Girls Trip Delight

Belinda Howard Smith

an evening photo of Red Stag shop window display in downtown New Braunfels.

Downtown New Braunfels, Texas is both nostalgic and trendy. I reminisce about the former department stores with the deep display windows. It takes me back to my childhood, those magical moments dreaming about the treasures in the window. Today, the stories within the display windows are both old and new as the proprietors of resale shops, the Henne Hardware Store operating for more than 150 years, a theater, and a hip ice cream shop share the same block.

Just as the sun was setting I walked along West San Antonio Street, the main street cutting through downtown surprised to find an ice cream shop, a bakery and a few businesses still open, since the downtown area in many small towns shut down long before the sun.

The interior of 2 Tarts Bakery. A counter of fresh baked goods are in the background. To the right is a wall of paper goods and colorful socks for sale. There are several small round tables with chairs for customer seating.
Store window glass with neon Bakery sign and below it are cafe tables and chairs.

Downtown New Braunfels is a shopper’s paradise. Stroll, shop, sip, and savor. It’s a Girls Trip kind of place with unique boutiques, coffee shops and places to dine. It’s like stepping into another world. One I’ve never experienced yet seems familiar. Umbrellas shade the sidewalk café tables among historic buildings a few shade trees, and pots of flowers that have acclimated to the Texas heat. I can’t help marvel at the history enmeshed with the new since America isn’t old by comparison and the fact “we” tend to tear down the old to make room for the new.

New Braunfels honors its history with modern charm. Historical buildings such as a former US Post Office (built in 1915), former City Hall (built in 1927) and many historical homes now operate as restaurants. It’s a place to shop and experience something new and different.

Umbrella covered street-side  cafe tables outside businesses in downtown New Braunfels, TX

If you’re planning a Girls Trip, family vacation, or couples travel and you want to stay in a quiet, country cottage, BellaVida Haus is located minutes from the Historic Gruene area on 2 wooded acres. It’s sleeps up to 8 people and has dreamy outdoors gathering areas, a pool, and outdoor grilling kitchen.


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