Our summer road trip extravaganza took us to Austin where we overnighted at the Sheraton at the Capital. Three things attracted us to the property: location, location, location. As in, there were three things we really wanted to see in Austin and this hotel was close to all of them. Plus, being just off of the freeway, it’s extremely easy to find and get to. I’ve read some reviews complaining about the location being in a less than ideal part of town, but honestly, we found no issues. The world famous 6th Street, only six blocks away, and the surrounding area is a business district. There are hotels closer to 6th Street, but the Capital complex and University of Texas are almost literally across the street from the Sheraton, making the hotel very central.
Coming in on a Sunday, we were greeted by a large but nearly empty lobby. The space was clean and uncluttered with an understated decor. A lobby bar stood empty between the entry and the front desk, with a large communal work table on one side, overlooking the downstairs work area, Link@Sheraton and restaurant. We took advantage of both the bar and table that evening to get some work done on the free Wi-Fi.
Check in was fast and simple. The desk staff seemed well versed on the hotel and surrounding area, and was able to offer good advice on walking distances, parking at the Capital, and local restaurants. Even better, they surprised me with vouchers for breakfast, which I didn’t realize (and am still not sure) was included in the rate. One problem: the two rooms we booked for the family were on separate floors. The agent apologized and explained that, because they were very full, she couldn’t get us adjoining rooms but did manage to get us on the same floor. Good enough for us but lesson learned: include room preferences when booking, not when checking in.
In almost no time, we were up in the rooms, refreshed and back downstairs; kids out at the pool, conveniently visible from that table by the bar, which is where the grown-ups settled down. Bar service was good and the bartender was excellent! He managed to whip us up lattes and decaf green tea all evening; much appreciated. Link@Sheraton, the PC-equipped work station was just below us; it seemed a little isolated but was in use most of the time. Another favorite space was the patio outside of the restaurant, also overlooking the pool. The weather was beautiful during our stay, so this was a great place to unwind.
The breakfast vouchers were for the buffet plus made-to-order eggs, though they also have a breakfast menu. The buffet was more than ample: scrambled eggs, bacon and sausage, potatoes, fruit, hot and cold cereals, fruit, yogurts, a variety of breads, muffins, and bagels with the works. The smoked salmon with capers was very good.
Our rooms were clean and comfortable, and overall in excellent condition though perhaps a bit dated. We were in an interior corner room that was large enough, but certainly not roomy. Perhaps that’s why we spent more time than usual in the public spaces which were more inviting and definitely spacious. Despite being located close to the elevators, the room was very quiet. The girls’ room, a double down the hall, seemed a bit larger, and was also pretty quiet though you could hear loud folks talking in the hallway.
Though short, we enjoyed this stop on our trip and would certainly stay at the Sheraton at the Capital again.
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