The Driskill Hotel Yell: "Get Off My Lawn!!!"

Maya Baratz and Alexia Tsotsis at The Driskill
Maya Baratz and Alexia Tsotsis at The Driskill
Shannon Cottrell

There comes a time during every party hopping night when you want to stop hopping, but keep your juices flowing along with the champagne and wine. The unofficial designated venue for this practice last night was Austin's historic hotel The Driskill. Filled with elegance, ambiance, and a cozy upstairs bar and lounge area, The Driskill seemed to be the perfect end-up spot for our crew.

What started off as a group of approximately 20 techies from Los Angeles and San Francisco turned into a mosh pit of SXSW-ers from across the land within an hour. At this point of the night, the schmoozing turned into smooching, and corks popped like clockwork, as people who had been chasing one another down all night finally came together in one place.

Kurty D and Amanda Coolong
Kurty D and Amanda Coolong
Erin Broadley

The Driskill
The Driskill
Erin Broadley

VIPs: Greg and Mike
VIPs: Greg and Mike
Shannon Cottrell

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​Come 1:30 AM the crowd began to thin, and people started

brainstorming about where to get noms. It goes without saying that

whenever large groups of people try to collectively make decisions,

they dawdle and loiter. The loitering vicinity ended up being the main

entrance of The Driskill, which I'm guessing didn't make hotel

management happy. However, last call was a good hour away, so a

handful of people including one of the flashmob's hosts and new media

expert Brian Solis, angel investor Paige Craig, and some of the LA Weekly crew sat down at an outdoor table and ordered pizza.

Security threat: champagne at The Driskill
Security threat: champagne at The Driskill
Erin Broadley

Brian Solis
Brian Solis
Erin Broadley


scene was starting to dwindle, and there was a full bottle of unopened

champagne ripe for the taking. Just as our stomachs started to expand

from warp-speed bread and cheese consumption, a tall distinguished man

wearing a suit and an earpiece approached the table and grabbed Craig's

champagne glass out of his hand.

"You need to leave," said the man. "We're closing."


yet finished drinking his champagne, Craig grabbed his glass back from

the man and told him he wasn't done. Tensions and testosterone levels

began to rise.

About five seconds after that, the same hotel

manager grabbed a glass out of someone else's hand. This of course led

to an argument, and additional security men approached the table

telling us all to leave because the police would be arriving soon.


Driskill, like any Austin establishment must abide by Texas law, which

mandates that all venues stop serving alcohol after 2:00 AM. Security

approached our table at 2:15 AM, so it's understandable that they

wanted everyone out of there.

However, there is a professional

and polite way of doing things, and there is a rude and obnoxious way

of doing things. I'm going to go out on a limb and say that the course

of action The Driskill's security men took falls into the latter

category. There was no approaching the table and calmly asking the

customers, who had just dropped several bottles worth of expensive

champagne money into the bar that night and the night before, to please

leave the hotel. There was no calmness or politeness exhibited at any

point during the entire process. There was only aggressiveness and a

lot of grabbing.

Needless to say, The Driskill just lost some

damn good business this week. We weren't fans of the music they played

upstairs, anyway. Coincidentally, I am Foursquare mayor of The

Driskill. Should we have hotel management send us a free bottle of


Favorite OH of the party: "Wow, a lot of people wanna get f@!#ed at South by Southwest."

View more photos in the "SXSW Parties: TechSet, Tweethouse & (Another) Driskill Flashmob" slideshow.

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