While the cranes dotting the horizon continue to build on an already impressive skyline, travelers looking for a stay as unique as Austin may want to opt into a boutique hotel. We’ve gathered up the quirky, funky, swank and one-of-a-kind smaller format places to stay that will satisfy your need for the weird and the wonderful. Lay your weary head on custom linens, luxuriate in the best bath products, wrap yourself in a cozy robe and plop down in the heart of the action.

Austin Motel exterior and neon sign on South Congress Avenue in Austin Texas
Austin Motel. Credit Nick Simonite.

Austin Motel

Austin Motel is legitimately an Austin icon—its signature neon sign has been blazing on South Congress for decades. In 2017, the property was given a '50s-style makeover that befits its original motor court roots. A stay here means you’re right in the middle of South Congress, treated to deliciously comfortable beds, decidedly quirky decor, a heated pool and a full calendar of events like Bob’s Bizarre Burlesque Bingo and Break Free Yoga. Also on the property is Joann’s Fine Foods, serving a Southwestern-inspired menu and fabulous cocktails on a breezy patio. Definitely check out their happy hour.
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The Carpenter Hotel pool in austin texas
The Carpenter Hotel. Credit Alex Lau.

Carpenter Hotel

Transformed from its former life as a Carpenter’s Union Hall, Carpenter Hotel incorporates all things Texas with all things contemporary luxury property. The hotel is warm and welcoming with rich colors and lots of natural wood styling. Everything in the rooms is custom-made - from the blankets to the beds - and each room has its own outdoor terrace. Grab a kolache and coffee at Hot L Coffee or have a glass of wine and a griddled burger at the tasty and unpretentious Carpenters Hall restaurant.
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exterior of East Austin Hotel at Twilight in austin texas
East Austin Hotel. Credit Ryann Ford.

East Austin Hotel

East Austin Hotel may be located in East Austin but its retro international vibes make it feel very cosmopolitan. Though it has a prime location near the coolest bars, restaurants, and nightlife, it may be difficult to want to leave the property. Each of their 47 rooms is crisp, light, and bright with Danish-inspired decor, textiles and furniture crafted by local artisans, and pool views. There are also two bars onsite (Pool Bar and The Upside) for maximum socializing with locals and visitors and Sixth and Waller, their all-day-cafe serving fusion takes on global eats and specialty cocktails.
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Guest room at Heywood Hotel boutique hotel in Austin Texas
Heywood Hotel. Credit Casey Dunn.

Heywood Hotel

Tucked away off East Cesar Chavez, the Heywood Hotel combines the indie spirit of Austin, the coziness of home, and bright, colorful decor that is nothing short of cheerful. Each of their seven rooms is bespoke with handcrafted furniture, local art, and delightful textiles that make it hard to choose. Each room also has its own amenities, like the King Deluxe that features a fireplace and cathedral ceilings, or the Queen Balcony with a balcony and a shower with a skylight. Included are free coffee and tea service, wifi, bicycles, parking and an internet jukebox.
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Bed looking out at terrace at Hotel Ella
Hotel Ella. Credit Jake Holt Photography.

Hotel Ella

Luxury doesn’t begin to describe the accommodations at the historic Hotel Ella. Probably because it’s housed in a literal mansion near the University of Texas. Every room and suite is sumptuous—with handspun linens, locally curated products, stocked minibars and opulent flair. Its imposing Greek columns, cabana-lined pool, and wrap-around verandas feel like the height of opulence. The location can’t be beaten either as its right near the busy University of Texas campus and the Drag. For breakfast, lunch, and dinner, make sure to check out the award-winning American bistro-style restaurant, Goodall’s.
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Hotel Saint Cecilia pool and terrace in Austin Texas
Hotel Saint Cecilia. Credit Nick Simonite.

Hotel Saint Cecilia

Named in honor of the patron saint of music and poetry, the property and rooms at Hotel Saint Cecilia are a riot of color, bohemia and inspired eclecticism. This is a place where details matter and deciding between the 14 rooms is a little like choosing your spirit animal. In addition to all-luxury-everything, rooms come equipped with a spa body product minibar and Rega turntables (with a vinyl lending library, to boot.) The property also features a 50-foot heated lap pool and poolside bungalows for ultimate lounging.
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Hotel San Jose Room 42 Grand Standard in austin texas
Hotel San Jose. Credit Nick Simonite.

Hotel San Jose

If you’re the type of person that wants to be smack dab in the middle of all the hipness, Hotel San Jose is heaven. Step out your front door to the South Congress spectacular. Every day feels like a fresh adventure when you’re mere feet away from some of the coolest things to do in Austin. Every room in this bungalow-style 1930s hotel is fresh and fun, in the best way. There’s often live music on the veranda and events next door. Meet new pals at the onsite pool, enjoy a frosty Michelada or a frose on the popular patio, stop into Jo’s coffee for good times and caffeine and revel in that sweet south Austin chaos.
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Exterior of Kimber Modern boutique hotel in Austin Texas
Kimber Modern. Credit Casey Dunn.

Kimber Modern

The Kimber Modern lives up to its name by eschewing the “front desk and impersonal space” hotel tradition, opting instead for a virtual concierge and contemporary design centered around a peaceful courtyard. Every space is intentionally designed to feel like a retreat from busy South Congress avenue. The common area offers organic breakfast, a water bar, and floor-to-ceiling windows. The courtyard is shadowed by Texas live oaks and centers on an enormous water feature. And the rooms—with Egyptian cotton towels, Malin and Goetz bath products, walk-in showers and lovely beds—may make you want to stay forever.
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Bathroom in guest room at South Congress Hotel in Austin Texas
Courtesy of South Congress Hotel.

South Congress Hotel

Overlooking vibrant South Congress, this hotel is impeccable in every regard. Amazing views, bespoke bed linens, custom robes, rainfall shower heads, Ursa Major bath and body products, Apple TVs and, of course, gorgeous decor. It even smells good. There are multiple food and drink options to choose from, like a mid-day brunch at Cafe No Se or a fresh juice at Manana. Amenities at South Congress Hotel include 24-hour concierge and fitness, a bilingual staff, motorcycle rentals and, yes, even a personal shopper service. The rooftop pool is often featured in magazines and is the ideal spot to catch some Texas rays.
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None of these catch your fancy? Check out our complete list of places to stay in Austin.