If there is one thing Austin loves, it's a good homes tour, and while it's hard to believe a year has gone by already, the AIA Austin homes tour is back. As always the AIA manages to round up an impressive list of local starchitects, and this year you'll be able to gawk at works by Dick Clark and Michael Hsu among others. While I'm sure all of them are worth checking out, here is a preview of the homes I'm most interested in seeing.
The already good selection of modern home interior stores in Austin just got a little bit better with the addition of Blu Dot. Last night was their big grand opening party, but before the crowd arrived I had a chance to take a tour of the space and chat with founder John Christakos about Blu Dot and the store.
First, it should be noted that Blu Dot is different from West Elm or CB2 and other modern design stores in one very specific way. Everything at Blu Dot is designed in house and manufactured by Blu Dot. John, and co founder Maurice Blanks first formed the company in 1997 because they could see the need for good affordable modern furniture.
If you are looking for a modern home at an affordable price, it's hard to beat Agave. Unfortunately there isn't a lot of turn over out there, so that means inventory can be a bit limited, until now. If y'all remember, there are lots of vacant lots out at Agave. The original developer has financial issues, so those lot have been held by the bank until recently. Now a new developer has stepped up and is getting ready to break ground on a new round of homes. The first 6 should begin construction in the next month or so, and depending on sales hopefully there will be many more to follow. There are still nearly 200 empty lots out there
The north/south corridor of Chicon street in East Austin has had it's ups and downs. Businesses like the now shuttered Rosewood Community Market and East Village Cafe looked like they would bring a new vibrancy to the area. While it's unfortunate to see they weren't able to make it, its refreshing to see a new group of business owners having their go at it.
Figure 8 coffee purveyors has now moved into the old East Village Cafe, and besides a complete interior renovation of the space, they've also brought with them some serious coffee expertise. The shop is run by Ryan Hall and Kathleen Carmichael formerly of Houndstooth and Cenote and features the ever so delicious Tweed Coffee roasted right here in Texas.