Pearl announces ‘Olé, San Antonio’

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    Pearl presents a summer of Spain celebration honoring San Antonio’s Tricentennial and its Spanish Heritage through “Olé, San Antonio.” (photo, Christina Acosta)

    The Pearl announced their new summer-long program, “Olé, San Antonio,” that will celebrate San Antonio’s Hispanic heritage in honor of the Tricentennial.

    On July 15 through September 16, the Pearl will feature events that include the four pillars: gastronomy, music and dance, arts and architecture. The lively events will acknowledge the shared past and a vision of the future as an intercambio (exchange) and collaboration between the cultures of San Antonio and Spain.

    Pearl restaurants will feature Spanish menus and chef collaboration dinners, retailers that will feature curated Spanish items and activation in Pearl Park. Events will have new programming, while also incorporating existing Pearl activities.

    “Our intention with creating Olé was to acknowledge our 300 years of history with Spain and to create a truly monumental celebration that people will cherish and remember for the rest of their lives,” said Elizabeth Fauerso, chief marketing officer for the Pearl. “We want to bring the entire city together, along with our friends from Spain, for a collaboration that can only happen in this special Tricentennial year.”

    The Tricentennial will bring in new visitors from all around the world with an economic impact study showing an additional 263,000 visitors to our city in 2018, according to Mayor Nirenberg. This will generate an impact of $119 million. On average, there are 34 million annual visitors in San Antonio.

    Bexar County is also preparing for the celebration with the completion of the first phase of the San Pedro Creek Improvements Project, which will be completed next month. The first phase features four miles of paseos, 11 acres of landscaped area and 30 acres removed from floodplain.

    Eight street bridges were replaced and six pedestrian bridges were built while six existing bridges are rehabilitated. Sixty thousand linear feet of new walls and three new channel gates were also added.

    This summer, we will immerse our guests in traditions from San Antonio’s Spanish heritage and celebrate Hotel Emma as a focal point for several gastronomy related activities,” said Beth Smith, director of marketing & public relations for Hotel Emma

    Gastronomy will be celebrated through a Spanish takeover at Pearl restaurants hosting Tapas Tuesdays, Gin Tonic Thursdays and Spanish Wine Selections. The Culinary Institute of America (CIA) will also participate in the festivities hosting Spanish master classes for its students and foodies. They will also be hosting several cooking demos in their Latin kitchen space centered on popular Spanish cuisine like tapas, paellas and Spanish wine.

    Spanish music and dance bring the Pearl to life with intercambio performances that will include mariachis, DJ sets, flamenco and jazz. World-renowned flamenco dancer Carlos Rodriguez will present a special performance at Pearl Park; Spanish DJs will collaborate in their performances with South Texan counterparts; and an evening with zarzuela with Casa de España.

    Arts and architecture will be a major focus in programming. Illustrator, artist, painter and winner of the 2010 Spanish National Illustration Ana Juan will be creating a limited edition serigraph honoring the city’s long history presented by master serigrapher Manolo Gurillo.

    Throughout the summer, the Olé Galería will feature exhibitions of contemporary Spanish graphic artists and works from visiting Spanish photographers Beatrix Mexi Molner and Andres Marin. Olé will also be collaborating with the San Antonio Museum of Art (SAMA) on its exhibition, “Spain: 500 years of Spanish Painting from Museums from the Museums of Madrid.”

    On June 21, the official opening day of Olé, (June 15 will be the soft opening), several activations will happen including Día Mundial de la Tapa (International Day of the Tapa) tasting at Pearl Stable, a flamenco performance in Pearl park by Pure Flamenco Primitivo Family Dance Company; and a Spanish cuisine and cooking techniques at CIA.

    On closing day, scheduled for Sept. 16, will include a intercambio dinner with Spanish chefs working with Pearl chefs, a mariachi-flamenco performance with Spanish guitarist Luis Gallo performing with local artists as part of Mariachi Lab and a Cabezudos (big heads) parade representing key figures in San Antonio history. A short film, the product of a collaboration between visiting Spanish and San Antonio artists, will premiere at the event.

    A full Olé schedule with confirmed programming dates as well as a full website and mobile app will be coming soon. For more information about the Pearl, visit www.atp

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