The genius of San Antonio is that ever since 1941, it has sagely leveraged, grown and enhanced its greatest asset and attraction: the River Walk. The idyllic pedestrian promenade along the San Antonio River, extended from 3 to 15 miles in 2013, is a scenic urban lifeline that connects visitors to everywhere they want to be and anchors the city’s #7 ranking for Attractions among America’s large cities. On one end of the River Walk, there’s the UNESCO World Heritage Center and the five colonial missions, key players in a #23 finish for Culture. On the other, the San Antonio Zoo, and in between, the San Antonio Museum of Art, the Texas Golf Hall of Fame, and dozens of other curiosities, eclectic stops and riverside cafés. Increasingly, Pearl is a destination within the destination: a mixed-use space in a former brewery, it’s a beguiling blend of retail, dining, offices, a riverside amphitheatre, events and a campus of the Culinary Institute of America. Around the esteemed school, a host of grads and chefs have clustered, creating a smorgasbord of choices from Italian to ’cue to bakery to vegetarian cuisine.