Bring the family and take a true staycation this summer in the East End IBIZ District. The East End is a historic and cultural hub including the African American Cultural Heritage District, the Texas Music Museum, the Carver Museum, and the Historic Victory Grill.
We are so happy that Hotel Eleven has opened right in the heart of the district, which allows for an immersive experience. We recommend booking the Fourth weekend of each month so that you can experience Kenny Dorham’s Backyard’s Fourth Friday celebration of music, arts, and culture.
Here’s our suggested itinerary:
Check in at Hotel Eleven and get situated. Leave the car behind because you can get around the whole district via foot or rent a B-Cycle to experience even more just outside the district. Happy hour at Blue Dahlia’s. We love their half price bottles of wine and tartines during happy hour on their private back patio oasis. Pro tip, grab a snack but don’t fill up because there is so much more delicious food in the district. After a snack, browse district boutiques for local shopping. Our favorites: Mana Culture, take heart shop, Tiny Taiga, and Olive. All of this is within 2 blocks of the hotel. As twilight hits, check out the schedule for Kenny Dorham’s Backyard to see current happenings, including live music. Or else, grab a show at the Historic Victory Grill, the original Austin venue for African American music.
Even though you are on staycation, dont waste the morning sleeping in. Get up early and experience breakfast at Hillside Farmacy, a retro-looking old school pharmacy that serves farm fresh food. Then hightail it down to Franklin BBQ to secure a spot in line for lunch. Trust us, you dont want to do this on an empty stomach, those BBQ smells will taunt you for hours. The line is almost an initiation to Austin culture. What’s more Texas than BBQ? And who’s more friendly than Austinites? Bring some cards while you wait, and make new friends in line.
After lunch, head across the street to the Texas Music Museum to explore the culture of local musicians. It’s worth the experience. Rent a B-Cycle right outside the museum and head down to the Carver Museum to explore African American culture, or ride around the Texas State Cemetery, the final resting place of several Texas governors, senators, and influential people in Texas history.
Dinner time. If you are exhausted and want to relax while being served, we recommend heading back to Hillside Pharmacy or Blue Dahlia, or for the more adventurous, try some of Austin’s best pizza from East Side Pies. Now that you have had a full day, grab a drink at one of the areas low key pubs, the Longbranch Inn or the Quickie Pickie. Prefer some privacy, grab a bottle from J&J Spirits and relax in your room.
We love the East End IBIZ District, its a little neighborhood oasis just outside of downtown, with all the amenities you might need within a few blocks. Enjoy your summer staycation. Shop Local, Eat Local, Drink Local.