Alright y’all, I’m kicking of the Centered City Guide posts with my recent trip to Austin, TX. I went out to Austin for the fabulous three-day http://www.theschoolofstyling.com and also lingered in the warm weather a few extra days to explore the city. I stayed with some gracious family friends who are Austin locals (and fed me too well). In no particular order, below are my recommendations for shopping, eating, and activities.
As for accommodations, I recommend Airbnb in the South Austin or South Congress areas or the http://www.bunkhousegroup.com properties like Hotel Saint Cecilia and San Jose. The Driskill Hotel is also right downtown and quite famous.
FOR THE VINTAGE LOVER:
Uncommon Objects – Vintage emporium of just about everything you can imagine. Kind of like your grandparent’s attic on steroids, but also styled really well. Lots of fun, I’d say you need at least 30mins – 1hr here. www.uncommonobjects.com
Prototype Vintage Design – Well curated boutique with a nice selection of men’s and women’s wear, shoes, bags and the like. www.prototypevintagedesign.net
Feathers Boutique – Vintage mostly, but with some new pieces mixed in and a modern jewelry selection. www.feathersboutiquevintage.com
Uptown Modern – If you’re driving (or have big bucks to ship furniture) and love mid-century modern this is the place to go! www.uptownmodernaustin.com
End of an Ear – Totally rad record store. Super organized layout and friendly staff. The best I found in Austin (went to three total) vintage and new vinyls. http://www.endofanear.com
See all Austin vintage here: www.vintagearoundtownguide.com
FOR THE HEALTH NUT:
Wanderlust Austin Yoga Studio – Lovely studio with tons of class options and a delicious smoothie/ acai bowl bar. You can even pre-order so your smoothie or bowl is waiting for you after class! http://austin.wanderlustyoga.com
Run the Lady Bird Lake Trail – FREE fun. Pull on your running shoes for up to 10 miles of mostly paved dirt trails. I did three miles and it was great. Lots of people and dog watching. http://www.austintexas.org/listings/lady-bird-lake-hike-and-bike-trail/4369/
LEAF – Salad bar extravaganza. It’s like a Chipotle for SALADS! This is the one and only location. Seriously, a salad lovers dream. Great for vegetarians, but also lots of meat/protein options. Casual atmosphere. http://leafsalad.com
Milk and Honey Spa – Guadalupe location. Modern and eco-friendly full-service spa. I loved my Lux mani/pedi. Book ahead! http://milkandhoneyspa.com
Whole Foods (just blocks from the original first ever WF) – It’s a giant grocery store, but if you’re like me a trip to Whole Foods feels like a vacation from real life some days. http://www.wholefoodsmarket.com/stores/lamar
Elizabeth St. Cafe – $$ (French Vietnamese) This was by far my favorite meal during the trip. It’s ADORABLE! The interior decor is spot on and from the drinks (sake/punch/wine/beer) to the full menu, coffees and pastry this place was truly enjoyable. Outside patio is also a plus! South 1st Street. http://elizabethstreetcafe.com
La Condesa – $$$ (Modern Mexican) Delicious food and chic decor in the heart of downtown Austin. This is a great spot, especially if you’re traveling with a group. Our party booked the entire upstairs floor for a private dinner event. Lots of delicious meats, the Mexican elote (corn) was to die for, as were the desserts! https://lacondesa.com
Mother’s Cafe – $ (Vegetarian/Vegan) A perfect spot if you’re in the mood to fill up on good for you ingredients! Since 1980, Mother’s has been a staple in vegetarian cooking in Austin. I loved the artichoke enchiladas! They also have an extensive smoothie bar. Huge menu with lots of options for vegetarians and non-veggies. http://motherscafeaustin.com
Bouldin Creek Cafe – $ (American/Breakfast) Awesome spot for breakfast, brunch or coffee. There’s an outdoor patio for nice days and free wifi access if you need to get some work done. Tons of coffee options too! http://bouldincreek.com
I didn’t have a chance to see any live music while I was in town, but that is certainly part of what Austin is known for! This link has some great sample lists of places to visit based on your interests, including lots of live music venues. http://www.downtownaustin.com/experience/sample-itineraries
If you have any specific questions let me know and I’ll do my best to answer them. Late February and March are spring temperatures in Austin so it’s a great time to visit!
XO – CLAIRE