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January 21, 2011

Trio of Restaurants at The Austonian on Second Street Feature Unique Design

2nd Second Street is quickly becoming one of the most popular areas of Austin. With new condos, retail and restaurants opening this year, the downtown district is one of the hippest spots in Austin. This week, Austin American-Statesman writer Marques Harper visited La Condesa, The W Hotel, and the restaurants and bars at The Austonian to find out more about the interior design and the inspiration behind each of the spaces.

Bar Congress, Congress and Second Bar + Kitchen, located in the base of The Austonian, were outfitted by interior designer Amber Lewis, who wanted to make the spaces uniquely different but allow them to complement the existing 2nd Street District. Her aesthetic incorporates industrial components with comfortable places to sit, eat and relax. "We wanted our guests to feel like they were being entertained in a friend's home," said Lewis. To achieve this, she outfitted each space with warm, casual and modern rustic elements.

Lewis’s favorite design piece is the woven leather bar die-mold that wraps the lower wall of Bar Congress. The design was inspired by a visit to the vendor stalls on The Drag after at UT football game, where Lewis met two vendors specializing in leather, who she ultimately commissioned to create the leather treatment for Bar Congress.

Read more about the design of the three spaces as well as La Condesa and The W hotel here.

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