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Old 02-27-2009, 07:36 PM
 
678 posts, read 739,269 times
Reputation: 596
It seems that the OP based his observations strictly on physical characteristics. I have made two recent trips to SF and had not ever been there before. I was bowled over by the physical beauty of the environment and the architecture-that would be hard to replicate anywhere. However, I did note that there was the lack of overt friendliness that one finds here in Austin and make it a place that gets under your skin regardless of the landscape. I don't know if I could get used to that cool aloofness we experienced there after having been in Austin so long.

 
Old 02-27-2009, 07:37 PM
 
Location: Austin
2,522 posts, read 3,497,167 times
Reputation: 675
http://www.austintexas.org/images/navheader_meeting_professionals.why_austin.jpg (broken link)


On one hand, you are EXACTLY right in all your pronouncements.......indeed almost all you've heard about Austin from afar in California was essentially
PR gimmicky, the same stuff California itself turned into a science to sell the countless subdivisions throughout the state over the years....Hyperbole to the nth degree.......yes, Austin is WAY overhyped...
does that mean it sucks, or gives it bad connotations? Hardly.....what it means is someone simply sold you a bill of goods......
I agree....the way they advertise the cities "eccentricities", you would think there were miles upon miles of unique, stylized, one-of-a-kind stores, botiques, sightseeing ops, and what have you.......in reality, there really is only that 5 block stretch on South Congress, per a truly solid grouping of Bohemia, outside of the UT area.......Guadalupe and environs near UT actually has far more of it, though they don't push that area as much....I much prefer strolling down Guad anyday compared to the little, sterile strip that is south congress......you want real Austin Bohemia, walk around the UT, and check out Vulcan Video, Wheatland Co-op, and all the other freaky deaky little places around the university.....the UT area is the one that really feels Bohemian because it really grew that way in an organic sense, and that for many DECADES around the University....the inauthentic crappy one you bemoan was patched together quickly as someone's idea of what a Bohemian Austin SHOULD look like, and comes off as one would expect......

Austin is a unique city, but not for everyone....I truly think families would do better living in a decent suburban area on the outskirts of a major city, like Plano(Dallas), or Sugarland(Houston)....that way you have the best of both worlds......Austin is really a college and 20-something orientated city, heavy on clubbing and live music venues......yes, it offers more, but that is certainly its core....the more may disappoint many who come from larger, more diverse metros.....there honestly isn't a whole bunch of high cultural offerings...no solid art gallery district, no live theater district...
few museums.....but lots and lots of live music venues........

I personally live in Austin for this reason......I simply love live music......
and Austin is one of the few cities that seems to live for it as well....
Nashville is the only other city I can think of where the love of live music
AND the respect for what went before, and of the older, seasoned musicians, permeates every patch of pavement.......and the people are
very easy to get to know, and I love them a bunch........I know that sounds weird, but I truly love the people of Austin.....its just the place that suits me, being a single guy just looking to enjoy life...the vibe is laid back, the eateries and bars are uber-mellow, and that suits me fine....
But I can see that its not for everyone, and it sucks to get suckered into the Austin PR from afar.....sorry you were disillusioned, but I can see how that can happen.

Last edited by scirocco22; 03-01-2009 at 11:39 AM.. Reason: copyright issues
 
Old 02-27-2009, 07:55 PM
Status: "My hands are up....don't shoot." (set 14 days ago)
 
Location: Katy,TX.
2,701 posts, read 4,115,720 times
Reputation: 1982
Quote:
Originally Posted by inthecut View Post


On one hand, you are EXACTLY right in all your pronouncements.......indeed almost all you've heard about Austin from afar in California was essentially
PR gimmicky, the same stuff California itself turned into a science to sell the countless subdivisions throughout the state over the years....Hyperbole to the nth degree.......yes, Austin is WAY overhyped...
does that mean it sucks, or gives it bad connotations? Hardly.....what it means is someone simply sold you a bill of goods......
I agree....the way they advertise the cities "eccentricities", you would think there were miles upon miles of unique, stylized, one-of-a-kind stores, botiques, sightseeing ops, and what have you.......in reality, there really is only that 5 block stretch on South Congress, per a truly solid grouping of Bohemia, outside of the UT area.......Guadalupe and environs near UT actually has far more of it, though they don't push that area as much....I much prefer strolling down Guad anyday compared to the little, sterile strip that is south congress......you want real Austin Bohemia, walk around the UT, and check out Vulcan Video, Wheatland Co-op, and all the other freaky deaky little places around the university.....the UT area is the one that real feels Bohemian because it really grew that way in an organic sense, and that for many DECADES around the University....the inauthentic crappy one you bemoan was patched together quickly as someone's idea of what a Bohemain Austin SHOULD look like, and comes off as one would expect......

Austin is a unique city, but not for everyone....I truly think families would do better living in a decent suburban area on the outskirts of a major city, like Plano(Dallas), or Sugarland(Houston)....that way you have the best of both worlds......Austin is really a college and 20-something orientated city, heavy on clubbing and live music venues......yes, it offers more, but that is certainly its core....the more may disappoint many who come from larger, more diverse metros.....there honestly isn't a whole bunch of high cultural offerings...no solid art gallery district, no live theater district...
few museums.....but lots and lots of live music venues........

I personally live in Austin for this reason......I simply love live music......
and Austin is one of the few cities that seems to live for it as well....
Nashville is the only other city I can think of where the love of live music
AND the respect for what went before, and of the older, seasoned musicians, permeates every patch of pavement.......and the people are
very easy to get to know, and I love them a bunch........I know that sounds weird, but I truly love the people of Austin.....its just the place that suits me, being a single guy just looking to enjoy life...the vibe is laid back, the eateries and bars are uber-mellow, and that suits me fine....
But I can see that its not for everyone, and it sucks to get suckered into the Austin PR from afar.....sorry you were disillusioned, but I can see how that can happen.
Now that's a good post from someone who's very comfortable with himself.
 
Old 02-27-2009, 08:22 PM
 
Location: Austin
2,522 posts, read 3,497,167 times
Reputation: 675
Quote:
Originally Posted by omegaman99 View Post
Thanks for the reply, and I'm glad we didn't come across as negative. That's not my intent! I really had hoped that Austin was going to be the spot for us to settle down, and based on everything I had heard on this forum, there was no reason to think that wouldn't be the case. Our realtor was likewise very optimistic.

I'm very glad that we did make the initial visit, as it really did serve as a reality check. My wife and I had a great time over the weekend, but when it was all said and done, we just felt that that Austin just wasn't what we were looking for. It was was just too generic, flat, and (surprisingly) restrictive (with all of the HOAs and CC&R's that we found with just about any decent neighborhood). Couple that with a very generic downtown (save the number of bars) and the weather, and it just didn't seem to work. Again, we had a fantastic time, but the area really felt more restrictive than San Francisco. We were used to neighborhoods with absolutely no restrictions, where every house was different, and you were basically free to do whatever you wanted to your house or yard. We learned that in Austin, you were basically restricted from even the most basic choices, like what color to paint your house, and that just seemed to be at odds with everything we had ever heard about Texas.

For all the faults of the Bay area, the fact of the matter is that the weather here is virtually perfect year round, you have the most sophisticated companies in the world, you have some of the world's most prestigious universities (Stanford and Cal), the landscape is incredibly gorgeous, the "weird" factor is off the charts, you're 1 hour or less from the world's best wine country, and you're less than 3 hours from fantastic skiing around Lake Tahoe. We had been thinking that we could find an alternative area for less, but I'm just questioning if that's really possible.
One thing most of us Austinites on here are confused about, Omega....
are you trying to convince yourself of the merits of the Bay Area as much, if not more so, as trying to find a Shangri-La somewhere else? It sounds like it was either Austin or nothing....have you tried looking all over the USA, or even somewhere else on the West Coast...perhaps a smaller city or town in Northern Cal.....a beach orientated mid-sized city like Santa Barbara......a sweet little town like Astoria in Oregon...



Astoria, Oregon....above......

Or any place in the Rockies? So many sweet little places in western Colorado.....Montana has many charms....and many ex-cali's have moved to Bozeman and such in the last decade........

Honestly, it seems like it was....I have my heart set on Austin....thats it.......and since thats not what we had in mind, SF it is........

I would try looking at a whole lot more areas and places......if you are looking for shoes and one pair doesn't fit, you certainly don't walk out of the store...you continue to shop till you find a pair that fits.....keep on looking......you'll find what you need......and I can guarantee you that whatever drove you to look outside the Bay Area will continue to nibble on you, no matter how hard you convince yourself....
 
Old 02-27-2009, 08:25 PM
 
385 posts, read 767,462 times
Reputation: 142
I lived in the wine country and went to SF on the weekends. Yes, it is one of the most stunning places on the planet but I would NEVER move back. The landscape in Austin might be bland in comparison but the people as a whole are far more human, kind and personable than the ones back in SF. We've only lived here a year but this is home to us now. To each his own. I'm glad some people don't like it here
 
Old 02-27-2009, 08:33 PM
 
1,035 posts, read 2,905,695 times
Reputation: 182
Just a side-note for anyone visiting Austin in the winter...it IS winter so the landscape isn't green & plush like most (non-drought) springs, summers & falls.
 
Old 02-27-2009, 08:39 PM
 
Location: Central Texas
16,123 posts, read 21,596,378 times
Reputation: 12137
Winter AND in the middle of the worst drought since the 1950's. But, of course, we LIKE our landscapes brown in winter - that means the grass has gone dormant, and we're all about xeriscaping!
 
Old 02-27-2009, 08:45 PM
 
Location: Austin
2,522 posts, read 3,497,167 times
Reputation: 675
Quote:
Originally Posted by AK123 View Post
In Texas at least, Houston and Dallas (the cities, not the suburbs) are not super conservative at all. Look at a voting results map, and you'll see Austin is certainly no longer the only "blue" area of Texas.
And several things in Houston (such as most of the Montrose area, and the Art Car museum) are "weirder" and "cooler" than anything I ever saw in Austin.
That's so funny what this poster says about "Houston Weird".......because
the Montrose area is far closer to what most out-of-area folks think the "Arts District" looks like in Austin........funny because its so off the radar, yet really where its at, even with its own "Continental Club", same Austin
ownership.........maybe we can encourage a few cali's looking for that bohemia to try Houston's Montrose......Hey, don't knock it till you tried it!

Here are a few pics of Houston Weird, otherwise known as Montrose....












If anything, the people in the Montrose area are even friendlier than Austinites.....and most assuredly happier!



Beautiful new "In-town" condos and TH's designed to look old and
victorian...



And parties everywhere, every day of the week, every week of the year.......so funny how its completely off the radar, yet infinitely closer to most outsiders idea of what Austin is like!
 
Old 02-27-2009, 09:05 PM
 
Location: Austin TX
1,565 posts, read 2,893,481 times
Reputation: 393
You just went to the wrong places!!! You need to go West of Loop #1 Mopac!
I felt the same first time I visited ATX but was shown the right areas






Some video from Lake Travis (http://video.yahoo.com/watch/78910/1550900 - broken link)


Believe me I there are some really nice areas in the Austin area! Something for everyone IMHO..

Last edited by S6Sputnik; 02-27-2009 at 09:18 PM..
 
Old 02-27-2009, 11:04 PM
 
589 posts, read 1,827,233 times
Reputation: 231
Quote:
Originally Posted by naomisday View Post
Omegaman99,

My former Professor who went to UT Austin, said that Austin reminded her
of her old hometown Bakersfield,CA...
Haha not! I grew up 50 miles north of Bakersfield. It is the arm pit of California. Austin is much much better than that stink hole. I am glad I moved
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