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Every Mar-Nov almost 1.5 million Mexican free-tailed bats migrate to their summer home under the Austin Congress Bridge. For all the bat details and their fascinating story go to: http://www.batsinaustin.com/
What no one has been able ...
We arrived into Austin on the Amtrax train and were greeted by our second Couchsurfing host - We hadn't arranged to meet him there and his introduction was slightly odd - in that he started talking away to us as a stranger and after a few minutes he then told us who he was - this may have got us off on the wrong foot.
It was late in the evening and we decided to go for a beer - not before someone tried to rope us into buying them cocktails in the most expensive bar ...
... cuddle, a donut run, presents and then a pool party
at the St. Cecelia. Ben, Lucy and I went the donut shop, picked up
Kathy, coffee at Joe's and then headed back for stage one of the
birthday celebration. For stage 2, we returned to the St. Cecelia, the
Hamiltons and Trucksesses joined us and we swam and talked a little bit.
We retired to Kathy's room for some HomeSlice and Amy's birthday cake
and then headed up the street to meet ...
... was all while Masa and Raaj were at home watching the new
Skyfall movie which I am sure they much preferred to baby stuff!
Sunday was a really nice day out in nearby San Antonio, the most visited city in Texas with a
population of 1.3m. About an hour away from Austin, San Antonio is really
romantic and reminiscent of Venice with its cute river and boat rides. As Masi
and Masa had been on it more times than they can remember, Raaj and I went on
the boat ...
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Historical Traveler Reviews The Driskill Austin
Overrated - This is really a bad choice
The Driskill is overpriced, over-rated, and you can do better than this place...
I found a web-special for $140 per night for the July 4th weekend - I am told this was such a "steal" for this "world class hotel"... Well this place is a dump.
Features - this hotel has none. Bathrooms are small and unless you are 3ft tall you will have issues. Tiling was not real clean, shower head I noticed only about half of the holes spat out water, the rusty access panel on the shower ceiling is always a nice touch too.
No coffee maker, no pool, workout room is a joke, the "spa" is nothing more than two flat padded tables, THERE IS NO SODA MACHINE IN THE WHOLE BUILDING - they said I should go across the steet to the beverage store.
Room was "cheap looking" furniture a little beat up, entire room done in this cheap flat white - you can buy for $5 a gallon, view was looking into a trashy alley full of puke (ok - some ended up being mine - but that is besides the point).
Food - Our $35 two omlettes at the grill were a joke. The waitress didn't even bring me change (coin) so the $.65 cents I figured would suffice for her tip. The main "dining area" is about as big as your living room and features alla carte junk.
Bar - Anyone under 55 years old enter at your own risk. The singer and piano bar - was enough to make me want to end it all right there on the spot. This area is for elderly people who enjoy $6 beers.
Parking - vallet only at $17/day and they want a tip? hahaha no way (ohhh and the $17 is taxable too)
Smell - if you like old mildew smelling places you will be in heaven here
Location - if you want to be close to 6th street this is the best location - however let's face realtiy Austin is so small if you can't walk two blocks (where the Omni, Hilton, and other BETTER places are) then you have serious issues anyhow.
Elevators - they are accessable only AFTER YOU walk up about 30 stairs... I guess they could have carried my junk for me but then they would want yet another tip.
Staff - not real polite at all... They could care less. The conceire was nice and did book us dinner reservations (outside the hotel) - but everyone else was a snob.
BOTTOM LINE: This place sucks. Over-rated, Over-priced, food is not good, nothing to do - I see NO POINT in staying here at all... pick any other hotel downtown - and go drinking with your profits...
The Beautiful Driskill
I went with a friend and her coworkers to Austin. Her supervisor booked the hotel rooms. It was amazing! The hotel is perfect in every way. I took so many pictures of just the hotel. The bar area was so fun that we didn't leave the hotel until late to go to 6th street. I'm very picky and I loved this hotel. I can't wait to go to Austin again! Since then, I heard this hotel is haunted, we didn't notice.
Beautiful, historic, fantastic service
My wife and I an our college aged daughter spent one night there this past weeked...it was coincidence that it was SXSW weekend in Austin. We all loved the hotel. The staff was very attentive, the valet guys are especially good. We had a north facing room which did a good job of minimizing the sounds of 6th street. The room was beautifully appointed, the bathroom was gorgeous. The bar in the hotel is very nice....We will definitely return to this hotel..highly recommended.
Mixed bag at the Driskill
I travel to Austn frequently and I had the mixed fortune to stay at the Driskill July of 2003. The Driskill is a quintessential boutique property, nice but quirky.
Pros: Generous and efficient staff, prompt valet service that calls you by name, cute piano bar that plays Pink Floyd (very Austin), nice lobby to schmaltz around in, Luxuriant bedding, spacious bathrooms, nifty art on the walls, relatively good location for downtown nightlife and resturaunts.
Cons: Hotel layout takes a while to get used to, not well maintained (bruised fixtures, and marred paint), 20 head shower a bit intimidating, not much counterspace, marble slippery when wet, lousy views (only four floor property), flowery pillows everywhere, rooms are generally tiny, Valet only (no self park), No pool.
Overall: Not bad, but not great. Stay if you can get a room in the price range of 150-200. Any more than that and you might as well stay at the Four Seasons.
Way too noisy
I stayed at the Driskill the night of Thursday, February 5, while on a business trip. I requested a quiet room because I had a great deal of work to do, but was given a room with a balcony overlooking Sixth Street. The room itself was beautiful, as was the hotel. But the street noise was unbearable. Despite requesting (and receiving) earplugs, I found the sounds of live bands, screaming co-eds, and drunken revelers until past 2 a.m. a tremendous interference to both work and sleep.
Room service was excellent, but I had to leave a message with the front desk to have the restaurant call me back -- no one picked up the phone when I called down. In addition, when I checked in, I was asked which newspapers I wanted delivered to my room the following day. I chose two out of three -- and received the one newspaper that I did not request.
When I asked for the copy of the Wall Street Journal I had requested -- and which had been delivered to others on my floor -- I was told there were none left. I did not receive the impression that my concerns about the noise, the newspaper, etc., were at all important to the staff. In any event, I would recommend the Driskill to anyone who is visiting Austin for leisure and especially for those who want to partake in the live music and bar scene. For those who are in Austin to work, I would avoid this hotel like the plague; at the very minimum insist on an interior room. Otherwise the noise will drive you mad.
Rooms were pretty but TINY!
My husband and I stayed here for a special occasion. The hotel is beautiful but the rooms were very claustrophobic. Ours was not only small but it also had only one tiny window that looked out into the alley. A friend of mine stayed there in the honeymoon suite on her wedding night and said that you could hear a huge amount of drunken street noise coming from Sixth Street (the bar district) below.
June 2003 we took taxi from airport to hotel for under $20. american you can take a shuttle for cheeper but i believe you must carry on your on lugage and you need to know where your going when you get off. Our taxi driver was great very polite and helpful for things to do if only all were this good. We arrived at the Driskill and quickly registered our room was very nice king size bed on 5th floor very immaculately kept. Although first night their version of fire alarm went off which is a women telling you to leave the building with no other info till you got to main lobby(someone smoking cigar) food at driskle very good but expensive cup of great tea 3.00 and the best banana peacan bread you must have.We had supper in the Driskill we did not make reservation but we went at 5.30pm and had no problem getting in. The rib eye and lamb was to die for and the service was excellent even though we did not have drinks just the main coarse we were treated by our waiter as though we were spending alot. He was very funny and helpful in advising us of what was his favorites and he was right on. The 2 things not as good was being a historical buliding our shower always leaked on the floor which we justed used our old towels to sop up which was no big deal as they were replaced in good time. Every evening 2 girls came to turn down our bed and left a card with cowboys prayer and the next days weather witch is important as I had a hard time finding local news with the weather. the next problem I had was finding information on local buses and things to do they did not have this readly available in the hotel I had to walk 2 easy blocks to info centre were I was well taken care of with bus routes for city bus and the dillo which does not run on weekends. Parking is expensive i did find 2 free parking lots on the red dillo route only problem you can't take dillo on the weekend I guess it only runs when the big guys are working. I found the people very nice and the bus drivers very helpful on city buses for first time useser. Barton Springs pool was a nice break must bring water float to relax on I think its best enjoyed this way. Locals very friendly here also I also recommend Congress bridge in evening we went in June 9 pm before bats came out very cool.
If you're looking for a place to go with Texas flare and hospitality, alot of history, and convinient location, The Driskill Hotel is a must stay! From it's timeless elegance to it's professional staff, The Driskill Hotel was an overall perfect experience. GO!
The Driskill is "the place" to stay in Austin. It is a beautiful hotel who's ambiance takes you back in time. The Driskill Grill is perhaps the best restaurant in Austin, and the 1886 Cafe and Bakery has pastry tidbits to tempt any palate. I highly suggest the Driskill to any traveler who wants the ultimate luxury experience, "Texas Style."
Ohmigosh!!!!!!!! This hotel is exquisite!!!!! I went for my cousin's wedding, and it was perfect. The staff is awesome. They make sure your stay is the best it can possibly be. Plus, if you are one who likes to work out on vacations, this is perfect. There is a fitness section, with treadmills and the works (plus weights), with PERSONAL TVs and headsets. You can have free water bottles, and chilled washcloths, as well. If you would like, there is also a meseuse (sp?), and in you can take a shower, plus be in one of those steam rooms (name? i forgot). Plus, there is a wonderful valet service, and you can reach everything by foot. It was wonderful!!!