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Clayton Korte reveals Stable Hall, a 19th century horse stable transformed into a premier music venue in San Antonio's Pearl district

Project name:
Stable Hall
Architecture firm:
Clayton Korte
Historic Pearl, San Antonio, Texas, USA
Shannon Korta
Principal architect:
Design team:
Sam Manning, AIA, Partner. Stephen Williams, AIA, Project Architect. Emily Little, FAIA, Partner Emerita. Jordan Sheets, AIA, Project Manager (former). Christian Hertzog, Project Designer (former). Jenny Adair, Project Designer (former
Interior design:
Joel Mozersky Design
Built area:
21,563 ft²
Site area:
Design year:
Completion year:
Civil engineer:
Structural engineer:
Environmental & MEP:
Word + Carr
Tools used:
The Historic Pearl, Potluck Hospitality
Cultural Architecture › Concert Hall

Clayton Korte: Designed by local San Antonio architect Otto Kramer and constructed in 1894, the Pearl Stable originally housed roughly 70 horses for the Pearl Brewery. Before motorized vehicles, these horses pulled beer wagons as part of the brewery’s production process until the early 1900s. With the introduction of the automobile, the intricate brick and stone building transitioned from a stable to storage.

The front pediment and cupola were removed in the 1940s. In 1950, the second floor, once used for hay storage, was also removed, and additional renovations converted the stable into an event venue named The Pearl Corral. A 290-foot mural called "The History of Ranching” wrapped the walls of the interior lending to the venue’s new Wild West theme. Designed and painted by Wimberley architect Buck Winn, the mural incorporated scenes of chuck wagons, old western towns, cattle branding, and bronco riding.

At this time, the lobby space adopted the name “The Safari Room” and housed taxidermy from the former Pearl Brewery president Otto Andrew Koehler’s numerous safaris. The Pearl Corral closed in 1968 during HemisFair and the stable reopened in 1971 as Jersey Lilly, a vibrant event venue with red flocked wall paper and brass chandeliers. Jersey Lilly operated until 2002, when ownership changed yet again and the stable operated as a different event venue. Today, the 128-year-old historic structure, now called Stable Hall, opens as a premier music venue.

Hammered limestone floors and plaster and original brick walls usher patrons into the lobby space as they enjoy pre-show drinks and local beers from the bars to the east and west of the entry. Column details and chandeliers in the lobby remain from an earlier renovation and lend to the cumulative history of the building. In the performance space, new forest green walls, lush velvet curtains, hand-painted landscape murals, and brass accents cultivate an intimate, soulful space for performances from artists like The Peterson Brothers and San Antonio’s own Rosie Flores.

A radially laid out original wood ceiling in the space serves as a testament to the skilled carpenters of the 1890s. Custom-designed upholstered balcony seats and upper-level lounge areas, referred to as the eastern and western “hay lofts,” work in tandem with the large, open ground floor which accommodates raucous standing-room-only shows to more intimate, seated events.

With the nation’s the Live Music Capital just down the road, Stable Hall amplifies the Texas music scene and celebrates the spirit of coming together. Uniquely historic and one of San Antonio’s oldest buildings, Stable Hall brings San Antonio a variety of performances and is certain to be a treasured venue for many years to come.

About Clayton Korte: 
Clayton Korte creates places that celebrate their environment and exalt the human experience 
at the intersection of architecture, authenticity, and craft. What began as a small architecture 
practice in 1983 has evolved into a firm today that includes interior design with offices in 
Austin and San Antonio. Though their Texas architecture roots run deep, work on winery, 
ranch, hospitality, and residential projects have taken Clayton Korte to California, Maryland, 
Hawaii, and beyond.

By Alfredo Gonzalez

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