This past weekend we finally stayed in downtown Dallas. Every time we've driven this way, I'm always amazed by the sprawl of Dallas and all the bustling suburbs; many of the suburbs are their own unique destination now. Over the weekend we took full advantage of city living, or what I consider would be "big city living" - ate lavishly and saw some art...
1201 Main Street
Views from the driveway entrance at The Westin Dallas Downtown
This hotel has it all. First, the location is amazing - we were able to park the truck and walk to several amazing restaurants during our stay. The hotel is also located just 1 mile from the American Airlines Center, which would be perfect for us, since we love watching NHL games. Being in the heart of downtown, you get some amazing views in the hotel - my favorite part.
The stunning view from the bathroom window at The Westin Dallas Downtown
But back to the hotel - we had the pleasure of staying in the corner Trinity Suite. This suite was great for our little family. Upon entering was the main living room and workspace that had its own half bathroom. This area was quite large and open, which encouraged us to hang out and relax more than we usually would in a hotel room. We were also quite excited that our pup was able to accompany us.
Relaxing in the Trinity Suite at The Westin Dallas Downtown as an entire family
Since the temperatures have dropped, it was wonderful that the hotel had an indoor heated pool. I loved the oversized loungers and the ease of access into the pool (handicap accessible) with the ramp leading into the water. This made for a fun play area for our little one to safely get in and out of the water. Both the pool and fitness center are located on the top floor of the hotel, which provides great views here, too! The fitness center was nicely spread out and well equipped with free weights, weight machines and lots of cardio equipment, including a Peleton bike. I loved being up there right at sunrise.
The pool and fitness center at The Westin Dallas Downtown
Also conveniently located in the hotel are the Grill & Vine and NOLA Brasserie restaurants. I wasn't feeling Cajun food this trip, so we only dined at the Grill & Vine - but on two occasions. The night of our arrival, we had an early dinner. When we got back to the hotel, there was live music in the lobby, so we hung out and ordered drinks and appetizers. With Christmas decorations all around us, the vibe was very relaxing and we were happy to spend the rest of the night at the hotel.
Enjoying the live music and festive decor in the lobby of The Westin Dallas Downtown
We made a second visit inside the restaurant the next morning for brunch. The service was amazing and we had a chance to meet the chef. On top of it all, the food was outstanding. I got the steak and eggs, which I assumed would include solid steak; the beef was actually slow cooked for hours and extremely tender - highly recommend!
Brunch views at The Westin Dallas Downtown - including the eggs benedict and steak + eggs
Honestly, most of the trip outside of the hotel involved trying out food in the Dallas area...
3133 Knox Street Dallas, TX
Looking back on this dining experience, I'm torn. Part of me says it wasn't worth the hype...
I've seen tons on this RH location and booked reservations exactly a month in advance to even get a spot. The only time available was 4:30, so when we arrived, our appetites weren't quite there. We opted to just order a bottle of rose and a few appetizers (shrimp cocktail + truffle french fries). For that, our bill came to over $150.
BUT the atmosphere was something else. The fancy furniture + fixtures on the store levels and the beautiful chandeliers at the restaurant really make for a special occasion. The service was wonderful and the food was great. So I'd say to reserve this experience for a time you can really relax, take in the ambiance and all the food. The menu is on the smaller side, so be sure to check that out before making a reservation. Being on the rooftop, booking a time during sunset would be your best bet!
Restoration Hardware Restaurant in Dallas, TX
(Located inside The National)
1405 Elm Street, 50th Floor
Also on the spectrum of extravagance is Kessaku. Located on the 50th floor of The National, this restaurant also gets hyped up for its amazing views. Unfortunately during our visit, the skies were grey and cloudy - cloudy enough that you couldn't see much from our seats.
They offer a high end selection of sake and some amazing cocktails. Food wise, the menu is small both in number of options and serving sizes; I'd recommend going here at the start or the end of the night. We left a little hungry even after a $200 bill...
But similar to RH, in return for the price you get amazing service and ambiance. I also enjoyed trying the sake "box", which brought out my inner child haha. You can walk around the perimeter of this floor for some city views, which cleared up before we left.
King crab roll, sake box + the observation area at Kessaku in Dallas, TX
1950 Market Center Blvd.
We rounded out our dining experience this weekend at Ferris Wheelers. This place has such a friendly and fun vibe - open to both children and dogs! They have a nice range of brunch cocktails and some great BBQ. We tried the ribs, pulled pork and the brisket. I really loved the green beans, which were extra tangy. Although they weighed out the meat, the portions still seemed quite big. My husband and I both ordered the 2 meat plates and the leftovers lasted us for 3 additional meals!
They have a great outdoor setup, with you guessed it... a ferris wheel. Unfortunately the gentleman trained to operate it was not there that day. The venue also includes an outdoor stage where they often have live music on weekends. Definitely need to go back for that!
Enjoying some Texas BBQ at the Ferris Wheelers Backyard + BBQ in Dallas, TX
877 Watters Creek Blvd
OK - we didn't eat the entire trip! On our full day in Dallas, we ventured a short distance to Allen (about a 30 minute drive) to check out the Sweet Tooth Hotel, an immersive art exhibit. I blogged about this back in March, when we visited their downtown location. The venue has since moved to the Watters Creek at Montgomery Farms in Allen. Although there are some familiar pieces from the downtown exhibition, most of it is new.
This exhibit also offers a scavenger hunt for a small prize at the end, which makes it even more interactive.
Filled with color, it's a great place to just exist and take in the art. You'll leave with some instaworthy photos, too. Tickets are available on half hour increments and allow for a one hour stay.
Some of the fun displays at the Sweet Tooth Hotel - Rewind in Allen, TX
Most trips, the hotel is just a place to rest your head, but on this trip we really enjoyed all the amenities at The Westin Dallas Downtown. We had so much fun listening to live music in the lobby, going to the pool and just hanging out in the room with a glass of wine. Dallas has quickly climbed my favorite cities list in Texas and I cannot wait to get back for our next visit - there is so much still yet to see! Thank you to Amanda + Matt at The Westin and the Sweet Tooth Hotel for making our Dallas experience extra special!