Perhaps no city in America proves the old adage “you can't go home again” better than Austin. The latest proof that the Live Music Capital of the World is in flux? La Zona Rosa, the legendary downtown music venue that that shuttered in 2013, is now reborn as LZR, a mixed-use project combining existing tech space and a rentable venue.
The concept is a joint project from data and automotive artificial intelligence company Vast, and real estate mogul Nate Paul, whose World Class Holdings acquired the building in 2011. But don’t expect a return to the place that hosted everyone from Willie Nelson to Amy Winehouse to Prince. Current tenants Vast and March Capital will continue to anchor the building, but have renovated 10,000 square feet of rentable event space including a large warehouse, lounge, bar area, and landscaped outdoor patio.
March saw a preview of the kind of events Austinites might expect from the fledgling LZR. During SXSW 2017, the space became the temporary home of the Apple Music and featured performances from Vince Staples, the Chainsmokers, and others. Although that event was very different from the types of shows the original La Zona Rosa hosted in its heyday, the owners are hoping to keep some of the spirit of the original La Zona Rosa.
“LZR has deep roots in Austin,” said Paul in a release. “The building itself embodies that feeling of true Austin. John and I wanted to keep that feeling alive. It’s the perfect place for showcasing what Austin is all about — which happens to be both new and old.”