The Plaza de San Agustin
The Heart of Laredo, Then and Now.
Stand on the tree-shaded green of the Plaza de San Agustin on any given day, and you might see couples strolling on the brick paths or a vibrant festival alive with music, dancing, and booths selling local artwork or authentic Mexican cuisine.
It’s a scene not unlike what you might have seen in the 1700’s, when Laredo was first founded. From the beginning, the Plaza de San Agustin was the center of town-and the center of operations for commerce, religion, and celebration.
There was a day when local residents came to purchase their goods at open-air markets in the Plaza. Merchants brought their wares from all over South Texas to sell. Today, the market tradition continues with the Bazar de San Agustin [link to Bazar de San Agustin page], a monthly celebration of life in Laredo including authentic local foods, artwork, and music.
In 1760, Laredo’s first chapel was built on the Plaza. The Cathedral is still there today, standing in the same location where the original mission chapel once stood. It boasts an active Catholic congregation, and it’s the site of many of the city’s most beautiful weddings and celebrations.
The Plaza is surrounded by history on all sides. At its boundaries you’ll see the historic La Posada Hotel, flying the seven flags of Laredo. You’ll also see the Capitol of the Republic of the Rio Grande, former capitol building and now a museum housing 1800’s-era artifacts and historical exhibits. Nearby is the historic Bruni Home, now the home of Laredo’s legendary steak house, the Tack Room. The completely restored Leyendecker Residence also watches over the Plaza.
Hundreds of years ago the people of Laredo gathered in the Plaza for all the town’s important religious and civic celebrations. Today, the Plaza is still a focal point for many of Laredo’s festivals-including the monthly Bazar de San Agustin, Jamboozie [link to Jamboozie page], and George Washington’s Birthday Celebration [link to GWBC page]. Step outside the doors of La Posada Hotel, and you never know what you might find in the Plaza: a free concert, a conga line full of brightly-costumed revelers, or a bicycle race that ends with a taco-tasting contest.
The Plaza de San Agustin continues to be the center of Laredo’s civic, religious and community life. Come and share the excitement of our celebrations or the peace of a lazy afternoon-as Laredo’s inhabitants have for hundreds of years.