The ARRIVE Hotel East Austin is a 77,000 sf complex comprising eighty-three rooms and a multi-use podium housing two restaurants, three bars, a coffee shop and leasable street-side retail space. By intention, the project seeks to question traditional hotel tropes: the grand entry… the hotel restaurant… the lobby. While it is an ambitious structure, the owners sought to minimize the prominence of the hotel identity itself, creating something that is not so much a hotel with supporting amenities beneath than a collection of signature food and beverage establishments that happen to have hotel rooms above.
The ideas behind the design of the hotel are simultaneously eye-grabbing and self-effacing. It is a signature structure to be sure, but it allows the street-level restaurants to claim the identity of the establishment for passers-by. The façade of the concrete and masonry structure is dynamic and undulating response to one of the more form-directive requirements of East Sixth’s street-side guidelines. Likewise, we used the cantilevering building itself (rather than the ubiquitous tacked-on awnings) to create code required covered sidewalks.On a material level – specifically the masonry infilled concrete structure – Baldridge looked to existing warehouse structures in East Austin, most notably the adjacent building housing the Texas Society of Architects.
The hotel opens at a time of rapid change in East Austin, but there was a community ethos at play in its design. It is an admittedly large structure — although not out of keeping with the transit oriented sixth street development — but it is to ARRIVE’s credit that it requested a building that favored public elements first, hotel second; and a building that drew its inspirations from the neighborhood. Perhaps most striking in this regard is Lefty’s Brick Bar, an open-air outdoor restaurant and beer garden located within the remains of a pre-existing masonry structure now physically attached to the principal hotel.
The built result is a testament to Baldridge’s and ARRIVE’s belief in context and community, comprising the work of local designers, consultants, artisans and construction professionals.
For more about the ARRIVE Hotel Group, you should go to its website. More photos coming soon!