Foodbitch Travel Playbook: Operation Staycation, Family Edition at the Hilton Anatole & JadeWaters Resort
Last summer, I was lucky enough to be among the first to experience the lovely oasis that is the newly resort-ized Hilton Anatole & JadeWaters. Currently my fave spot to staycate, the Anatole has everything a family needs to have tons of summer fun without leaving the city. Sure, you could go somewhere like Great Wolf Lodge, or visit a water park and then go back home, but the luxurious, Asian-themed, cavernous Anatole with its new JadeWaters resort pools and waterpark are everything you could ever want, without droves of annoying kids or log cabin-themed rooms. It’s essentially perfect for families (or couples, or groups, for that matter!).
I mean, check out the view.
Whether with or without kids in tow, The Hilton Anatole was made for staycations.
First stop: SĒR Steak + Spirits
Stash the kids in the room or better yet, with a babysitter for the night and head up to the top floor for a seriously (or SĒRiously?) delicious dinner at SĒR Steak + Spirits. The chef is doing some really creative things in the kitchen that are absolutely working, while still producing some seriously succulent cuts of meat. At our table, after a selection of tasty cocktails and appetizers, we enjoyed a filet (my Food Bastard’s choice) and a cowboy ribeye (my steak of choice). Both were outstanding but the ribeye won the night. Another shining moment was the fun that was clearly had creating the Caesar salad, featuring a sphere filled with dressing. Oh, and some outstanding sushi, new to the menu. Also unique was a gazpacho featuring pickled cantaloupe. Amazing. Our server was also able to pair truly excellent wines with our courses (as if we didn’t have enough to drink what with our cocktails and tequila tastings), and if you’re into technology, you can flick through your drink selections on an iPad. Swipe right! All I can say is I’m glad we didn’t have very far to go to get to bed that night.
Resort Life 101
Let’s talk about why The Hilton Anatole is one of the best places in Dallas for a family staycation, or any staycation for that matter. The resort amenities. All you have to do is book a room at the extremely well-appointed Hilton Anatole and you have the opportunity to enjoy these amenities for just $25 per room, per day (plus tax). Notice I said “per room” and not per person. Because these amenities are solid.
free parking (which alone could run you $25 at a hotel, mind you)
Wi-fi for up to three devices (no nickel and diming for that shiz)
Gym & Spa access (AKA The Verandah Club & Fitness Center)
15% discount on V-Spa services
FREE dinner for kids under 12 for each adult entree purchased at CounterOffer and Media
Two coffees per day at the Starbucks inside CounterOffer
Local and 1-800 calls (those 1-900 calls are gonna cost you though)
JadeWaters for up to six people per room (This is where it gets GOOD)
So! How good is JadeWaters anyway?
Oh, it’s good. Like, you could get on a plane and fly all the way to Mexico and deal with immigration and get in a shared van or taxi and ride out to a resort and drink some drinks that make your head hurt after two sips for a few days before you have to get back in that hot taxi or van and go back to that airport to fly back home.
You could drive your own car over to The Anatole, check in, go upstairs and drop off your stuff, slather on that sunscreen, head right back downstairs to JadeWaters and ahhhhhh–drink some really great cocktails like a frosé or a Low Tide. Plus, two 180-ft. water slides, a lazy river, an adult pool with a 23-seat swim-up bar, a kids’ splash area and lots of pool boys and girls to keep you hydrated and fed all day long. Oh, and there are cabanas! Because what resort would be complete without them?
What’s new since last year?
Lots of family-friendly programming. All day, if your kids are into games, s’mores, winning prizes, dancing, splashing and scavenger hunting, there’s plenty to do. And some nights, they show movies on the big screen like “Moana” and “Finding Dory.” How cute is that?
Overall, I can’t say enough about The Hilton Anatole and its JadeWaters resort.
A few pro tips:
The busiest days at JadeWaters are Fridays and Saturdays, especially Saturdays, so a Saturday, Sunday or even a weeknight stay isn’t a bad idea if you can swing it. The resort is restricted to hotel guests, but it can still get crowded (and the pool can get a tad warm) on Fridays and Saturdays. It’s a big, big hotel and it’s the most full on the weekends. Note that JadeWaters is only open through Labor Day so get over there quick!
The best food in the hotel is definitely found at SĒR, and nobody will judge you for bellying up to the bar and ordering some soup or sushi to go because you don’t feel like getting all dolled up and springing for a steak. You can still enjoy the musical stylings of a killer pianist and the steakhouse’s lovely staff. But also, get a dang bone-in ribeye steak, cooked medium rare because amazing.
Don’t forget to walk around the gorgeous, cavernous Anatole itself. From its stained glass ceiling in the lobby to the giant elephants to the amazing hanging sculpture that changes colors in the atrium, there’s a lot to see without even leaving the hotel.
Take in a marionette show. Yup. There is a basement marionette show and it’s crazy old school and amazing. Look it up.
That’s all for now; stay tuned to see where I turn up next time on my tour de Dallas Staycations. The Foodbitch Travel Playbook is open for business.
The Hilton Anatole // 2201 N. Stemmons Freeway // hiltonanatolehotel.com
Disclaimer: My family’s hotel stay and our food and beverage bill was comped by the Hilton Anatole for the purposes of publicity on social media and so I could review my stay on this blog. That being said, I was completely honest in my opinions above (as I always am), and I continue to recommend that folks stay at the Anatole all. The. Time.