Housed in the fancy 1883 Dullnig Building is the 17-room Riverwalk Vista (262 Losoya St., 210/223-3200, www.riverwalkvista.com , $120 and up), a luxury boutique hotel located less than a block from the River Walk . The more-affordable rooms are pretty small, but the hotel’s historic décor and thoughtful amenities make it an extremely worthwhile experience. Rooms include bottled water (always a nice touch) as well as down comforters, cordless phones, ottomans, and fancy bathrooms containing bathrobes, slate showers, lighted makeup mirrors, and plush cotton towels. The Vista’s food is also a big draw—fresh-baked cookies are served every afternoon (along with glasses of wine), and the mega-breakfasts include burritos, eggs, muffins, cereal, and fruit.
Located directly behind the Alamo  is the remarkable Crockett Hotel (320 Bonham St., 210/225-6500, crocketthotel.com, $149 d). Renovated in 2007, this magnificent downtown historic establishment is in the heart of all the action, just steps away from the Alamo (18 paces, according to hotel reps) and a five-minute leisurely stroll from the River Walk . The lobby area is modest yet welcoming, and the rooms are tastefully decorated, with soothing colors and boutique-style features such as interior shutters and regional artwork. The Crockett’s amenities include free Internet access and a complimentary breakfast offering a tasty egg casserole, pastries, fresh fruit, and cereal.
Locals (and Bill Clinton) love The Menger (204 Alamo Plaza, 210/223-4361, www.mengerhotel.com , $185 d), a remarkable 1859 hotel just across the street from the Alamo . This significant historic landmark has been a destination for travelers, ranchers, and dignitaries throughout its illustrious 150-year history, and guests the reported lingering ghosts represent some of these returning guests. The bar is legendary, and the hotel proudly boasts having downtown San Antonio’s  largest heated swimming pool, along with a full-service spa, fitness room, and Jacuzzi. Rooms include free Internet access, minibars, and fridges.
Another well-regarded historic downtown hotel is the Wyndham-St. Anthony (300 E. Travis St., 210/227-4392, www.wyndham.com , $159 d), an ornate yet refined Victorian property located three blocks from the Alamo and one block from the River Walk . Built in 1909, the hotel is designated a National Historic Landmark, and is legendary for its “Peacock Alley” lobby, decked out with eight-foot-wide crystal chandeliers and original artwork by Remington, Cartier, and DeYoung. The rooms feature Queen Anne–style décor with custom-tailored bedspreads and antique replicas. The bathrooms have a touch of style with black-and-white-tiled baths and pedestal sinks. All rooms feature wireless Internet access and the hotel contains a pool and spa tub.
Billing itself as the “Jewel of San Antonio” is the Fairmount Hotel (401 S. Alamo St., 210/224-8800, www.thefairmounthotel-sanantonio.com , $179–219 d). This magnificent 1906 Victorian-style hotel is a block away from La Villita , the historic neighborhood turned shopping area, and just down the street from the River Walk  and Alamo . The Fairmount features 37 individually decorated rooms and suites enveloped in a stately brick building with wrought-iron verandas. The lobby area overlooks a jeweled granite and marble courtyard with a fountain and palmetto trees, offering a romantic place for garden seating. Most of the Fairmount’s rooms are intimate suites featuring period furnishings, silk fabrics, fancy tiling, canopy beds, and Internet access.
One of San Antonio’s  fanciest lodging options is the luxurious Omni La Mansion Del Rio Hotel (112 College St., 210/518-1000, www.omnihotels.com , $209 d). Locals stay here for a special night out, and travelers return regularly to experience this Spanish Colonial hacienda-style accommodation on the banks of the historic San Antonio River Walk . Those who resist the hotel’s nightly rates are still drawn to La Mansion for its excellent margaritas. Hotel amenities include a magnificent courtyard with a heated swimming pool and spa along with historically stylish rooms offering Internet access, minibars, and plush robes.