Known as the live music capital of the world, it’s no secret that Austin is one of America’s coolest cities. The capital of Texas is one of the fastest-growing cities in the US, attracting new residents and businesses daily. With such a vibrant atmosphere, there’s no shortage of fun things to do in Austin. Whether you’re exploring taking a dip in Barton Springs, eating Texas BBQ, or soaking in the incredible live music scene, a trip to Austin is sure to be an unforgettable experience.
Despite the fast-growing population, Austin also retains ample space to connect with nature. It’s home to Lady Bird Lake, which flows right downtown and offers outdoor recreational activities in the heart of the city. The iconic Congress Avenue bridge is also home to millions of free-tailed bats that you can watch emerge in the evenings.
To compliment your time in Austin, you’ll want to find a hotel to stay in that’s equally as cool as the city. And with new ones popping up all the time, you might have a hard time choosing the perfect one. So we’ve created a list of the 12 coolest boutique hotels in Austin to help you plan your dream getaway!
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Where to stay in Austin
Austin is home to over a hundred different neighborhoods, each with its own individual character and charm. Deciding where to stay in Austin largely depends on what you want to see and do during your trip.
If you’re visiting for the first time and want to be right in the heart of the action, Downtown is a great place to base yourself. This is where you’ll find the city’s skyscrapers and late-19th-century architectural landmarks, including the iconic Texas State Capitol. Austin’s 6th Street District, the nightlife and live-music hub of the city, is also downtown.
Just a few blocks away from Downtown Austin is the Rainey Street Historic District, a perfect area to stay if you’re looking for nightlife. It has tons of vibrant bars, most with outdoor patios, spacious backyards, and even food trucks for a late night snack.
Another popular neighborhood to stay is East Austin, a district that has experienced a lot of growth in recent years. It’s easy to navigate and is super walkable with pedestrian-friendly streets.
South Congress Avenue, also known as SoCo, is a revitalized shopping and dining district, widely considered the hipster area of the city. It hast picture-perfect views of the Texas State Capitol Building along with lots of boutique lodging options, small shops, and delicious food trucks.
The 12 Best Hotels in Austin, Texas
1. The Driskell
If you’re looking for a luxurious place to stay in Austin, look no further than The Driskell! Located in the heart of downtown Austin, this historic hotel has been offering state-of-the-art amenities and exceptional service for over a century.
Originally built in 1886, the Driskell combines old-world charm with all the modern luxuries you’d expect today. You’ll fall in love as soon as you enter the grand columned lobby, which features marble floors and stained-glass domes. Each of the 189 guestrooms and suites have been thoughtfully designed with lavish decor, hardwood floors, and leather furniture.
There’s no shortage of entertainment options here. Enjoy live music at the bar every night of the week – it often hosts Grammy award-winning artists! Or take part in the monthly beer dinner in the 1886 Cafe & Bakery, where you can try local craft beers paired with a 4-course dinner.
Amenities inside the hotel include a modern 24-hour fitness center overlooking downtown Austin, 18,000 square feet of meeting and event space, museum-quality artwork, an award-winning restaurant, and a concierge service to make sure your stay is incredible.
When you’re ready to leave the hotel, you won’t have to wander far for entertainment. The Driskell is on the corner of 6th Street and Brazos Street in the heart of downtown Austin’s live music scene. You’ll be just moments from the city’s most popular attractions including Austin Music Hall and the Texas State Capitol.
2. Austin Motel
With a bright signature neon sign on South Congress, the Austin Motel is easily one of Austin’s most iconic hotels. It was given a complete makeover in 2017 that stays true to it’s 50’s style, with bright colors and quirky decor throughout.
The 41 guest rooms and suites each feature Custom Sferra sheets, coconut bath products by Alaffia, a 50” flat-screen TV, a work desk, and free WiFi. The hotel also hosts a calendar of regular events including Burlesque Bingo and Break Free Yoga. And with one of the best swimming pools in town, you won’t be bored during your stay at the Austin Motel.
You can try local cuisine while staying here at Joann’s Fine Foods, the onsite restaurant. It features an extensive all-day menu of tacos and Tex-Mex favorites like house-made tamales and picadillo enchiladas. It’s a great place for happy hour after a day of exploring!
The Austin Motel sits just south of the Colorado River and downtown, in view of the State Capitol. It’s in the heart of the South Congress neighborhood where you can find some of Austin’s best dining, nightlife, and shopping venues. The hotel’s knowledgeable staff will help you make the most of your time in the city.
Set amidst a lush garden courtyard, the Hotel San Jose will give you a sense of seclusion despite being steps away from one of the busiest shopping districts in Austin.
Each of the 40 rooms are designed with chic and thoughtful details and feature colorful accent walls and wooden furniture. Amenities include cozy Sfrerra linens, Malin and Goetz bath products, custom-made kimono bathrobes, and a curated minibar. Some of the rooms also boast a terrace overlooking the courtyard lounge.
This four-star hotel also has an outdoor swimming pool that is perfect for cooling off from the Austin heat. Enjoy a refreshing dip and then head to the hotel bar where you can get one of the best micheladas in town!
The attentive staff are available to assist you around the clock with your stay in Austin. And the hotel even offers typewriters and Polaroid cameras that you can borrow to get some fun Instagrammable photos during your stay.
Hotel San Jose is located on South Congress Avenue, just a few blocks from Downtown. It’s right in the heart of one of Austin’s favorite neighborhoods and is just a short distance from attractions like the Palmer Events Center and Town Lake.
The newly built Hotel Van Zandt is quickly becoming one of the best hotels in Austin!
Despite having 316 rooms, this hotel manages to feel like a boutique. Standard amenities include luxurious beddings, yoga mats, free WiFi, a flat-screen TV, a minibar, a work desk, and Bluetooth speakers. The higher-end suites offer extra features like soaking tubs, seating areas, and views of Lady Bird Lake. And since this is a pet-friendly hotel, you can even bring your dog along!
Hotel Van Zandt also boasts gorgeous communal space with exposed brick, natural wood, 60’s style furnishings, cool lighting fixtures, local artwork, and a music corner with a selection of vinyl records to choose from.
There’s an in-house bar and restaurant that specializes in craft beers and BBQ short ribs. They also host live music by local musicians every night of the week! You’ll love enjoying tunes and a view of the Austin skyline while sipping on a craft cocktail from the award-winning drink menu. Other amenities include a fitness center, a rooftop pool with pool bar, and in-room massage and body treatments on request.
Kimpton Hotel Van Zandt is located in the Rainey Street Historic District, less than a mile away from nightlife on 6th street. This one boutique hotel you might never want to leave!
5. Hotel Ella
Housed in one of Austin’s original landmark estates, a stay at Hotel Ella is sure to be an amazing experience. This Greek revival-style mansion was constructed in 1900 and underwent an extensive renovation in 2013 to offer a perfect balance of modern amenities and historic charm.
Each of the 47 guest rooms and suites feature custom-designed furniture, twice-daily housekeeping, a thoughtfully curated minibar, handspun linens, microfiber bathrobes, and luxury bath products.
You’ll love the cabana-lined pool and poolside bar where you can enjoy an evening cocktail. If you need some quiet time, head to the wraparound deck that overlooks the property for an ideal spot to catch up with your favorite book.
Enjoy a world-class dining experience at Goodall’s Kitchen & Bar, an award-winning bistro-style restaurant that features global cuisine with a seasonal menu. Other amenities at the Hotel Ella include spacious meeting facilities and spa services.
This hotel is in Downtown Austin and within walking distance to the University of Texas campus. It’s just a 5-minute drive to the 6th street Entertainment District if you want to head out on the town.
If you’re a music lover, there’s no better place to stay than the Hotel Saint Cecilia. This 5-star hotel was named in honor of the patron saint of music and poetry.
This boutique hotel features 5 suites, 6 poolside bungalows, and 3 studio rooms, each uniquely designed with old-world luxury. The rooms come with a spa body product minibar, a handmade organic bed, and custom kimono bathrobes. They also feature Rega turntables and Geneva sound systems and you are invited to borrow from the hotel’s lending library of vintage records.
The property is on a secluded space with lush grounds that are only open to hotel guests. You’ll love lounging in the 50-foot heated lap pool that’s open 24 hours a day. Saint Cecilia also offers poolside dining for breakfast and light meals. Above the lounge is a covered terrace with spectacular views of the city.
Other amenities at the Hotel Cecilia include free bike rentals, complimentary WiFi, and a 24-hour front desk to help plan your perfect vacation in Austin. They also offer other unique concierge programs such as guitar loans in partnership with Gibson and private vintage vinyl LP shopping services courtesy of Breakaway Records.
Overlooking the vibrant South Congress neighborhood, the South Congress Hotel is a gorgeous boutique hotel designed to be a hub of activity for travelers and locals alike. Some of the stand-out features include 3 unique restaurants, a coffee and bake shop, a rooftop pool, a lobby bar, and 2 retail shops that are locally owned.
The rooms feature Matteo bed linens, custom robes, an Apple TV, a minibar full of locally sourced goodies, and Ursa Major bath and body products. If you want to pamper yourself, upgrade to one of the suites, which feature 700 square feet of living space with a pool view and private balcony.
The rooftop pool surrounded by lush gardens is the perfect place to retreat after a day of exploring the city. Relax in the shade or enjoy poolside snacks and drinks by Café No Sé.
Other amenities at the South Congress Hotel include a 24-hour concierge, bilingual staff, motorcycle rentals, and a personal shopper service.
Nestled on 4 acres of beautifully landscaped courtyards, the Lone Star Court blends the past and present with a retro aesthetic and modern design twists. It’s easily one of the most unique hotels in Austin!
Lonestar offers contemporary lodging with mid-century Texan decor including industrial lighting, barn-style doors, retro fridges, oversized porches, and wooden rocking chairs. It has 123 rooms to choose from, each fitted with luxurious Egyptian cotton linens and luxury bath products.
Extra amenities at Lone Star Court include lawn games, complimentary bicycles, a fitness center, live music, outdoor fire pits, and a dipping pool. If you’re looking to socialize with other travelers, Lone Star creates the ideal space.
Lonestar is also home to The Water Trough, a restaurant and bar where you can enjoy Texan-inspired meals and cocktails. As an added bonus, there’s an ever-changing selection of food trucks parked right outside that deliver to the hotel!
Lone Star is located in The Domain community, near Rock Rose and Uptown, where you can find plenty of great shops and restaurants.
Located in downtown Austin’s Warehouse District, Hotel ZaZa Austin is the perfect choice if you’re looking to stay in the center of it all. This 4-star hotel combines the luxury of a resort with the comfort and style of a boutique hotel.
There are 159 guest rooms to choose from, each offering a different vibe. Choose from one of the high-end Magnificent Seven suites or a standard guest room with amazing views. No matter which room you choose, a stay at Hotel ZaZa promises an unforgettable local experience. The hotel also boasts communal areas with exposed brickwork, chandeliers, and high-end furnishings.
Other noteworthy amenities include a spa and fitness center, a rooftop pool, 8,500 square feet of meeting and event space, and two restaurants. Perfect Strangers offers lunch and lounge service, while Group Therapy is a full-service restaurant and bar.
The Cabana Bar and Poolside is one of Austin’s best rooftop bars. It provides a luxurious poolside retreat with breathtaking views overlooking downtown Austin and Republic Square Park.
The East Austin Hotel is a locally owned and operated boutique hotel in the heart of the East Austin neighborhood. It’s on East Sixth Street, a trendy area known for its independent coffee shops, bars, and small shops
You’ll sleep like a dream in one of the 75 mid-century Scandinavian-inspired hotel rooms that feature locally crafted furniture and vintage decor. Some of the luxury amenities include custom robes and towels, cushy Casper mattresses, signature robes and caftans, and deluxe custom-scented bath products.
The outdoor courtyard pool is the perfect place to relax with its retro palm springs vibes. It features an outdoor bar, sunbathing loungers, and plenty of seating.
The East Austin Hotel is also home to several fantastic restaurants that you can enjoy during your stay. Enjoy international fare at Sixth and Waller, sip cocktails at The Upside rooftop bar, or spend the day lounging at the Pool Bar.
11. The LINE Austin
Once home to a 1960’s jazz club, The LINE Austin is part of downtown Austin’s history. Sitting at the crossroads where Town Lake meets downtown, this cool hotel draws influence from the city’s surrounding natural beauty and vibrant energy.
There’s no shortage of entertainment at The LINE, with pop-up art exhibits, Texas storytelling evenings, and a Sunday pool party with a DJ spinning Motown tunes.
Indulge yourself at one of the in-house restaurants that cater to any mood. Enjoy lakeside dining at Kristen’s Kish’s Arlo Grey, grab a cocktail from P6, or try the tacos from Veracruz All Natural. Or simply relax and take in the view from the hotel’s saltwater infinity pool that overlooks the lake and the Congress Avenue Bridge.
There are rooms to suit every need, from queen-sized beds to lakeside suites. If you’re working from home, you can even reserve one of the work studios that offers lots of light, a homey feel, and a 70” plasma TV.
Whichever room you choose, it’s sure to be an amazing stay. Each room features a comfortable bed, a minibar to satisfy your cravings day or night, custom artwork by local artists, unique light fixtures, and a library of vintage books.
12. ARRIVE Austin
Located in East Austin between downtown, Holly, and Blackshear-Prospect Hill, ARRIVE Austin is a newly-built hotel with a modern design and hip vibe.
Rooms are bright and airy with wooden furniture and unique artwork. They are designed for relaxation and feature plush robes, Brooklinen bedding, Turkish towels, and Niven Morgan bath products. Other amenities include complimentary WiFi, Apple TV, Direct TV, a Marshall Bluetooth speaker, and a curated local field guide.
Staying in is equally as enjoyable as going out as ARRIVE Austin has so many onsite amenities. The restaurant, Vixen’s Wedding, serves flavorful eats and was named one of Austin Magazine’s 2019 Best New Restaurants.
The gin bar serves 90+ varieties from Austin to New Zealand in a chic rooftop setting. It was also named one of the best hotel bars in Austin by Tribeza. When you need a pick-me-up, head to the Cartel Coffee Lab, which sources and roasts some of the world’s most exciting coffees. You may never want to leave!
That’s it – 12 of the best Austin hotels! Did we miss any cool boutique hotels in Austin? Comment below so we can add them to the list!
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