The Vibe: Retro cool plus the great outdoors.
The Area: South Congress
The DNA: The Bunkhouse Group first ground up built and largest hotel to date, Hotel Magdalena features four new, but distinct, buildings connected by exposed elevated walkways and courtyards, creating a treehouse feel inside the grounds. It is also the first mass timber boutique hotel in North America. Along the exterior corridor, chairs look out onto the grounds below, which are essentially one large rainwater garden: rain flows down the steep landscape toward a herb garden, a green stretch of lawn, and the pool—and ultimately into two giant underground cisterns, to sustainably water the greenery all year long. The lush grounds are planted with native Texas species including Bigtooth Maples, Redbuds, Meyer Lemon Trees, Yaupon Holly, and Little Gem Magnolia. There is a restaurant, pool bar and coffee service in the lobby. Rooms have well stocked minibars, and also have an in-room cocktail service upon request.
Suite-Me-Up: The uncluttered, calming rooms are limited to a single color – green, blue, red, or yellow. The hues brighten up alcove sinks, where custom-colored tiles from Kismet Tile match the room’s sculptural lamps from David Weeks and handmade pillows from Christian Rathbone. The design team collaborated with photographer Scott Newton to curate prints for the walls. Pulling from his archives, which celebrate the period when Willie Nelson owned the original buildings on the current site, they handpicked different works for every space.
Seen: archdaily, dezeen, The Spaces, WeHeart
Accolades: Condé Nast Traveller Hot List 2021
✅ free Wi-Fi • size matters: 89 rooms (29-65m2) (312-700 sq ft) • hotel opened: September 2020 • architecture: Lake | Flato • bathroom amenities: Sangre de Fruta • parking possible on-site (charged) • pets allowed • 24-hour front desk • wheelchair accessible