Tag Archives: western texas

Experience: Thunderbird Hotel

Thunderbird Hotel in Marfa Texas

The quintessential neon “Hotel” sign, vintage lounge chairs around the pool, cacti in the zen yard. The rugged exterior of Thunderbird Hotel in Marfa, Texas is a brilliant contrast to the rustic and modern interiors.

Z and I stayed here during our Western Texas roadtrip, after our initial night in a teepee. It was nice to move somewhere with indoor plumbing, and Thunderbird Hotel was definitely the right choice for us.Thunderbird Hotel in Marfa Texas

Thunderbird Hotel in Marfa Texas

After checking in across the street at the newly opened Capri (the hotel’s check in and store mainstay), we made our way through the garden and up to our second floor corner suite. The room was cozy and the cowhide rug and leather butterfly chair made us feel right at home, considering we have both in our DC abode. White tiling flanked the bathroom where we found fluffy white towels and the most amazing smelling bath necessities by local Texas company Dear Clark.

Thunderbird Hotel in Marfa Texas

Thunderbird Hotel in Marfa Texas

Thunderbird Hotel in Marfa Texas

Thunderbird Hotel in Marfa Texas

Thunderbird Hotel in Marfa Texas

After venturing out to explore Marfa we came back for an after dinner drink at Capri, which is just about the coolest hotel bar I’ve been in outside of Manhattan. I found that the owners are from New York City and had the whole staff trained by NYers, which explains the unique taste and the care in the crafting of everything from their interiors to the cocktails. We ran into a shop owner we’d seen earlier in the day (in a town of 2,000 it’s hard not to keep seeing the same people) and chatted the night away about all things Texas.

Now, Thunderbird Hotel isn’t for everyone. It lacks a television, telephone, mini fridge, and other “amenities” like that; probably under the guise that you’re visiting a new place to explore and not lounge around with TV. But for us adventurers it was the perfect place to lay our heads and spend lazy mornings in each others company.

Thunderbird Hotel in Marfa Texas

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Texas Photodiary

I think it’s true when they say “Everything’s Bigger in Texas”. The sky is a massive, cloudless pristine blue wall that lights up at night, full of bright shining stars you can see so clearly (due to the lack of light pollution). The farmlands are larger than I’ve ever seen before and can span a whole town (literally; there’s a town in Western Texas that is just this one farm). Even the people, they’re big in friendliness.

On my first trip to Texas I feel like I only cracked the surface of this once-independent-nation. It’s a vastly large space with so much variance. We started our trip in Austin, where a friend suggested Jacoby’s for dinner. AMAZING. We closed the place down on a Wednesday night and headed to some live music down the road at Stay Gold. After narrowly avoiding a winter storm it was so nice to be able to walk around in a light jacket and enjoy the warmth that I hadn’t felt in months.

After a cozy night we went out for breakfast tacos; that omnipresent Tex-Mex is enough to make me want to move South in itself! After fueling up we hit the road west for a cool seven hours. We watched the terrain go from dry and rocky to lush and tree laden, to mountains and plateaus, arriving into Marfa for sunset and moonrise.


Resident cat, Marmalade of El Cosmico

Marfa shop Freda

As previously stated, Marfa was easy to explore within just a few hours. With four days in the Western Texas area we were also able to explore the nearby towns of Alpine, Marathon, Fort Davis (for a star party!), and Terlingua (post on that place coming soon!)

afternoon delight at The Saddle Club in Alpine

Nearby Terlingua is the Big Bend National Park, which borders on Mexico’s Chihuahan Desert. Z and I took a sunset horseback ride through the park and it may have been one of my favorite experiences of the trip.

What do you think of my trip? Have you ever been to this part of Texas?

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Desert Dreams

It’s been about two weeks, but already I’m somehow missing the hot-and-cold of the Texan Desert. Starting my day in a warm wooly coat and shedding my layers as the sun warms the day was a fun way to live where you get the best of both styles!

Romwe top (only $12!)
Madewell Flea Market Flares (get em here!)
Preen Sunglasses via Ditto (get em here)
Vintage/thrifted booties (similar here, here, and here)

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Experience: El Cosmico

El Cosmico Marfa
Every year I resolve to visit at least one new state. 2016’s came early in the year with a surprise trip to Texas that Z organized as a Christmas gift. One of the most exciting aspects of the trip was being able to spend a night in an actual teepee, in the desert of Western Texas. After hearing that desert temps can be utterly freezing I was a littler nervous, but the prospect still had me ready to give it a try. We flew into Austin spending a night in Music City and then hit the road for 7 hours west to the art hub of Marfa.
El Cosmico Marfa
El Cosmico Marfa
El Cosmico Marfa
We arrived to Marfa’s El Cosmico around sunset, just in time to check out our teepee among the changing colors of the sky. We made our way to our space, one of 3 teepees on the “campground” nestled between decked out RVs, yurts, and safari tents. We started a fire (they’re gas run so it was easy and fast to light!), turned on our heated mattresses (#heavenly), and snuggled in with a bottle of red wine from the El Cosmico store.
El Cosmico Marfa
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El Cosmico Marfa
El Cosmico Marfa
El Cosmico Marfa
After a warm night’s sleep (and a couple of freezing layered runs to the communal, space heater-run bathroom) my internal clock woke me up in time to catch the planetary alignment and watch the sunrise. When you’re out in the flatlands of the desert the sun rises fast, but I tried my best to capture the ombre colors racing across the sky. It helped that Western Texas is notorious for its clear skies that have some of the best stargazing, and it totally lived up to it’s name!
El Cosmico Marfa
El Cosmico Marfa

We spent the morning grabbing a lazy breakfast at Buns N’ Roses and enjoying the warm fire as the temperature outside raced towards warmth. We made another lap around the El Cosmico store, stocking up on postcards, tee shirts, and bumper stickers before heading out to our next hotel-and a much needed shower (because even though the temps were warming I still wasn’t ready for an outdoor shower in January).

 

All in All, I totally loved staying at El Cosmico.

While it’s known to be packed (as the whole town swells with tourists) from mid-March through November it was great to be able to see and stay in such a cool and unique area which was perfect for bloggertunities. If you ever head to Marfa I definitely recommend El Cosmico for at least one night. I suggest the teepee if it’s a more romantic trip (thanks Z :*) but if you’re going with your girls then I suggest the RV campers, which sleep more people and each have their own (outdoor) shower and bathroom.

Be sure to stay tuned for more from our trip to Texas!

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