Austin’s vibrant downtown is one of the coolest parts of the city. Located in the city’s core and along the Colorado River, downtown Austin comprises several districts, each with their own spirit, attractions and appeal. The neighborhood is a hub for trendy entertainment, upscale dining and a proudly independent state government. Austin is the state capital, and the Texas Capitol sits in the middle of downtown. The main campus for the University of Texas and Texas Memorial Stadium is just to the north, and game days are a never-ending party. It’s also a hot spot for vacation rentals for those who want to be close to all the excitement.
Downtown Austin has very defined boundaries. Martin Luther King, Jr. Boulevard serves as the northern boundary, and Interstate 35 and Caesar Chavez Street make up the eastern and southern boundaries, respectively. The western boundary is Lamar Boulevard. Inside that boundary are 10 individual districts that vary in size. A few of these districts present amazing upmarket homes, townhomes or condominiums that you can rent for your next Austin getaway. Let’s take a closer look.
Austin’s beautiful Civic District offers many points of interest, like the Governor’s Mansion, Texas Law Library and Austin Public Library. The Civic District has some of the finest dining options in the city across a variety of cuisines. Top restaurants include Wu Chow, Bull & Bowl and Perry’s Steakhouse.
In the Civic District, you’ll find mostly luxury condominiums for rent in the local buildings. Condos here are usually two or three bedrooms, but there are some studios and one-bedroom units for rent and a couple larger four- or five-bedroom residences. There are even a few luxury homes in the neighborhood.
The Warehouse District presents a combination of office buildings and refurbished warehouses that are home to chic cocktail bars and savory restaurants. It’s also a nighttime hub, with DJs spinning house music at gay-friendly nightclubs while other venues in the district host jazz or hip-hop performances. Republic Square in the heart of the Warehouse District, is a verdant park with walking trails and a weekly Farmers’ Market.
In the Warehouse District, you’ll find high-rise luxury condos for rent that offer prime views of the city. Most condos are two or three bedrooms, but there are a few smaller and larger residences available. Austin is an exceptionally pet-friendly city, and many of the condos in the Warehouse District allow dogs and cats.
The Seaholm District is a small section in southwest downtown that was formerly for industrial use but has been transformed into a desirable, mixed-use urban neighborhood. At the heart of the district is the former Seaholm Power Plant that has been revitalized into a popular employment, residential and retail destination. The dining opportunities in the district are endless. You can find everything from local classics like Hut’s Hamburgers to stylish, up-and-coming bistros.
Many of the old buildings and warehouses of the Seaholm District have been gutted to the studs and rebuilt as some of the most sought-after housing in Austin. Condos here are the pinnacle of amenity-rich downtown living in Austin, and boast front-row views of downtown and the river. The district is bordered on the south by Ladybird Lake, and you’re within walking distance to boating, fishing, kayaking and stand-up paddle boarding.
The Market District has taken off over the past few years, and is quickly becoming a top residential and commercial destination in Austin. High-rise condos and apartment buildings like The Monarch (29 stories tall) provide bird’s-eye views of the city, and there’s excellent shopping and dining all within walking distance. Here you can discover everything from Lululemon to REI – and can even snag some groceries at the very first Whole Foods market. The flagship store opened in the Market District in 1980. Along West 6th Street is home to a slew of bars, taverns and pubs. There are also stylish restaurants like Fixe, Ranch 616 and Next Level Burger. To the north of 6th Street are several historical residences, some of which have been converted to businesses.
The West End is a quieter neighborhood just west of downtown known for its high concentration of antique shops and art galleries. It’s sometimes referred to as the “Central Design District.” The West End has some nice parks and walkable paths, like the Town Lake Hike and Bike Trail. There are plenty of retail stores and restaurants throughout the district. It’s also convenient – with downtown just to the east and Mopac (the Texas 1 loop) to the west.
The West End features mostly midsize homes with an average of three bedrooms and one bathroom. Some homes are larger while very few are smaller. The average size for a home here is about 1,100 square feet. While homes here aren’t large, they are luxury-rated and exquisite. When you rent a home in the West End, you’ll enjoy the ideal mix of luxury family living and easy access to anywhere in Austin.
Austin’s North Side neighborhood is right in between downtown and the University of Texas campus. It was once a 300-acre campus for IBM prior to becoming a bustling entertainment, high-end shopping and residential district. The North Side has a wonderful mix of luxury retail, bars, restaurants and multi-family residences – mostly condos and duplexes. Here, you’ll find shops ranging from Nordstrom’s department store to RH (formerly Restoration Hardware). A quarter mile stretch at Rock Rose has become the hot spot in North Austin to catch the big game or party the night away.
The Museum District is one of the smallest districts in Austin at 12 square blocks, between MLK Boulevard and West 17th Street, and Guadalupe Street and Trinity Street. There aren’t many vacation rentals here to speak of other than Cambridge Tower. The Museum District is the site of the Bullock Texas State History Museums and the Blanton Museum of Art. Nearby, you can grab bites like Chick Fil-A and Raising Cane’s and pick up necessities at Target, about two blocks away.
There are no vacation rentals in the Medical District. The small district near I-35 and MLK Boulevard does have a few medical facilities and several parking garages for the Frank C. Erwin, Jr. Special Events Center, where the Longhorns play their basketball games. Waterloo Neighborhood Park has walking paths and is part of the district.
The Financial District is just southeast of the Texas Capitol building and grounds. There are no apartments or private homes in this area as it is mostly churches, government buildings and parking garages. St. Mary Catholic Cathedral and the First Baptist Church of Austin are in this district.
Find the Best Vacation Rentals in Downtown Austin
If you’re looking to come to Austin for a weekend to see some of the best college football in the country, or if you’re headed here for the SXSW festival, or just to explore the city on your own schedule, we can accommodate your stay. We have excellent downtown Austin vacation rentals that offer more bang for your buck than a traditional hotel.
Bring the family or group of friends for an unforgettable vacation, or invite that special someone for a memorable getaway in Texas’s most eclectic and vibrant city. From stylish condos for two to elaborate estates for the whole fam, our top-rated rentals are incomparable to a stuffy hotel. Browse our inventory or contact us today!