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Hilton Garden Inn Austin Downtown/Convention Center 3.5

Downtown, Austin, Texas

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Review Summary

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Pros

  • Downtown location near the convention center and Sixth Street entertainment
  • Contemporary rooms renovated in 2016, all with microwaves and Keurig coffeemakers
  • Rooftop restaurant and bar with spectacular city views
  • Spacious fitness center with several cardio machines
  • 24/7 business center with two PCs and remote printing capabilities
  • Outdoor pool with a waterfall and adjacent seating
  • 11 separate meeting rooms and free Wi-Fi
  • Free coffee and newspapers in the lobby
  • 24/7 Pavilion Pantry with food, drinks, sundries, and an ATM
  • Concierge services include valet dry cleaning and laundry
  • Guest laundry facilities available

Cons

  • Expensive valet parking is the only on-site option
  • Rooms have small bathrooms and lack safes 
  • Breakfast buffet costs extra
  • Pool is tiny

Bottom Line

The upper-middle-range Hilton Garden Inn Austin Downtown/Convention Center has an attractive location within a short walk of the convention center and Sixth Street’s entertainment and dining options. The 18-story property features a rooftop restaurant/bar with sweeping city views, as well as a spacious fitness center and lots of meeting space. However, the outdoor pool is small, and expensive valet parking is the only on-site option. On the upside, the 254 rooms are spacious and have lots of extras, including microwaves, mini-fridges, and Keurig coffeemakers. The mid-range Hyatt Place Austin Downtown adjacent to the convention center offers a good alternative, but expect to pay more.

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Scene

Busy downtown business hotel with a popular rooftop restaurant and bar

Three small oval kiosks with granite tops serve as the registration area of this busy downtown hotel. The ambience is bustling, with guests constantly coming and going from the modest lobby, which has low ceilings, yellow tile floors, and orange panels framed by natural stone walls behind the reception kiosks. Several modern chandeliers in various oval shapes and sizes illuminate the entrance from the valet drop-off area just outside. The building has a big and airy atrium that some rooms overlook, which is centered on a double-sided, wood-framed fireplace. But overall, this space lacks the polish and design-conscious look of the more recently renovated guest rooms, and there's little that makes these spaces worth lingering. (Even the fireplace is missing nearby seating to take in its warmth.) Other common areas include a rooftop restaurant and bar, where sweeping views of the Austin skyline and surrounding area await on the 18th floor. It’s a large space, with islands for the breakfast buffet and a wrap-around granite bar that has lots of high-back leather stools.

Location

In downtown Austin just off Interstate 35, one block from Sixth Street’s entertainment and dining 

The Hilton Garden Inn is located adjacent to an on-ramp for Interstate 35, just one block from entertainment and dining options along Sixth Street. The closest Sixth Street venues are a three-minute walk, and the hotel is a nine-minute walk from the Austin Convention Center. The Downtown MetroRail station is located on the far end of the center. The Mexic-Arte Museum is a 10-minute walk along Fifth Street, while the Warehouse District is a 14-minute walk, or three minutes by car. The University of Texas at Austin campus is an 11-minute drive or about 20 minutes via public transportation. Expect trips to Austin-Bergstrom International Airport to take approximately 25 minutes by car, or 35 to 40 minutes by public transportation. 

Rooms

Spacious, stylish rooms with microwaves, coffeemakers, and mini-fridges, but small bathrooms

Guest rooms received a renovation in 2016 that gave them a fresh, stylish look and a light-gray, brown, and olive palette. The most distinctive feature is the custom wallpaper in an organic pattern of gray, brown, and cream that resembles white birch bark. The two-tone brown carpet also has a busy dot-dash pattern. Bright, pop art with Austin/music themes adds splashes of color, as do decorative pillows in mustard yellow that rest on upholstered armchairs or sleeper sofas (in Deluxe King units). Amenities include work desks with ergonomic office chairs, microwaves, mini-fridges, 42-inch flat-screen TVs, and Keurig coffeemakers. Standard Kings are the smallest rooms, at 288 square feet, while Double Queens measure 331 square feet. Deluxe Kings have 360 square feet, and King Suites are more than double that. 

Bathrooms are pleasant but small, with huge, backlit oval mirrors framed by dark stones embedded in mortar. Dark wood vanities with granite tops are stocked with Neutrogena toiletries, and simple beige tile frames the shower/tub combos. Some rooms feature great views of the city, while others overlook the interior atrium. Rooms are generally quiet, but those on lower floors facing Interstate 35 hear more traffic noise.  

Features

Rooftop restaurant/bar with great views, laundry room, valet parking, gym, and meeting space

The Hilton Garden Inn has all the amenities one would expect of a large, business-oriented hotel in the downtown area. One highlight is the Eighteenth Over Austin, a rooftop restaurant/bar with spectacular city views from the 18th floor. It features new American cuisine and serves a full hot breakfast buffet (for a fee) as well as lunch and dinner. The 24/7 Pavilion Pantry offers a nice array of sundries, drinks, and food items, including frozen entrees and microwave pizzas. The Pantry also has free coffee/tea and an ATM, and free "USA Today" newspapers are available on weekdays. 

The bright and spacious fitness center is open 24/7 and has several cardio machines, exercise bands, and free weights. The heated outdoor pool is disappointingly small, but it does have a waterfall that cascades from a faux rock feature as well as a few tables and chairs. Valet parking is the only parking option at the hotel, and it’s expensive. Concierge services include valet dry cleaning and laundry, and there is a guest laundry room as well. 

Eleven separate meeting rooms are available, including a ballroom that can seat 250 people. The 24/7 business center has two PCs with internet access and a printer/copier that enables guests to print remotely from their rooms. Wi-Fi is free throughout the hotel. Rooms don't have safes, but there's a safe deposit box available for guests to use. 

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Address

500 N Interstate 35, Austin, Texas 78701-3702, United States

Also Known As

  • Hilton Garden Inn Austin Downtown

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