Since being crowned the capital of Texas in 1893, Austin's friendly spirit and assorted industries have attracted an eclectic population defined by art, music, politics, and progressive thinking. These elements have created a mosaic of change and creative independence in an otherwise conservative state. The city's black sheep status was amplified in the 1970s, when artists like Willie Nelson and Stevie Ray Vaughn were looking for a place to escape the commercial pressures of Nashville and settled on Austin, laying the first pieces of what would become the city's vibrant musical scene. Subsequently, Austin has been named the Live Music Capital of the World and is host to the annual South by Southwest music, arts, and cinema festival and the Austin City Limits music festival.
"KEEP AUSTIN WEIRD"
Austin's official motto is the Live Music Capital of the World and its unofficial motto, "Keep Austin Weird." Together, these sayings-along with traditional Southern hospitality and a "peace and love" philosophy-summarize the heart of the city's social scene. During the day, the capital buzzes with politics, business, and endless outdoor activities. In the evening, its bohemian sensibility takes over with impromptu gatherings and jam sessions at over 100 nightly live-music venues, which draw a diverse crowd ranging from bikers to professors to organic farmers-and visitors are always welcome.
Located in central Texas, Austin is both the state's capital city and the home of the University of Texas. Its rivers, hills, and lakes are a dramatic contrast to central Texas' plains, providing numerous outdoor destinations. Within the city, the burgeoning 2nd Street District, where W Austin is situated, is a medley of destination shops, restaurants, museums, music venues, and City Hall-punctuated by communal green spaces. The hotel itself shares a space with the Austin City Limits, where all genres of musicians come to play. The studio steps are a pre- and post-concert hangout, providing a place for musicians and fans, locals, and visitors to mix and mingle. W Hotel Austin also hosts many events during Formula 1 Austin, which occurs in November each year.