In the heart of San Antonio, just seven minutes from the international airport, is a community filled with open pastures, glamorous estates, wildlife, farm life and luxury. The residents of Hill Country Village have either been here for a very long time, or were blessed enough to finally find their spot. It’s coveted, yet unconventional, steeped with history yet full of modern architecture.
For Deb Ford, Hill Country Village has been a part of her life for nearly 30 years. Ford’s two-plus acre plot on the southern end of the Village boasts a gorgeous home surrounded by mature trees and a sprawling green lawn that makes it hard to imagine the bustling world just seconds away. “The convenience is extraordinary,” says Ford. “This is the walking neighborhood. I can, and have, walked to the post office and the grocery store.”
The original home was built on the property in 1960. As Ford moved her family in she made two major expansions to fit her growing children, who now often visit with children of their own. The master suite is located on the original, ranch style side of the home and a separate two story children’s or entertaining wing offers a generous great room with a fireplace, three bedrooms with bathrooms and bonus room with a separate entrance.
A huge kitchen adjoins the two spaces nicely and Ford reminisces about the many memories she has had around the kitchen table. “So many kids have grown up in this house, we always had my children’s friends here, they still come back to visit and will be sad when I go.”
Professed as the “cool house” Ford affectionately calls the home the ultimate entertaining space. Local and National dignitaries have been guests in the home, where Ford is well known for her parties. The canopy of the trees and layout of the home create an ideal setting for speaking engagements with large audiences. “We even had my daughter’s wedding here. Imagine 700 guests, lights everywhere and a dance floor all right on this lawn.” And after flipping through an album of the event it is obvious the setting was not only perfect, it was magical.
The serenity of the outdoors is carried into the home, through the large windows and French doors creating the perfect flow to one of the many gathering spots. “The front porch is my sanctuary, just heavenly.” The porch leads down to the pool, which rests nicely amongst the canopy of trees and is surrounded by a large patio with a fire pit. “It creates a natural amphitheater which was not intentional, but is as if God planned it.”
“One of the greatest features of the property is this beautiful barn,” say Ford of the expansive space with fully protected interior. Ford uses it for a gardening center and workshop, but it is suitable for much more. “You can own one big animal per acre and it would be ideal for horses.” Whether interested in raising animals or just looking at them, the home offers abundant natural entertainment. “The wildlife is just incredible here,” says Ford. “I love watching the routines of the deer and there are just so many beautiful birds.”
Before World War II, Hill Country Village was a hog farm. Then, in 1946 developers began construction of Village Estates, the first subdivision located north of San Antonio. Tracts were a minimum of nine acres and offered residents suburban country living. The Hill Country Village Association was created in 1954.
The citizens incorporated the community in 1956 and established a mayor and council form of government. Given the limitations of selling nine-acre parcels, residents voted to allow the sale of smaller tracts down to two acres, however many lots are still much larger than that evoking a sense of privacy that residents have come to cherish.
Ford will indeed miss many things about the home as she moves to be closer to her grandchildren, but knows the home will now find its new family to raise. “Hill Country Village is not cookie cutter by any means. It’s an investment in living life beyond the extraordinary, a place to start a life. People come and stay.”
Article written by Jennifer Pucci Starr.