If you’ve watched the new “Dallas” TV show, the opening sequence features the new Omni Dallas, with its colorful neon lights. The hotel truly represents the spirit of Dallas – bold and brash. Opened in 2011, the certified Gold LEED Dallas Omni is actually owned by the city of Dallas, connecting directly via skybridge to the Dallas Convention Center. The hotel is ultra modern with all the latest amenities, and a showplace of Texas cuisine, art and sophistication. We had a chance to stay here and discovered a whole new side of Texas to love.
Lunch at Texas Spice was amazing. This farm-to-table restaurant boasts a sumptuous buffet filled with Long Horn favorites, emphasizing local ingredients and southern-style cooking. Dallas is a big sports town with five pro sports teams, so it’s only right they have a state-of-the-art sports bar that was as big as, well, the state of Texas! I also had a chance to peruse their Collections Gift Shop – a one-of-a-kind showplace featuring Texas’ best retailers, artisans, local foods and wine.
But would I able to see those glorious lights from the hotel? You bet. The view from the Uptown Terrace, the urban pool deck, provided views of the changing lights as well as the glittering Dallas skyline. Sitting there at night – warm breezes blowing, sipping a cocktail – was nothing short of spectacular.
The Omni caters to children and I had one in tow. Their Omni Sensational Kids program – which included a Discovery welcome backpack – helped keep my Riley busy with crayons, a magnifying glass and lots more fun stuff. It was easy to see why they were included in “Parents” magazine’s “10 Best Hotel Chains for Families.” As a member of their Select Guest program, I also enjoyed special privileges, such as complimentary wi-fi and a free morning beverage delivered to my door. If you’re headed to Dallas for either business or pleasure, put the Omni at the top of your list. www.omnihotels.com/dallas 214-744-6664.
Perot Museum Rocks
Ross Perot did more than run for the U.S. presidency; he donated funds to create the Perot Museum of Nature and Science. This exquisite building, exhibits and spectacular children’s museum uses hands-on discovery to serve as a living science lesson. My favorite was the Earthquake Shake where you feel like what it’s like to get caught up in a real one. In the robot arena, I built a robot for racing. This is a fascinating place to spend the day for everyone. Perotmuseum.org.
JFK Assassination – Was it Really 50 Years Ago?
If you’re like most people of age, you remember exactly where you were when you heard the news about President Kennedy. Seeing the grassy knoll and book depository is something else. For one thing, it’s much smaller than I anticipated. Tour the Sixth Floor Museum at Dealey Plaza, chronicling the assassination and legacy of President Kennedy, or hang out in front of the memorial and hear about conspiracy theories for a price from “history vendors.” Walk through the JFK Memorial Plaza, a meaningful remembrance. Dallas marks this tragic event come November with a series of events called “The 50th – Honoring the Memory of President John F. Kennedy.” 50thhonoringjohnfkennedy.com.
A Foodie Town
More than just steaks and Tex-Mex, Dallas is a town of a thousand cuisines. A great way to soak up Dallas history is on a food tasting/cultural walking tour. Eat your way through Uptown, a mile north of downtown. After you’re done, ride the free McKinney Avenue Trolley to the new Klyde Warren Park in the Dallas Arts District, or explore West Village’s one-of-a-kind shops and boutiques.
The arts, theater, rodeo, Dallas Arboretum, Galleria Dallas for shopping and tons more, this is one hot destination. Come see for yourself! www.visitdallas.com.