Eclectic charm of a quirky, owner-managed bed-and-breakfast
Occasional lapse in cleanliness, and some old furniture
Car necessary for access and recommended for area travel
A pleasing mixture of Old World Spanish hacienda and Tuscan villa, this upscale bed-and-breakfast houses five slightly overstuffed rooms furnished with floor-sweeping drapes, embroidered tapestries, and bronze statuettes -- some of which could use a good dusting. Views of lake Travis lend the property its name, and vistas of the water from the small infinity-edge pool and hot tub are gorgeous. A substantial hot breakfast is included in the room charge. The inn sits on a cliff above the lake and while a popular restaurant is five minutes away on foot, a car is necessary to reach downtown Austin. Hotel Saint Cecilia is an upscale boutique alternative with a hipper, sexier vibe -- but prices are higher.
Abundant knickknacks in a palatial, yet homey, hacienda-style villa
The yellow stucco exterior, dark wood framing, and terra-cotta tile roof of this large property bring to mind hacienda construction. The interior decor combines Southwestern and European-style touches, such as embroidered table runners and Queen Anne chairs. The resulting style mishmash creates a uniquely Texan ambience in a property that is particularly popular with couples seeking a romantic retreat. Sitting space abounds on the first floor, which is brimming with overstuffed couches and Impressionist reproductions. It opens up onto a back terrace, which affords sweeping views of the nearby lake and a peek onto the swimming pool nestled into the hillside.
Overlooking Lake Travis in a semi-rural area dotted with residences
La Villa Vista sits perched over Lake Travis in a semi-rural area, just off a two-lane road that winds along the cliffs overlooking the waterfront, snaking between cypress trees and hills sparsely dotted with residential buildings and the occasional business. The hotel is a short walk from a popular local eatery, The Oasis, which serves Tex-Mex beside the lake, and though it's walkable, there is no sidewalk to speak of along the road. Austin and the Bergstrom Airport are both about a half-hour drive from the hotel.
Five individually decorated rooms with a lot going on
Fairly variable in amenities and size, the five rooms here offer an over-the-top aesthetic that can seem like too much for some. Decorative objects include blown-glass vases, faux embroidered tapestries, and a mixture of wood floor, tiling, carpeting, and hand-painted decorative molding. The smallest room, the Himalaya, consists simply of an elevated platform with a mattress, a sitting area below, and an adjacent, rather small, bathroom with a shower. The Milan Suite and Tuscany Suite feature large jetted tubs, and the Milan Suite also has a fully equipped kitchenette. Every room except for the Himalaya has lake views, and the Milan, Penthouse, and Tuscany Suites also have private outdoor space. All rooms have air-conditioning, a flat-screen TV, and free Wi-Fi. Most rooms have a mini-fridge. Overall, the rooms are well-maintained and clean but there's dust here and there.
Swimming pool with infinity edge, free breakfast, and free parking
La Villa Vista provides better than average features for a small bed-and-breakfast. There's no full restaurant, but staff serves a free hot breakfast every morning that consists of everything from eggs to pastries. Wine is provided in a self-serve fridge in the lobby. Outside, Doric columns support the shade trellis near the infinity-edge pool and hot tub. This area overlooks Lake Travis. Wi-Fi is free throughout the property and parking is free.