360 West February 2015 : Page 96

Destinations Rancho Loma Roughly two hours and some change west of Fort Worth, near the town of Coleman, this chill and fabulous restaurant finally snagged big kudos in a recent Texas Monthly story. Go for owner Laurie Williamson’s sublime cooking, served with sides of friendly chat by husband Robert. And spend the night in one of five guest rooms (polished concrete floors, Italian linens) in Rest, the contemporary bunkhouse the couple built a few steps away from their renovated ranch house. Trust us, after a feast of spicy grilled quail, seared sea scallops and bone-in Akaushi rib-eye, plus the bottles of wine you brought along, you‘ll be happy to walk to your room. Late-night chats by the fire pit and morning coffee on the communal deck outside Photos by Ralph Lauer your room make for a simple, satisfying retreat. Dinner is about $80, not including tax and tip. Overnight stays are $190-$240 and include a full breakfast. 2969 County Road 422, Talpa; 325-636-4556 or rancholoma.com. Travaasa On Austin’s outskirts, the spa-resort caters to body and spirit with carefully cultivated menus filled with adventure, culinary, fitness and spa-wellness experiences. Take your hiking boots and enjoy the scenery. For an encounter with your spirit, set aside time to explore the labyrinth. Maybe a horseback ride or yoga class is what’s needed. Whatever you do, you’ll be assured of a back-to-nature experience, exceptional food and drink, and rooms in rustic surroundings with sumptuous interiors. Rates from $250. 13500 FM 2769, Austin; 877-261-7792 or travaasa.com. Wake up to a treetop view of the Hill Country. Photo courtesy of Travaasa 96 February 2015 360westmagazine.com for Choose from one of five rooms, including the spacious king suite with the sexy soaking tub, below. 2 the road By June Naylor While a family vacation is all well and good, sometimes you need to make time for just the two of you, be it with your honey, sibling or best friend. Here are some of our favorite Texas places — some nearby, none too far — tailored for a short, sweet escape.

Destinations

June Naylor

Rancho Loma

Roughly two hours and some change west of Fort Worth, near the town of Coleman, this chill and fabulous restaurant finally snagged big kudos in a recent Texas Monthly story. Go for owner Laurie Williamson's sublime cooking, served with sides of friendly chat by husband Robert. And spend the night in one of five guest rooms (polished concrete floors, Italian linens) in Rest, the contemporary bunkhouse the couple built a few steps away from their renovated ranch house. Trust us, after a feast of spicy grilled quail, seared sea scallops and bone-in Akaushi rib-eye, plus the bottles of wine you brought along, you'll be happy to walk to your room. Latenight chats by the fire pit and morning coffee on the communal deck outside your room make for a simple, satisfying retreat. Dinner is about $80, not including tax and tip. Overnight stays are $190-$240 and include a full breakfast. 2969 County Road 422, Talpa; 325-636-4556 or rancholoma.com.

Travaasa

On Austin's outskirts, the spa-resort caters to body and spirit with carefully cultivated menus filled with adventure, culinary, fitness and spa-wellness experiences. Take your hiking boots and enjoy the scenery. For an encounter with your spirit, set aside time to explore the labyrinth. Maybe a horseback ride or yoga class is what's needed. Whatever you do, you'll be assured of a back-to-nature experience, exceptional food and drink, and rooms in rustic surroundings with sumptuous interiors. Rates from $250. 13500 FM 2769, Austin; 877-261-7792 or travaasa.com.

Wake up to a treetop view of the Hill Country.

Kimber Modern

A few steps away from Austin's South Congress, this urban boutique hotel in one of the city's oldest neighborhoods provides easy access to enough diversions to last several weekends. Oysters at Perla's, a turbo coffee at Jo's, white pie with spinach at Home Slice Pizza and shopping at cool stores like Stag are all just a short walk away from the Kimber. But the suites will tempt you to stay put in the comfort of spacious, modern rooms that pair clean lines with bursts of color. The wood-deck courtyard, shaded by ancient live oaks, is a good place to just hang between forays into the neighborhood. Come nighttime, the Continental Club and its live music stage are just around the corner, from $265. 110 The Circle, Austin; 512-912-1046 or kimbermodern.com.

Camp Comfort

Possibly the coolest corner of the Hill Country, the petite, German-flavored town of Comfort sits in easy reach of San Antonio but exists in a space utterly its own. Added hipness comes from the year-old boutique B&B called Camp Comfort, a collection of four suites and one cabin crafted from an 1860s bowling alley. Rustic and plush all at once, Camp Comfort's lodgings give you room to spread out and, well, camp in style. A kitchenette with all the conveniences may make you want to revel in the seclusion of your dwelling, but make a point to venture out to the big orange chairs in the courtyard and to walk down to bucolic Cypress Creek, which runs along the property. A wander around the village of Comfort takes you into plentiful shops offering antiques and home decor, books and clothing. Find a cocktail at The Cocky Rooster Bar and dinner at 814 A Texas Bistro. From $160, which includes an organic breakfast in the camp's social hall. 601 Water St., Comfort; 830-221-6090 or camp-comfort.com.

Fredericksburg Herb

Farm Cozy up in one of the cottages surrounding an expansive courtyard, curl up with a cup of tea and a book on a porch rocker, or wander the gardens. Detox with a sea-salt scrub and herbal wrap in the spa. Find something special for decorating your garden in the farm shop. If you're feeling adventurous, visit one of the dozens of nearby Hill Country wineries for a tasting and tour. Just be back at the farm in time to enjoy a leisurely dinner of tomato-basil bisque and coffee-rubbed New York strip in the Farm Haus Bistro with a bottle of local cabernet. From $179. 405 Whitney St., Fredericksburg; 830-997-8615 or fredericksburgherbfarm.com.

2 for the road

While a family vacation is all well and good, sometimes you need to make time for just the two of you, be it with your honey, sibling or best friend. Here are some of our favorite Texas places - some nearby, none too far - tailored for a short, sweet escape.

The Highland Dallas Hotel Formerly the Palomar, this chic high-rise allows quick access to the Park Cities and Greenville Avenue. A weekend stay might include a fitness class, facial and massage at Exhale Spa; a blowout and manicure at Salon Pompeo; and a dinner that includes a bacon tasting, dry-aged steak au poivre and a side of avocado fries at John Tesar's celebrated Knife (which also provides room service). Be sure to allow time for a long soak in your giant bathtub. Knife dinner package with stay, from $317; spa package with stay, from $619. 5300 E. Mockingbird Lane, Dallas; 214-520-7969 or thehighlanddallas.com.

Read the full article at http://www.bluetoad.com/article/Destinations/1916996/243877/article.html.

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