AUSTIN, Texas—The Driskill unveiled the renovation of 14 suites on the historic side of the hotel as part of an ongoing refresh of the entire property.
Located in downtown Austin and equipped with 189 total guestrooms and suites, The Driskill has provided accommodations, luxury, mixology, cuisine, and live music almost every night of the week to guests, including presidents, throughout its history. The hotel is elegant while still being welcoming and approachable. With Texas-based architecture firm Clayton Korte leading the design for the new suites, this marks the first renovation of the hotel’s rooms since 1998.
“Throughout history, The Driskill has been a legendary landmark in Texas hospitality,” said Chris Collins, general manager of The Driskill. “We’re excited to invite Texans and visitors alike into the newly updated suites, which have been modernized for maximum comfort but still maintain the same historic charm with their own personality.”
Originally imagined and built by Colonel Jesse Driskill, a cattle baron, established businessman, and civic leader, The Driskill was conceptualized to be a grand hotel and showpiece for the once frontier town of Austin, meant to rival other big cities. The original cost is estimated at $400,000, the equivalent of $92 million in 2021. In 2013, the historic hotel was acquired as a part of the Unbound Collection by Hyatt with planned investments of $8 million in upgrades.
The full renovation of the 14 guest suites at The Driskill reinvigorates the spaces, adding to the character while maintaining references to the property’s rich 135-year history. In conjunction with interior designers at Rottet Studio, architecture firm Clayton Korte altered the existing materials and fixture palette to bring forward the spaces and uncover architectural details that bring forth the personality of each space. In addition, redesigned bathroom layouts, fixtures, and finishes enhance guests’ experiences as they relax.
“We are honored to continue working at The Driskill with the Hyatt Unbound team and Rottet Studios,” said George Wilcox, AIA, associate partner. “We believe that our design involvement at this Austin icon should always be tempered with respect for the history of the hotel, with an eye towards keeping it as a relevant and current part of Austin’s ever-changing hospitality landscape.”
The renovation also served to accentuate the personalities of each of the 14 suites. While being careful to repurpose existing artwork and historic paintings, the focus was to elevate each room’s characteristics while providing more functionality for each space. A redesign of the original floor plan of each suite ensured a boutique hotel experience.
The Driskill has long been known for guestroom amenities such as stained-glass bathrooms and balcony views of the city’s fine dining and music venues. Some of The Driskill’s most popular suites are now upgraded for a better experience. Standing at 1,200 square feet, amenities of the newly renovated Cattle Baron suite, for example, include a clawfoot soaking tub, walk-in shower, a living and dining area with a private wet bar, and a separate bedroom with two matching queen beds, vanity area, and closet space. Other features for hotel guests include access to a collection of artwork throughout the hotel, pet-friendly accommodations, Texas comfort food, a coffee bar, and fresh pastries at 1886 Café & Bakery, and the famous Driskill bar.
Plans for the future hotel upgrades include a full guestroom renovation to all 175 rooms, which will begin in September 2022. Other hotel spaces and additional outlets, including The Driskill Bar, will also be refinished.