PHOTO: InterContinental Stephen F. Austin

Fodor's Expert Review InterContinental Stephen F. Austin Hotel

701 Congress Ave., Austin, Texas, 78701, United States, Austin, Texas, USA See on Map

Lauren Modery

Locally known as the “Stephen F.,” this 1924 hotel underwent a multimillion-dollar renovation in 2013, which modernized guestrooms, while retaining the landmark’s historic charms. The location still can’t be beat: smack in the middle of Congress Avenue, next door to the Paramount Theater, one block from Sixth Street and four blocks from the Capitol. Rooms, underscored by rich reds and hardwoods, feature understated Texas homages, like Lone Star emblems and cow skin, throw pillows—all in all a bit bland apart from the stately bathrooms with marble vanities. Unwind at the hotel bar’s popular terrace, overlooking Congress Avenue and the Capitol. Roaring Fork, the in-house restaurant, specializes in wood-fired steaks and upscale American fare.

Photo: InterContinental Stephen F. Austin


Though the style might be a tad out of fashion—the wallpaper and rugs can be a wee bit royal—each of the hotel’s 189 rooms feature lavishly comfortable beds and grand views of downtown.

The hotel offers babysitting services.

Photo: InterContinental Stephen F. Austin


Large and relaxing with marble countertops, gold fixtures and warm lighting.

Photo: InterContinental Stephen F. Austin


Regal perfectly sums up the entranceway. Guests are not only greeted by friendly and welcoming staff, but also by a grand staircase straight out of Gone with the Wind.

Photo: InterContinental Stephen F. Austin


Art Deco-inspired Health Club featuring a lap pool and Jacuzzi.


Stephen F’s bar is located on the second story and offers a view of downtown from the outdoor terrace. Sip on an Old Fashioned or champagne cocktail or eat on of the bar’s delicious steaks or burgers in the deep red, scholarly room.

YOU SHOULD KNOW During local events such as SXSW this hotel is in the middle of it all, and it’s not uncommon to spot a visiting celebrity or two.


Getting Around

Located smack dab in the middle of Downtown Austin, it’s easy for guests to walk or snag a pedicab. On foot is the best way to experience the sights and sounds of this historical area.


Ever think of trying rattlesnake? Well now is your chance at steakhouse Lonesome Dove (5-minute walk). Though the prices are steep, guests rave about Chef Tim Love’s wild game and steak dishes. A touch of class in the middle of bar-riddled Sixth Street, Parkside (4-minute walk) is known for wide selection of oysters and delectable New York strip. This place can be expensive, so locals enjoy its generous happy hour with discounted burgers, ceviche, and cocktails.


Step back into Soviet Russia at the Russian House (6-minute walk). Try any one of their 100+ infused vodkas such as cigar or lavender. You’ll have to make a reservation to a secure a spot at the small and exclusive Midnight Cowboy (4-minute walk). This former massage parlor is now home to some of Austin’s finest cocktails.


The InterContinental Stephen F. Austin may not be as hip as some of its Downtown Austin contemporaries, but the hotel delivers. You’ll be hard-pressed to find a guest who didn’t enjoy their stay, whether it’s because of the comfortable and luxurious accommodations, friendly staff or excellent central location.


Casual Chic


Phones: 512-457–8800;888-424–6835

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