With the UCC Summit in Dallas, Texas right around the corner, we’ve been doing a lot of thinking about the Lone Star State. Partners from across North America will congregate at the Glass Cactus at the Gaylord Texan for the premiere Wildix event of the year, but what do you do if you get there a little early, leave a little late, or want to spend an evening out on the town?
Lucky for you, we’ve put together a list of our favorite places to see, shop, and dine around the town whether you’ve got an extra hour or an extra day. Take a look and start planning your extra Dallas adventures after you register for the UCC Summit 2020!
An Extra Hour
If you feel like taking time to relax but you’ve got a timeline to keep, Relâche Spa offers nail services, massages and facials all in under an hour. If your back is killing you after spending a day full of travel, the Back in a Minute 25 massage is described as a “Customized Touch Destress Massage” and works to melt tension, soothe the mind and harmonize the body. If you’re traveling from up north where the air is extra dry, you might opt for the HydraFacial 25 that promises to be soothing, moisturizing, non-irritating and immediately effective. You can check out their full list of services and book an appointment here.
Located inside Zeppole in the atrium of the Gaylord Texan, Silver Bar is reminiscent of a saloon from the Old West. A huge mural of cowboys and cattle overlooks the bar that serves a variety of draft beers, cocktails, wine and more. The only thing missing is an old-timey piano playing the Westworld theme song.
Image courtesy of Gaylord Texan
If your trip to Texas doesn’t include a visit to San Antonio and the famed River Walk, head over to the Riverwalk Cantina in the Gaylord Texan atrium for the feel of the river without all of the travel! Serving delicious Tex-Mex and traditional Mexican cuisine, you’ll get a taste of what Texas has to offer while enjoying an atmosphere that truly reflects an al fresco experience. (If you’re going for lunch, get the Smoked Brisket Tacos. Trust me.)
A Few Extra Hours
Located in the heart of Downtown Dallas, Reunion Tower offers panoramic views of the city, several dining options, cocktails and more! With several ticket options, you can choose when and how many times you ascend the tower to take photos or enjoy gourmet cuisine. You can grab tickets here.
Image courtesy of Texas Trees Foundation
Since 1994, Pioneer Plaza has been a focal point with historical significance in downtown Dallas. Honoring the history of the area, the bronze statues are a nod to the trails that originally brought settlers to Dallas. Surrounded by native plants, the recreated cattle drive features longhorn steers and three cowboys on horseback. The creation is adjacent to the Dallas Convention Center at Young and Griffin between the historical Pioneer Cemetery and the Dallas Convention Center. Once a boring parking lot, Pioneer Plaza is now the second most-visited landmark in downtown Dallas.
It’s a 30-foot tall, alarmingly realistic rendered sculpture of a human eyeball in a fenced garden. While extremely weird, it’s also quintessential Dallas.
Image courtesy of Wild Bill’s Western Store
If you’re looking for an authentic pair of boots to commemorate your trip to Texas, look no further than Wild Bill’s Western Store. Described as a “Must See” in the city, it’s been a part of the retail landscape for more than 50 years. With such a rich history (and the celebrity clientele to back it up), Wild Bill’s fully embodies “Texas Heritage.”
The experience of shopping at Wild Bill’s starts before you even step inside. Hanging above the entrance, you’ll find a 20-foot longhorn and a 10-foot silver and gold belt buckle. The awnings that surround the store are covered in artwork depicting the Old West and offer a great photo op for shoppers.
As soon as you step inside, you’re met with the deep, rich smell of leather. Browse thousands of pairs of boots as well as hats, western apparel and accessories that personify the Texan style. Take a seat in a longhorn chair while you’re waiting to try on your size boots or saddle on up to the bar that’s original to the building. Quite literally. The barstools are saddles. Did we mention that Wild Bill’s is authentic?
Since 1873 Deep Ellum has been an important part of the downtown Dallas scene. Historically it’s played host to industry, music and the arts providing a space for both innovation and creativity. While Deep Ellum only covers .5 square miles, it’s home to over 400 businesses with 60+ restaurants; 50+ bars; 25+ live music, arts, and entertainment venues; 30+ shops and galleries; and 5 craft breweries and distilleries with over 100 murals gracing the neighborhood. Easily walkable, it’s a great way to experience a lot of Dallas without a lot of travel.
An Extra Day
Founded in 1903, the Dallas Museum of Art is among the 10 largest art museums in the United States and features an incredible array of art with over 24,000 works ranging 5,000 years of history. Representing spectrum of world cultures, the Dallas Art Museum is located in the heart of the nation’s largest arts district. The museum serves as a catalyst for community creativity, engaging people of all ages and backgrounds with a diverse spectrum of programming, from exhibitions and lectures to concerts, literary events, and dramatic and dance presentations. The museum offers free general admission and has welcomed more than 3.2 million visitors since 2013.
The Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Gardens cover 66 acres of beautiful grounds, ready for you to explore. Walkways with tunnels of crape myrtle trees, gardens full of sculptures and infinity pools, and sweeping beds of flowers and plants all await you in one of the nation’s best botanical gardens. Because of the time of year, tickets are only $5 in early February, offering you a beautiful and affordable option for spending some time outside.
Image courtesy of The Sixth Floor Museum at Dealey Plaza
As the site of the assassination President John F. Kennedy on November 22, 1963, Dealey Plaza is the most visited landmark in downtown Dallas. The Sixth Floor Museum at Dealey Plaza is located within the former Texas School Book Depository building where three spent cartridge shells and a sniper’s perch were found 45 minutes after President Kennedy and Texas Governor John Connally were shot. The museum offers historical context for JFK’s life, presidency, death and the aftermath of a grieving nation.
If you don’t want to venture inside the museum, the plaza outside offers visitors a chance to see the exact spot where JFK was killed. The street is marked with a white ‘X’ to indicate the spot where Kennedy was hit, and you can venture over to the famed Grassy Knoll. The Museum Store and Cafe across the street offers a wide selection of books, films, and historical reproductions of the news of the assassination. Swing by the cafe and grab a scoop of Henry’s Homemade Ice Cream; it’s well worth the high price. The museum suggests you get your tickets ahead of time.
If you’re planning a visit to Dealey Plaza, it’s important to note that there are typically “tour guides” in the plaza talking about the events surrounding the assassination. The “tour guides” are not typically associated with the museum and can sometimes feature graphic images. If you’re squeamish, it may be best to avoid them.
Image courtesy of The Dallas Morning News
The M-Line Trolley is a free, fully-restored trolley that provides plenty of hop-on/hop-off options around the city. With 42 designated stops and 4.6 miles of track and lines, the air-conditioned and heated vintage trolleys are a great way to get around Uptown Dallas without having to do a lot of walking. This unique, fun and reliable public transportation serves the city of Dallas 365 days a year with hours ranging from 7 am – 12 am (midnight) depending on the day and takes about an hour to run the full route. You can check out the schedules and route, along with points of interest along the way by clicking here.