SXSW Austin City Guide
SXSW Austin City GuideWritten by: Dana Droppo
You’ve made it to SXSW in Austin, but now where to go when you’re not watching some of your favorite bands play live? We’ve got you covered. Check out these 12 insider spots, including suggestions on where to stay, eat and shop that you won’t want to miss while in Austin.
1. EAT: Hut’s Hamburgers
EAT: Hut’s HamburgersWebsite: http://www.hutsfrankandangies.com/
An old time favorite, this burger joint boasts some outlandish combos. Try the “Fat’s Domino,” the “Alley-Oop,” or the “All-American Buddie Holly Burger.” Top it all off with one of their world famous shakes and you’ll be full through your entire week-long trip!
2. EAT: Hut’s Hamburgers
EAT: Hut’s HamburgersWebsite: http://www.hutsfrankandangies.com/ An old time favorite, this burger joint boasts some outlandish combos. Try the “Fat’s Domino,” the “Alley-Oop,” or the “All-American Buddie Holly Burger.” Top it all off with one of their world famous shakes and you’ll be full through your entire week-long trip!
3. EAT: Franklin BBQ
EAT: Franklin BBQWebsite: http://franklinbarbecue.com/ Get a taste of true blue Texan BBQ at family-owned Franklins. An insider’s tip: order the brisket. You’re essentially buying a one way ticket to smokehouse heaven.
4. EAT: Kome Sushi Kitchen
EAT: Kome Sushi KitchenWebsite: http://www.kome-austin.com/ You might think the best homestyle Japanese cooking in the world is found in, well, Japan. But locals know you can get it right here in Austin at Kome Sushi Kitchen where the chef-owners cook the same recipes their Japanese grandparents made 50 years ago. Get the ramen and you’ll be slurping your way through the rest of SXSW.
5. STAY: Heywood Hotel
STAY: Heywood HotelWebsite: http://www.heywoodhotel.com/ The Heywood is one of Austin’s premier boutique hotels, boasting a unique and creative slant on accommodating guests with carefully-chosen art pieces lining the walls and seven different customized rooms. Bonus? It’s right in the heart of downtown, so you forget fighting the crowds to hail a cab.
6. STAY: The Driskill
STAY: The DriskillWebsite: http://www.driskillhotel.com/ Complete with marble floors and a stained glass dome, The Driskill is a relic of 19th-Century Texan hospitality. Live music shows, extravagant suites and an award winning restaurant make this spectacular building a must-see, even if you’re not spending the night.
7. STAY: Firehouse Hostel
STAY: Firehouse HostelWebsite: http://www.firehousehostel.com/hostel.html If you’re looking to stay for cheap, the Firehouse Hostel is brand new, super clean and right in the heart of downtown. With options to stay in private rooms, or share dorm-style suites and bathrooms, you can experience all that SXSW has to offer for less than $100/night.
8. SHOP: Waterloo Records
SHOP: Waterloo RecordsWebsite: http://waterloorecords.com/Home Waterloo Records has been an important part of Austin’s music scene since it opened in ‘82. With an expert staff, a massive selection of records and videos, and frequent in-store performances that amp up during SXSW, head over to take a little slice out of the city’s history. Hey, what’s a better music festival souvenir than some limited-edition vinyl?
9. SHOP: Blue Velvet Vintage
SHOP: Blue Velvet VintageWebsite: http://feathersboutiquevintage.com/ Dig through racks and racks of old band T-shirts, washed out denim, Hawaiian shirts, and glitter-laced dresses at Blue Velvet Vintage. This one-stop vintage shop carries something for just about anyone, and none of your friends will have the same digs.
10. SHOP: Nice Kicks
SHOP: Nice KicksWebsite: http://www.shopnicekicks.com/contact-nice-kicks/ Nice Kicks isn’t just the best sneaker store in Austin, it’s known all over the world for being one of the best sneaker shops, period. Whether you’ve been searching for that perfect pair of basketball shoes for months, or you haven’t worn a pair of sneakers in years, this shop is the perfect place to get acquainted with the streetwear gems Austin has to offer.
11. VISIT: The Hideout Improv Theatre and Coffee House
VISIT: The Hideout Improv Theatre and Coffee HouseWebsite: http://www.hideouttheatre.com/ This improv theatre-cum-coffee house hosts weekly shows, teaches beginners the basics of improv and stage performance, and pours a mean cup of joe. Stop by the hideout for a laugh, a coffee, or both!