Culture / Travel

The Thompson’s Third Texas Offering Introduces Two Hotels in One — Exploring the Thompson and tommie Austin

Wonderful Restaurants, an Impressive Wellness Center, and More Perks That Make This Unique Downtown Concept Stand Out

BY // 06.09.22

In the summer of 2022, we paid a visit to the newly opened Thompson Austin, the hotel brand’s third foray into Texas (following Dallas and San Antonio) and the first to introduce a two-hotels-in-one concept with the addition of tommie. 

Tucked right between 5th and 6th Streets, the new Thompson Austin hotel opened this past January in the heart of the city’s downtown. The mixed-use build (designed by bKL Architecture) is a sleek addition to downtown Austin’s skyline, featuring 212 luxurious guestrooms and suites designed by KTGY Simeone Deary Design Group, along with 17 residences, a 6,700-square-foot wellness center, a rooftop pool deck, two restaurants, and private event space.

And though this is the third Texas offering from the Thompson brand, there is one major distinction: the addition of tommie.

Los Angeles may be home to the first tommie, a boutique hotel offshoot of the Thompson brand geared at younger travelers, but Austin is the first instance of a combined Thompson and tommie experience.

Note: We spent our weekend at the Thompson Austin, so we’ll have a little more detail about that side of the unique hotel.

 

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The new Austin property features the Thompson and tommie — two separate hotels in one. (Photo by Al Argueta)

At a Glance: The Thompson versus tommie

With entrances right next to one another on San Jacinto Boulevard, the Thompson Austin and tommie Austin blend together until you head to your room. The two share hotel amenities, like the state-of-the-art gym and the rooftop pool and gardens, as well as the four dining options.

The idea of tommie was to create a more casual experience for a traveler who doesn’t spend as much time in their room but could still access the more luxurious aspects the Thompson offers. The slightly less expensive guestrooms are smaller in size but still offer a cool, minimalist design by Venice-based Studio Collective.

 

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The Thompson Austin guestrooms were designed by KTGY Simeone Deary Design Group. (Photo by Chase Daniel)

The Thompson Austin Guestrooms

Luxury meets hipster at the new Thompson Austin, especially when it comes to the guest room design. A few focal points in the King City View room include dark green leather headboards, concrete ceilings, and views that double as works of art. Our room faced directly out towards 6th Street with the historic Driskell hotel perfectly in view. I was a little worried when I saw that complimentary ear plugs were provided with a note about the infamously noisy street, but we didn’t hear a thing all night.

 

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Thompson guestroom bathrooms include D.S. & DURGA amenities. (Photo by Chase Daniel)

The Little Things

Slick hotel bathrooms feature black toilets, black-and-white speckled tile, gold accents, and D.S. & DURGA products (including the Thompson Hotel’s signature brand scent). Each room comes stocked with a couple of cozy, hoodie robes and slippers to borrow as well.

Rooms also include Nespresso coffee makers and a bar stocked with Texas-sourced snacks and Tito’s (of course).

 

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Thompson Austin has a rooftop pool on the 4th floor, which includes Wax Myrtle’s bar and restaurant. (Photo by Al Argueta)

The Rooftop Pool

Situated on the fourth floor, the rooftop pool deck at Thompson Austin is stunning. It includes Wax Myrtle’s Club, where you can easily grab bites or a cocktail to sip by the pool. There are several lounge chairs (first-come, first-serve) but you can also reserve a cabana.

 

The Fitness Center

The 6,700-square-foot wellness center includes treadmills, ellipticals, climbers, Peloton bikes, a weightlifting area, a squat rack, and so much more. There are also private rooms that can be used for TRX training and HIIT workouts, a spin class room, yoga and dance class room, and sports simulator room. What else could you need?

 

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The Hide-A-Way Cheeseburger is a must-try at Wax Myrtle’s.

Dining at Thompson Austin

Wax Myrtle’s

My favorite part of our stay was a dinner at Wax Myrtle’s. The Mediterranean restaurant just came out with a new menu and it’s exceptional. First, start with the heirloom tomato burrata and warm truffled feta. The feta is topped with pistachios giving it a creamy and crunchy balance. Next, don’t miss the sweet potato fries, they’re not the usual. These are thin wedges of sweet potato with jalapeno yogurt, barbecue oil, za’atar, and cilantro. And lastly, whether sharing or not, the Hide-A-Way Cheeseburger is perfect for either. It’s wagyu beef topped with melted white cheese, pickles, Golden sauce, and chopped red onion.

As for cocktails, you can’t go wrong with BDAY — a mezcal-based drink with Cappelletti, Strega, lime, grapefruit soda, and a Gentian aperitif. Or if you’re more of a whiskey lover, the Day Trip is a strawberry sweet favorite.

 

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Diner Bar at Thompson Austin serves upscale Southern food like chicken fried quail. (Photo by Jasmin Porter)

Diner Bar

Founded by John O. Morisano and James Beard Award-winning chef Mashama Bailey (Savannah’s The Grey), this Southern fine dining restaurant at Thompson Austin is led by chef de cuisine Kristine Kittrell. Located on the ground floor of the hotel, Diner Bar is the sister restaurant of The Grey.

Make sure to start with the Eleven Twenty-Five cocktail. It’s a white rum-based drink with cognac, cinnamon, and lime. For appetizers, don’t miss the foie and grits — duck liver sits atop a plate of grits, served with strawberry mostarda and onion gravy, offering a perfect mix of sweet and salty. The lamb crepinette is another favorite with mashed potatoes and brasied greens. The menu also offers fresh oysters and a chicken fried quail that looked delicious.

 

The Grey Market

Around the corner from Diner Bar, The Grey Market (also founded by Morisano and chef Bailey) features grab-and-go bites and an all day menu of Southern favorites. If you’re dining in, you can expect breakfast dishes, The Grey Market burger, fried chicken sandwiches, salads, soups, and more. A few ready-to-go sandwiches, salads, and spreads (pimento cheese, whipped ricotta, hummus) are also available to purchase and bring to your room or office. Local draft beer and wine are also available.

 

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The Thompson Austin also includes a West Texas-inspired ground-floor coffee shop and wine bar. (Photo by Chase Daniel)

The Coffee Bar at tommie

In the need of a quick caffeine fix or a good place to hang out? The hotel also houses an all-day coffee shop and bar designed to evoke the warmth of West Texas. The menu features coffee from Dripping Springs’ Greater Goods Coffee Co. There’s a communal table, bar seating, and spots by the fireplace to chill or work while sipping a latte or local craft beer.

In addition to all of these perks inside of the hotel, Thompson is in walking distance of so many Austin favorites. The Paramount Theatre, Antone’s Nightclub, and of course, 6th Street are all a short walk away. Also, don’t forget to grab a donut from Voodoo Doughnut any time of day.

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