The Driskill Hotel in Austin was completed in 1886 and is named after a cattleman named Jesse Driskill. Each side of this Historic Hotel is impressive and has a similar stucco exterior with appropriate limestone trim. This view below faces 6th street and is a block off of Congress Avenue, in the middle of the after hours district filled with bars, restaurants and breweries. Sixth Street is also home to some of the best music in the country, with bands performing from all over the world, throughout the year.
When you enter the lobby from the main entrance on the east side of the hotel, this antique ceiling light extends almost the width of the walkway and pretty well hits you right between the eyes with its warm glow. It is a very detailed fixture and you can’t help but stare as you walk by a plethora of antique furniture collected through the years. The big five pointed star in the middle, makes one start to imagine they are in the wild wild west again.
Throughout the hotel lobby and guest areas there are numerous western couches made from cowhides and made with comfort in mind. You can bet I tried one out and it took a lot of urging to get my rear end up. I wanted to stretch out, relax and take a nap. I wanted to dream about being a cowboy and meeting Lillie Langtry!
On the way to the bar one walks by several sets of revolvers and you know full well you are in Texas now. The guns, including a few rifles, are displayed throughout the second floor. The second floor is home to the hotel’s bar and restaurant. If you need to use the facilities I urge you to make use the restrooms on this level. You will be amazed at the accessories available for your amusement.
When you walk up to the second floor, from the lobby and head to the bar area, you encounter this massive replica of a Texas steer colorfully decorated with the Driskill’s exterior, superimposed against the state flag and the hotel’s logo. I urge you to deviate from any pre-planned tour and take an hour or so to see this magnificent architectural structure, a member of the Historic Hotels of America and the oldest operating hotel in Austin. If you bypass this hotel in favor of one of the suggested tourist traps then shame on you!