Where to Stay Now

Travaasa Austin, Austin

Jan 21, 2013 By Jordan Breal

A mere fifteen minutes after being buzzed into this secluded wellness resort about thirty miles northwest of downtown, I was floating in an infinity-edge pool with a margarita in hand. As I looked out over the wooded hills surrounding scenic (if drought-depleted) Lake Travis, I struck up a conversation with…

JW Marriott San Antonio Hill Country Resort and Spa, San Antonio

Jan 21, 2013 By Jordan Breal

Situated on a six-hundred-acre spread thirty minutes north of downtown, this 1,002-room resort has half a dozen restaurants, a six-acre water park, a 36-hole golf course, and a 26,000-square-foot spa, as well as its own Starbucks and FedEx shipping center. It’s larger than many Texas towns, not to mention every…

The Inn at Dos Brisas, Washington

Jan 21, 2013 By Jordan Breal

This secluded country escape roughly halfway between Austin and Houston should have a warning posted at its entrance: “Caution: Guests may become incurably spoiled. Stay at your own risk.” Once inside its gates, you’ll wend your way along a narrow road through acres of bucolic farmland, passing organic gardens, pastures…

Hotel Galvez, Galveston

Jan 21, 2013 By Jordan Breal

Opened in 1911 as a triumphant symbol of Galveston’s rebirth after the devastating 1900 hurricane, the coast’s premier beachfront hotel unveiled an $11 million face-lift last year on the occasion of its hundredth anniversary. So while you’ll find much-needed upgrades throughout, the Queen of the Gulf still radiates the same…

Rancho Loma Restaurant + Rest, Talpa

Jan 21, 2013 By Jordan Breal

The first thing I noticed as I pulled into this middle-of-nowhere retreat an hour south of Abilene was that I had no cell service (though Sprint customers should have better luck). The second thing I noticed was the achingly pastoral scene surrounding me: an organic garden verdant with heirloom tomatoes…

Riven Rock Ranch

Jan 21, 2013 By Jordan Breal

The most strenuous task you’ll have to accomplish during your stay at this 210-acre working ranch may be uncorking the bottle of Texas wine that’s been set out for your arrival. Unless you consider strolling through a garden or floating the Guadalupe River (bring your own tube) to be unnecessarily…

The Joule, Dallas

Jan 21, 2013 By Jordan Breal

Housed in a twenties-era downtown high-rise, this boutique hotel boasts the only underwater bird’s-eye view of the city. That’s right: if you’re daring enough to swim to the glassed-in edge of the Joule’s heated rooftop pool, which juts out a dramatic eight feet beyond the building’s facade, you can peer…

Hotel Saint Cecilia, Austin

Jan 21, 2013 By Jordan Breal

Is that Mick Jagger taking an evening swim? It’s hard to tell in the glow of the neon “SOUL” sign that illuminates the tree-lined pool at this coolly decadent boutique hotel, but spotting rock royalty here is about as surprising as encountering a lion while on safari in the Serengeti.

Where To Stay Now 2012: The Ten Best New (Or Improved!) Texas Hotels

Oct 12, 2012 By Jordan Breal

As a recent study of hotel booking trends pointed out, us Texans prefer to vacation in Texas. Since our last roundup of the state's most notable lodgings was in 2004, I thought it was high time to revisit the subject. So I drafted a list of 44 hotels that have opened or undergone significant renovations in the last 8 years. I then winnowed that list down and booked rooms (anonymously) at 24 properties across the state to determine my favorites. Although my full reviews will be available next week (the November issue goes live on TexasMonthly.com on Wednesday and hits newsstands on Thursday), I wanted to go ahead and share my ten favorites (plus the five that nearly made the cut) . . . .  

Coming Soon: Where To Stay Now 2012

Oct 11, 2012 By Jordan Breal

So I’ve been MIA from the blog lately, but I think I have a pretty good excuse, as I’ve been busy putting the finishing touches on a Texas travel feature for our November issue. For the latest installment of “Where To Stay…