When Chuck and Marion Palaza decided it was time to move back to Texas, they chose a big home in Stone Oak. It wasn’t long before they were ready to downsize by giving up the yard work and maintenance and give condominium living another try. Previously, they spent 12 years living the condominium lifestyle in Washington DC. In fact, Chuck was working in the Pentagon on 9/11 and Marion was also a Federal employee on the day that changed life forever. Although they enjoyed their time in the nation’s capital, it was never quite the same. Having made the move to urban living in downtown San Antonio, we invited The Palazas to share their thoughts on what makes downtown so special:
When you decided on an urban lifestyle in Texas, how did you decide which City to call home?
Chuck – “We came to Alteza in San Antonio first. We were really impressed with the building, the amenities and I really like being attached to the hotel. They explained about the health club, the lobby is down stairs and you can get whatever you need at 2:00 in the morning. We told them we liked it, but we were going to Austin before we made our decision…..and we did. We went to Austin and looked at two or three condos up there. There was absolutely no comparison. They showed us some 2 bedrooms and my closet was bigger than that second bedroom. It was unbelievable, and the prices were at least $100,000 more–just what you get for the money. So we cancelled the trip to Dallas, and we came back to The Alteza in San Antonio.”
What does San Antonio compare to Washington DC?
Marion – “If you compare what we had in Washington DC to what we have now, there just is no comparison. The Alteza has so much more space and views of the City from every room. In San Antonio, River Walk used to be the focus, but now that you have the Tobin and the Majestic, it seems like more and more top performers and acts are coming to town. I think San Antonio has really changed. It’s becoming more of a big city vs. the small town that’s it’s always been known for. We discovered Southtown. We never knew that existed! It’s amazing. All those restaurants and the fact that you can just walk to them. It’s so nice not to get into a car and get some exercise. Starfish is fantastic if you like seafood.”
How do you feel about living right on the River Walk?
Chuck – “It used to be mostly touristy type restaurants. But now they’ve extended it both north and south. North up to the Pearl Brewery which has been revitalized with restaurants and shops. And on the weekend a great farmer’s market. Then south down to the Missions and Southtown. It’s just a beautiful area. Very mature trees that grow up over the river. I go jogging down there just about every day. It’s real shady there and it protects you from the heat.”
What is the best part about living at The Alteza?
Marion – “We have a fabulous staff. It’s unbelievable how things get done. They take your dry cleaning and laundry. You just bring it down to the concierge, and they call you when it’s ready. They’ll even put it in the closet if you want them to. We love being able to walk everywhere because you find all these little hidden treasures that you never knew about. There is a church over by the River Center mall. It’s kind of small, but the bells toll and you think you’re in Europe. The people who are living on the north side of town are really missing out.”
Chuck – “The quality at the Alteza is unbelievable. It’s so quiet here, you don’t even know you have neighbors. We don’t here a thing at night, nothing. That’s how well built they are. The staff is super friendly and most accommodating. I had a piece of furniture delivered and it weighted over 100 lbs. I asked if they had someone who might be able to help, and the next thing I know, the door bell rings and there they are – it’s right there. And Ruth’s Chris is great. I call it my basement bar. I always wanted to have a bar in the basement, and now I have Ruth’s Chris. It’s perfect.”
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