River View

Historic King William Villa Offers Rich History

By Ellie Leeper
Photography By Greg Harrison 

The Advisory Council of Villa Finale hosted a culinary adventure in San Antonio that benefitted its historical property and collections. The only National Trust Historic Site in Texas, Villa Finale is the former home of San Antonio civic leader and preservationist Walter Nold Mathis. Open to the public since October 2010, Villa Finale continues to support Mathis’ legacy by not only interpreting a 19th century home and its collections, but by sustaining a vision for preserving the King William neighborhood. Originally constructed in 1876 by English hardware merchant Russell Norton, Villa Finale had a succession of owners and cosmetic additions before Mr. Mathis purchased the property in 1967.
After an extensive restoration, the Villa Finale served as Mr. Mathis’ home until his passing in 2005.

A sampling of Peruvian, Colonial Spanish and South Texas cuisine was provided by several of Pearl’s most accomplished chefs who are contributing to San Antonio’s ‘culinary Renaissance’:  chef Johnny Hernandez of La Gloria, La Fruteria, and Casa Hernan; chef Geronimo Lopez of Nao New World Flavors and The Culinary Institute of America at Pearl, and chef Jesse Perez of Arcade. The event’s cocktails were crafted by Blue Box Bar mixologist Olaf Harmel and the wines were generously donated by Republic. Exxon Mobil provided additional sponsorship for the event.

Entertainment was provided in the Villa’s Garden, by Adrian Quesada—Money Chica, a Peruvian cumbia sensation making their San Antonio debut. Special guests of the evening were invited to enjoy the occasion on the Villa Finale balconies. Co-Chairing the event were Josie Gill Davidson and Elizabeth Fauerso and we recommend a guided tour of the King William district during your next visit to the River City.


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