As a growing hub of both the hi-tech and creative industries, Austin flaunts an infrastructure which keeps abreast with the requirements of savvy locals and visitors alike. Adding to the city’s buzzing hospitality scene, is the hotly anticipated Austin Proper Hotel & Residences, the newest property of the eponymous Santa Monica-based hotel chain. Situated in the Market District, an emerging downtown neighbourhood of the Texan capital, it features 244 guest rooms and suites, in addition to 99 branded residences, spread across 32 floors of a newly built tower. The building, a design by San Francisco-based practice Handel Architects, sees various interiors designed by Kelly Wearstler who not only delved into local history for inspiration, but also blends in local artistry and craftsmanship. The lobby is a lofty light-filled space with coffered walls providing a graphic backdrop for carefully sourced furnishings, including a monolithic reception desk, leather sofas, a glass and steel table, and a wood-and-ceramic grandfather clock. The aforementioned local artistry is arguably best captured by an intriguing sculptural staircase installation of 60 patch worked vintage rugs.
The rooms of Austin Proper come in no less than ten categories, ranging from the King Room, at 32 sqm. (345 sq.ft.) the most compact on the premises, to the Proper Penthouse Suite, a lavishly appointed suite with all the required bells and whistles, including a furnished terrace. Obviously, all rooms offer beautifully designed settings infused with modern comfort and technology, such as premium WiFi and Apple TV, and given its location, also sweeping views of Austin. Needless to say, on the fun side, Austin Proper pitches in with a number of alluring facilities which could easily become destinations in their own right. Cocktail room Goldie’s is an intimate affair, featuring a stone sunken bar with a selection of small-batch spirits, craft beer, natural wines and seasonal lite bites. The Peacock, situated on the ground floor, is a restaurant and lobby bar serving dishes from across the Mediterranean in a matching, colourful decor. Mind you, a private dining room balcony is also readily available. Opening in the coming months is an additional café and pool-side restaurant. Other notable facilities at Austin Proper include a 24-hour fitness centre, a rooftop heated and cooled swimming pool, and very soon, a full-fledged spa with five treatment rooms and a pre-treatment relaxation lounge.