Gay Men News

Bringing the Best in LGBTQ to you

Gay Austin Guide: Where To Eat, Play, And Stay

Gay Austin Guide: Where To Eat, Play, And Stay image
Posted by Joseph on October 1, 2015

Austin isn’t just liberal by Texas standards – it’s one of the nation’s most progressive cities, as well as a luminary in live music venues, cutting-edge restaurants and bars, indie retail, and outdoor recreation. It’s routinely cited as one of the coolest and most livable cities in the country, and it’s steadily developed into a highly popular gay and lesbian destination, especially during key arts and cultural events, like South by Southwest in mid-March, Gay Pride in early September, Austin City Limits Music Festival in early October, and the Austin Film Festival in late October. The city makes for a great visit year-round, though, as even during the hot summer months, you’ll find plenty of great ways to cool off, from swimming at Barton Springs to boating and sunbathing at clothing-optional Hippie Hollow park, on Lake Travis.

The Lone Star State’s capital city, Austin continues to soar in population – it’s grown from about 470,000 to 820,000 since 1990, to become the nation’s 13th largest city. There’s a sizable and very visible gay scene, and many businesses around town are LGBT-owned, although the community is very well-integrated within Austin’s as a whole – there’s no specific gay neighborhood, and at many of the city’s top nightspots and restaurants you’ll encounter a decidedly mixed crowd. Austin may also have more lesbian-owned accommodations than any city in the country, including hip, design-driven boutique properties like the Hotel San Jose and the Kimber Modern. 
Here’s a look at some of Austin’s favorite LGBT hot spots for eating, drinking, and accommodations.

The locavore food movement thrives in Austin. Many leading farm-to-table restaurants are in the trendy South Congress (SoCo) and South Lamar neighborhoods, a short drive across the river from downtown, and just across I-35 from downtown in steadily gentrifying East Austin – these areas also abound with cool food trucks. In South Lamar, you’ll find the stellar gastropub Barley Swine (, a bustling if cramped space serving first-rate food and hard-to-find beers and wines. Recent dishes have included a chicken-fried chicken egg, and duck foie gras with carrot, lavender, farro, and hibiscus. If there’s a wait for a table, step next door to Henri’s (, a dapper little spot serving artisan cheeses, charcuterie, and wine.

South Congress Café ( has been one of SoCo’s hot spots for years, turning out delicious contemporary Texan cuisine, like mesquite-grilled pork chops and – at brunch – carrot cake French toast with cream cheese-pecan syrup. Owned by talented gay restaurateur Lou Lambert, the Elizabeth Street Café ( serves creative Vietnamese food, including hearty noodle bowls and Texas-inspired kaffir-lime fried chicken bahn mi sandwiches.  Owned by the same team is Lambert’s (, a sleek downtown space that describes its fare as “fancy” barbecue (think cold-smoked quail and oak-grilled Colorado lamb T-bones). For more authentic Texas barbecue, prepare to stand in line for a seat at Franklin Barbecue (, which is justly famous for its tender brisket and smoked sausage.

Across from two gay bars in the Warehouse District, Peche ( is a romantic, cozy place with exposed-brick walls and high ceiling, serving pre-Prohibition-style cocktails and fine American and Continental fare. Nearby, Frank ( is a good bet for cold beer and hot sausages, with the “Jackalope” (antelope, rabbit, and pork sausage with cranberry compote, sriracha aioli, and cheddar) a signature specialty. A few blocks away, head to stylish and contemporary La Condesa ( for artfully plated food inspired by Mexican street vendors, including ceviche, carnitas taquitos, and carne asada. Return to South Lamar to campy Maria’s Taco Xpress ( for cheap and tasty Tex-Mex fare, from al pastor tacos to gorditas.

You might want to break up your exploring with a stop for sweets – a longtime favorite for its rich, creatively flavored ice creams (bacon-jalapeno popper, banana pudding, Mexican vanilla) is Amy’s (, which has locations in several fun neighborhoods, including South Congress, downtown’s Old West, and the UT district. Newer in town and receiving lots of attention for its superb artisan ice cream, gay-owned Lick ( serves such delightfully daring flavors as roasted-beets-and-fresh-mint, and goat cheese-thyme-honey.

Coffeehouses also have a major presence in Austin. The cafe inside the famous and LGBT-popular Book People ( bookstore is always a good bet. South Austin’s Bouldin Creek Café ( has delicious fair-trade coffee and chocolates, plus excellent breakfasts (try the migas) and veggie tacos. And in East Austin, Texas Coffee Traders ( is one of the city’s most respected artisan roasters.

In downtown Austin, the Warehouse District has long been a favorite hub of gay nightlife – it’s home to long-running Oilcan Harry’s, an always-packed stand-and-model bar that attracts a hot collegiate crowd and has a spacious back patio. Next door, Rain on 4th ( has a lovely deck out back, a cozy billiards bar up front, and a mid-size dance bar in the middle, and a couple of doors down, newcomer Posh ( restaurant and bar is rapidly become a popular option in the neighborhood. For a somewhat mellower scene, head across the street to stylish Halcyon (, a gay-friendly hangout serving everything from espresso drinks to cocktails, plus tasty food. 
On the east side of downtown, Rusty’s ( is an inviting, mixed guys/lesbians venue with live music, often of the country-western bent – there’s also a fun Latin party on Sunday evenings. Nearby Lipstick 24 ( is the city’s top lesbian venue, although everybody is quite welcome here – head for the attractive deck on warm evenings, and enjoy the live entertainment, which ranges from local bands to poetry readings to belly dancing. A few miles north of downtown, ‘Bout Time II ( is a welcoming neighborhood bar in a relatively new and roomy space that has karaoke, dancing, and great drink specials.
On the west side of downtown, the Iron Bear ( is – you guessed it – a hot spot for bears, otters, and the like – it’s an attractive space with cool bartenders and a no-attitude vibe. Also popular with the leather-bear set is Chain Drive, a rough-and-tumble bar that’s been thriving on the edge of a sleepy downtown-adjacent neighborhood for years. This area, particularly its main drag Rainey Street, has suddenly become a hot destination for drinking and dining, with a passel of cool, hipster lounges and restaurants set inside converted Arts and Crafts bungalows. Favorites include Javelina Bar ( for delicious bar food (green-chile pork fries, miga burgers), and Blackheart Bar ( for live music and a great selection of bourbon and whiskey.
Some downtown clubs have gay nights, including Barbarella (, which hosts a very fun TuezGayz party each week, and the Warehouse District’s Republic Live (, which often has gay parties and events. And then there’s the slew of noteworthy mixed hangouts, including (to name a few) Gibson ( on South Lamar, the sleekly decorated Hangar Lounge ( in downtown gay-popular Warehouse District, quirky Cheer Up Charlies ( in East Austin, and Spider House (, a funky bar and coffee lounge near UT campus.

In the heart of downtown, the wonderfully glamorous, significantly historic, and allegedly haunted Driskill Hotel ( is where dignitaries and celebrities often stay when in town. This gorgeously restored 1886 building with fine artwork lining the hallways has warmly furnished rooms, the acclaimed Driskill Grill restaurant, and an inviting bar that serves great cocktails and tasty snacks like truffled popcorn and house-baked soft-pretzel sticks. Other great options downtown include the swish W Austin (, with its striking, contemporary rooms and see-and-be-seen bar and restaurant; and the 31-story Hilton Austin (, a great option for convenience to 6th Street music clubs and Rainey Street lounges and restaurants.

Across the river, you’ll find another excellent lodging base in retro-trendy SoCo, home to the bargain-priced Austin Motel ( – rooms at this quirky slice of ’50s-style Americana have simple but comfortable furniture, and some have kitchenettes. A few blocks away, and owned by the trendsetting, lesbian designer Liz Lambert (sister of gay restaurateur Lou Lambert), the Hotel San Jose ( is another vintage motor court, but it’s been given a swanky postmodern, minimalist makeover – the spacious courtyard suites are especially posh. Lambert also owns the stylish Hotel Saint Cecilia (, which is nearby but on a quieter residential street. In the same area, partners Kimber Cavendish and Vicki Faust run the Kimber Modern (, a dramatic boutique hotel whose high-tech, minimalist rooms have such notable features as plush platform beds and sleek yet warm furnishings.

Austin has a handful of lesbian-owned B&Bs, each with its own charm. In SoCo, the Park Lane Guest House ( is a peaceful, eco-minded hideaway comprising three spacious cottages as well as a more affordable room in the main house. Not far from here, Gateway Guesthouse ( is a striking 1918 beauty with six smartly furnished rooms or cottages; co-owner Bess Giannakakris – a talented chef – prepares delicious breakfasts and teaches cooking classes at the inn. And in leafy Old West Austin, the Brava House ( is an elegant 1880s Victorian within walking distance of downtown and a number of great restaurants.

For a relaxing yet potentially invigorating experience out by Lake Travis (near Hippie Hollow’s popular gay beach), book a weekend at Travaasa Austin (, an “experiential resort” where you can go on hikes or horseback adventures, take archery or yoga classes, enjoy a massage in the serene spa, take cooking or mixology lessons, or simply chill out for a few days in this rural setting that’s just 20 miles northwest of downtown. The property comprises several clusters of buildings with upscale rooms, plus a terrific restaurant – Jean’s Kitchen – that focuses on locally sourced cuisine as well as craft beers, wines, and spirits from the Austin and Hill Country region.

Have you found the right one, or are you still searching?

Join a gay dating site where you can meet single guys from any town or city. Rely instead on Gay Dating Solutions to do the work for you!

Don’t get fooled by FREE offers made by other sites. Gay Dating Solutions is offering a free 6 month promotion ABSOLUTELY no strings, request for credit card numbers, etc…it is the only site that is truly free to join!

Like us on Facebook:

Tags: #BigBankChallenge #BohemianKissChallenge #EqualityActJapan #StopAsianHate 12 Dates of Christmas 2020 Olympics Aaron Schock Adam Castillejo Adam Rippon addiction ageism Aging AhTave AIDS Aime Wichtendal Alaska Alex Morse Almost Love America's Next Top Model American Medical Association Amy Coney Barrett Annise Parker Antes Que El Mundo Se Acabe Anti-Asian Violence Anti-LGBTQ ANTM anxiety Aptima HIV-1 Arizona Armie Hammer astrology At-home date Atlanta Atlanta Black Pride Atlanta GA Atlanta Nightlife Atlanta Pride Atlanta Pride Run Atlanta’s Queer History Bicycle Tour Austin Swink Austin Texas Austin TX Backpacks for the Street Basel Abou Hamrah BFI Flare Bisexual BLACK GAY MEN Black LGBTQ Atlanta Black Lives Matter Black Love Bohemian Rhapsody Boston Boston MA Boston Nightlife Brian Sims Broadway bully Bullying California Call Me By Your Name Canada Capital Pride Capitalism Cason Crane Celebrity News censorship Chemistry Chemsex Chicago Chicago IL Chris Evans Christian proselytizing Christianity Christmas Christmas commercial Christmas movie Christmas Movies Chucky Circus of Books civil unions Cody McCook Colorado Comedy coming out commentary compatibility Confidence Congress conspiracy theory Conversion therapy CoronaVirus Court Vox COVID COVID-19 Covid-19 vaccine Cubbyhole NYC daddy Dallas Dallas Gay Bars Dallas Gayborhood Dallas Texas Danica Roem Daniel Harding Daniel Howell Date night dating dating advice Dating Apps Dating Red Flags dating rut dating tips DC Pride Dead to Me Denver Depression discrimination Disney Documentary Dolf Pasker Dolly Parton Domestic Violence Donald Trump Donna Price Drag Race drag racing Dustin Lance Black election Election 2020 Election Day Elite Employment Entertainment Entertainment news epidemic Fabio Fasoli Family family gatherings Film Finding True Love First Date First Date Etiquette first date ideas first date tips Flirting Tips Flirty Dancing Florida Fort Lauderdale Franklin Graham Freddie Mercury Garrett Clayton gay gay asian gay asian men Gay Atlanta Gay Austin Gay Bars NYC Gay beaches Gay Boston Gay Boston Nightlife Gay Chicago Gay Christmas Gay Couple Gay Couples Gay Culture Gay Dallas Gay Dallas Nightlife gay dating gay dating advice gay dating app gay dating apps Gay Dating Red Flags Gay Dating Solutions Gay Dating Tips Gay DC gay discrimination gay film Gay Florida Gay Fort Lauderdale Gay Health Gay Holiday Movie Gay Houston gay kiss Gay Love Advice gay marriage gay marriage proposal gay men Gay Miami gay midlife Gay Mountaineer Gay Movies Gay New York Gay nightlife Gay Nurse Gay NYC Gay Panic Gay Pride gay relationship advice gay relationship tips gay relationships Gay Santa Gay Scene gay seniors gay sex gay singles Gay Soldier Gay Travel Gay Twitter Gay Washington DC Gay Wedding gay weddings Gay Widower Gays Over COVID gaysian Gen Z Generation Z Georgia Gert Kasteel Ghosting GLAAD GOP Gorsuch Greater Houston LGBTQ Chamber of Commerce grindr Guy Vandenberg Gym Gays Haaz Sleiman Hallmark Halloween Hate Crime HBO Max Health HGVT HIV HIV prevention HIV stigma HIV treatment HIV vaccine HIV/AIDS hobbies Holi-date Holiday Film Holiday Movies Holidays Hollywood Holyoke Homophobia hooking up hookup hookup culture Hot Vax Summer House Hunters Houston Houston Texas Houston TX Hulu Ian Jordan Indya Moore Instagay Instagram intersex Intimacy Intimacy coach Iowa Iowa caucus isolation It's A Sin Jake Gyllenhaal James Bushe Japan Jaymes Vaughan Jayson Conner Jeffrey Newman Jennifer Tilly Jewish Jewish persecution Joe Biden Jonathan Bennett Josef Salvat Jussi-Pekka Kajaala Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg JVN Jwan Yosef Karamo Brown Kristine Stolakis Lady Gaga Lesbian lesbian couple Let It Snow LGBT LGBT Austin LGBT Travel Guide LGBT-Free Zones LGBTQ LGBTQ Asians LGBTQ Atlanta LGBTQ Austin LGBTQ Boston LGBTQ Chicago LGBTQ Dallas LGBTQ DC LGBTQ discrimination LGBTQ employees LGBTQ Family LGBTQ Film LGBTQ Film Festival LGBTQ Films LGBTQ flag LGBTQ Fort Lauderdale LGBTQ Health LGBTQ History LGBTQ Houston LGBTQ Miami LGBTQ movies LGBTQ New York LGBTQ nightlife LGBTQ NYC LGBTQ Pride LGBTQ retirees LGBTQ retirement LGBTQ Rights LGBTQ Seniors LGBTQ Victory Institute LGBTQ Youth Life Lifetime Lifetime TV Network Linda Warren lockdown London LGBTIQ+ Film Festival loneliness Love Victor Love Wins Luke Evans Male Nurse Malik Brown marriage equality marriage proposal Marsha P Johnson Marvel Marvin Cortes Massachusetts mature gay dating mental health Mexico Miami Miami Beach Miami Beach Pride Miami Florida Miami nightlife Michael Cashman Michael Henry Middle-aged gay men midlife Modern Family mormon Mr. Right Muscle gays music video My Gay Match NASCAR National Coming Out Day Nationwide Conversion Therapy Ban Neil Gorsuch Netflix Netflix Special Nevada New Year's Resolution New York New York City Nonbinary North Dakota Northern Ute tribe Norway Nurse Appreciation Week NYC NYC Events NYC Pride NYC Pride 2021 Oak Lawn Obergefell v. Hodges older gay man Omander Omar Ayuso One True Pairing online dating online dating apps online dating tips online gay dating Online trolls Open Relationship Operation Hyacinth OTP Outfest Outfest LA 2021 Outfest Los Angeles Pan-African Pride pandemic Paper Moons Pat Robertson Pennsylvania Perez Hilton personality Personality Matching personality type Pete Buttigieg Pink Capitalism Poland Politics polyamorous polyamorous relationship polyamorous relationships Pope Francis Pose power bottom Pray Away PrEP pride Pride 2021 Pride Afrique Pride Flag Pride Month Prince Harry profile pic Puerto Vallarta quarantine Queer eye Queer Film Queer Films Queer Holiday Movies Queer Lawmakers Queer Love Story Queer Santa Queer Youth racism Rafa Olarra Rainbow Wave red flags Reddit Relationship relationship advice Relationship Tips relationships religion Rep. Andy Biggs Republican retirement Ricky Martin rom-com Romantic Comedy Ryan Murphy Ryan O’Connell Samaritan’s Purse same sex marriage Same Sex Relationships Same Sex Wedding Same-Sex Couples Same-Sex Kiss same-sex marriage same-sex marriage ban Santa Claus Schitt’s Creek Score Miami Score Nightclub Scott Evans Scott Wiener Section 28 self isolation self-care Senior Gay Dating Senior Gay Men senior gays Senior Prom Seven Summits sex Sex and Intimacy Sex Education sex life sexual identity sexual preference sexual racism sexuality short film Shy Gay Guys Single All the Way single gay man Single Gay Men Single Gays Single Young Gays social distancing social isolation social media Social Security Somerville South Florida sports Stonewall Stonewall Riots straight men Super Bowl ads Super Bowl commercials Super Bowl LIV Supreme Court Switzerland Syfy Syria Tan France Television Tennessee The Boys in the Band The Center on Colfax The Christmas Setup The Eternals The First The Thing About Harry Threesome throuple TikTok Tom Daley toxic gay relationship toxic masculinity toxic relationships Transgender Travel Travis Shumake true love Trump administration Turner Free TV series Tweets Twitter Unconditional Love United Methodist Church US economy US Supreme Court Valentine's day viral news viral video Virginia Washington DC Web Series Wedding When Harry met Santa Workplace workplace discrimination World AIDS Day World Pride Young Gay Guys young gay men Youth YouTube

Leave a reply

Related articles
image for Fox News VP Slams Olympics Team for ‘Darker, Gayer, Different’ Agenda
Fox News VP Slams Olympics Team for ‘Darker, Gayer, Different’ Agenda

And people are not happy Fox News executive vice president John Moody has slammed the US Olympics team for being ‘darker, gayer, different’. The executive editor at the conservative news channel has slammed the organizing committee for making the team more diverse. Reactions have slammed Moody for racism and homophobia.…

image for Download Gay Dating Solutions’ New Mobile Apps
Download Gay Dating Solutions’ New Mobile Apps

Without a doubt, gay dating in 2018 is an art form. If you’re a single gay man and looking for love, you know where the gay dating scene is. It’s online. But whether you’ve met 100 online dates or zero, it’s a tricky little business. There’s such a grand variety…

image for Single and Over 50: Is Online Gay Dating For You?
Single and Over 50: Is Online Gay Dating For You?

Are you over 50 and thinking about trying online gay dating? For those looking to start dating again over the age of 50 it can be a daunting prospect, especially if you’re a gay man. Separations from long-term relationships and the loss of loved ones can leave us feeling unsure…

image for What is The Best Gay Dating App for You?
What is The Best Gay Dating App for You?

There is no shortage of gay men to message and potentially meet up with online, as thousands of gay guys are hopping on and off different dating apps all the time. But what is the best gay dating app for you? At Gay Dating Solutions we pride ourselves on finding…

image for We Now Have Mobile Apps So You Can Use Gay Dating Solutions On The Go!
We Now Have Mobile Apps So You Can Use Gay Dating Solutions On The Go!

Love month is upon us!! Does your hectic work schedule prevent you from dating, but you still want to find your soul mate? Keep your love matches on the go and at your fingertips with Gay Dating Solutions‘ NEW mobile apps! Download today & feel free to share with your gay friends: 📱