Editor's note: Pingpong and SXSW parties lead this round of top stories. Read on for more of the week's most popular headlines.
1. A-list actress spins new bar and restaurant in iconic Austin space. Austin will get its first pingpong bar, thanks to Susan Sarandon. SPiN, the New York-based chain of restaurant/bars where pingpong is the centerpiece, will open downtown at 213 W. Fifth St. — the former home to Antone's — this fall.
2. All of these University of Texas programs rank No. 1 in the nation. Austin is in good standing with U.S. News & World Report right now. Not only is the Capital City the No. 1 place to live, but the University of Texas at Austin ranks as one of the best colleges — and so do its graduate programs.
3. Here are the best free parties of SXSW, plus RSVP secrets you need to know. SXSW is wrapping up, you have neither a wristband nor a badge, but you're still set on participating. What do you do? That's easy: Hit up the following parties that are free and loaded with great acts.
4. Austin's eight best neighborhood restaurants make us feel right at home. There's nothing quite like a neighborhood restaurant — a quaint spot you can visit frequently, one that feels like home. Our CultureMap Tastemaker nominees for Neighborhood Restaurant of the Year include establishments across the city that reflect the rich variety of cuisine that Austin has to offer.
5. Austin lands new daily nonstop flight to hot California destination. A new nonstop flight is taking off from Austin-Bergstrom International Airport. Alaska Airlines will launch daily nonstop service from Austin to San Jose, California, this summer. Just days later, the airline also added a new flight to San Diego.