019, 3:13 AM
Rynetwo Rynetwo is offline
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Originally Posted by UltraDanPrime View Post
I've heard similar statements from people that
have seen it in person. I think the negativity twords it is because it's a Hampton Inn & suites. If it was something less chainy, it would get more love!
Okay. Went down for St. Patrick’s and it looks and plays very good to the landscape. I was with my SO and a few of his family members and they all though it was very nice.

I know people use the site from a far, but pictures don’t make the interaction as seem less as it is in person.
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  #98  
Old Posted Mar 17, 2019, 10:38 AM
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The River front is definitely better looking than the street front.
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  #99  
Old Posted Mar 17, 2019, 7:48 PM
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Originally Posted by The Model View Post
[IMG]Home 2 Suites by Raul Medina III, on Flickr[/IMG]
This building really turned out nice. I'm used to thinking smaller hotels usually skimp on the design quality and detail, but this really looks good.
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