Views from Above
UT alums debut Rainey Street hotel with rooftop bar and local conscience
There’s a new hotel alongside the Rainey Street District this October, providing yet another option for revelers and tourists alike to spend the night in one of Austin’s hottest entertainment districts.
Opened by brothers and University of Texas alums David and Andrew Wood, the Cambria Hotel Austin Downtown stands 16 stories tall on East Avenue, right behind bars The Stay Put and Half Step. It joins two other Cambria Hotel locations in the city: One near The Domain and one at the airport.
As members of UT’s rowing team, the Wood brothers practiced on Lady Bird Lake twice a day for four years, so the location is personal.
“It’s a long-overdue homecoming for David and myself,” wrote Andrew Wood in an email to CultureMap, which switched between his own voice and a joint statement. “We absolutely love Austin and are blessed and grateful to have the opportunity to open our hotel and rooftop in Austin. We owe so much to both Austin and the University of Texas to work hard, be responsible, and provide opportunities to our community.”
The hotel’s intent is to provide for the “modern mid-level business traveler,” according to a press release, but the Wood brothers say there’s something for everyone. The 212 guest rooms offer king or queen beds with rates between $200 and $400 a night.
The rooms are sensible and bright.Photo courtesy of Choice Hotels
They also share that guests can enjoy regular music and entertainment, specialty cocktails, and above-and-beyond service. Since the location is also listed on ResortPass, a website for booking day passes at hotels and spas, the brothers wrote an invitation for locals to “spend the day with us and enjoy our fun-filled terrace, resort pool, and oversized fireplace."
The Cambria’s design incorporates Austin’s beloved limestone, as well as artwork from local artists (including the Hill Country mural that serves as a perfect selfie spot, the brothers say). In fact, limestone plays such a large role in the hotel’s design that the swanky rooftop bar is named for it. Limestone Rooftop is intended to be a place for guests and locals to unwind and take in “unparalleled views of Austin," they write, "overlooking the iconic Congress Street bridge” through the bar’s floor-to-ceiling windows.
The hotel’s main restaurant, Graffiti, will serve up “classic American fare,” and is open every day for breakfast from 6-11 am, and dinner from 5 pm to midnight.
Breakfast is looking fancy, with this luxe chicken and waffle sandwich.Photo by Kevin Marple
Less useful for locals, but still a nice touch; a 1,616-square-foot gym boasts Peloton and Life Fitness equipment, as well as standard machines and free weights. The Cambria also offers seven conference rooms, including the “Hippy Hollow Boardroom,” named after the quirky Austin swimming hole.
“Together we know what makes our neighborhood special, so let’s come together to keep it that way,” wrote Wood.
The Cambria Hotel Austin Downtown is open now at 68 E. Ave. More information and reservations are available at choicehotels.com.