Whether you’re just passing through Austin, coming to visit friends, or already living in this fantastically vivacious town, this itinerary will take you through some of Austin’s most upscale Sunday spots for drinks, dining, and leisure.
This meandering Sunday Funday is both potentially walkable, and guaranteed to be peppered with Austin culture and kitsch, without the hassle of large crowds or long waits. Enjoy 🙂
Photo: The Driskill, via Wikimedia Commons
10-12 a.m. – Brunch at the 1886 Cafe & Bakery, tucked away inside the Driskill Hotel.
A little known fact about the Driskill Hotel, is that it houses the 1886 Cafe & Bakery. 1886 offers the peace and pleasure of a classic brunch, while keeping it austere with choice plates, such as the “Hippy Hollow” (scrambled eggs with spinach, local goat cheese served with tomatoes & country potatoes) and “Texas Pecan Waffles” (fresh pecans, sliced banana, powdered sugar, berries, blackberry jam & maple syrup).
1-2 p.m. – Drinks on The W Hotel Pool Terrace.
Take a taxi, pedi-cab, rideshare, or simply hoof it just a few blocks from the Driskill to the phenomenal rooftop pool bar at the W Hotel Austin. Especially on a Sunday. Settle into a bloody mary, mimosa, or craft cocktail at the bar, and feel free to reserve a private cabana or kasbah online.
2-4:30 p.m. – Ready for a change of venue? Take a dip at Bar Rio
Even if you don’t take the plunge into Rio’s sleek rooftop pool, the terrace bar is a great spot to do a bit of mid-day people watching, with no additional fee to swim. Take in the view overlooking the upscale West 6th Street district, as the lovely ladies of Rio’s staff mix up cocktails to your liking. Reserve a cabana and chat in the shade with your pals between the occasional plunge into the sparkling pool. (Party-heavy, so if you hit this one, be prepared.)
5-6 p.m. – Time for a happy hour at Peche
A mere .8 of a mile from Rio Pool Bar, Peche (for ‘sin’ in French) is known for it’s “sinful cocktails and cuisine”. As Austin’s first absinthe bar, Peche pulls no punches and promises stellar service to complement its options for alimentation and libation. Drop on in for their happy hour to get ½ off buttery escargots and other select items.
6:30-8:30 p.m. – Dinner at Geraldine’s
Head east of Congress to the heart of the Rainey Street district, for dinner at Geraldine’s. Housed in the elegant and funky Hotel Van Zandt, the gem of Rainey St., Geraldine’s has made a name for itself through embracing the organic feel of its surroundings. It doesn’t hurt that Executive Chef, Stephen Bonin, grew up in Texas and is adept at blending local flavor with classic cuisine to consistently produce intricate, delectable dishes that patrons can’t help but photograph over ooos and ahhhs.
11 p.m. – 2 a.m. – Finish off the night on Rainey Street
At the street level of the Hotel Van Zandt, you can take a stroll down Rainey Street. Wander in and out of kitschy single-family homes converted into bars such as Lucille and check out some live music at the Blackheart, or just lounge on any one of the fairy-lit patios as the night draws to a close.
It’s time to go home, but – admit it – you’ve had a pretty awesome day! There’s 6 days left in the week, and for the rest of them you’ll be telling people what an epic Sunday Funday you had in Austin! Fact.