Austin Marriott Downtown Breaks Ground, Adds Director

A 31-story, full-service Marriott hotel began construction in downtown Austin, slated for completion by 2020. Combined with JW Marriott Austin, the two properties will encompass about 180,000 square feet of meeting space within two blocks of the Austin Convention Center.

Austin Marriott Downtown
Austin Marriott Downtown

White Lodging broke ground on a new 613-key property in downtown Austin, scheduled to open in the summer of 2020. The new Austin Marriott Downtown will go up 31 stories at the corner of Cesar Chavez and San Jacinto, overlooking the University of Texas campus, the State Capitol and the downtown Austin skyline.

Amenities at the hotel include 64,000 square feet of meeting, exhibit and entertainment space, three bars, a street-level, full-service restaurant and an exhibit hall with floor-to-ceiling windows along a 170-foot glass wall. In addition, the seventh-floor pool deck will feature cabanas with ceiling fans, televisions and private waiters, as well as seating areas with individual fire pits. The M Club will have its own private outdoor terrace for VIP guests. The property will also have an underground parking garage with 257 parking spaces.

“This project will complement the existing JW Marriott Austin,” Deno Yiankes, president & CEO of investments and development at White Lodging, said in prepared remarks, referencing the White Lodging-developed property that opened in 2015. “Together, these properties will provide a game-changing opportunity for the city, elevating its attractiveness for large meetings and conventions, which otherwise might not consider Austin.”

Combined, the two properties comprise more than 1,600 rooms and about 180,000 square feet of meeting space, conveniently located within two blocks of the Austin Convention Center.

Austin’s hotel market has seen some notable activity within the past few months. Last November, Omni Barton Creek Resort & Spa announced that it would invest more than $150 million to renovate and expand the asset, including the addition of a second resort tower.

New marketing leadership

At the groundbreaking ceremony, White Lodging introduced its new director of sales and marketing for the Austin Marriott Downtown—Fernando Estala. The 16-year Marriott International veteran has held leadership roles at premier convention hotels, including the San Diego Marriott Hotel & Marina, New York Marquis & Marriott Wardman Park in Washington, D.C. Estala joined the White Lodging team in 2013, and most recently served as director of sales and marketing for the Indianapolis Marriott Downtown.

“Fernando is a respected and highly engaged sales leader with experience from Marriott’s most prestigious convention hotels throughout the country,” Chris Anderson, senior vice president & chief revenue officer of full service at White Lodging, said in a prepared statement. “His strong reputation in the industry and among meeting planners makes him the perfect fit to lead the newest lifestyle generation of Marriott Convention Hotels.”

Image courtesy of White Lodging