In 1925, Jennie Eck Stewart inherited land from her parents in the 1200 block of South Congress. Soon after, she and her husband Earnest began expanding the stores located there. When the 1930s came along, the entrepreneurial couple saw more and more Americans using their automobiles for vacationing. They decided to capitalize on the new trend called the “motor court”, a new lodging concept designed to accommodate this new breed of traveler. They built the Austin Motel in 1938, and legend has it, it’s never been closed since. The Austin Motel’s neon sign is instantly recognizable to locals and Austinites at heart.
1220 South Congress Ave. Austin, Texas 78704