Photo courtesy of Basecamp Terlingua
Great escapes in the Lone Star State
They say everything’s bigger in Texas, but these small escapes prove that bigger isn’t always better. From repurposed jail cells to bubbles in the middle of the West Texas desert, here are 10 of the best places to get away from it all in the Lone Star State.
Photo courtesy of The Cell Block
The Cell Block | Clifton
What once served as a small town city jail has been transformed into one of the state’s most quirky getaways, The Cell Block. This one-room hotel in Clifton’s Art Alley (about halfway between Austin and Dallas) comes equipped with a queen bed, full bathroom, fire pit, rooftop deck and a collection of vintage photographs and records for your musical pleasure.
Photo courtesy of Lydia Schrandt
Doves Rest Cabins | Canyon
Staying at one of the cabins at Doves Rest puts you right at the edge of Palo Duro Canyon, the second largest canyon in the country. Each cabin offers unobstructed views of "The Grand Canyon of Texas," while some also feature outdoor hot tubs, grills and porch swings for taking it all in.
Amenities like fully stocked kitchens, satellite TV, Wi-Fi and wood-burning fireplaces make the spaces extra homey, especially during winter.
Photo courtesy of Carly Summers Photography / The Wayback Cafe and Cottages
The Wayback Cafe and Cottages | Austin
Tucked into the Texas Hill Country outside Austin, these eight tiny cottages come adorned with organic linens and handcrafted furnishings. Guests enjoy Hill Country views, a saltwater swimming pool and a sense of quiet, even though the hotel is just 15 minutes from Downtown Austin.
Photo courtesy of Knoxy Knox / Rancho Pillow
Rancho Pillow | Round Top
This 20-acre property in southeast Texas feels straight out of an artist’s daydream, and it is. Folk art finds and curiosities adorn every corner, whether you’re staying in the 18th-century Dutch barn, storage shack-turned-Love Shack, Tower House or the Teepee.
Photo courtesy of Basecamp Terlingua
Basecamp Terlingua | Terlingua
There’s no better way to experience the wide open spaces and certified dark skies of West Texas than a stay inside a Bubble at Basecamp Terlingua. These unique rooms allow you to sleep under the stars, even in the dead of winter. If you can’t snag a Bubble, the property also features tipis, lotus tents, casitas and remodeled vintage trailers.
Photo courtesy of Steve Workman / Tres Lunas Resort
Tres Lunas Resort | Mason
Expect "Texas Zen ranch hospitality" at Tres Lunas Resort, situated in Texas Hill Country halfway between Mason and Fredericksburg. The 112-acre estate has an outdoor infinity edge pool for summers and hot tub for cool winter days. And you'll find cozy accommodations in a poolside suite, three-bedroom casita or the rather unique Sheriff’s Office, a room inside a vintage jail cell.
Photo courtesy of Rancho Loma
Rancho Loma | Talpa
A five-room boutique in central Texas south of Abilene, Rancho Loma gives visitors a place to relax, with views over the rolling Texas terrain and luxurious amenities such as in-room espresso, free Wi-Fi and Frette linens. Some rooms include freestanding soaking tubs and private outdoor showers.
Photo courtesy of Presidio La Bahia
Presidio La Bahia | Goliad
History buffs will love staying in The Quarters, the sole room available for guests at this 18th-century Spanish fort and mission. The intimate, two-bedroom apartment has a fireplace and kitchen, and guests get after-hours access to the entire inner courtyard of the Presidio.
To up the cozy factor, turn off the lamps, light a candle and wrap up in a blanket while basking in the safety of the thick stone walls.
Photo courtesy of River Road Treehouses
River Road Treehouses | New Braunfels
Stay among centuries-old cypress trees at the Guadalupe River Cabins in New Braunfels. These six treehouse cabins overlook a creek that feeds into the Guadalupe River, and each includes a fully stocked kitchen, satellite TV and Wi-Fi to keep you connected.
The outdoor fire pits are a perfect spot to cuddle up with a blanket and a bottle of Texas wine.
Photo courtesy of Wildcatter Ranch
Wildcatter Ranch | Graham
This working cattle ranch in North Texas Hill Country – just 90 minutes from Dallas – doubles as a luxury guest ranch. Guests can explore 25 miles of trails on rides guided by Texas cowboys, swim in an infinity edge pool and sink their teeth into hand-cut mesquite grilled steaks at the onsite restaurant.