Retail Roundup: Sycamore Townhomes Area Shopping, Dining and Entertainment

South Austin is a destination for Austinites from all over town. A collection of funky-to-fine locally owned shops, boutiques, and restaurants on South Congress, South 1st, and South Lamar put the Sycamore Townhomes in the middle of a uniquely Austin, fun, and entertaining area.

For starters, Sycamore Townhome residents do their grocery shopping at a nearby neighborhood HEB, the 80,000-square-foot Whole Foods Market downtown, and also weekend Farmers’ Markets at El Gallo restaurant, Republic Square Park and the SFC Farmers’ Market at the Toney Burger Center on Jones Road.

More extensive shopping lists are also easy. The Sycamore Townhomes enviable near-south location puts residents within 15 minutes or less of six major shopping centers, as well as downtown and South Congress. These six malls, Barton Creek Square Mall, Southpark Meadows, Village at Westlake, Escarpment Village, Sunset Valley Market Fair, and the Shops at Arbor Walk, represent an assortment of nearly 500 department stores, specialty stores, movie theaters, and restaurants.

Eclectic Boutiques and Chic SoCo Cafes     

South Congress, lovingly known as “SoCo,” is pure Austin. This district includes a variety of locally owned, eclectic boutiques, gift shops, salons, restaurants, music, and art galleries. Boutiques like Creatures and Parts & Labour feature funky-but-chic to just plain chic clothing, shoes, and accessories. Popular and worthy stalwarts that have been doing business on South Congress (since before anyone had thought to call it SoCo) like Lucy in Disguise costume shop and Allen’s Boots western wear still draw many old and new customers alike.

Restaurants in SoCo range from the informal Magnolia Café, Homeslice Pizza, and Jo’s Coffee Shop to upscale dining at places such as Vespaio. Vespaio serves exquisite Italian food in an elegant dining room. South Congress is also home to one of the Austin scene’s most enduring live music venues, the famous Continental Club.

Margherita Pizza, Fine Wine and New York Cheesecake

Nearby dining includes El Flaco Café, New India Cuisine, Home Slice, Barley Swine, El Borrego De Oro authentic interior Mexican restaurant, and Hopdoddy Burger Bar, to name just a very few.

Serving some of Austin’s best pizza by the slice or by the pie, Home Slice Pizza is an authentic Brooklyn-style pizza joint diners adore. The traditional Margherita pie is topped with fresh mozzarella, tomato, garlic and basil. It is so delicious that it’s almost impossible to have only one slice. Home Slice also serves hot and cold subs, calzones, salads and famous, nearly irresistible garlic knots along with a great selection of wines and beers. With so many tasty menu items, it can be hard to save room for their tempting desserts such as scrumptious cannolis, New York Cheesecake and Italian ices.

For an elegant dining experience, Green Pastures Restaurant is the perfect place to enjoy sumptuous French-inspired dishes, fine wine and a decadent selection of homemade desserts. Long renowned for both its excellent food and powerful ambience, it is housed in the beautiful Victorian childhood home of famous Texan John Henry Faulk. Set amid lush gardens and beautiful architecture that reflect the height of Southern grace, Green Pastures has been recognized as one of the loveliest places to eat in America.

Live Music, Diverse Shopping and Movies in the Park

Legendary 6th Street offers a wonderful variety of restaurants, and at night, 6th Street is transformed into a dazzling paradise of nightlife activity. Other nearby destinations include downtown’s vibrant 2nd Street District with its vast array of clothing shops and home furnishing stores, as well as the 4th Street Warehouse District, well-known for its diverse and fun selection of nightclubs and restaurants.

In addition to events and conferences, the University of Texas Longhorns sports teams attract legions of loyal fans throughout the school year for some of the best baseball, football and basketball games in the nation. And for outdoor entertainment, Republic Square Park has “Movies in the Park,” as well as “Yoga in the Park,” and other events.