San Antonio is a city of intriguing--and often surprising--contrasts. It's also the country's eighth-largest city. Downtown, amid 20th-century office buildings, the 18th-century Spanish Governor's Palace has been preserved, as has La Villita, one of the city's original settlements, which now houses artisans' workshops, restaurants, and historic houses. And, of course, there is the Alamo, which symbolizes the Texas Revolution. In the heart of the city, 20 feet below street level, lies the popular River Walk. Along the tree-shaded banks of the San Antonio River, cafes, shops, galleries, and restaurants offer samplings of San Antonio's many cultures. Restaurants serve everything from haute cuisine to down-home barbecue. San Antonio has a museum of art and natural history, nightclubs, symphony performances, touring Broadway shows, a world-class zoo, NBA basketball, horse racing, and much more.

FAST FACTS San Antonio Convention and Visitors Bureau P.O. Box 2277 San Antonio, TX 78298 Phone: (210) 207-6700, (800) 447-3372 Fax: (210) 207-6782 Web:

Executive Director: Steve Moore Director of Marketing: Alicia Vargas

Location and Transportation:San Antonio International Airport is approximately nine miles from the city center. Airlines that serve it include American, Southwest, and Delta.

Hotels and Meeting Venues:There are approximately 25,000 hotel rooms. Total tax on hotel rooms is 15 percent. The Henry B. Gonzalez Convention Center has 240,000 square feet of exhibit space and 46 meeting rooms. The convention center expansion, slated for completion in January 2001, will increase the contiguous exhibit hall space to 440,000 square feet. Other facilities include the multi-use Alamodome and the Municipal Auditorium and Conference Center.

Recreation:Water sports, year-round golf, and tennis are among the area's recreational activities. Additional attractions include the Sea World of Texas and Six Flags Fiesta Texas.