"Much Ado About Nothing…"Austin & Lake Austin Spa & Resort

"Much Ado About Nothing…"Austin & Lake Austin Spa & Resort

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Destination: Austin, Texas
Date: November & December 2012

The entrance to Sixth Street in downtown Austin
November 2012
Beautiful downtown Austin with the State Capital in the background
November 2012

Austin is one of the best little cities in America.  I think the best way to describe it is funky.  It yearns to be as liberal as Berkley, CA and as hip as NYC.  The best way to fit in this eclectic town is to throw on a pair of big bulky black eyeglasses and fake it.  Being a hub for the computer industry there is a much higher level income of people in this little town.  Saying that… there are lots of fun things to do to keep busy.

My trendy sister “K” and her daughter “L”
Check out her awesome blog at www.mydelayedfairytale.com

Recently, my trendy sister “K” came to visit me in San Antonio, and she was set on going the sixty miles north to visit Austin.  I told her to put together an itinerary of things she wanted to do and I would be her humble host.   Browsing her list of “to do’s”, I was just as excited as she was, to visit.  Our first stop of the day was to Sandra Bullock’s restaurant, Bess Bistro, bessbistro.com.  Its located just off 6th street (music center of Austin) at the cross street of San Antonio St.  Entering her posh restaurant we stepped down into the basement of an early 1900’s building, and into a beautiful, and comfy dining establishment.

Trent and “L” in front of Bess’ Bistro
November 2012
The front door to this cool little establishment
November 2012

I think it helped that it was an overcast kind of blustery day outside because it added to the ambiance of this basement establishment.  With a fire place, a beautiful “old-timey” bar, and wine bottles all around it was a fun place to have lunch.  I couldn’t help keeping a look-out over my shoulder to see if “Sandy” was making any kind of appearance that day.  She didn’t, we ate, and moved on…

Cute little booth in Bess’
November 2012
The bar in the middle of the restaurant, Bess’ Bistro
November 2012

Our next stop was for some fun antique shopping.  We headed over to another place “K” had on her list called Uncommon Objects, uncommonobjects.com.  It was a typical antique shop in south Texas with the noticeable difference of how the product was displayed.  Instead of vendors setting up booths to display their whatnots, the owner of the store had very tastefully displayed the items in colored categories.  In one section everything had varying colors of green, in another red, yet again in another… yellow.  It was beautifully displayed and made my shopping experience so much more enjoyable.

Cute antique store organized in colors!
December 2012



Fun little antique shop in Austin
November 2012
Gourdoughs Food truck, home of amazing donuts!
November 2012

After enjoying some shopping in this area we set out to find a food truck for dessert.  Since my apple maps told me that Gordough’s Specialty Doughnuts, www.gourdoughs.com,  was 0.8 miles from the store we were shopping, we started out on foot to find our treasure.  It was a great little walk through this part of Austin and we found our food truck in no time.  Just like the food network promises Austin is filled with food trucks.  It has become quite a trend in this city.  Plus I love it because it adds to the selection for the consumer… like me!!  It was a lot of fun finding our truck and feasting on any kind of donut we could imagine.  We settled for the Funky Monkey and the Miss Shortcake which were both amazing and too much for one person to eat alone.

“K” is grateful while Trent buys our doughnuts!
November 2012
Can you see the enthusiasm on my face as we sampled a few goodies
November 2012

Just a month after “K’s” departure, Trent and I found ourselves headed back up to Austin to enjoy the Lake Austin Spa and Resort.  Ringing in 19 years of wedded bliss on December 18 we were excited for a three night stay away from the kiddos.

A sanctuary for peace and meditation, I’m not kidding its bliss!
December 2012
The resort sits lake side
December 2012

If you’ve never heard about Lake Austin Spa and Resort then today is your lucky day, lakeaustin.com.  It is an amazing resort and ranked number one destination spa by Conde Nast!  Located on the shores of Lake Austin it contains a peaceful escape from all worldly cares.  It has only forty rooms and each located just steps up from the shoreline.  Sitting on the private patio of our room I can look over the water and see the glimmer of the suns reflection and hear the rustling of leaves from the breeze that blows through the resort.

The one bedroom bungalows just up from the lake front
December 2012
My favorite spot at the resort!
December 2012

Once we arrived, we were given robes to wear throughout our stay.  Yep clothes are optional! Of course we all stay very modestly covered up with these big robes.  All jewelry, makeup, and the necessity of doing my hair was abandoned for the equalizing power of the robe.  Every guest walked around in these giving this resort a feeling of being in a sanctuary of those seeking peace and tranquility.  As a mother of six around the holidays thats exactly what I was seeking… peace.

My daily attire while on resort
December 2012
Trent wasn’t as easy to convince to wear his robe around the property,
but all these ladies knew the dress code of choice!
December 2012

In my last week at home I’d thrown one PTA holiday party, attended the office party, one piano recital, one orchestra recital, a swim meet, and helped wrap presents for the teachers at the school.  I was running and running and ready for respite.  At Lake Austin Resort there are many different yoga and workout classes available, water cycles, hikes, lap pools and anything you can imagine to get your zen back in order.  Trent and I even tried a “beaming” class which I had never done before that worked on our inner balance with yoga type moves and a soft beam.  It was interesting to say the least.

Our first beaming class (basically a class about balance)
December 2012

There is a spa on site that also offers a huge menu of items for our enjoyment, www.lakeaustin.com/explore/lakehouse-spa/.  I told Trent since I was going to blog about what they had to offer I needed to try as many treatments as I could. 😉  Our first night at the resort we did the couples “Texas Starry Night” massage out on an open aired deck in the spa.  Believe it or not, even in December it wasn’t cold.  We enjoyed the breeze and the outdoor heaters that were right next to us.  With the stars shining bright over our heads we enjoyed our couples massage and I began to feel the stress leave my body.

Ready for our Thai Yoga massage on the outdoor patio
December 2012

The next morning we decided to do a couples Thai Yoga massage.  I’ve mentioned this procedure in a previous post while we were visiting Thailand.  Even here it was a great massage.  Trent calls it yoga for lazy people, but it really is a great stretching massage.  Later that day we had the Diamond Facials.  It was great with cellular and collagen stimulation and we really did both look years younger after the procedure.

Trent enjoying a hammock by the lake
December 2012

The best part of the day however was my nap I took outside by the lake front.  I took out a pillow and a beautiful crocheted blanket from my room and lay out on a hammock and read my book until my eyes grew heavy and I fell asleep.  It was so relaxing with the wind brushing my skin, and birds singing in the trees.

All of these are served on small salad/bread plates.  Not the most amount of food but it was all delicious
December 2012

I should also mention that this resort also has a fantastic organic food.  Being all inclusive, it gives quite a selection for the everyday fare.  The food is portion controlled but with five courses to every meal I never felt like I had not eaten enough.  Its all organic, locally grown, and there is even an herb garden just outside the main dining area that keeps the promise “from the farm to the plate”.  With all the calories of every item listed on the menu its a great way to watch what you eat while at this luxury resort.

Some of the many oils to choose from during the Ayurvedic massage
December 2012

While we were there we also had the Star of India massage, which is an ayurvedic scalp and neck procedure that includes an herbal full-body treatment.  Since it is based on your personal dosha, or vital energy, it is all customized to fit your personal needs.  Since I hadn’t had an ayurvedic procedure before it was a fun way to try something new.  Each movement my therapist made was slow and deliberate and added to the tranquility of the treatment.  My favorite part was when warm essential oil was streamed over my forehead in the traditional “third-eye” area and I could feel the warm oil dribble down my forehead into my scalp.  It lasted for several minutes as the continuous dripping of oil saturated my scalp.  Almost like a candle wax coating my head it was a warm and soothing experience.

Tools needed for the Tour of Asia massage.  Looks sketchy, I know but it was incredible!
December 2012
The cups used for the cupping procedure
December 2012

The last treatment I had the chance to experience was the Tour of Asia.  This is a combination of many East Asian therapies to relieve pain, and bring complete relaxation.  As if I wasn’t relaxed enough….  With the combination of acupuncture (it really doesn’t hurt at all), moxibustion, cupping and tapping are all used to bring total relaxation.  Cupping is a cool procedure that sucks the toxins out of your skin but also leaves you looking like you’ve been attacked by an octopus so make sure not to do this before a special even where any amount of your back, shoulders or arms are shown.  It was all so wonderful and I enjoyed every moment of our stay at this top rated resort.

Trent’s back after his cupping procedure
December 2012
Our therapist left small acupuncture needles in our ears promote relaxation even after our procedure
December 2012

All the elements of earth are represented onsite at this resort.  Visually it is beautiful.  Add the sounds of birds, the crunching of he gravel paths, the breeze, the water flowing at the lake or the water fountains on property, the smells of the water, the greenery, the sites of squirrels, monarch butterflies, leaves skipping along the paths and the taste of the delicious foods with so much variety it is a smorgasborg for the senses.

The pathway to all of the rooms (top) The blue waiting room for therapies (left) The outdoor walkway (right)
All equals a beautiful resort
December 2012

Truly this is my favorite spa resort in the country.  Of course I haven’t tried them all and if you think you know of one that is any better please let me know so I can get a reservation!  I highly recommend this amazing sanctuary to bring peace and harmony to any soul just needing a little recuperation.

Safe and Happy Travels!!