by Lissa Poirot
What may be overlooked as a business hotel for its convenient yet stoic stand 14 stories above two main interstates and six miles from the airport, the Omni Austin Hotel Southpark strives to welcome families — and succeeds. More than 300 elegantly European-style rooms are available, including a fantastic kids suite bursting in color and creating a space entirely for kids. A large indoor/outdoor pool and family-friendly activities, particularly during summer months, makes the Omni a perfect home away from home while visiting Austin, Texas.
The capital of Texas, located between San Antonio and Dallas, Austin is an eclectic mix of history and art — it’s Sixth Street Entertainment District where live music pours onto the streets nightly, leads right up to the imposing Capitol building. The three-story, interactive Bob Bullock Texas State History Museum, the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center botanical garden, the Lyndon Baines Johnson Presidential Library and Museum (the country’s most-visited presidential library), and seven man-made lakes providing water sports and hiking and biking trails make Austin a wonderful weekend getaway spot. Don’t miss the thousands of migrating bats that live beneath Congress Bridge and emerge at sunset for a unique and impressive display. (Catch the show from the riverbank parks, on a sunset river cruise, or from the restaurants overlooking the bridge.)
The Omni’s central location brings families close to all the fun, but its offerings also make it a place to spend some time. This isn’t just a place to drop your bags and run; enjoy the pool, watch a family flick, play croquet and relax.
Our Editor Loves
- Kids' suite with child-friendly decor and games
- Indoor/outdoor pool and play area
- Convenient location
- Children Programs
- Kids' Theme Meals
- Onsite Dining
Find the Best Price for Your Stay
There are 312 guestrooms and suites at Omni Austin Hotel Southpark. Rooms feature mini bars, coffee makers, flat-screen TV and free Wi-Fi for hotel rewards members.
Of all the rooms, be sure to book the Kids' Sensory Suite. The suite upgrade provides parents with their own room with king-sized bed and sitting area connected directly to a just-for-kids room with twin beds, bean bag chairs, DVD player and kids' movies, books and games, a small coloring table, and a colorful, kid-friendly decor including a fish-themed bathroom. Two one-bedroom suites are also available.
The hotel's other 300+ rooms, decorated in oversized European-style furnishings, range in size from the 260-foot Deluxe Double to a 340-foot Parlor Suite.
Pleasant stay for business, Pete's coffee shop has really good coffee. Facilities are extremely clean. A little loud on the freeway side, but close the curtains and not an issue. Easy to get in and out of hotel and onto freeway.
This hotel is in dire, dire need of refurbishment. The rooms looked over 30 years old with heavy dark carpets, overly ornate art and lighting and a very dank feel. Our bathroom tiling had holes from previous fixtures, and just looked decrepit. All the staff we interacted with very friendly and professional which was only reason I did not give this hotel poor rating. Now this hotel was 1/2 the price of ones closer to downtown Austin.
For little ones staying at an Omni Hotel, a backpack filled with games and goodies is presented upon check-in. Kids may find flashlights, books, toys and candy inside their packs, providing entertainment and giving adults a chance to unpack and settle in before heading to the pool.
The indoor/outdoor pool has the kids swimming under the sun and a bridge or swim into the indoor pool area, where there is also a whirlpool. Little ones may prefer the indoor section more, where the depth makes it easy for new swimmers to jump and splash.
At the Austin Southpark, summers are "Sensational" for kids with Saturday afternoon poolside activities, including face painting, arts and crafts, water games and more from 1 to 4 p.m. Family-friendly movies are shown at the hotel's amphitheater every Saturday night at 7 and 9 p.m. with free popcorn and lemonade served.
Recreation and Sports
If you're not visiting on a Saturday, have no fear, the hotel has family activities available year-round including a croquet set, basketball court, tetherball and a sand box.
Onion Creek Grille
The Omni's main dining room is the Onion Creek Grille, a casual, southwestern-style restaurant serving breakfast, lunch and dinner daily. A grand breakfast buffet provides an array of pastries, cereals, eggs and traditional buffet samplings, as well as made-to-order Belgian waffles and omelets. At lunch, select from the extensive menu or enjoy the Pasta Extravaganza buffet's four pasta types and sauces. At dinner, steaks, seafood and southwestern dishes are the highlights. A kids menu is also available.
If in a hurry to visit Austin in the morning, pop into the Lobby Lounge for a quick continental breakfast. The lounge is open from 6:30 until 10 a.m., and again for drinks in the evenings from 4:30 p.m. through midnight.
Morsel's Coffee Shop
This gourmet coffee shop offers an assortment of snacks, coffee and tea. Light breakfast and lunch are also available.
Planning & Tips
All About the Extras
The hotel's Omni Kids program provides nice touches like providing outlet covers in the rooms and presenting the kids with a special kids' cup that allows for unlimited drink refills during their stay.
Get Fit Kits are available for in-room fitness programs. The kits include a floor mat, two dumbbells, portable radio with earphones, stretch bands and an exercise booklet with suggested workouts, all complimentary and checked out at the front desk. For an even more intense workout, portable treadmills, sports drinks and energy bars can be delivered to the room (reserve the treadmill in advance, as it is subject to availability). A fitness center is also located onsite featuring weight training, free weights, treadmills, cycles and ellipticals, as well as a sauna and whirlpool.
The Art of Smart Timing
Summers in Texas can be quite hot, with temperatures climbing into the 90s. In the winter, temperatures are more comfortable -- highs into the 60s even in its coolest months. Austin's most unique attraction, the nightly emergence of the thousands of bats living beneath a bridge, will be missed during the winter months, as the bats as migratory. They typically return to Austin in the spring and are at their best in the late summer and early fall.
The Omni is 10 minutes from the Austin-Bergstrom International Airport, and complimentary shuttle service is available upon request. The hotel is nestled between I-35 and Highway 71, and is an easy drive from Dallas or San Antonio, at just under three hours drive from either.
The Super Shuttle Austin provides airport transportation, as well as destination transportation. However, Austin is a large city -- it is the capital of Texas, after all -- and a car is the best way to maneuver the city.
For Mom and Dad
The Onion Creek Golf Club -- the birthplace of the Senior PGA Tour -- and the Jimmy Clay Premier Golf Course are both located near the Omni, each featuring 18 holes of championship golf.