Top Trip Rentals has your vacation rental home just like you’d like it, and KEY Concierge further enhances that stay. Technology helps their tea of hospitality experts develop and deliver customized itineraries in advance for out-of-towners.
Founder and CEO Kim Shrum created the app-based service to provide “next level” services for discerning travelers and staycationers.
“We’re in a rewarding business,” explains Shrum. “We’re creating memories for our clients through unique experiences you can’t buy out of a box.”
These special itineraries involve tapping into the local community to identify unique adventures (arranging day trips to Marfa or catering intimate dinner parties) as well as satisfying everyday needs.
Our Top Trip guests find that KEY Concierge is a big help with services such as pre-arrival grocery delivery, bar stocking, and airport transportation. No matter what’s on the agenda, KEY Concierge infuses its services with personable and thoughtful attention to detail.
Check This Out
Enhance your Top Trip Rental stay by booking one of KEY Concierge’s popular tours in Austin. Try the Brewery + BBQ Excursion. Outdoor lovers won’t want to miss KEY’s private Hill Country Ride or A Day on the Lake (so many ATX adventures to arrange!).
Tell Us About Your Experience
How has KEY Concierge enhanced your Austin stay with Top Trip Rentals? Add your comment here or show us on Instagram (@toptriprentals, #toptripping). Did you get the complimentary breakfast?
In honor of two anniversaries–30 years of South by Southwest, Austin’s premier festival (1987–2017), and Top Trip Rentals’ 10th anniversary, we gave SXSW 2017 musicians a special promotional rate during their stay. Yes, while ATX room rates hit high notes, we lowered rates to $30 a night so musicians could conveniently rock a 6th Street launch pad during their SXSW’s performances.
Crazy, right? Well, Top Trip Rentals believes Austin’s soul is its artists. We wanted to tip an appreciative hat to artists of all stripes (musical, visual, theatrical) who’ve made success possible. When SXSW emerged out of the Austin Chronicle’s think tanks in 1987, some 700 people attended; my, how things have grown! In 2016 alone, SXSW brought $325.3 million into Austin economy’s. The average nightly cost of an ATX hotel room that year? $350.
So, yeah, Top Trip Rentals thought our 10th anniversary was the perfect opportunity to give back to SXSW bands.
“We wanted to support the original mission of SXSW, the music portion, because that’s what basically put Austin on the map as a destination city,” explained Chereen Fisher, owner of Top Trip Rentals.
Top Trip was honored and thrilled to have artists from all over the world at our vacation rentals. This year’s list of SXSW musicians and bands included
We couldn’t have asked for better guests, and so Top Trip Rentals created a tradition. During big festivals and events, we’re reserving a portion of our vacation rentals at affordable prices for performers, those souls who get on stage and give their energy, genius, and artistry every night.
Come Stay with Us During Your Gig!
Are you a performer (musical, visual, theatrical) who needs an affordable place to unwind during Austin’s legendary festivals and creative events? Talk to our offices: email at email@example.com or talk to a human at (512) 522-8747.
As we greet 2017, our Top Trip Rentals staff doesn’t want 2016 to get away without reflecting on a few special highlights.
In 2016, Top Trip Rentals welcomed more guests from more varied locations to more accommodations than ever before. That kind of growth introduced new faces to our guests.
We added two great new team members: Rebecca Barbeau, general manager, and Cara Thibodeaux, reservations specialist. Both come with extensive travel-related professional and personal experience.
When booking a Top Trip Rentals stay in Austin, your first contact will most likely be with Cara. She calmly and knowledgeably answers hundreds of daily calls and emails regarding accommodations in Austin and the surrounding Hill Country.
Cara’s extensive experience includes working with hotel brands and vacation rentals, including HomeAway.com and TurnKey Rentals. When she’s not working, Cara travels the world (recent trips include Guatemala, France, Spain, and Italy) and writes an Austin food blog, Foodofthe512.
Rebecca Barbeau joined Top Trip Rentals in 2016, filling our newly created General Manager role. Rebecca has years of experience globe-hopping and working in resort hospitality at some of the nation’s most gorgeous locations: Big Sky, Catalina Island, and the Grand Canyon.
Rebecca keeps everything running smoothly at Top Trip Rentals. You will find her at the Littlefield Lofts property handling guest relations, working with our housekeeping staff, and overseeing the moving behind-the-scene pieces. When not tenaciously problem solving for Top Trip, Rebecca loves traveling and used to live out of the largest piece of Samsonite luggage you’ve ever seen.
Cara and Rebecca can be reached at Top Trip’s email if you have a question about an upcoming stay. Make sure you say “hello” when you book your stay.
Now that the dust has settled (literally), let’s take a moment to reflect on ACL 2016. This year, festival managers went for a younger crowd and the music skewed heavy on EDM. I wandered around and saw a number of bands, Catfish and the Bottlemen, Melanie Martinez and Cage the Elephant all played fabulous sets, full of energy and showmanship.
This year, I didn’t have a must-see band, so honestly, I went because I had a Top Trip Rentals VIP pass and I LOVE the VIP area of ACL. If you have the money, (about $450/day vs. $100/day) it is so worth it. Here lies the promised land, just beyond the VIP gatekeepers–air conditioned flush toilets, free drinks from Tito’s Vodka and Troublemaker Wines, free food from local vendors like Ranch 616 and catered meals from Central Market. It’s called the “Grove” and it’s shady, and relatively quiet and has big-screen TVs set up for football and others showing the stages. It’s an oasis for sure in a sea of people and heat.
There are moments of pure transcendence at ACL, and for me, ironically, I end up spending as much time watching the crowds and clouds, as I do the bands. Don’t get me wrong, the music is great. But, Austin has a lot of great music happening at all hours in all places across town.
What makes ACL such a great place to experience music is the setting. ACL is set up in Austin’s Zilker Park, on the edge of Town Lake, with a great view of Austin’s ever changing skyline across the river. It’s really a gorgeous site.
There is a lot to love about Austin. The people, the attitude, the winter weather, the music, and more. So, what do locals do when entertaining friends and family from out of town? I posed this question to Top Trip Rentals’ staff members and here’s some of our favorite places. Happy Travels!
Rebecca’s Top 5 favorite Austin spots:
Walking the Greenbelt and stopping for swims in Barton Creek along the way!
Margaritas and “Texas Radio Live” at Guero’s Oak Garden on Wednesday nights.
ACL is coming up fast. And that means, time to pick your favorite bands. Every year we go, it’s so hard to pick between acts when there are two equally interesting bands playing at the same time in opposite ends of Zilker Park where ACL is held. And it’s impossible to run between stages (well, it can be done but not easily) during performances to try to see two acts at once. The only way to manage your band picks is through a careful review of the ACL website lineup page that includes bios and videos, then download the app and set up your schedule.
What are Top Trip Rentals’ staff members psyched about? Here’s a few of our recommendations.
Sandra’s Top 5:
Mumford & Sons
Rebecca’s Top 5:
Band of Horses
Rene’s Top 5:
Nathaniel Rateliff and the Nightsweats
Quaker City Night Hawks
Corrine Bailey Rae
Cara’s Top 5:
As you can see, a real mix of bands and styles from our crew at Top Trip Rentals, but we guarantee, you won’t find a bad band at ACL. And if you’re not much of a planner, wandering the park and staying at a stage that sounds interesting could yield a great new find.
And finally, the kind folks at ACL put together a great “tips” guide that includes an FAQ for getting the most out of the Festival, now in its 15th year. Read this to learn more details like how to get from downtown to Zilker, what items you can and cannot take, and more info on programs happening in addition to music during the event.
Dripping Springs was once a sleepy ranch town 25 miles west of Austin on the way to the gorgeous Texas Hill Country. As with all things near Austin, it has changed. Today, it’s a thriving town in it’s own right with a blossoming wine community brought on by a new string of vineyards dotting the landscape. As Dripping Springs is only about 30 minutes from downtown, it makes an easy spot for a close-by day trip. If you are looking for an excuse to explore Dripping Springs, this weekend provides you with the perfect opportunity.
This Saturday, September 10, the city is hosting the 9th Annual “Dripping with Taste Wine & Food Festival” to tempt you out of downtown Austin. The Food and Wine Festival showcases more than 75 food, wine and spirit vendors that are made or produced nearby Dripping Springs.
When it came time to create a house cocktail for our historic Graeber Home located in the heart of Austin’s famed 6th Street, we chose Barmadillo partner Mixologist JR Mocanu. His mission–to merge both traditional and modern elements to accurately reflect the building’s historic significance and modern updates.
With this in mind, we present–“The 410”–a mix of all locally-sourced spirits that looks sweet but tastes substantial (it’s the bitters). All ingredients used in “The 410” were available to barkeeps in the 19th century in keeping with the historic provenance of the building and yet combine in a modern way to celebrate the home’s remodel and renovations in the mid-20th century.
So, the next time you stay with us at the Graeber, request a batch of “The 410” to greet you for your stay. Cheers.
At our Sixth Street vacation rental, the Graeber House, we are honored to display works from Cornelius Carter’s “Faces Series” including this portrait of the late musical genius Prince on the walls of our 4,800 square-foot 19th century home located in the heart of downtown Austin. Carter’s works are exhibited at the Graeber and on loan by his gallery IEI Austin.
Through the Graeber’s partnership with IEI Austin, our guests have enjoyed a rotating inventory of artwork including the canvases of William Stidham and Larry Graeber. At Top Trip Rentals, we value the contributions of the creative community as a part of what keeps Austin great and are happy to showcase local artists at our properties. Top Trip Rentals’ Graeber house has served as a pop-up gallery during the famous WEST shows and hosted IEI Austin gallery openings.
“Guests to the historic mansion can see Carter’s works of musical icons while staying in the heart of the entertainment district in a section of Austin that glorifies musicians,” says Top Trip Rentals owner and Graeber property manager Chereen Fisher. These rock star paintings grace the walls of the Graeber House, and are available for purchase through IEI Austin, Rhonda Rougeau gallery owner.
Cornelius Carter is an Austin-based, classically-trained artist with a style rooted in the traditional portraiture paintings of European masters while depicting subject matter dealing with societal struggles around race and class. From his eponymous website, Carter describes how he “weaves together imagery from history, mythology, childhood, and life experience to create images that are thought provoking, captivating, and beautiful. People and their relationships are a central theme…”
About the Artist: Carter was born and raised in 1970s Memphis, choosing to leave the South for more opportunities by attending the prestigious Minneapolis College of Art and Design on a partial scholarship. He moved to New York and sold paintings as a street artist in Greenwich Village before moving back to Memphis and finally choosing Austin as a place to raise his son and pursue his art. In 2015, Cornelius unveiled, “The Death of the King,” a large-scale portrait of the shooting of Martin Luther King Jr. at the Austin City Hall in a press event opening the “People’s Art Gallery” where Cornelius was chosen along with two others as a featured artist for 2015 from the approximately 1,250 entries submitted by more than 300 local artists and art organizations. “The Death of a King” was displayed at the Austin City Hall for all of 2015.
Where in Texas is the BEST place to visit according to Conde Nast Traveler magazine? Right here, South Congress Avenue shopping. Our updated 1930s era SOCO bungalow is one block off of Austin’s famous South Congress Avenue and right in the heart of all that this incredibly cool, fun and weird. You are moments from Big Top Candy, the Continental Club, Perla Restaurant and so many more than we can list in one blog. Also, some of the best boot shopping in the state as mentioned in the Conde Nast article. It’s old Austin meets new.
You may or may not have heard, but Uber and Lyft have suspended operations in Austin due to a disagreement with Austin City Council. For an excellent summary of the issues, check out this Texas Monthly article about the debate. Welcome to Austin folks, we have lots of civic engagement!
So, if you’re in Austin without a car, what are your options? Well, you can go back to calling cabs, take Capital Metro (our public transportation), or try a newer ride hailing service like GetMe, RideFare and Wingz (for getting to and from the airport only). The two primary cab services in Austin are Yellow Cab and Austin Cab. However, none of Austin’s cab companies gets particularly good reviews on Yelp. From the Yelp complaints, it seems that these cab services take a long time to pick up, so give plenty of lead time before requesting one.
No one at Top Trip Rentals has tried it yet, but Shire Cab Company, gets great reviews. The driver, Al, is a local, a musician and apparently a character. You might try contacting Shire Cab Company if you’re looking for an Austin experience.
It’s been a long time coming, but one of Austin’s newest transformations is the Seaholm EcoDistrict near West Avenue and 3rd Street. (Sure; the district’s bigger, but if you want to tell a driver where to drop you off, that’s a good corner.) Commissioned in 1948, the Seaholm Power Plant produced power until 1989. It closed in 1996 and became a Texas Historic Landmark and National Historic Place. Now, it’s becoming a downtown destination.
Established highlights of this downtown area already exist: salons (Jackson Ruiz has a location in this development), grocery stores like Trader Joe’s, and restaurants, including True Foods Kitchen. You can enjoy a lovely outdoor dining experience with a view of the decommissioned power plant steam pipes. The Seaholm Power Plant sign is still there. Commissioned in 1948, Seaholm produced power until 1989. The plant closed in 1996 and became a Texas Historic Landmark and National Historic Place.
A quick trip these days reveals an ongoing construction site. The new Austin Central Library is in final stages (that completion date keeps changing); the entire area, once completed, will be a pretty cool spot and interesting mixture of iconic and cutting-edge Austin architecture.
Once the dust has settled, the Seaholm District will be an amazing gem of a destination for locals and travelers alike.
Twenty years ago, shopping was pretty basic in Austin. If you wanted to go camping or backpacking, then there were plenty of choices for buying water purifiers and tents. Not exactly a spot for high fashion and design. Well, that my friends has changed. The last five years has really seen the growth of shopping options explode, from the newly and constantly expanding Domain Shopping area north of town, to small boutiques around downtown, there’s something for everyone now. And some of the most interesting and unexpected shopping can be found a short distance from our Littlefield Lofts vacation rentals at Sixth and Brazos. For a leisurely stroll from the LL building, start off with a pedicab or long walk heading west on Sixth Street toward the intersection of Lamar and Sixth Street. This is an area near a shopping region known as West End or West Sixth Street.
For a nice way to spend a few hours, we at Top Trip Rentals highly recommend taking in a few boutiques and shops along this expanding downtown shopping corridor. Never one to preach what I don’t practice, I spent a leisurely breakfast recently at Walton’s Fancy and Staple on Sixth Street with a friend before heading out for a few stores on West Sixth Street. Walton’s is housed in a historic building and has a little of everything–food, pastries, coffee, antiques for sale, garden supplies and other curios. Not having eaten yet that day, I ordered the breakfast tacos, but once my friend’s shrimp and grits arrived, I knew I’d made a mistake. Get some Southern Comfort food at Walton’s…it seems to be their speciality.
After filling up on cappuccino (the coffee here is good!), I was ready to walk toward my ultimate destination–birthday shopping for a friend at the Jonathan Adler Boutique on West 5th Street near the Lamar intersection. As my companion was headed on to BookPeople after breakfast, together we strolled down West Sixth by not-yet-open bars and not-yet-finished condo construction to make our way to the intersection of Sixth and Lamar.
Around this busy pedestrian and traffic-filled crossing, there are a few women’s clothing stores, like Antropologie and Title Nine where I stopped in to see if anything caught my eye (it didn’t) and then finally headed over to 5th and Lamar, making a quick dash into West Elm and then onto the shiny explosion of cool that is Jonathan Adler’s Austin store. How I want to buy everything in here! From subversively messaged cross-stitch pillows to candles that smell like Vodka, Jonathan Adler has everything that a downtown Austin loft needs to shine the brightest. Not much in the way of camping supplies, but this Austin outpost of JA has everything a downtown loft craves–sparkly, modern and clever furniture and accessories.
And if you are still in the market for camping supplies, never fear, REI is housed a block away in between BookPeople and Anthropologie. So, now, Austin’s got you covered from the outdoors to the outlandish! Shop On!
In the “blink and you missed it” category, none is changing more rapidly in Austin’s food scene than the offerings for brunch. Every good restaurant in town now has some kind of option for this Sunday meal that is better than breakfast and more important than lunch. It’s a verb. It’s brunch.
Looking for a simpler way to park downtown? Top Trip Rentals has parking available for purchase with our Littlefield Lofts vacation rentals or you can find parking through this handy website–Best Parking. All you do is choose which part of town you’re in, and it gives you rates and locations. (Shown above is the area of Austin near Littlefield Lofts). The site is organized by price range and area of town. Parking in Austin can be challenging, but it doesn’t have to be! This is also available as an App (Best Parking) for both Android and iPhone.
We had a great week with the folks from Capitol One Spark Small Business program who held their VIP reception with author, chef, raconteur, Anthony Bourdain at our historic Graeber Home on Austin’s famed 6th Street. Here are a few pics from the Capitol One Spark Small Business House they set up for SXSW Interactive 2016. Hope to see everyone again next year!
In 10 days, our city is going to be bursting at the seams with musicians, techies, film buffs, actors, travelers, fans, geeks, and more. All will converge on our humble city and turn it into the place to be in the universe for 10 days in March.
There are so many amazing people in town for this extended week’s programming. Two panels that I would love to see are Daniel Pink on Friday, March 13 and the Bill Gurley and Malcolm Gladwell’s featured session on Sunday, March 15. For all other offerings, here is a panel summary for SXSW 2016. Get planning!
Every Saturday, rain or shine, from 9 a.m.- 1 p.m., you can buy yummy, healthy and local food brought to you by local farmers and one of Austin’s best non-profits the Sustainable Food Center. The SFC/Downtown’s Farmer’s Market is at Republic Square at 4th and Guadalupe.
Former 19th Century Saloon and 20th Century Architect’s Private Home now 21st Century Private Rental Available through Top Trip Rentals
March 5, 2014, Austin, Texas—For the first time in 60 years (perhaps 130 years) the private residence at 410 E. 6th Street, is available for nightly rentals and special events. Top Trip Rentals, an Austin-based vacation rental company, is representing the property.
The limestone building at 410 E. 6th Street began life in the 19th century as the rough-and-tumble Shamrock Saloon and more recently was the private residence of the late architect and urban planner David Graeber, founder of GSC Architects.
Today, this rare residential townhome on East 6th street, is available for guests and special events. The home’s first major booking is by an LA-based digital media company reserving for this week’s SXSW Interactive Conference.
“Space plays an important role in the creative process,” says Chereen Fisher, owner of Top Trip Rentals. “Our SXSW guests were interested in the house’s unique character, history and location to give them a chance to connect with business partners and to entertain clients in a memorable space right on Sixth.”
This residential home, with the feel of a small boutique hotel, is located in the heart of the Famed Sixth Street Entertainment District and is protected as an Austin Historic Landmark. It features 3 bedrooms, 3 baths, 2 separate wings, an indoor pool facing the 19th century structure, 2 kitchens, 4,623 square feet on two floors of living space and is decorated with original art provided by IEI Austin.
“The building at 410 E. 6th Street is a time capsule with references to times and lives lived over 130 years in this one location,” Fisher added, “When guests stay with us, they too add to the story of this home, so we hope they have a great time and make it a good story.”
Welcome to our weird and wonderful town! We’re excited that the first time you’re coming to Austin, you’re staying with us. To get you started on enjoying your time here, we have oodles of ideas for all kinds of interests.
The best way to get a quick idea on what kinds of fun you can get into in Austin is posted on our social media sites like our Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest (with tons of ideas tagged) andInstagram accounts. My favorites are in the Pinterest account. You can choose any Austin type experience you want and look through the images to see if anything catches your eye.
Also, check out our blog that’s on our website. You can just wander through the archive of our blogs and see if anything else we’ve written about that strikes your fancy.
At Top Trip Rentals, we strive to provide our guests with the most amazing stay possible. We know that time away from life is limited and that vacations are precious opportunities to reconnect with friends and loved ones or simply to unwind from the stress of life.
To enhance your stay, we have partnered with KEY Concierge. They not only handle the essentials…pre-arrival grocery + stocked bar, transportation, food delivered in, etc…they also deliver five-star experiences curated by local concierge. Whether it’s a customized taste of Austin, guided hill country hike + picnic, live music crawl, breakfast taco + bloody marys delivered to your door or waiting in a five-hour line for the infamous Franklin BBQ, the sky’s the limit. To make your trip seamless and experience the best of Austin, let their local concierge team handle the details so you can arrive + relax. firstname.lastname@example.org | 512.640.4888.
“We are excited to provide concierge services for guests staying at Top Trip Rental vacation homes,” says Erin Kotzur, KEY Concierge Director of Business Development. “We make stays memorable by crafting the perfect itinerary and handling the details so guests don’t have to,” she added.
Top Trip Rentals will continue to provide guests with Austintacious ways of enjoying their stay through information found on our blog, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest boards and Instagram. “At Top Trip Rentals, we continue our commitment to giving each guest personal assistance, so we’re always just a phone call away to help you, but for more elaborate requests, we wanted to be able to give guests additional services, like access to KEY Concierge, that will improve their stay,” says Chereen Fisher, Founder of Top Trip Rentals.