Surrounded by downtown Austin’s vibrant music scene, the W Austin draws on the neighborhood’s rock-and-roll roots for its hip bar scene, glam roof-deck pool, and colorful, mid-century–inspired decor. Live music wafts through the lobby on weekends, the Records Room houses more than 8,000 vinyl records, and even the spa is aimed at helping rock stars recuperate after a show, with treatments like the Led Zeppelin–inspired "Over the Hills and Far Away" full-body detox.
Austin isn’t just one big after-party, though; it’s also an eco-conscious city with a sustainable food-loving bent, and the W embodies those attributes. In 2012, the building was the largest of its kind to receive LEED certification, and a rooftop apiary provides honey for the sleek farm-to-table restaurant downstairs, which also has its own forager. And that restaurant, TRACE, is a local hot spot in its own right; don’t miss a true Texas brunch on the patio on Sundays, complete with live jazz.
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Right in the heart of downtown, the W Austin shares a building with the Moody Theater, home to Austin City Limits Live, and is just a few blocks from the Austin Music Hall, so you can walk to and from the show. Hangover-soothing dining options include tacos at La Condesa, barbecue at Lambert's, and coffee and hamburgers at Jo's. The cool, refreshing waters at the popular Barton Springs Pool are only a short cab ride away.
Need to Know
Rooms: 251 rooms, 32 suites. From $249. Check-in: 3 p.m.; check-out: noon. Dining options: With a nod to Austin’s vibrant local food movement, TRACE, the W’s trendy farm-to-table restaurant, uses only seasonal, regional ingredients that are sustainably grown and foraged, and, true to the name, transparently traceable. Central Texas favorites like braised short rib, tortas, and shrimp and grits are available daily; the restaurant serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner, as well as a weekend brunch accompanied by either a funk-soul DJ (Saturdays) or a jazz quartet (Sundays). Lighter fare accompanies cocktails, local brews, and live music in the Living Room’s four bars, and snacks and drinks can be ordered throughout the day on the poolside terrace from WET bar. Spa and gym details: At FIT, the hotel’s modern gym that overlooks downtown Austin through floor-to-ceiling windows, personal training and yoga classes can be arranged upon request. The fourth-floor AWAY spa offers a full range of treatments inspired by the hotel’s music theme, all aimed at helping guests detox after a night out catching the hottest shows on Sixth Street.
Who's it best for: Groupies, aspiring rock stars, and anyone who wants to be able to walk home from the concert. Our favorite rooms: With names like Wonderful, Spectacular, and Fabulous, it should come as no surprise that all of the colorful, kitted-out rooms have superlative views of either the skyline or the water. But some of the best views are reserved for the Cool Corner Suites, spacious one-bedroom pieds-à-terre with wraparound windows and loftlike exposed concrete. Pick your scene: Each of the four rooms in the Living Room bar has its own distinct vibe. Sample signature spirits by the fireplace in the intimate Tequila Bar, catch live music on Thursday to Saturday evenings in the Records Room, sip craft cocktails in the red-hued Secret Bar, and catch a breeze on the Screened Porch. On the last Sunday of the month, the bar also hosts Living Room Live, a free live music series featuring up-and-coming local musicians.