They say everything is bigger in Texas, and that's definitely the case with the Austin City Limits Music Festival. 2015 will be the second year the event spans two back-to-back, three-day weekends, which will take place Oct 2 to 4 and Oct 9 to 11.
The popular music festival began in 2002 and has continued to grow thanks to the big-name headliners it obtains; artists this year include Foo Fighters, The Strokes, The Weeknd, Bassnectar, and Alabama Shakes, to name just a few of the 150 performing. VIP packages and one-day tickets for some of the days are still available for those who want to head to the self-titled Live Music Capital of the World.
Based on which concert you're most excited for, we've selected a hotel that will be perfect to call home base while in Austin. Even if they're already completely booked, you can at least grab a drink at the hotel bar and hope to spot one of the bands.
Having opened in 1987, the Four Seasons Austin has been around just seven years longer than the rock band Foo Fighters, who will be headlining both weekends. It is one of the city’s most well-known luxury properties, enjoying a prime downtown location and phenomenal lake views. The service and amenities are top-notch, as you’d expect from the Four Seasons, making it a favorite pick for big-name celebrities. The rooms, while a bit generic, are comfortable and come with all the posh amenities you’d expect: flat-screen TVs, iPod docks, and high-end bath products. We think Dave Grohl and the band would feel plenty at home here.
A celeb favorite, particularly for musicians playing at the ACL Live venue next door, the W Austin is a hotspot that draws trendy, hip millennials. Featuring a minimalist design that incorporates elements of southwestern decor, its 251 rooms are housed on the first 16 floors of a mixed hotel-and-condo tower. It’s well located in the heart of Austin’s newly emerged 2nd Street District — close to sights, shopping, and entertainment. Since the W is the haunt of mostly young, affluent travelers, it’s staffed and outfitted accordingly. The Living Room bar is a popular, dimly-lit gathering spot for Austinites, and where we imagine Drake would enjoy hanging while not performing.
It’s only fitting that if you love blues rock guitarist Gary Clark Jr — born, raised, and based in Austin — you stay at a uniquely Austin property. Hotel San Jose definitely fits that bill, as the 40-room property incorporates a stylish, minimalist design and sits at the center of Austin’s SoCo neighborhood, a trendy area known for great music. The hotel reflects its hipster surroundings by offering lots of cool stuff on loan: an excellent music library (both CDs and pre-filled iPods), a video collection, Polaroid cameras, bicycles, and even a Remington typewriter. There’s a small swimming pool, urban-chic rooms, an outdoor lounge serving drinks and snacks, and the locally famous Jo’s Coffee next door.
Irish musician Hozier is known for his soulful, indie rock songs like his hit “Take Me to Church.” The Hotel Saint Cecilia is a perfect match to the performer, as the 14-room boutique property has a hip atmosphere and stylish decor. It features a sexy lounge (complete with patio seating), spacious grounds, and uber-chic rooms that meld with Austin’s weird vibe and cool music scene via distinct decorative touches and amenities. The centerpiece is an historic Victorian home fronting spacious, sylvan grounds and housing four of the hotel’s beautiful suites. The long, narrow pool offers a classy place to beat the Austin heat. Plus, it’s located in one of Austin’s coolest neighborhoods, close to downtown shopping, historic sites, and entertainment. We wouldn’t be surprised if Hozier picked this as his home base during ACL.
Fans of English punk rock musician Billy Idol will enjoy the gritty, artsy East Austin area that’s filled with cool bars and restaurants. Enjoying a prime location in this neighborhood is the seven-room Heywood Hotel. Situated in an intimate Craftsman-style house, it lives up to its “unique boutique” billing. Rooms all have distinct, trendy decor with pops of color and smart details such as black make-up towels and eco-friendly, big-bottle toiletries. Free perks include parking, Wi-Fi, and loaner bicycles, and rooms come stocked with large flat-screen TVs, French presses, and minibars with fair prices. But the hotel’s size means limited service hours, and virtually no amenities.
Popular house music DJ deadmau5 is one of the most well-known electronic artists, particularly for the mouse helmet he wears during performances. Festival goers that enjoy deadmau5 will likely appreciate a modern, eclectic hotel. The stylish Kimber Modern hotel in South Austin has only five guest rooms, and caters to guests looking for a private hideaway. An outdoor courtyard is shaded by tall trees and features a sleek water feature and hammocks. Just off the courtyard is the hotel’s common area, where guests will find cool mid-century modern seating, a trendy Apple iMac computer and printer, and a full kitchen. The bright and airy rooms all have platform beds with comfy bedding, iPod docks, LCD TVs, and white decor.