Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Where to Stay: W Austin

The front entrance of W Austin
The W Austin is Austin’s newest hotel, located in the recently revitalized district known by locals as “Block 21” (it’s the 21st block on the city grid). Besides amazing views of Lady Bird Lake and South Congress, the W Austin’s location also offers easy access to some of downtown’s best restaurants and boutiques.

If you’re a music lover, you’ll adore the W Austin. On the hotel’s corner – where Lavaca and 2nd Streets meet – sits a statue of Willie Nelson (conveniently dedicated on April 20). The hotel also shares space with Moody’s Theater, which is where musical acts like Radiohead and Miranda Lambert tape episodes of Austin City Limits.

In the Living Room (a bar), a wall of vintage records curated by the owner’s wife is a design focal point but serves much more purpose: you can actually pull a record from the wall and play it on the bar’s vintage sound system. And, rumor has it celebs like Kanye West made the Living Room their home-away-from-home during this year’s South by Southwest festival in Austin.

Food and dessert at Trace
Trace is the W Austin’s signature restaurant that focuses on fresh and seasonal ingredients, many of which are sourced from local farmer’s markets. The adjoining bar is noticeably darker than the restaurant itself and has a swanky lounge feel. I preferred the bright and airy dining room with its all-glass wall that leads to an outdoor patio and two oak trees. (Trace’s patio is also a great spot to people watch before ACL tapings!)

Wow Suite at the W Austin
Upstairs, the W Austin tucks away 251 rooms (including 32 suites). I loved my tour of a Wow Suite, 1,307 square feet of fun and breezy space. Standard guestrooms show just as much attention to detail as the suite: a guitar strap-inspired graphic along the bathroom mirrors, vintage David Hicks inspired wallpaper, and a red serpentine chaise lounge (a custom design) that I couldn’t stop taking pictures of.

My room at the W Austin
Serpentine chaise lounge, custom designed for the hotel
More of the serpentine chaise lounge!
If you’re staying at the W Austin, you have to set aside some time to experience AWAY Spa. The reception area’s design is a highlight with an antique mirror desk and art installation from a local artist. They’ve got a great lineup of products, too, like Eminence Organics and Malin + Goetz. I loved the detoxifying Over the Hills and Far Away body treatment.

Starting with a full-body dry brush, the experience is followed by a coconut sugar scrub and bull-body massage then topped off with a cool coconut mini-facial. It was a total indulgence.

On the same floor as the spa, you’ll find the SWEAT fitness area and WET pool, one of my favorite spots to hang out during my stay. Oh, and it’s also the backstage entrance to Moody’s Theater. Sadly, no celeb sightings for me!

Whatever, Whenever Desk at W Austin
Photo courtesy of W Austin

1 comment:

  1. Wow ! amazing pics which can impress everyone to go there and stay for some time so that one can feel relax at such a great place.

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