A new hotel is coming to downtown Austin, with two restaurants and bars from a lauded Miami hospitality group. Florida’s Lost Boy & Co. — in collaboration with Austin company FBR Management — will open the two unnamed spots within the forthcoming Downright Austin at 701 East 11th Street sometime in the spring.
The first of Lost Boy’s and FBR’s bars/restaurants in the Downright will be found in what is being described as a sunken lounge with under-the-water views of the next-door pool. And then there’s the lobby cafe, which will offer breakfast and coffee with a walk-up counter for takeout services. While further details aren’t available at this point, it’s fair to expect great cocktails, good food, and stylish spaces.
Over in Miami, the Lost Boy company oversees six bars and restaurants. Co-founders and co-partners Randy Alonso and Chris Hudnall started with Lost Boy Dry Goods, where they turned Alonso’s denim store into a neighborhood pub in 2018. They followed that with Tropezón in 2021, a gin bar and tapas restaurant. Next, they revived longtime dive bar and restaurant Fox’s Sherron Inn as Fox’s Lounge in 2022. Then there’s Joliet, with a New Orleans seafood bent, in 2022. And, finally, they have two places within the Atop Mayfair House Hotel and Garden in 2022, the wood-fired Southwestern restaurant Mayfair Grill and roofop rum bar Sipsip Calypso.
The rest of the Downright will feature guest rooms and suites, as well as indoor and outdoor event spaces. The general aesthetic is a whole hip and bright thing, with pinks, geometric shapes, checkerboard designs, and lots of plants.
Downright is operating under the Marriott hotel company. And it’s taking over the current physical Sheraton at the Capitol hotel, which is still open for booking during the space’s renovations.
FBR’s Austin bar footprint is quite large. Co-founders Max Moreland and Matt Luckie also have a knack for taking over longtime Austin bars. This started with dive bar Mean-Eyed Cat, and continued with Christmas dive bar Lala’s Little Nugget (they’re even expanding this with a second location in South Austin this year), downtown bar Dive Bar & Lounge, and one of Austin’s first true speakeasy cocktail bars Midnight Cowboy. The company also oversees Rainey Street bar Stagger Lee, downtown whiskey bar DuMont’s Down Low, neighborhood mini-chain Lavaca Street Bar, South Lamar spot Gibson Street Bar, West Sixth’s Star Bar, tiny East Austin bar the Wheel, Cedar Park alfresco sports-y spot the Fieldhouse, and the newer Sign Bar. The business also runs beverage services at Austin music venues Moody Amphitheater, Emo’s, and Scoot Inn; and does the same for national music festivals such as Austin City Limits and Lollapalooza.
Sort-of relatedly, there have been two out-of-town-run Austin hotel restaurants shutters in the past month. The Thompson closed down its poolside restaurant and bar Wax Myrtle’s, which was run by Chicago-based hospitality company Land and Sea Dept., in late December 2023. And San Antonio chef Steve McHugh’s two Austin restaurants and bars within the Hyatt Centric Congress Avenue Austin closed suddenly in early January after less than a year of service.