Fully Furnished Private Homes, Condos and Lofts

#travel

Do Holidays Right With a Vacation Rental Home

Package with tag and caption Vacation Homes for the Holidays

Is the thought of getting your home ready for holiday guests dragging you down? Are you worried that there just isn’t room for everyone? Will you be lucky to get time off to spend with family—and just forget about having days to cook and clean for visitors!

Why not let someone else take the hassle out of holiday hosting? Here are a few good reasons to book a vacation rental home for your next holiday gathering.

5 Holiday Reasons to Rent a Vacation Rental Home

group of four photos showing vacation rental homes in Austin for holidays

1. Grow a Spare Bedroom

Package with gift tag showing Top Trip Rentals logoGetting together as a group can be tough, especially when you have a big family. Many vacation rental homes maximize space with flexible floor plans; they’re set up to accommodate more guests.

For example, Top Trip Rental’s amazing private residence, the Graeber House, has multiple living areas, two kitchens, three bedrooms, and 3.5 baths (nobody’s waiting for a shower here!). A little secret for grown-ups: an indoor pool plus its location in the heart of Austin’s downtown destination, 6th St., provide amazing “wow” factor for special occasions.

 

2. Get Along Better with Family

Package with gift tag showing Top Trip Rentals logoThese days, many families are blended. Not everybody can comfortably share space. Why not book a cluster of rooms? Vacation rental homes’ more affordable pricing makes multiple books a realistic option for family members with varying needs.

Littlefield Lofts in Austin was recently holiday “home” for Top Trip Rentals company owner Chereen Fisher’s extended family.

“It was great,” Fisher said. “The kids opted to sleep in Grandma’s room as a special treat. We picked one loft, #701, where the families ate and gathered together. And my brother and sister-in-law had private, quiet space for baby in their own home.”

Littlefield Lofts’ 24 vacation rental homes within one building ensure a combination of space and privacy that works for your family. The Top Trip Rentals reservation team is happy to help you select the best lofts for your groups’ needs.

 

3. Let Someone Else Sweat the Prep

Package with gift tag showing Top Trip Rentals logoWouldn’t it be nice to simply spend your holiday time enjoying friends and loved ones? That vacation rental home you’ve booked for Thanksgiving will be clean and ready for company, plus you’ll be rested and ready for family fun.

Done celebrating? Someone else can wash sheets, clean bathrooms, and handle that messy kitchen.

Not everyone wants to cook a big meal. If you’d like to order in, Austin has several ways to work out having holiday dinner without the hassle.

Staying at Top Trip Rentals’ Hyde Park Hideaway? Maybe your crew would like to sup on Hyde Park Bar & Grill’s fabulous Cajun fried turkey. Since 1982, this local destination decorated by a giant fork has been wowing folks with comfort food (and everything on the menu can be ordered “take out”).

 

4. Pull Together a Friendsgiving

Package with gift tag showing Top Trip Rentals logoSometimes it’s the family we choose that needs celebrating. Why not make that holiday with friends an outing?

Choose a vacation rental home where everyone can fully relax. If you’re used to tiny house living, a large home with a spacious outdoor patio area might be just the thing for gathering together and kicking back. Go for a roomy kitchen for all the festive cooking you can’t accomplish in a crowded apartment.

Top Trip Rentals’ University Hills vacation rental home has four bedrooms (two are master suites with their own private baths!) and a big backyard patio. Plus there’s plenty of room inside to relax and watch those bowl games.

 

5. Make Holidays a Destination

Package with gift tag showing Top Trip Rentals logoGetting away to focus on the people you love is truly special. A beautiful location makes that precious time with family even more memorable.

If lakeside chats, strolls along the shore, and happy hours on the deck appeal to your family, book Top Trip Rentals’ Sunset Shores vacation rental home.

This large, 3,500-sq. ft. home, situated right on the shores of constant-level Lake LBJ in Marble Falls, provides plenty of room to roam and relax for as many as 12 people. And Central Texas’ mild winter temperatures allow you enjoy the outdoors no matter what season.

End every day of your special holiday retreat with a gorgeous sunset view from the deck!

 

Three photos showing Austin vacation rental home and New Year's Eve and holiday decorations

Rooms pictured here are Top Trip Rentals vacation homes ready for your holiday fun.

Book Now!

 

SaveSave

SaveSave

SaveSave

November 8, 2017

How Do I Get To Circuit of The Americas?

View of the Circuit of The Americas track from the COTA Tower

If you’re asking, you know that Austin is home to Circuit of The Americas, the only purpose-built Formula One track in the United States. Or maybe you don’t–perhaps you’re heading out to COTA for a night bike ride, outdoor concert, soccer academy practice, karting, MotoGP, or any of the other amazing activities hosted on the track.

Whatever the reason, you need to make your way to 9201 Circuit of The Americas Blvd., Austin, TX 78617. From pedals to propellers, we’re here to help!

Transportation Options for COTA

View of Circuit of The Americas tower from the track
Circuit of The Americas Tower, from the track. Photo Credit: Leah Nyfeler

Ride Your Bike to F1

When COTA first opened, the City of Austin worked out a bike route from downtown. There are dedicated bike paths, free bike parking onsite, and travel distance is about 13.6 miles from Top Trip Rentals’ Littlefield Lofts location (119 E. 6th St.).  Downtown Austin to COTA Bike Route

 

Do a CapMetro and Shuttle Combo

Public transportation is not Austin’s strongest suit, but the local service (CapMetro) has teamed with COTA to provide special MetroRail schedules for the weekend. You can ride MetroRail into downtown and take advantage of shuttle services from Austin Convention Center (4th and Trinity). The second shuttle pick-up is at Travis County Expo Center (7311 Decker Lane); both drop off at either COTA’s Front Gate or McAngus lot, near the Grand Plaza. CapMetro and COTA Shuttle Info

University of Texas Longhorn Band on track at Circuit of The Americas
COTA’s inaugural year, University of Texas Longhorn Band played. Photo Credit: Leah Nyfeler

Taxi to COTA

Austin has a variety of taxi services, all readily available from Austin-Bergstrom International Airport and throughout the city. Those lime green ones? That’s ATX Co-op Taxi, a hybrid between traditional street-hail and ride-hail service, where each member holds an equal share in the company (and the drivers have a soccer team!). Road congestion can be frustrating (#atxtraffic) and time sitting adds up. But that taxi will drop you off and pick you up without parking hassle. Consult a handy fare calculator to estimate your taxi cost.

Pedicab driver waiting for riders at Circuit of The Americas parking lot.
Catch a pedicab to the parking lot. Photo Credit: Leah Nyfeler

Hail or Share a Ride

Have someone else do the driving and dropping off with an app. Uber is the official ride hailing service for this year’s United States Grand Prix (enter promo code RIDE2COTA for $20 off your first ride to COTA with Uber), but you know us: we love local business.  Try out Austin’s home-grown nonprofit ride-sharing co-op, RideAustin 

Sports cars in the parking lot at Circuit of the Americas in Austin
COTA’s parking lots are full of fine cars, especially Lot A. Photo Credit: Leah Nyfeler

Upgrade Your Car Service

If you’re going to sit in traffic, you might as well sit in style. Austin Private Car Services has special USGP packages for traveling to COTA (limo, anyone?). Now, we are all about that unique home-town experience, which is why we’re partial to Ross Elite Services, owned by University of Texas athletes and champions Aaron Ross and Sanya-Richards Ross.

Emergency medical helicopter ready at Circuit of The Americas for USGP
COTA has a full-service medical facility on site, including an emergency helicopter. Photo Credit: Leah Nyfeler

Why Not Fly?

One of the many entertaining aspects of COTA is watching the helicopters come in and drop off passengers. You, too, can skip the highway lines and soar to the track. Epic Helicopter Tours will ferry up to six people, but you need to book at least 48 hours in advance. (And while we’re at it, here’s a shout-out to Lonestar Helicopters, which has provided aerial support for F1 and flown rescue missions to Hurricane Harvey’s smallest Houston victims).

Drive Your Car to COTA

There are a variety of parking lots at COTA, and you’ll want to consult maps to determine exactly where each is and which your permit specifies. If you haven’t bought that parking pass, you’re out of luck–they’re all sold out for 2017’s USGP.

Circuit of The Americas Grid Girls lined up by track with camera man
What will the COTA Grid Girls be wearing this year? Photo Credit: Leah Nyfeler

Locals KnowTop Trip Rentals’ University Hills vacation rental home is a 16-mile drive to COTA, with a nice portion on TX-130 S. The speed limit on TX-130 is a motorsport lover’s dream: 85 mph, the highest in the United States.

 

 

 

SaveSave

SaveSave

SaveSave

October 20, 2017

Why Does Austin Make Me Sneeze?

Collection of items for Austin's allergy season, including Kleenex, neti pot, and various over the counter medications

Welcome, Austin visitor! Have your eyes started to itch? Are you sneezing? Can’t go anywhere without a tissue? Does it feel like you’re coming down with a scratchy throat and bad cold?

Relax. Your trip isn’t ruined.

You’re not sick (though you may want to die).

You’ve just met Austin’s allergens.

What’s Irritating In Austin’s Air

Collection of items for Austin's allergy season, including Kleenex, neti pot, and various over the counter medicationsGenerally speaking, Austin has great air. Low pollution, little smog, few ozone action days.

“We have first-time guests actually ask, ‘What makes Austin smell so good? Why does it have such a unique scent?’” said Chereen Fisher, Top Trip Rentals founder and owner. “It’s a mix of things, I think: our unique limestone-y soil and then everything that’s in the air.”

Depending on the time of year, that “something in the air” could be any number of things. According to Allergy and Asthma Center of Austin, ATX is often listed among the top 5 American cities for allergens.

With more than 300 days of sunshine annually, Austinites love their outdoor lifestyle. Whether exercising or lounging,  spending time outside means getting a handle on any allergy issues.

Knowing what’s blowing in the wind in any given month provides some helpful information for avoiding sneezes, sniffles, and snot.

Here’s a handy breakdown of seasonal pollen and particles you’ll likely breathe in on an Austin visit.

Austin’s Fall Allergens (September, October, November)

Cedar elm in fall behind agave with bird perched on it
Cedar elm. Photo Credit: Leah Nyfeler

Fall Elm (also known as cedar elm; native to central Texas; produces little round seed pods called samaras; prominent in east Austin)

Ragweed (10–30 percent of the U.S. population reacts to ragweed, known as ‘hay fever’; ragweed can grow as tall as 2 ft., though we’ve seen 5 ft. plants in particularly wet years; one plant can create billions of grains of pollen per season; often found along Barton Creek greenbelt)

Weeds/Grasses (central Texas’s weed season, from August–November, is one of the longest in the country; includes Johnsongrass, one of the top 10 worst weeds in the world, and carelessweed aka pigweed–pigs love to eat it; watch out for contact rashes when on single-track trails)

Austin’s Winter Allergens (December, January, February)

Trees shade Austin's Lady Bird Lake Trail near 1st Street Bridge
Oaks overlooking 1st St. Bridge. Photo Credit: Leah Nyfeler

Mountain Cedar (locals swear that a good bowl of spicy tortilla soup helps combat infamous “cedar fever”; those yellow clouds hanging above those scrubby trees aren’t smoke but visible pollen; most Austinites hate cedar trees–actually Ashe junipers–with a passion; yep, you can make gin from the berries)

Weeds/Grasses (yup, still hanging around; because winter is relatively mild with few hard freezes, Austin has a long growing season)

Oak (February to late May, Austin’s gorgeous spreading oaks carpet cars and patios with a greenish dust and dropped clusters, called catkins; just forget about washing your car for a while)

Austin’s Spring Allergens (March, April, May)

Mountain Cedar (watch the allergy forecast–we swear cedar fever ends)

Weeds/Grasses (in addition to the pollens, watch out for poison ivy along Austin’s trails; “leaves of three, let it be”)

Mesquite (Texas ranchers don’t like this native thorny tree, which is really a legume; bees like the flowers; Austin’s wild monk parrots eat the beans)

Oak (live oaks, Spanish oaks, red oaks…we’ve got lots of oaks)

Smoke from Mexico (spring agricultural fires in Mexico and central America blow into Texas, bringing hazy days and trouble for asthma sufferers)

Privet (aka ligustrum; City of Austin has identified ligustrum as an invasive species; sadly popular in older landscapes)

Texas Mountain Laurel (you’re probably not allergic, but that’s what smells like Grape Kool-Aid)

Close up image of bloom from Texas Mountain Laurel
Blooming Texas Mountain Laurel. Photo Credit: Leah Nyfeler

Austin’s Summer Allergens (June, July, August)

Blooming star jasmine in Austin
Star Jasmine, an evergreen vine. Photo Credit: Leah Nyfeler

Star Jasmine (late spring, early summer; not actually an allergen, but extremely fragrant flowers scent the Austin air; people hold “white” parties when it blooms)

Saharan Dust (north Africa sends Texas gusts of fine dirt; on the up side, the Saharan dust makes summer sunsets truly gorgeous, as light filters through the particles)

Pet Dander (year ’round; Austin loves its dogs, so odds are good that you’re sharing that patio restaurant with Fido, not to mention just about every other public place)

Mold spores (year ’round in central Texas; even when Austin is in drought conditions, check the mold count)

5 Austin Allergy Resources

Pink and blue sunset over Circuit of The Americas track near Austin
Austin’s summer sunsets wow, like this one at Circuit of The Americas. Photo Credit: Leah Nyfeler
  1. Know you have allergies? Start over-the-counter medications before you visit. Pack your neti pot for sinus irrigation (just use bottled water, not tap water, to skip amoebas).
  2. Check the daily predicted count, like the KVUE Allergy Forecast, before and while you visit.
  3. Got asthma? Want to exercise outdoors? Take a look at Austin’s air quality index report before you hit the Barton Creek greenbelt or Lady Bird Lake Trail.
  4. Need something to feel better? Locally owned People’s Pharmacy can help with traditional medications and advise on alternative remedies.
  5. Does ingesting local products help with allergies? We don’t know if there’s any truth to whether local bee pollen helps, but we’re willing to see if drinking locally-made Austin Reserve Gin from Revolution Spirits helps with cedar fever.

Collection of items for Austin's allergy season, including Kleenex, neti pot, and various over the counter medications

 

 

 

SaveSave

SaveSave

SaveSave

SaveSave

SaveSave

September 25, 2017

Top Trip Rentals Shout-Out: KEY Concierge

Top Trip Rentals cards with profile of KEY Concierge founder and CEO Kim Shrum

 

You’re on a dream get-away to Austin. Quick: What’s your plan for an epic night out?

Can you figure out the hottest new restaurants in town? Need fresh flowers? Want a side trip somewhere fun?

Sure, it’s possible to wade through Google search results, Yelp reviews, and random “best of” articles. But don’t you have better things to do?

At the touch of a button, KEY Concierge’s team of local hospitality experts takes the nightmare planning out of your ATX destination agenda.

Why Top Trip Rentals Works with KEY Concierge

Top Trip Rentals bedroom view at 119 E. 6th Street Austin, TX
Would you really rather get up and go out than eat in at your Top Trip Rentals home-away-from-home? And with this view? #breakfastinbed Photo Credit: Twist Tours

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?

Top Trip Rentals special offer through KEY Concierge for complimentary breakfast

 

 

June 13, 2017

Make Dripping Springs Your Hill Country Day Trip

Postcard that says "Go Play Stay" and #toptripping for Top Trip Rentals

Dripping Springs was once a sleepy ranch town. Located 25 miles west of Austin, the town is on the way to the gorgeous Texas Hill Country. But as with all things near Austin, Dripping Springs has changed.

Today, it’s thriving town in it’s own right. With a new string of vineyards dotting the landscape, a thriving wine community exits. Only a short drive from downtown, Dripping Springs is an easy spot for a day trip getaway.

Local Wine and Food Festival

If you are looking for an excuse to explore Dripping Springs, this weekend provides the perfect opportunity. This Saturday, September 10, 2016, the city is hosting the 9th Annual “Dripping with Taste Wine & Food Festival”. The Food and Wine Festival showcases more than 75 food, wine, and spirits vendors made or produced in nearby Dripping Springs.

The festival takes place at the Dripping Springs Ranch Park & Event Center, located on Ranch Road (RR) 12 (see the map on this website link for the Event Center). 

Happy trails and #toptripping to you!

September 9, 2016

How to Get Around Austin Without a Car

In Texas, we love to drive. Cars rule the road. So how do you get around Austin if you’re not driving?

At one point in time, Uber and Lyft suspended operations in Austin after voters weighed in on Proposition 1. As a result, the Austin City Council proceeded with more stringent security requirements. (This Texas Monthly article provides excellent coverage about the debate. Welcome to Austin, folks; we have lots of civic engagement!)

What Are My Ride Options in Austin?

Car2Go waiting at Austin's Convention Center during SXSW
There’s always a bank of Car2Go at the ready, across from Austin’s Convention Center. Photo Credit: Leah Nyfeler

If you’re navigating Austin without a car, what are the transportation options?

  • Austin has public transportation (take Capital Metro for both bus and light rail)
  • Try a ride hailing service (like GetMe and RideFare;  Wingz goes to and from the airport only)
  • Car2Go is a convenient carsharing service  (and dedicated parking places).
  • Pedicabs work well in the general downtown area (there are several companies)
  • Austin’s primary cab services are Yellow Cab and Austin Cab (note that Austin’s cab companies gets less than stellar reviews on Yelp. From the complaints, cab services seem to take a long time, so allow plenty of lead time when requesting a pick-up)
  • Austin B-cycle, a cycling ride share, is a great way to have some fun and get a bit of exercise. And there’s a station conveniently located directly in front of our Littlefield Lofts on 6th Street!
Austin B-cycle station near the Pfluger Pedestrian Bridge
Go from station to station; this Austin B-cycle rack is near the Pfluger Pedestrian Bridge. Photo Credit: Leah Nyfeler

TIP: Top Trip Rentals hasn’t tried it yet, but Shire Cab Company gets great reviews. The driver, Al, is a local musician (and, we hear, a character), so try Shire Cab Company for that uniquely Austin experience.

June 30, 2016

Dear First-Time Austin Guests

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.

Street art-style map of Austin painted on building
You’re not lost; you’re with us. Photo Credit: Leah Nyfeler

Finding Fun in Austin

Cyclist Danny MacAskill rides at Austin's Castle Hill Graffiti wall to promote Epecuen.
Danny MacAskill at Austin’s Castle Hill Graffiti Wall. Photo Credit: Leah Nyfeler

The best way to get a quick idea on the kinds of fun you can get into in Austin is through our social media sites.

Top Trip Rentals social media team posts on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest (tons of ideas tagged!), and Instagram.

My personal favorite account? Pinterest. Why? Choose any Austin  experience you want, scroll through those images, and see what catches your eye.

Also, the Top Trip Rentals website blog has a ton of information. You can wander through the posts  to discover whether anything we’ve written about strikes your fancy. The blog is where you’ll also find good-to-know updates on everyday (but important) items, like where to park in downtown Austin, festival tips, and all kinds of local “insider” information.

 

Top Trip Recommends

Top Trip Rentals card listing Top 5 favorites for BBQ in Austin

We regularly compile lists of our favorite things: these are written on our “Top 5″ cards.

These bright yellow bits of Austin love are archived on Pinterest (Austin’s Top 5). Each list has a simple yet descriptive title that organizes our recommendations: the best beer, BBQ (shown left), breakfast spots, coffee houses, local pools, and so on.

You’ll definitely want to try, visit, or experience these while you’re in ATX.

And you know what? We’d love for you to share YOUR “Top 5” with us once your visit is complete. Tag your post with #goplaystay on any of our Top Trip Rentals social media sites.

Need More Info?

So, once you’ve taken a look at these resources, do you still want more ideas or need to know something about Austin? Post your questions to our Facebook page. We’re happy to investigate and find an answer for you.

Other ideas and areas for experiencing Austin include music, culture, visiting the Capitol, UT sports, loud events, off the beaten trail places, and the weird.

Patrons seated at Austin's Eastside Showroom Bar
Photo taken at Austin’s Eastside Showroom bar

There really is something for almost everyone here.

Make it a Top Trip Day!

Welcome, y’all! Photo Credit: Leah Nyfeler

January 8, 2016