The Domain off Mopac (aka Loop 1) is the party spot in NW Austin. Uber cool complex of upper-end shops, live entertainment and hip people. This is my 3rd Aloft to visit. Visualize the cool euro economy version of the "W" hotel (1/3 the price). Our trip was a combined birthday. We all went to high school together... long ago, yet didn't feel like it. This trip put us back in the groove.
Entire hotel is contemporary modern with euro theme and finish flair. Common areas are great. Pool is mid-sized but cool. Plenty of sun worship space. Lobby has seating to visit with very nice bar serving all the best for fair price. On a budget, NO Worry since it's a BYOB like all hotels - just be cool about it.
Rooms are nice. Cool theme, Direct TV, 42" LCD screens, coffee-maker, blow dryer, fridge and plenty of supplies available downstairs for less than 7-11. A fast microwave is downstairs too.
I read the room were small, but not so much. My standard King room was an apartment size bathroom/shower with 5-6 feet around the king bed in the sleeping area, desk, settee. No drawers, plenty of hangers.
Timeline of a great stay:
Arrived Friday evening about 6pm. I was in a rough mood for other reasons - yet Aloft staff bent over backwards to be nice to grouchy me. Kudo's for being so nice. Note: I booked online, but Aloft DOES NOT run your CC until check-in or after you missed check-in. Hence, you will need your C-card. Website gave me the solid impression Aloft already charged my card. Hotel was not crowded but not empty either. It felt about right.
Parking is about 200ft north opposite Neiman-Marcus store and the "Park" sports bar (which is kinda built into side of the Aloft building). You will be given a parking pass for the car lot. Hotel has free reserved parking.
Aloft is pet-friendly.. I should have brought Tiki my beautiful bassett hound. There were a lot of friendly dogs staying in the hotel and nearby in the Domain apartments. It's a happy place. Big doggie bowls of cooled water and biscuit bones in the lobby. The website pictures are real deal.
We all spent Friday evening on the patio at Fleming's happy hour with great wine, martini's, food and friends. Aloft hotel van provided shuttle service even though it's only a 2-4 minute walk. Sundown and late night dinner was at the Oasis on Lake Travis. Magnificent!! We all had a great time. Eight of us stayed at Aloft for the weekend and no doubt that was a best choice. Some of our classmates now living in Austin came out to join us. Spectacular.. Thanks to Valerie for taking care of us again, ever since school she has deserved a metal or something.
SATURDAY morning - awesome! You have a choice for breakfast. Eggs, Bacon, Cereal..whatever is cooked to order at Aloft. Average check is $8-9 pp. But for Saturday my choice was "The Steeping Room" house of herbal tea, legendary coffee and magnificent breakfasts. (I wrote a separate review for "the steeping room", an upbeat place serving tasty health vegan, killer pastries and very tasty not so healthy food like my wonderful omelet with cheese and sides of bacon, fruit and potato’s $12pp). If you opt for visiting the Steeping Room, just walk out Aloft's front door, turn Left and walk thru or around the parking garage. It's right next to Starbucks. If you go thru the garage be aware to take the elevator up to the 3rd level. Parking garage is built into a hill.
Wonderful shopping and people watching all day in the Domain. Cool eclectic crowd of assorted ages. Live bands play from lunch time to sundown between Starbucks and North Italian Bistro. Our lunch was at North featuring great jazz on the shady patio with Malbac wine with the coolest snack: Italian bread topped with cheese, Prosciutto and Asparagus. Yum! (Not expensive either $28)
Our group birthday was also at the North for dinner (kinda missed that detail earlier in the day). No worries.. this place is worth returning even on the same day. Our waitress suggested our choice for dinner. I LOVED the grilled Salmon sharing another bottle of Malbac. Once again this is why you always ask the staff what they think is a winner - it usually is. But surprise!! without asking they prepared deserts to celebrate our birthdays complete with flaming candles. We moved outside to listen to more great music, then over to Starbucks next door to late conversation over coffee.
After a great evening it was back to the Aloft. Slept like a baby.
SUNDAY morning was bright, happy with early sunrise breakfast downstairs before hitting the pool for some quality sun bathing time prior to noon departure. Made some new friends on this trip. More than a couple were out of practice and they opted for late checkout. Aloft staff was smiling friendly as they made a fresh pot of coffee to cut into my cup of Jim Beam bourbon to help start the morning (good to be prepared with byob on mornings before Alofts bar is open). 8/8 said they really enjoyed the weekend here.
I'm definitely staying at Aloft in the Domain again, especially on business trips because its a fun place. Great value for under $120 night money and conducive atmosphere. Now if your one of the boring 'traditional" type insisting on acting your real age there is another hotel just down the road for you.
I wish you the best on your journey.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- The new Aloft Austin, located at The Domain, which is known as the second downtown in Austin. You'll find some of the best shopping, dining and entertainment at our doorstep. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Aloft Austin At The Domain Hotel Austin