Most of the public educators who catch their first glimpse of the Holdsworth Center, the new $200 million complex where they can “learn, reflect, and grow,” have the same reaction. After clearing the guardhouse and curving down a road that slopes seductively toward Lake Austin, they cannot believe their eyes.
What appears before them is a stunning campus endowed by H-E-B chairman Charles Butt, designed by the San Antonio–based firm Lake Flato, and landscaped by Austin’s Ten Eyck team. Limestone buildings, featuring myriad coffee bars and artwork by the likes of Alex Katz and Ellsworth Kelly, are accentuated with rich, sorrel-hued wood trim. Dormitories have been outfitted with screened porches and fireplaces. Native plants bloom in swirling patterns along meditative pathways. A cozy, après-ski-like bar encourages impromptu breakout sessions, and a two-story boathouse extends over the water with a view of the Austin Country Club. In other words, Holdsworth resembles a retreat designed for the comfort of the most exclusive one-percenters.Read More