Before the over abundance of Video on Demand, video stores were almost the only way to find most movies. Having vastly more of a selection than movie theaters, you could always discover older movies you had never heard of, or find goofy-awesome looking movies made for video.
Across the country, video rental is a dying business. But Austin loves its movie rental stores and these local businesses remain strong here.
Texas’ Oldest Video Store: I Luv Video
The number one place to go for movie rentals in Austin is I Luv Video, where you can buy and sell movies as well. Touting itself as Texas’ oldest and largest video store for over 30 years, I Luv Video has been an Austin staple for as long as I can remember. When I was a kid, I would wander around the aisles looking at all the cool box art for the tapes, trying to figure out what those movies were like. I even remember when they used to make pizza at their former Braker and I-35 location.
The rental rates at I Luv Video are reasonable and accessible for the average person. Stock titles are currently priced at $2.75 for 5 nights, and new releases are $4 for 2 nights. Like you would expect, there are late fees. But there’s also a bonus: if you turn in new releases a day early, you get a $1 credit on your account.
Today there are two I Luv Video locations, and both of them are equally fun to wander around. One of them is located on the Drag at 2915 Guadalupe, next to EcoClean.
If you’re at Spider House or another nearby business, it’s always fun to stop by and look at their selection. Most of their DVDs and VHS tapes are pretty rare, so you’re guaranteed to find something cool to rent.
I Luv Video’s other location is at 4803 Airport next to Coldtowne Theater. Their selection is huge. Even if you’re not looking for anything specific, you’re bound to find something you’ve never heard of or forgot existed.
Both locations are open every day from 10 AM to midnight.
- One thing unique about I Luv Video is Free Beer Tuesday. Yes, they offer free beer from 6 PM-midnight, every Tuesday. The Guadalupe location has rotating beers in bottles and cans, while the Airport location uses kegs from companies (many of them are local) like LiveOak, Circle, Rognes, Black Star Co-op and PBR.
- In addition to organizing movies by traditional genres, I Luv Video also categorizes by director. This is really cool if you’re trying to follow a specific director’s filmography.
- Lastly, both locations offer LPs, CDs, DVDs, Laserdics, Beta, Reel-to-Reel, 8-tracks, Cassettes and video games. They also sell vintage film and band t-shirts and locally designed clothes by Radio Fonix.
With so many new residents and novel local businesses popping up constantly, Austinites appreciate any taste of old Austin. With a two-story selection of VHS and DVD movies for rent and purchase, and vintage toys as decor, I Luv Video allows visitors to discover and rediscover old movies while walking through pop culture history.
4803 Airport Blvd. – Website
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