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“Hip, romantic & luxe”

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Hotel Saint Cecilia
Ranked #69 of 203 Hotels in Austin
Certificate of Excellence
Stamford, Connecticut
Level Contributor
268 reviews
54 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 97 helpful votes
“Hip, romantic & luxe”
Reviewed April 23, 2014

As an anniversary treat, my husband and I decided to visit Austin, where he went to school. I'd never been there, and when I checked out boutique hotels, Hotel Saint Cecilia came right up. A hotel that quotes William Burroughs, Leonard Cohen and Patti Smith is my kind of hotel. A peek at the suites and bungalows showed funky but elegant furnishings (made me think of Paris hotels) and the sweet pool with its neon sign beckoned. The grounds were lush and playful, highlighted by giant incense sticks stuck into trees and Christmas lights. The usual snack bar offered prosciutto, fine flatbread, exotic tea, and other delights beyond the usual commercial fare. Our bungalow was spacious, including a living/dining room, bedroom and bath with huge shower and separate tub. The bed linens were so divine we ordered two sets when we got home to continue the luxury in real life. I'm wearing a t-shirt with a peacock that boasts the hotel name, and I smell of frankincense and myrrh, one of their signature perfumes. The service was personal and exceptional and the staff did everything they could to satisfy our every need. Located in the chic Soco 'hood, we found plenty of nightlife and interesting restaurants within walking distance and I spent mornings at the South Congress Athletic Club, a friendly no-frills gym with Pilates studio located around the corner. We definitely want to return to Hotel Saint Cecilia for the lush digs, the great vibes and the seriously romantic ambiance.

Room Tip: Get a bungalow for privacy and spaciousness.
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  • Stayed March 2014, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
1 Thank Nan F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Lisa M, General Manager at Hotel Saint Cecilia, responded to this review, June 2, 2014
We are honored by your review--thank you. We are elated that your stay was everything you described, it is always our goal to offer our guests a wonderful and unique experience. We hope to have you back soon, and until then we hope you enjoy the mementos of your stay with us at Hotel Saint Cecilia. Until next time!
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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133 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
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  • Sleep Quality
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  • Value
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Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (35)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
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English first
New York City
Level Contributor
7 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
Reviewed April 10, 2014

Went to Austin for a much needed vacay and came across Saint Cecelia via some blog reviews. I checked it out and loved the vibe of it so much that I immediately booked a stay there for two nights.

Upon arriving at the hotel, I felt like I was walking into an oasis. The grounds have a very Los Angeles/Chateau Marmont feeling, with lush greenery and hidden areas to relax. The overarching vibe is complete feeling of calm, like arriving home after a long day.

The hotel is anchored around a magnificent tree that has branches spread out as far as the eye can see. The beauty of the hotel is only amplified by the awesome music they have playing throughout the day - think Fleetwood Mac, Velvet Underground, Pink Floyd. There is also a subtle smell of incense permeating the grounds, which is lit nightly.

The hotel bar is private to guests at the hotel, which is a major plus in my book. During one of the chilly nights, I curled up on the couch next to the fireplace with a fantastic cocktail and zoned out. I found myself zoning out quite a bit during my stay, just focusing on the beauty of the grounds, the chirping of the birds and the soothing atmosphere.

The rooms are super cool. We stayed in Suite 2, which has a sitting area with a couch that could easily double as a twin bed (and did for our 5 year old daughter) that leads into a large room with a King bed, fireplace (it's fitted with a mood light), and record player. The bathroom has a shower with a glass door.

The overall mood for the rooms are lush fabrics, dim lighting and a chill vibe. My gripes, and there weren't many were:

-Low lighting in the bathroom makes it hard for women to put on makeup. I found myself using the sunlight from the huge windows in the main space to apply my makeup, but it was a pain. I would prefer a makeup light option in the bathroom or vanity mirror with natural lighting.
-The toilet was really hard to flush. It was a two hand sort of job, which I found odd.
-The water pressure in the sink was not strong enough for me, nor did the water in the sink get hot enough.

Other than that I found the room to be amazing. The Hastens bed that everyone lauds in their reviews is pretty awesome. Once you lay in the bed you don't want to get up. Between the plush pillows and the soft mattress, it makes you just want to lay there forever.

Our suite also had a sitting area on the balcony, which was nice when we wanted to have a little time to ourselves.

The pool was lovely, but not warm enough during our stay, so we couldn't enjoy it.

The major caveat is nothing is cheap at Saint Cecelia, you are paying a premium for an experience. You don't need to ever leave the hotel to have a great time, which is part of the cost in my eyes. Cocktails are a minimum of $14 and as high as $20. Food runs about $20 as a base. We paid $25 for a S'mores plate for our daughter. I think I saw french toast on the breakfast menu for $30, so be forewarned if you're the type that likes to eat at hotels. :)

I would stay at Saint Cecelia again in a heartbeat. I actually only want to go back to Austin just to stay there!

  • Stayed April 2014, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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Helpful?
Thank ItsLizD
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Austin, Texas
Level Contributor
10 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed April 3, 2014

I live in austin and relish anytime i do a stay cation at the Saint Ceclia! The general manager took the the time to help me with my reservation (thanks Lisa)!! It was my birthday and booked one of the poolside bungalows and was blown away by how fantastic it was! Jay, Katie and J.D at the front desk made me feel exceptionally welcomed and special. Jesse at the bar was great! Very attentive while lounging by the pool and made sure myself and my guests had plenty of cold water and even came thru with some sunblock when we noticed ours were empty. Thanks Jesse you rock! Turn down service wonderful touch and bloodymarys delivered to our room were tasty and beautiful! Hands down best two day bday extravaganza! Love the super soft sheets and playing records that the hotel will lend to you! Can't wait till i get to stay again:)

  • Stayed March 2014, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank tiva-austin
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Corpus Christi, Texas
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed April 3, 2014

The bar patio was right outside my bedroom window in the "big house." Management was polite and I was promised the "party" would be over at 11:00. Didn't happen. Had to leave the hotel and find another near midnight just to get sleep. I guess the bar tab was more attractive than my room rate. Bad layout I guess. Nice looking room though. Wish I could have slept there.

Room Tip: Make sure you're as far away from their bar/patio area as possible.
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  • Stayed April 2014, traveled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
1 Thank cbandas
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Lisa M, General Manager at Hotel Saint Cecilia, responded to this review, June 2, 2014
We sincerely apologize that you were unable to enjoy your time with us. The lounge is generally quiet and we are sorry that was not the case the evening you joined us. We would love to have you back as our complimentary guest in order to remedy the situation and to offer you an experience that you will leave happy with. Please contact me directly at lisa@hotelsaintcecilia.com so that we can host you in a room that will offer you more peace and privacy.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Dallas, Texas
Level Contributor
63 reviews
15 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
Reviewed March 25, 2014

We were welcomed by the staff here who knew our names when we arrived and told me happy birthday (they had asked my husband when he made the reservations if there was a special occasion). Our room was gorgeous but comfortable with a private patio overlooking the courtyard. There were cookies waiting for us on our table, they give you a choice of complimentary newspapers in the morning, and turn-down service included them leaving ice and rainwater. (And I have to mention how crazy comfortable the bed was!)

Each room has a turntable and the front office has a library of vinyls to take advantage of. Good selection (Beatles, Sly and the Family Stone, The Band, Miles Davis, to name a few) and a nice touch to get yourself in vacation mode.

We had coffee delivered at night from the lounge (expensive mixed drinks, but other drinks don't seem outrageous), and a delicious breakfast delivered in the morning. They make everything so easy, making it very easy to relax.

This place is very expensive though. We had a gift certificate and had to use it on a Sunday night (rather than a weekend night) because the rooms were otherwise out of range. If you have the money, you'll get a resort feel on one of the coolest streets in Austin - private, but close to the action. I'd recommend it for a special occasion.

Room Tip: A staff member gave us recommendations when making the reservations on the phone.
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  • Stayed March 2014, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank bethanyfarns
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New York City, New York
Level Contributor
80 reviews
25 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 68 helpful votes
Reviewed March 24, 2014

I thought this hotel was a very nice boutique hotel in Austin. Here's how my visit breaks down:

PROS:
Best part of this hotel is that it gives you a resort-feel in the middle of a city.
The rooms are nicely decorated and the grounds are very enjoyable. Each room has a record player and you can borrow vinyls from the lobby.
The pool is small, but a relaxing place to pass time and the location is closed enough that you can walk right to the heart of South Congress.
The bed are also very comfortable.

CONS:
This hotels is pretty expensive (like as much as the Four Seasons) but the service and amenities just are not up to that level
The rooms have very little light, and I even had a lot of trouble putting on makeup in the bathroom since I couldn't see much.
My husband and I had a studio and there was no door on the bathroom - something to note in case you are traveling with a friend.
Absolutely nothing is included in the price (except a newspaper). There is no coffee maker in your room or even in the lobby which was kind of disappointing. You're only option is to buy a pot from the restaurant.
The TAXI situation - by far the WORST part of our stay. My husband was running late to dinner on Friday. He had the hotel call a taxi at 9pm and he did not get a response until 10:45. He completely missed dinner. When he kept asking the hotel about options they just said it's hard to get taxis there on Friday and Saturday nights. The restaurant was only 2 miles away - why couldn't the hotel (1) have a car service that guests can use, even if the guest has to pay more money for it or (2) offer to give him a ride the 2 miles to the restaurant?.
We were shocked to hear that this taxi problem happens every weekend and the hotel doesn't do anything about it. (Note: this doesn't seem to be a problem if you are staying downtown because all the taxis hangout there)

None of these are major issues, but if you are paying over $600 a night, they should be addressed and you shouldn't be waiting almost 2 hours for a taxi to drive you 2 miles. The whole experience was a bit strange.

I love boutique hotels and almost always stay in them before I would go to a chain, but this one is just not a good value. I would stay there again if I was in town for business and my company was paying for it.

MISC: This hotel also allows children and is family-friendly, but we didn't see any so that wasn't an issue.

  • Stayed March 2014, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank maf908285
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
16 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
Reviewed March 20, 2014

we were warmly welcomed to the hotel. i was a bit worried as the hotel seemed very "cool" and "hip" and was fearful our brood of 3 small children (6, 4 and 2ys) would kill the vibe. actually it was the opposite, we were made to feel very welcome and our room was made up nicely to make it a pleasurable sleeping experience for the children. the pool was nice though could have used a sweep of it's floor each morning. hotel offered to empty out the fridge to make room for any snacks/drinks we'd need for the children. the cleaning service did a great job. overall, a perfect hideaway, we were sad to leave.

Room Tip: loved the bungalows!
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  • Stayed February 2014, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank meganturnas
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Hotel Saint Cecilia

Property: Hotel Saint Cecilia
Address: 112 Academy Dr, Austin, TX 78704-1852
Phone Number:
Location: United States > Texas > Austin
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Room Service Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#11 Romantic Hotel in Austin
#21 Luxury Hotel in Austin
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:4 star — Hotel Saint Cecilia 4*
Number of rooms: 14
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Hotel Saint Cecilia is a secluded luxury hotel in the heart of Austin's South Congress District. The 14 room property, situated on an 1880 estate, is a tribute to rock and roll opulence and royal elegance. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Saint Cecilia Hotel

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