I travel a lot for business, and my hotel choices are typically dictated by the event I am attending. Last month I stayed at the Mandarin Oriental in Washington, DC, because it was a conference hotel. It was a fantastic place for vacation, although their business facilities were not what I wanted. Last night I stayed in the Omni Hotel in downtown Austin, Texas, and it was precisely the opposite- nothing like a luxury resort for vacation, but an excellent place for business travelers. This is particularly true if you have meetings in downtown Austin.
The Dine Drink Travel Youtube channel has a full video review of this hotel as I walked through it last night. Thoughts, however, which are more suitable to a text format:
- There are plenty of power plugs on the work desk. Win.
- The wifi is pretty reasonable. Since I am a Select Guest member (the Omni loyalty program), it is also only $4.95 for their premium access. Actually, this is why I am a Select Guest member.
- I have stayed here probably half a dozen times before, and last night and this morning were the first time I have eaten here. I ate in the bar last night, and my poblano soup and crab cakes were both very good. I met my sister who lives here in town, and she enjoyed the shrimp and avocado tostadas. The breakfast buffet this morning was also good.
- Free coffee in the room!
- They have my favorite vodka martini in the world. Be sure to ask for the Ultimate Martini they used to make which is no longer on their menu. Belvedere vodka, Lillet Blanc, and an orange twist. It is an excellent nightcap.
- I can walk a few blocks to my meeting, which is easily the best way to get around a new city.
- The pool on the top floor has lovely views of the city.
The converse is that there aren’t a lot of things I want on vacation- there is no spa, there aren’t on-property dining choices beyond the one restaurant, etc. However, for business meetings in Austin this is my go-to choice.