While spring break typically means a family getaway, why not break away for a romantic night or two with your significant other? A little time away from the kids, the family pets and your cellphone can be a wondrous thing, even if it means watching a movie in the room and going to sleep at 8 p.m. We’ve picked three places in Texas to recharge, including a just-opened hotel in Dallas, a new property in Austin and a bucolic retreat on acreage near Brenham.
GAGA FOR ZAZA
Enjoy a little fantasy with a sweet suite at Austin’s Hotel ZaZa
Yes, there’s a Hotel ZaZa in Dallas, but Austin’s version gives you a chance to hit up the capital city. Located in the Warehouse District, the ZaZa emulates the feel of an older building, a look that carries into the lobby. We suggest you book one of the boutique hotel’s Magnificent Seven Suites, each individually themed with unique decor and style. We like the Orient Express for its luxe colors and furnishings. You also get a fully furnished kitchen and garden terrace with outdoor seating, perfect for sipping Champagne or coffee. Little touches include candle-lit turndown service with melatonin, water and chocolate truffles. And while there’s no lack of places to dine in Austin, the ZaZa offers a pair of lushly designed options: Perfect Strangers, the lobby-level cafe, and Group Therapy, the craft cocktail lounge with its own bar menu and an all-day brunch menu on weekends. It’s located on the seventh floor and is adjacent to the pool deck. Pop in for a libation and toast your getaway, no matter how brief it might be. — Meda Kessler
400 Lavaca St., Austin, 888-880-3244, hotelzaza.com/austin
RUSTIC REFINED ROMANTIC
The Inn at Dos Brisas delivers all three in abundance
In Washington County, you can hide away on a 300-acre ranch estate in rolling countryside that offers a five-star experience. The Inn at Dos Brisas is an elegant, intimate Relais & Châteaux resort about midway between Houston and Austin. Among nine accommodations, there’s the Hacienda, an 1,800-square-foot home with fireplaces in the bedroom and living room and an extraordinary bathroom, a private plunge pool and a lovely patio, where your breakfast is served. The inn’s restaurant is supplied by a 42-acre certified organic farm, which provides produce for the most lavish meals found in Texas and for the chef’s private cooking lessons. Enjoy classes from the sommelier or simply nibble and sip at the daily wine and cheese reception. Take a horseback ride (lessons are available), book a carriage tour of the grounds or arrange a picnic lunch to savor beside a quiet pond. Tennis is another option, as is clay target shooting. In-suite spa services can be arranged, too. Or just enjoy the sunset (or sunrise) and a little quiet time away from it all. Book online at dosbrisas.com. — June Naylor
10000 Champion Drive, Washington, 979-277-7750, dosbrisas.com
The views are stunning inside and out at the Hall Arts Hotel in Dallas.
Reasons to spend a romantic weekend in the Arts District don’t get any better than the new Hall Arts Hotel, which sits within a few steps of the Meyerson Symphony Center and Winspear Opera House. This luxury hotel distinguishes itself with an unparalleled dedication to — you might have guessed it — art. Owned by longtime Big D arts patrons and collectors Craig and Kathryn Hall, the contemporary hotel — designed by the city’s HKS Architects and New York’s Bentel & Bentel — showcases more than 100 commissioned works by artists from around Texas and the world, including a commanding sculpture in the entry drive made from volcanic stone, Organoleptic, by Mexico’s Pedro Reyes. You won’t need to leave the hotel to dine, thanks to chef Eric Dreyer, known for years as chef de cuisine at Fearing’s Restaurant at The Ritz-Carlton Dallas and now shining in his own right at Ellie’s, the in-house restaurant. The spacious guest rooms offer beds fitted with Frette linens, a shower and/or shower and tub and a bedside tablet that allows you to adjust drapes, select TV options and order room service; we especially like the corner rooms with lots of windows. Thoughtful touches abound, starting at check-in: Guests are offered a complimentary glass of a Hall Wine varietal, as the art-loving proprietors also are owners of award-winning Napa Valley wineries. Rooms from about $200. — June Naylor
1717 Leonard St., Dallas, 214-953-1717, hallartshotel.com