It’s no secret that Nevada offers world-renowned hospitality at lavish resort-casinos. But in the Silver State, our quirks are also our perks. If you’re looking for a vacation that’s irresistibly different, Nevada’s array of unique retreats and unusual accommodations have got you covered.

Grandma's Restaurant and Magnolia Gallery & Inn on main street Austin. Historic buildings.

Enjoy a suite stay in a historic building renovated for comfort and charm.

View of Austin from above, sagebrush, clouds, mountainsBY RACHEL WRIGHT

The “Loneliest Road in America” is anything but, and smack dab in the middle of this famed road trip across Nevada lies the welcoming community of Austin. The town sprang to life during a silver mining rush in the 1860s, and the Austin of today features stately 19th-century buildings, intriguing historic sites, and access to remarkable outdoor recreation. Take advantage of everything the area has to offer and let the charming Magnolia Gallery & Inn serve as your adventure basecamp.

Inside of a room at Magnolia Gallery & Inn, sink, chairs, tableThe Magnolia Gallery & Inn was originally constructed in 1864—the same year Nevada became a state—and has had many past lives. The building has been a brothel, a grocery store, a saloon, a music store, and an ice cream parlor. Now, proprietors Laurian Arbo and Ken Merkes are honored to add another chapter to the story.

Inside of a room at Magnolia Gallery & Inn, sink, refrigerator, table, chairs, sofa“The building captured our hearts, and we felt that we could refurbish it, add modern conveniences, and offer an experience for travelers who enjoy history and old buildings,” Arbo says.

The renovated property features two spacious upstairs parlor suites available to guests traveling without children or pets. Settle into a cozy living room with plenty of comfy seating, or fully unwind in a queen bed outfitted with soft sheets and plenty of pillows. Both suites also include a private bathroom and kitchenette with microwave, bar sink, and apartment-size refrigerator. 

Arbo or Merkes will likely check you in, and history buffs and curious souls will delight in the anecdotes they share about the storied property. One such story? The size of the bathroom in the Main Suite is the same size as one entire bedroom and living quarters when the building operated as a brothel—there were nine rooms on the second floor.

As residents of Nevada for 25 years, Arbo and Merkes have explored extensively and will happily share recommendations with travelers. 

“The serenity and history of the area are what drew us to Austin,” says Arbo. “We love the freedom and the recreational opportunities, and we feel a deep connection to the Old West in Nevada.”

Inside of a room at Magnolia Gallery & Inn, bed, dresser, closet


DELIGHTFUL DIVERSIONS Less than a mile from the Magnolia Gallery & Inn, Stokes Castle is a must-see stop on the western edge of Austin. Follow a short, winding dirt road to the top of an overlook with sweeping views of the Reese River Valley and you'll find a three-story stone structure built by a wealthy mining and railroad magnate in the 1890s.  Hikers and bikers can take advantage of Austin's access to the rugged and remote Toiyabe Range, home to the Toiyabe Crest Trail and the Austin-Toiyabe Mountain Bike Trail Network.  Before leaving town, pop into Jason's Art Gallery to shop gorgeous turquoise jewelry of all colors, some of which was mined in the Silver State. The boutique has rings, necklaces, bracelets, and earrings, as well as crystals, cabochons, beads, and antiques.  While overnighting at the Magnolia Gallery & Inn, sate your appetite at Grandma's, the next-door restaurant that bills itself as "Austin's living room." Homemade pizza, tacos, and salad (plus a full bar) are extra satisfying after a day of exploration. Open seasonally in the summer, Champs serves up super tasty burgers from a food truck. 

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