Pearl on the Concho

Find a Rare Pearl in San Angelo

Jamye Stewart


San Angelo is famous for rare pearls, found in freshwater mussels, in the Concho River. But there are other spectacular pearls on the Concho.

The Pearl on the Concho – a historic hotel. The current owners, David Robertson and Leon Burk, bought the former Holiday Inn Holidome in 2013, just days before it was scheduled to be demolished. The adventurous father and son team began the arduous task of remodeling the historic hotel. The hotel had suffered devastating damage in fires, so the task was not an easy one and cost the duo millions of dollars. The restoration took almost two years. Robertson says that it was definitely worth it. He says "We kept a lot of the original character, mainly because of memories." Customers often tell them about the many memories they have of the old hotel and they like the fact that the hotel is family owned.

Rumor has it that the holidome was the first one built in the United States in 1966. The General Manager, Shelley Jenkins, states that The Pearl is still the only atrium hotel in San Angelo, today, and is a very popular hotel for gatherings, any time of year, thanks to the heated pool. She adds "There is loads of fun to be had, here." There is miniature golf, billiard tables, table tennis, air hockey and other arcade games in the atrium, to add to the fun.

The hotel definitely has a historic charm. You feel an air of elegance as soon as you walk in and gaze up at the original, spiral staircase, that leads up to the 333 Restaurant and Saloon. The rooms are clean; beds are comfortable. Make coffee (DeCoty) in your room, which for some of us, is a big deal. Continental breakfast is included with your stay.

You can definitely keep yourself amused at the hotel, all day (or sleep in – the beds are comfy!) or venture out...and find yourself a variety of pearls.

The Pearl of the Conchos sculpture, by Garland Weeks, is on the north Concho River (Celebration Bridge) in Bart DeWitt Park. The sculpture is a mermaid holding a Concho pearl and was rendered from an original work created by San Angelo resident Jayne Beck. 

Concho pearls have been found in the natural waterways of West Texas for at least 400 years. The freshwater mussel shells, unique to this area, produce lustrous pearls in natural colors ranging from soft pinks through vivid lavenders. These beautiful pearls, produced by at least 12 varieties of mussel clams of the Unionacea family, appear in virtually every shape and size, and can be purchased in jewelry stores throughout the city.

The River Beautification Project features beautiful gardens, a river walk/plaza area, 14 water displays, turn-of-the-century lighting, the Bill Aylor Sr. Memorial River Stage, a children's (Kids' Kingdom) playground, a four-mile jogging-walking trail, the Visitor Center and a nine-hole golf course -- all in downtown San Angelo. The Celebration Bridge links the Historic City Center, the River Stage and El Paseo de Santa Angela, and provides access to Fort Concho from the river.

Shop for pearls on Concho Avenue, in the downtown area. Concho Avenue was the first street in "Santa Angela". The avenue shares simple charm with delightful country collectibles and memorabilia. The colorful history of Concho Avenue and downtown San Angelo is reflected in the stores and buildings.

Whether browsing through antique malls or designer fashion stores, having lunch at a tavern, enjoying music at the watering hole or reliving history in the "Best Little Bordello Museum in Texas" -- Miss Hattie's -- you are guaranteed a wonderful time.

Around every downtown corner, you will find more enticing and delectable treasures, many historical buildings and, most of all, friendly people.

Angela Sculpture - 418 W. Ave B. A sculpture of monumental scale cast in bronze of St. Angela Merici (Santa Angela) and Carolina Angela de la Garza Dewitt that rises to a height of approximately 10 feet. Visitors are able to walk around the statures on paths in the garden area.


San Angelo Visitor Center

418 W. Ave B.

San Angelo, Texas 76903

 (325) 655-4136

There is a picturesque waterfall that tumbles down the walkway that goes to the river and The Angela Sculpture, cast in bronze, overlooks the river. Hours of operation are Monday - Friday 9:00 am to 5:00 pm Saturday 10:00 am to 5:00 pm and Sunday's 12:00 pm to 4:00 pm.

Pearl on the Concho
333 Rio Concho Dr.
San Angelo, TX 76903

Reservations: (325) 653-4500

The Pearl is within walking distance to downtown and various shops and restaurants.

Sunday - Tuesday: Closed (Winter Schedule)

Wednesday - Friday:  3:33pm to 9:00pm
Saturday:  3:33pm to 10:00pm

Sunday- Tuesday: Closed (Winter Schedule)

Wednesday - Thursday:  3:33pm to 11:00pm

Friday & Saturday: 3:33pm to 2:00am

Happy Hour

Wednesday - Saturday:  3:33pm to 7pm








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20 Feb 2017

By Jamye Stewart