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A peek inside 7 of Austin's most elite condominiums

(Highrises)

With real estate in Austin surging and new transplants clamoring to get a piece of charming city property, demand is higher than ever to live in Austin. While condos within city limits come in a variety of price ranges, there is no shortage of fancy living in the Live Music Capital of the World.

Here are seven of Austin's most elite residences.

Four Seasons Condos, listed for $4,995,000

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Got a hankering for stellar city views and $5 million burning a hole in your pocket? This three-bedroom, three-and-a-half bathroom condo on 98 San Jacinto Blvd. clocks in at 4,208 spacious square feet and is within walking distance from Lady Bird Lake.

Perch yourself inside any one of this 26-story highrise's high-end rooms: a formal living room, kitchen, dining room and bedrooms all complete with floor-to-ceiling windows, marble bathroom and living areas with ornate wallpapers and light fixtures. Of course, no downtown condo is complete without a terrace… or two; one for your guests and one for yourself. Speaking of guests, the condo has two spacious bedrooms with bathrooms en suite in addition to the master suite. If you run out of room to house your guests, you could always make room in the expansive walk-in closet!

The Austonian, listed for $4,990,000

(highrises.com)

Coming in just $5,000 below that of the Four Seasons, this Austonian condo is two years newer and just a touch bigger at 4,306 square feet. Well-suited to those with plush taste, 200 Congress Avenue gives you panoramic views of the Texas Capitol building from its enormous balcony. With three-bedrooms and three-and-a-half bathrooms and a designated office for work from home, this condo comes with clean lines, custom cabinetry and an open floor plan for those who love to entertain.

W Austin Residences, listed for $4,500,000

(highrises.com)

Famously home to Austin Mayor Steve Adler, this 3,147 square foot residence is a modern architecture lover's dream. This penthouse condo, complete with another set of three bedrooms and three-and-a-half bathrooms, will have you feeling luxurious as you relax in the glass steam shower or watch your favorite show from a hidden flat-screen TV. The condo comes with a private three-car garage with a Tesla charger, automated window shades and a gourmet kitchen with a custom glass breakfast nook to start your mornings off right. The handcrafted lit-up floating shelves will show off all your trinkets like you live in a museum but the floor-to-ceiling windows won't make you feel like you're living in a fishbowl from 36 stories up. With concrete pillars to match the sky-high ceilings, white oak floorboards and an in-house laundry room, this 210 Lavaca Street dwelling will make you feel like royalty.

The Loren, listed for $4,005,000

(highrises.com)

If you're looking to get out of the city but not too far away, The Loren's condominiums will offer extensive views of Zilker Park and East Austin all in one. A short trek to Downtown, these condos aren't scheduled to be completed until spring of 2022, so they will be brand new and ready to be broken in.

This 3,511 square-foot modern mansion on 1211 W. Riverside Drive will be softly lit with plenty of natural light, the four bedrooms and four-and-a-half bathrooms provide ample room to spread out and the high floor placement is breathtaking.

Seventy Rainey, listed for $3,680,000

(highrises.com)

This rare 3,684 square foot penthouse spans three floors with a private balcony on each dreamy level. If that wasn't enough, the private rooftop terrace overlooks scenic East Austin views.

With three bedrooms, three bathrooms, two half bathrooms and a sprawling floor plan, the penthouse condo is perfect for remote work and quarantine living. This condo is characterized by its clean lines, industrial-yet-modern touches. Best of all, this space will put you right in the heart of Rainey Street, so you'll never be too far away from the party.

Saint Cecilia Residences, listed for $3,300,000

(highrises.com)

Shrouded in greenery, this is the place to go if you're looking for a unique dwelling. With only seven other homes in the development, this condo offers both privacy and proximity to vibrant South Congress Street. In collaboration with Bunkhouse Group, the property management group founded by Austin's Liz Lambert, this home is packed full of quirky and colorful accents, finishes, hardware and adds an element of interest before you even walk in. Featuring three bedrooms, three bathrooms and coming in at 2,440 square feet, this condo is one of the smaller locations on the list, but the amenities and treetop views are unparalleled. You'll be just walking distance from Saint Cecilia Hotel, new Music Lane and just minutes from Downtown at this brick veneer palace.

44 East Avenue, listed for $2,800,000

(highrises.com)

Another brand new property, estimated to be completed in 2022, is conveniently located on both the shore of Lady Bird Lake, for those who love to get out and enjoy Austin's exquisite flora, and on Rainey Street, so you're in the heart of Downtown living and you'll get the best of both worlds. With four bedrooms and four full baths, this condo spreads 2,858 vast square feet. With retro architecture, wood flooring and high ceilings, this home is airy and waiting to be enjoyed. If you have the cash to make $17,000 per month payments, this home could be calling your name.

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‘Like speed dating of cats’ at Purr-fecto Cat Lounge
Purr-fecto Cat Lounge

Lina Martinez with her newly adopted cat, Emmanuel, who she renamed Sullivan.

Timmy and Tommy are ready to play.

As the 2-month-old white-and-tabby brothers swat feather wands, chase toys and generally hold court inside Purr-fecto Cat Lounge, a half-dozen potential adoptive parents look on lovingly, trying to get their attention.

“This is kind of like the speed dating of cats,” said Lupita Foster, owner of Purr-fecto Cat Lounge. “I intentionally didn’t put in any tables. That’s why we call it a lounge instead of a cat café because we have these lounge areas where you can sit and relax and cuddle.”

Foster, who has owned a cleaning company, Enviromaids, for 18 years, was inspired to open Purr-fecto Cat Lounge after adopting her own cat, Romeo, from a local shelter.

“When you want to adopt a cat, you have to spend a lot of time with them to get their personality,” Foster said. “I wanted to do something to help the community and something that makes me feel good, that warms my heart. A business with a purpose. This was a perfect idea.”

Actually, a purr-fect idea.

Inspired in part by a cat lounge she visited in Los Angeles, Foster began laying the groundwork for the business in late 2021 and officially opened the doors of Purr-fecto Cat Lounge, located at 2300 S. Lamar Blvd., in July 2022. Since then, she’s worked with rescue organizations such as Fuzzy Texan Animal Rescue and Sunshine Fund Cat Rescue to facilitate nearly 100 cat adoptions.

At any given time, there are 10-15 cats living in the space, which features an ideal blend of calm, cool corners and adorably Instagrammable backdrops with phrases such as “I want to spend all my 9 lives with you.”

Lina Martinez, 32, learned about Purr-fecto Cat Lounge from a friend’s Instagram post and made an appointment to visit two days later.

“My first impression was, ‘AWW!’” Martinez said. “The kittens were to die for. I felt happy and at peace – just what I needed.”

Visitors to the cat lounge pay $15 for a 30-minute CATXperience session or $30 for a 70-minute session that is spent getting to know the personalities of each cat. Foster said the first thing she typically sees from visitors to the lounge is a smile.

“Everybody that enters the door is smiling,” she said. “And we’ve seen people who have cried because they can’t have kids and they decide to go and adopt a cat instead.”

Foster said she loves bringing in cats who might not have a chance to be adopted at traditional shelters. She told the story of one cat named Izzy, who was partially blind, who was adopted by a family that had a deaf cat at home.

“Izzy was not going to get adopted anywhere else, but she’s extremely beautiful,” she said. “If she was in a cage in a rescue and you tell people she’s blind, she was probably going to be overlooked. But visiting our space, she doesn’t seem like she’s blind. She knows her way around. She moves around perfectly.”

Although Martinez, who had been casually looking for a pet to adopt since moving to Austin nearly four years ago, was interested in a cat named Ruby that she had seen on Purr-fecto’s social media, at the lounge she instead found herself drawn to 5-month-old mixed breed Tuxedo cat.

“I thought he was a star,” she said. “He worked the room and introduced himself to everyone. When I laid down to pet Ruby, he ran from the other side of the room and cuddled with me. It was game over. He got me.”

And she, of course, got him, complete with a commemorative photo that read “My Furrever Family” the day she took him home. Although his original name was Emmanuel, she renamed him Sullivan after her favorite DJ.

“Purr-fecto is special because of the amount of effort and love they put into taking care of the cats,” Martinez said, “and finding them good homes and making possible adopters feel at home.”

Foster, who spent a recent Thursday hosting a group of teenagers in foster care at the lounge, several of whom expressed interest in working there, said the best part about her new endeavor is that her heart is always full.

“I just feel complete,” she said. “I always felt as an entrepreneur that I was missing something. I knew I accomplished a lot, but in my heart I was missing a little connection with the community. Now I’m creating connections between humans and pets and that’s amazing. I’m creating family bonds. It’s just about love, you know. And we need that.”

Austin's 7 Best Indian Restaurants

We all have those cravings for an amazing butter chicken or some authentic dosas with coconut chutney, but when I was thinking about where I wanted to go to satisfy my taste buds I realized that my list of great Indian food around Austin was surprisingly short. After doing some research and asking around, here is your list of the best Indian restaurants around town.

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