The most festive and boozy bars around Austin this holiday season

Austin, Texas – The weather might not always make it feel like it's the holiday season, but several bars around town have transformed their spaces into winter wonderlands where all your Christmas dreams can come true.

Though the weather might not always make it feel like the holiday season, several bars in Austin, Texas have gone all-out to create their own winter wonderlands.
Though the weather might not always make it feel like the holiday season, several bars in Austin, Texas have gone all-out to create their own winter wonderlands.  © Screenshot/Instagram/gibsonstbar & geraldinesatx

Just because there isn't any real snow on the ground doesn't mean bars and restaurants in southern states such as Texas can't make up for this minor weather-related shortcoming.

When December rolls around in the capital city, that means one thing and one thing only: it's time to deck the halls in the booziest and most merry way possible.

Of course, no Christmas bar is complete without a holiday-inspired drink menu, and bars around town are not skimping out on this necessary factor.

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From boozy hot chocolate to sinfully crafted cocktails infused with cinnamon whiskey, there's likely a drink for every taste somewhere in the city.

If you have your heart set on scoping out the best spots in Austin, Texas to celebrate the holiday season with cheer, here are some of the best Christmas-themed bar to stop by this year.

Old-school Austin with a Christmas flare

Gibson Street Bar on South Lamar has gone all out for the holidays.
Gibson Street Bar on South Lamar has gone all out for the holidays.  © Screenshot/Instagram/gibsonstbar

Gibson Street Bar and Lala's Little Nugget have long been considered local legends, and they're both serving up strong displays of Christmas spirit this year.

Nestled in the heart of the South Lamar district in Austin, Texas, Gibson Street Bar has long been a favorite amongst locals and transplants alike, and it's undergone quite the Christmas remodel this holiday season.

Not only is the entrance decked out with twinkling lights, candy canes, and a giant gingerbread man, they've also installed a massive Christmas tree in the backyard for guests to admire whilst sipping on some boozy holiday cheer.

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But for Lala's Little Nugget, going all-out with Christmas decor is nothing new to the holiday season. Since it's opening in 1972, Lala's has been a year-round Christmas bar, serving as the merriest spot to be during any time of year.

But there's something extra magical about being at Lala's Little Nugget when it's actually the holiday season.

There's a different buzz in the air this time of year, and there's no better way to transition into Christmas mode – Austin-style – than swinging by Lala's Little Nugget or Gibson Street Bar for a dose of classic holiday cheer.

Lucille Patio Lounge on Rainey Street

Lucille Patio Lounge not only has festive lights and traditional Christmas decor, they also have several inflatables of several characters from classic Christmas films.
Lucille Patio Lounge not only has festive lights and traditional Christmas decor, they also have several inflatables of several characters from classic Christmas films.  © Screenshot/Instagram/lucillepatiolounge

Rainey Street has come a long way from where it started, but that doesn't mean it's any less worthy of spending a day meandering down, especially during the holidays.

Whether you're a local, a transplant, or simply passing through town this time of year, there are two must-visit bars on Rainey Street that have gone all-out for Christmas.

From snow machines to festive cocktail menus and light displays, Lucille Patio Lounge has just about everything you could ask for in a Christmas-themed bar.

On an ever-so-common warm winter night in Texas, the on-site snow machine will make you forget you're in the south, even if just for a moment.

So get some friends together and head to Lucille's winter wonderland on Rainey Street to take in the dazzling lights and faux snow with a holiday-inspired drink in-hand.

Instagram-worthy winter wonderlands

Edge Rooftop Lounge has transformed into a winter wonderland with fresh faux snowfall every hour on the hour.
Edge Rooftop Lounge has transformed into a winter wonderland with fresh faux snowfall every hour on the hour.  © Screenshot/Instagram/edgerooftop

If you're more into an immersive bar experience, then there's no better place to swing by than Geraldine's located in Hotel van Zandt or Edge Rooftop Lounge at the JW Marriott Austin.

Both of these bars offer up interactive experiences that are about more than just sipping on a festive cocktail under a dazzling display of Christmas lights.

Take in the city lights under coverage of an igloo with up to five other friends at Geraldine's, where the South Pole has come to life on the fourth floor roof at Hotel Van Zandt.

Igloos can sit up to six people, and come equipped with seating, blankets, tables, and the board game Candyland, offering a wholesome way to pass the time. Lights resembling snowflakes shine on the outside of the igloo while you and your friends bask in the warmth inside with one of Geraldine's holiday drinks in-hand.

One reservation runs you about $300, or $50 per-person for a party of six, and will land you your own dedicated igloo, one complimentary bottle of champagne, and your own private waiter for little bites and other menu items.

If you like the idea of a Christmas-themed rooftop bar but aren't thrilled about the price tag of a personal igloo reservation, head to Edge Rooftop Lounge for some festive drinks, live music, and fresh faux snowfall every hour on the hour through December 25.

Edge Rooftop Lounge is located on the fourth-floor terrace at the JW Marriott Austin, and offers stellar views of the city along with a spectacular display of Christmas lights.

With Christmas just weeks away, there's no time like the present to get your crew together to see what kind of holiday spirit you can muster up on a day or night out on the town.

Cover photo: Screenshot/Instagram/gibsonstbar & geraldinesatx

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