Situated on the southern bank of the River Walk in San Antonio’s La Villita Historic District, this 0.18-acre property was purchased by Colonel Jeremiah Y. Dashiell in 1850. The home built by local contractor and stonemason John H. Kampmann was a rectangular, stucco-covered limestone building with a metal hipped roof on a raised basement, with a wide porch that extends across the main facade. After Dashiell’s death in 1888, the property was severely neglected and deteriorated. In 1942 the San Antonio Conservation Society purchased the property and undertook comprehensive historic preservation work on the house and grounds, after the city declined to purchase the site as part of the larger La Villita revitalization project being overseen by architect O’Neil Ford.
Today the property is a popular destination along the River Walk, featuring Spanish Colonial Revival plazas located on two terraces. The upper, brick-paved Garden Plaza contains waist-high flagstone planters whose flowerbeds have modest plantings of live oaks, Texas sabal palms, and forsythia. Clay pots filled with a mixture of majesty palms and annuals line the periphery. Overlooking the River Walk, the lower, flagstone-paved River Plaza is shaded by live oaks whose branches exhibit a zigzagging filigree. Cream-colored pots planted with ferns, grasses, and other annuals line the periphery.
The property is currently leased to the Fig Tree Restaurant, which uses both courtyards as event spaces. Casa Villita is a contributing property to the La Villita Historic District, which was listed in the National Register of Historic Places in 1972.