Open Pop Up Shops‘Tis the season for OPEN. Four previously vacant building suites in downtown have been transformed into boutiques, floral shops and art galleries for the holiday season, as well as four buildings in La Villita. The downtown core has never looked so alive.

Open Pop Up ShopsWhen I first wrote about the OPEN Downtown Pop up Shops, my tone was a bit down because of the lack of foot traffic. Jacqueline and I have so much passion for downtown San Antonio and we want to see it blossom with exciting, small businesses. Today, December 11th, is the first day of OPEN and I am happy to say that while I was inside a pop up shop, other people from San Antonio surrounded me as they talked with their friends and held up different garments to get a closer look. Looking around, I could hardly believe this was E. Houston Street.

OPEN features pop up shops at four different downtown locations this year – The Book Building at 140 E. Houston St., The Schaum Building at 231 E. Houston St., and the Milam Building at 115 E. Travis St. La Villita also houses four pop up shops in buildings 7, 8, 14B and 25. Today, Jacqueline and I stopped by the OPEN pop up shops located on E. Houston and E. Travis St.

Open Pop Up ShopsOpen Pop Up ShopsFirst stop – Zelle Boutique, a boutique based in Texas, located in the Schaum Building. The brightly colored balloons caught my eye, but the unique and artsy window displays caused me to walk in and shop for longer than anticipated. Jewelry reflecting the fashionable looks of Kendra Scott, fall booties, scarves and dresses hung all around the narrow suite. With jewelry ranging from $8 to $17 and outerwear for $35, we will be stopping by Zelle Boutique again!

open-3330Next door to the Schaum Building is the Book Building which was overflowing with fresh flowers and beautiful art pieces. Frank’s Fresh Flowers and Canvas, an art bar and wine gallery, create a calming atmosphere for the San Antonio shopper. Whether you’re looking for a holiday wreath, original flower arrangement, photography or a painting, OPEN has it all in one dressed-up shop.

open-3333Open Pop Up ShopsA short five minute walk down Houston Street and onto Travis Street will take you straight to the Milam Building (look for the balloons!) which features Socorro Society and Ame Collaborative. Socorro Society brings vintage fashion straight to the consumer, and Ame is a collaboration of fine art from local artists.

Get out of your comfort zone this holiday season. Skip the mall, the traffic and the teeth clenching, check out lines and head to the OPEN pop up shops. If we want the City to house fashion boutiques and galleries permanently, we have to show them how badly we want it. OPEN is open daily from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. until December 19th. For more information, please visit www.opensanantonio.com. Have fun!