The 8 Best Austin, Texas, Hotels

Austin's elegant Hotel ZaZa is our top pick for a stay in this Texas city

An early morning, Austin, Texas view of the Pennybacker Bridge or '360 Bridge' as it is more commonly known. The bridge spans across Lake Austin and connects the Capitol of Texas Highway (Loop 360). You can see downtown Austin off to the left on the horizon.

Jeremy Royall/Getty Images

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The Rundown

As the capital city of Texas, Austin has a lot to live up to—yet it humbly manages to exceed every expectation. The music scene is second-to-none (no wonder it’s known as the Live Music Capital of the World); its expansive outdoor areas are a favorite amongst hikers, bikers, and boaters alike; the local cuisine dishes up plenty of tasty treats; and its position as the gateway to the Texas Hill Country means only a short drive stands between the chaos of the city and the enticing tranquility of the rolling hills. Whether you’re looking to stay in the heart of the action or you’re hoping for a little solitude and pampering outside the city limits, the following list of the best hotels in Austin has a little something for every traveler.

01 of 08

Best Overall: Hotel ZaZa Austin

Hotel Za Za Austin

Hotel Za Za Austin

Why We Chose it

From its proximity to the best dining, shopping, museums, and attractions in Austin’s Warehouse District to its swanky vibe, Hotel ZaZa Austin puts the va-va-voom in your vacation. 

Pros
  • Rooftop pool overlooks downtown Austin

  • Fitness center

  • 3 onsite dining options

Cons
  • Pool noise and music may be loud at night

Opened in 2019, this hotel offers all the modern conveniences today’s travelers crave with high-end touches throughout. The rooftop pool is the place to be, day or night, so reserving your weekend pool lounger ahead of time is a wise move. Order bottle service or the Audrey Hepburn Sleek-Rita cocktail from the Cabana Bar, which also serves up quick bites like crispy jalapeno calamari, hot chicken wraps, and seasonal fruit. Perfect Strangers, the lobby-level coffee shop, is a great spot for starting your day with a little people-watching, and the dining room, Group Therapy, has a wide selection of menu items (don’t miss the “Curious Traveler” starter of lamb lollipops, blue crab deviled eggs, and salmon bagelettes) for breakfast, brunch, and dinner. 

While the standard guest rooms are well-appointed, those seeking VIP treatment may wish to choose from one of four individually themed Concept Suites—one feels like a posh cabin in the forest, yet another is draped in rich velvets and mirrors for a romantic getaway. Another step up the guest room ladder takes you into a Magnificent Seven Suite, also themed in such designs as retro Palm Springs and beach bungalow. There’s even a Texas Hill Country suite that will instantly transport you to the nearby rural region. 

Notable Amenities

  • Group Therapy cocktail bar
  • Onsite ZaSpa
02 of 08

Best Nostalgia: Lone Star Court, by Valencia Hotel Group

Lone Star Court, by Valencia Hotel Group

Lone Star Court, by Valencia Hotel Group

Why We Chose It

This modern-day take on a motor court-style hotel of yesteryear offers contemporary amenities with an ambiance that embodies the Austin vibe.

Pros
  • Pool reminiscent of a local Texas swimming hole

  • iPad and iPhone docking stations

  • Rocking chairs adorn each porch

Cons
  • Not located in downtown Austin

From the moment you step onto the Lone Star Court property, you’re whisked away to a simpler time set on four beautifully landscaped acres of land. Each room in this “retro-ranch” themed property overlooks the common courtyard while rocking chairs on each “porch” offer an ideal view of all the action. Inside the guestrooms, you’ll find vibrantly colored touches, including couches, a full-size fridge stocked with Texas treats, braided rugs, a knotted wood pine armoire, a cowhide desk chair, Egyptian cotton linens, and barn-style bathroom doors. 

While it may be tough to pry yourself from the comfort of your room, one of the reasons this is among our top picks is that the property has much to offer beyond your four walls. There’s a swimming pool inspired by local Texas swimming holes, outdoor firepits, a fitness center, a business center, dry-cleaning service, and complimentary bicycle rentals. Stop by the onsite Venezuelan food truck, Aurora, for empanadas and cachapas or the Southern sit-down eatery, The Water Trough (which also boasts a full bar, including the tantalizing Chill Cowboy cocktail, and live music every Friday and Saturday). Just a 15 minute drive from Austin proper, it's not difficult to spend a day in the hustle and bustle of the city while staying on this property.

Notable Amenities

  • Live music in onsite restaurant
  • Complimentary bicycles and lawn games
  • Outdoor firepits
03 of 08

Best for Privacy: Casa Cartel

Casa Cartel

Casa Cartel

Why We Chose It

This exquisite villa offers everything a large party could ever need; it comfortably sleeps 17 guests and prioritizes entertainment and comfort.

Pros
  • Double-sided stone fireplace

  • Private, heated pool

  • Multiple wet bars and patios

Cons
  • Not in downtown Austin

This property, which was once owned by a prominent business owner in Austin, was purchased and revamped by Jantzen Matzdorff, the reality TV star from TLC’s Flip That House in 2017. During the remodel, Matzdorff added many historical and cultural influences to honor the original owner’s ties to Mexico, including a 20-foot-tall mural depicting Mayan mythology painted by a well-known Mexican artist and vintage furniture from Monterrey, Mexico. 

There are five bedrooms and five full bathrooms, each uniquely and lavishly decorated. The common spaces shine, with a basement movie theater, a large pool, a full kitchen, a massive dining room table, and multiple seating areas throughout. There are also several “hidden” rooms including a speakeasy, which requires you to first pass through a jail cell door, and a confessional (hey, it helps to promote the city's motto, "Keep Austin Weird"). While sitting outside feels as though you’re in the country, you’re a quick 10-minute drive to downtown Austin.

Notable Amenities

  • Private movie theater and speakeasy
  • Personal chef available upon request
  • Vintage convertible Cadillac tour to Austin available
04 of 08

Best for Families: Club Wyndham Austin

Club Wyndham Austin

Club Wyndham Austin

Why We Chose It

With multi-bedroom suites, kitchens, and separate living and dining areas, this property caters to families looking for the comfort of a home away from home.

Pros
  • In-unit washer and dryer

  • Full kitchen and multiple bedrooms

  • Close proximity to Texas Capitol and 6th Street

Cons
  • $30 parking fee per day (waived for members of Club Wyndham)

  • Long elevator wait times during peak hours

Located near the banks of Lake Lady Bird off the Colorado River, Club Wyndham Austin stands at the intersection of nature and the heart of all Austin has to offer: the Texas Capitol, LBJ Presidential Library, the University of Texas at Austin, multiple museums, parks, and all the 6th Street entertainment. This property serves families or small parties well, thanks to its two-bedroom suites (one bedroom and studios are available) and all the creature comforts of home: a washer and dryer, full kitchen, separate living and sleeping quarters, and a sleeper sofa. 

Of course, there are plenty of awesome amenities your family likely won’t find at home to help make your stay extra-special: a rooftop sundeck, zero-edge infinity pool, fitness center, barbecue areas for a grill-out, and a game room. The only tough part about staying at Austin, Texas, hotels as fun as this one will be convincing the kids it’s time to go home.

Notable Amenities

  • Game room
  • Zero-edge infinity pool and rooftop sundeck
Continue to 5 of 8 below.
05 of 08

Best Budget: Firehouse Hostel

Firehouse Hostel

Firehouse Hostel

Why We Chose It

Located on the upper floors of Austin’s oldest fire station, guests are treated to a complimentary breakfast and a chill vibe at this hostel.

Pros
  • Laundry facilities

  • Secure luggage storage

  • Free, healthy breakfast

Cons
  • No parking provided

Budget-conscious travelers should opt to stay at the Firehouse Hostel in downtown Austin—one of the best hotels in Austin for soaking in a bit of history. This international hostel-meets-craft cocktail bar offers a cool, unique ambiance and plenty of fun amenities—all at half the price of most other lodgings in town (rates start at $27). Firehouse is located inside of Austin’s oldest fire station, right across from the historic Driskill Hotel; it’s within walking distance of the Capitol, the bars on Sixth Street, and several great eateries and shops. 

Accommodations here are simple yet sparkling clean: Take your pick of several dorm and suite options, all of which are outfitted with air conditioning, fresh towels, in-room lockers, and comfy bedding. There’s a complimentary breakfast served every morning, as well as a fully equipped kitchen. In hip Austin fashion, the hostel itself is accessed through a hidden bookshelf in the lobby of the Firehouse Lounge, where guests can also gather for handcrafted cocktails and live music in the evenings. Reception is open 24 hours, and popular attractions like Jester King Brewery and Pedernales Falls State Park are less than an hour away. 

Notable Amenities

  • Onsite bar
06 of 08

Best for Relaxation: Omni Barton Creek Resort & Spa

Omni Barton Creek Resort & Spa

Omni Barton Creek Resort & Spa

Why We Chose It

Guests can keep active with tennis, golf, fitness classes, and nature trails or unwind with some downtime at the spa or pool.  

Pros
  • 7 onsite dining options

  • Nature loop for walks

Cons
  • Not located in downtown Austin

Everything’s bigger in Texas, including the acreage at the Omni Barton Creek—4,000 acres to be exact, located a quick 15 minute drive from downtown Austin. And this sprawling property needs all that space because it offers such a wide variety of activities. Golfers can keep busy for days with 72 holes spread over four championship-style courses. Each week, there are 30 fitness classes to choose from in the 33,000-square-foot fitness center, including yoga and weight training. The Mokara Spa offers 20 treatment rooms (try the CBD massage or facial), indoor whirlpools, steam rooms and sauna, and a private rooftop pool for the ultimate relaxation. When you’re ready to stretch your legs, there’s a one-mile nature trail complete with bubbling creeks and wildlife spotting. And there’s plenty to keep the kids busy too, from a miniature golf course and a splash pad to summertime poolside movies and an inflatable waterslide on the lawn. 

Choosing a suite means even more room to spread out, with separate living and sleeping areas, a dining table, and multiple balconies overlooking the golf courses. Turn-down service, blackout curtains, and hypoallergenic beds ensure a comfortable stay. 

Notable Amenities

  • Mokara Spa with private rooftop pool
  • 72 holes of championship-style golf
  • 10 professional tennis courts
07 of 08

Best for Luxury: Lake Austin Spa Resort

Lake Austin Spa Resort

Lake Austin Spa Resort

Why We Chose It

If absolute luxury set in an intimate oasis is what you’re after, look no further than Lake Austin Spa Resort.

Pros
  • Set in peaceful Texas Hill Country

  • All-inclusive resort serving locally sourced gourmet meals

  • Full calendar of fitness and wellness activities

Cons
  • 20-mile drive from downtown Austin

  • Pricey

This sprawling, woodsy resort and spa sits on a gorgeous strip of Lake Austin shoreline, spread across 19 lush acres. As a four-star, French country-style property that offers a plethora of posh amenities and classy touches, Lake Austin Spa Resort guests have access to a wide range of daily fitness classes and wellness programs. The activities schedule is always jam-packed with such offerings as yoga, Pilates, AquaFit, nature hikes, and meditation and mindfulness seminars, in addition to activities like sunset wine tastings and chef-led cooking classes. The cuisine is excellent (and nutritious), as you might imagine: A sample menu for dinner included blackened local redfish, pan-seared striped bass, black pepper homemade spaghetti, and an heirloom tomato and cucumber salad. 

Rooms at the Lake Austin Spa Resort are decked out with plush fabrics, original artwork, deep soaking tubs, and signature Lavender Fields amenities, in addition to a Keurig coffee maker, DVD, and cable TV, complimentary Wi-Fi, and more; most rooms have incredible lake views. A stay at this resort is a total splurge, but it’s well worth it. 

Notable Amenities

  • Water taxi available to/from downtown Austin
  • Cottages with private hot tubs and meditation gardens
  • Complimentary room service
08 of 08

Best Workcation: Austin Marriott Downtown

Austin Marriott Downtown

Austin Marriott Downtown

Why We Chose It

Whether you’re traveling to Austin for a convention or are just looking for some fresh scenery while you balance working hard and playing hard, Austin Marriott Downtown offers the best of both worlds.

Pros
  • Adjacent to the Convention Center

  • On-site grocer, cocktail bar, and restaurant

  • 60,000 square feet of meeting space

Cons
  • Valet parking only

With today’s remote work environment, there’s plenty of flexibility to work from wherever your heart desires—and the 31 stories of Austin Marriott Downtown’s stylish tower make for a stunning office space that will no doubt put your home office or cubicle to shame. Guest rooms start on level seven to maximize views of the city’s skyline, Lady Bird Lake, the University of Texas campus, and even Texas Hill Country off in the distance. The hotel’s design draws inspiration from local materials, making use of sturdy limestone and Texas Cedar.  

When you’re not working, Marriott makes it easy to shift into more relaxing gear with a two-level lobby bar and a 24/7 fitness center. Zanzibar is a lush rooftop terrace and pool oasis that feels as though you’ve stepped into a tropical jungle—so it’s only fitting to order a Mai Tai or Bird of Paradise while you chill in a poolside chaise lounge or cabana. The food menu also features an island vibe, complete with Jerk chicken wings, a sushi burrito, and a Kahuna burger. Loaf + Vine is an urban grocer perfect for grab-and-go options and coffee, and The Lobbyist is a popular spot to meet coworkers for drinks in a grand, two-story lounge setting. 

Notable Amenities

  • Tiki bar
  • Rooftop pool

Final Verdict

Determining which of these best Austin hotels is calling your name largely depends on what brings you to town in the first place. For a laid-back experience brimming with social activities and Texas hospitality, the Lone Star Court goes above and beyond. The Firehouse Hostel couldn’t be friendlier to your wallet, allowing you to direct your money to all the entertainment and nightlife Austin is known for. For a luxurious stay in a boutique property that gets you closer to nature, there’s no place like Lake Austin Spa Resort. And if your goal is to mix a little business with pleasure, the Austin Marriott Downtown delivers. No matter where you choose to rest your head, each of these hotels promises to be a good time.

Compare the Best Austin, Texas, Hotels

Property Resort Fee Rates Rooms Wi-Fi
Hotel ZaZa Austin
Best Overall
None $$ 159 Free
Lone Star Court Best Nostalgia None $$ 123 Free
Casa Cartel Best for Privacy None $$$ 5 Free
Club Wyndham Austin Best for Families None $$ 189 Free
Firehouse Hostel Best Budget None $ 9 Free
Omni Barton Creek Resort & Spa Best for Relaxation $39/day $$ 493 Free
Lake Austin Spa Resort Best Luxury None $$$ 40 Free
Austin Marriott Downtown Best Workcation None $$ 613 Free

Methodology

We evaluated dozens of hotels in downtown Austin and the surrounding Texas Hill Country region (for those who don’t want to stay in the heart of the city). To determine the best of the best for the chosen categories, we considered such factors as the hotel’s reputation and quality of service, proximity to area attractions, and sought-after amenities (e.g. rooftop pools, live music, and views). We also considered the property’s dining venues, unique experiences (like water taxi rides and private theaters), and design touches. In addition to customer reviews, we noted each of the hotel’s sanitation and cleanliness measures.

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