milk + honey
100 Guadalupe St. A, Downtown
If you’re in need of a wax, a quickie facial, a mani/pedi, or just about any self-care treatment you can think of, milk + honey is the spot. It’s ideal if you need to be in and out, but it’s also a solid option if you want to spend an afternoon with friends thanks to the serene lounge area, where you can hang out between treatments. If you’re after a one-and-done style pampering, go for the “Spa Partisan” that packs in a body polishing treatment followed by a steam under a canopy, and a 60-minute body butter massage. (It’s as good as it sounds.) Facials—which are anywhere from 60- to 120-minutes long—are completely bespoke. The estheticians take the time to talk to you about your goals, then create a treatment with decongesting ultrasonic therapies, gentle extractions, fruit acid peels, and powerful peptide treatments. End your experience by wandering through the smartly curated shop—we love to stock up on Osea’s clean skincare. They have three other locations throughout Austin, and one in Houston, but the 2nd Street District location is the flagship.
Raven + Lily
11601 Rock Rose Ave., Ste 110, Domain Northside
Entrepreneur Kirsten Dickerson brings her passion for working with female artisans to life with Raven + Lily, an ethical fashion and home label whose Austin flagship represents the handiwork of 1,500 women from around the globe. Inside, look for a light-as-air fringe caftan, handmade by women in Mexico, or blush soft leather earrings that are lovingly crafted in the foothills of the Himalayan Mountains. Each piece tells a story, and Dickerson's relationship with various female communities ensure that these women are able to practice their craft, provide for their families, and continue to live with dignity. The home assortment is particularly beautiful—we loved the black-and-white handwoven throw pillows, which are created on an upright loom in Oaxaca City, and the walnut wood bowls, hewn in partnership with M. Montague in Morocco. Photos: Courtesy of Raven + Lily
Travis Heights Bungalow
Travis Heights, Austin
While Austin has no shortage of great, quirky hotels (Hotel San Jose and Hotel Saint Cecilia being two of our favorites), there's something totally clutch about finding a great house you can spread out in, too, particularly if you're traveling with another couple or have littles in tow. Enter this lovingly restored 1920's bungalow that happens to belong to a friend of a goop staffer, conveniently located in Travis Heights, and an easy walk from the action on South Congress Avenue. There are two generously sized bedrooms, a modern, subway tile-lined bathroom with brass fixtures; plus, the light-filled sitting room is tastefully appointed with vintage furnishings and great for gathering. The fully-equipped kitchen is stocked a fresh loaf of Sourdough bread from a neighborhood bakery, organic Mill King milk for the Nespresso coffee machine, butter, eggs and even local honey. Don't miss spending a late afternoon unwinding in the backyard under the native oak trees.
2315 Lake Austin Boulevard, Clarksville
The latest eatery from local restauranteurs Larry McGuire and Tom Moorman (Josephine House, Elizabeth St. Cafe, and Clarks), Pool Burger combines beef and booze right by the historic Deep Eddy Pool. Peeler Farm's burgers and crispy crinkle fries are cooked up in a 1968 Airstream parked alongside the small, but very on-theme tiki bar (think: carved stools, Mai Tai's, and ample grasscloth). Aside from the classic beef, cheese, and bun combo, you'll find riffs like The Blue Hawaiian (griddled pineapple, bacon, blue cheese, guac) and the Deep End (Swiss, jalapenos, bacon) on the menu. Save the best for last and order their home-made soft serve with all the fixings.
Rae’s Reiki-focused practice, Blue Sky Healing, has its home base in Austin, Texas, but she also practices in New York and LA. In addition to her individualized healing sessions, Rae teaches master Reiki classes for those interested in learning themselves. (On this list, she’s trained Colleen McCann, as well as Santa Monica hair stylist/colorist, Andi Scarbrough, who incorporates body and energy work into her one-of-a-kind hair treatments.)
Maggie Louise Confections
1017 E. 6th St., East Caesar Chavez
While the bright colors of these candied confections immediately signal that the chocolates don't qualify as clean eating, there's a time and place for indulgent handmade chocolates like these: they're (almost) too pretty to eat and have cheeky a sense of humor, too.
4807 Airport Blvd., Hyde Park
Bullfight is a part of a string of spots that have popped up recently along Airport Boulevard making for an unlikely new restaurant row. Chef-owner Shawn Cirikel tackled Spanish cuisine with a pleasantly straightforward tapas menu, including tomato gazpacho, paella, and croquettes. The grilled branzino with cauliflower, eggplant, and pistachio is insanely good, too.
1400 S. Congress Ave., South Congress
Go to Perla's on South Congress for seafood and top-notch oysters. (It's run by chefs/restauranteurs Larry McGuire and Thomas Moorman and their Austin power group that's responsible for Lamberts, Clark's, and Josephine House, to name a few.) The inside of the restaurant is beautiful, but if you want to people watch while you're in Austin, sit outside here.
1209 E. 6th St., Austin
The food trucks of Austin deserve their own guide. Boteco is just one (really noteworthy) highlight. The yucca fries here get a lot of well-deserved praise, along with the empanadas and feijoada (a hearty Brazilian stew). Boteco catered the birthday party of Austin local Camila Alves, whose insider tips have helped us find many of Austin's other gems (e.g., the margarita at Hotel Saint Cecilia, the peanut butter dessert at Uchi, and the Zilker Park train ride).
1822 S. Congress Ave., South Congress
There is a lot of awesome Tex-Mex in Austin but most people would agree that you have to go to Torchy’s at least once every time you find yourself in Austin. (If you're only making one trip, make it in the morning for a breakfast burrito.) Torchy’s, which started as a taco trailer in 2006 in the Bouldin Creek food truck mecca, now has several regular locations in Austin (in addition to the still-operating trailer), plus dozens of others around Texas and in a couple of other states. Sure, this makes Torchy’s seem less special, and many of the locations look no more remarkable than your average fast food joint—but the food here says otherwise.
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