Hotel Granduca brings Tuscan luxury to Westlake area


The Central Texas hotel boom extends well beyond downtown Austin.

While the bulk of new construction has been in the city’s central business district, there are plenty of other properties in the works across the region. The latest to come online is the Tuscan-inspired Hotel Granduca, which opens Wednesday in the Westlake area.

The 194-room luxury hotel, at 320 S. Capital of Texas Highway (Loop 360), is the second Hotel Granduca to be built by Giorgio Borlenghi, president of the Interfin Cos., a Houston-based development company. The first was in Houston.

It was on one of many trips to Austin to visit his son, Alex, at college that Borlenghi said he realized Central Texas was an ideal place to expand.

“Having lived almost 40 years in Houston, we have always appreciated Austin’s lifestyle and the vibrant community,” he said. “After the success of our Hotel Granduca in Houston, we thought Austin was the natural place to continue our vision of bringing something very special to Texas. Granduca Austin is not just another hotel, but a unique experience that is elegant, exclusive and intimate – with, of course, an Italian flair.”

The 190,000-square-foot hotel sits atop a hill on a 38-acre site adjacent to a new office building that will soon be occupied by Apple Inc., offering sweeping Hill Country views.

As a privately held company, Hotel Granduca’s developers declined to release the project’s cost. Construction lasted about 18 months.

General manager Joseph Violi said he was immediately drawn to the project.

“My parents were both born in Italy,” said Violi, who previously managed hotels affiliated with the high-end Ritz-Carlton and Waldorf Astoria brands. “This project just sang to me. I’m very fortunate to have the most amazing ownership group in the world.”

Furnishings buildingwide that Borlenghi, Violi and their team selected are custom made, with most coming from Europe. About 1,700 pieces of artwork – no two alike – adorn the walls in public and private spaces, for example.

“Everything was designed specifically for this property,” Violi said. “Everyone who’s seen it so far has been blown away. They love the look, the Tuscan feel.”

The guest rooms, which range in size from 480 square feet to 1,350 square feet, feature walk-in closets and are designed to have the look and feel of a Tuscan villa. Rates start at about $350 per night for regular rooms, with larger suites going for about $1,000 per night.

Amenities include a swimming pool with cabanas, a game room, a gym, meeting space, car service to nearby amenities and the Visconti Ristorante & Bar, which Violi said he expects will appeal to a wide array of guests, as well as nearby residents.

“Our property will have two very different personalities,” he said. “During the week, we’ll see small, high-end meetings. Weekends, we’ll be more leisure, with people attending UT games and things like that.”

The Westlake area is underserved right now in terms of both lodging and dining options, Violi said. Hotel Granduca will help fill that gap, while also providing an alternative to downtown Austin, where the bulk of the Austin area’s hotel rooms are located.

“Not everyone wants to be downtown,” he said. “We’re an oasis in West Lake Hills. There’s nothing like this out here.”



Reader Comments ...


Next Up in Business

Austin pirate radio station, flagship for Alex Jones, faces $15k fine
Austin pirate radio station, flagship for Alex Jones, faces $15k fine

A pirate radio station that serves as controversial host Alex Jones’ Austin flagship has been knocked off the city’s airwaves – at least temporarily – and the Federal Communications Commission has levied a $15,000 penalty that the station’s operators are refusing to pay. A lawsuit filed this week in U.S. District Court...
Austin pirate radio station, flagship for Alex Jones, faces $15k fine
Austin pirate radio station, flagship for Alex Jones, faces $15k fine

A pirate radio station that serves as controversial host Alex Jones’ Austin flagship has been knocked off the city’s airwaves – at least temporarily – and the Federal Communications Commission has levied a $15,000 penalty that the station’s operators are refusing to pay. A lawsuit filed this week in U.S. District Court...
Chanel plans Austin manufacturing plant
Chanel plans Austin manufacturing plant

French retailer Chanel plans to build a manufacturing facility in Austin, according to county deed records and documents filed with the city. The company – known for its pricey perfumes, handbags, jewelry, fashion wear, makeup and skin care products — has purchased 50 acres east of Austin-Bergstrom International Airport through a real estate...
Hill Country Galleria adds several new shops, restaurants
Hill Country Galleria adds several new shops, restaurants

The Hill Country Galleria continues to beef up its tenant roster. The Bee Cave lifestyle center, which recently added an H&M store as part of a multimillion-dollar makeover, will see several new stores and restaurants open their doors in the coming weeks and months. By fall, expect to see these additions: A pop-up shop from athletic...
Austin alcohol sales jump 13 percent in May
Austin alcohol sales jump 13 percent in May

Alcohol sales in Austin – and across Texas – jumped by double digits in May, according to an American-Statesman analysis of state data. For the month, bars, hotels and restaurants citywide poured $71.7 million worth of beer, wine and mixed drinks, compared to $63.3 million during May 2017. That’s a 13 percent increase. Statewide,...
More Stories