Are you a single woman aged 60 and over seeking a solo retreat that caters to your unique spirit of adventure?
Look no further than Mineral Wells, TX – a hidden gem offering a perfect overnight escape designed just for ladies like us. This quaint lil’ Texas town is a mere one-hour drive west of Ft. Worth. It’s easy to embrace the tranquility and explore the charm of this enchanting journey to celebrate independence and self-discovery.
My adventure began as I drove into town.
The gigantic (for this western town) iconic Baker Hotel stands out amongst the flat lower buildings. It’s a historic landmark testament to the town’s enduring allure. The structure was based on the architecture of a similar hotel from Hot Springs, Arkansas. The story goes that a hotel baron who traveled to Hot Springs wanted a similar-looking Spanish revivalist-styled hotel in Mineral Wells and had it built.
As I wandered through the historic downtown area, I was transported back to the early part of the 20th century, surrounded by vintage shops and cozy cafes.
Mineral Wells is not just a destination; it’s an invitation to immerse yourself in America’s recent past. I enjoyed the freedom to explore at my own pace and savor the warm baths of this welcoming community.
I stayed at The Crazy Water Hotel and relished exploring the view from the rooftop – the vast expanse of the Texas land. The top floor of the hotel now functions as a catering space for all types of events. Formerly, it was a ballroom where Larry Hagman’s mother taught dance lessons.
The Crazy Water Hotel offers all the modern comforts that seamlessly blend with old-timey charm in this seven-story hotel. There are over 60 rooms/apartments, ranging from $119 for a weeknight retreat to $423 for a hospitality suite; it has a quirky allure.
The cherry on top is that all but two rooms boast full kitchens, giving guests the perfect excuse to channel their inner chefs. The lobby looks like the interior of a grand train station, with massively high ceilings, woodwork around the doors and windows, and globular chandeliers reminiscent of NYC or San Francisco depots.
The hotel features the Rickhouse Brewing brewpub, retail shopping, a small museum of curios, and The Crazy Coffee and Water Bar, nestled in the original 1927 bar. I went for a water tasting before viewing a blueprint for the upscale spa and mineral bathhouse now under construction in the basement of the hotel. The plan is to open the bathhouse and spa sometime next year.
The Crazy Coffee and Water Bar lets you sip on three types of Crazy Water: Crazy No.2 is drawn from a well 250 ft deep. Crazy No. 3 is medium-content mineral water drawn from 350 ft. deep, and Crazy No. 4, my favorite, is full-bodied, removed from 120 ft deep with the highest mineral content. You can also indulge in a menu of exotic Joe at this bar. I didn’t get why there was no Crazy No. 1?
Until the Crazy Water Hotel’s spa is ready, the hotel sends its customers down the road to experience thermal mineral baths and savor a rejuvenating experience at Crazy Water Spa.
I treated myself to a culinary experience as the evening descended. Whether you prefer the intimacy of a quiet dinner for one or the lively ambiance of a social setting, The Second Bar & Kitchen in the hotel accommodates every desire. Engage in conversations with fellow travelers as I did, or savor the joy of your own company as you indulge in a culinary exploration.
Executive Chef and James Beard nominee David Bull runs The Second Bar & Kitchen. Bull and his family moved to Mineral Wells after 20-plus years of owning and operating many leading restaurants in Texas. In 1999, he shaped the Driskill Grill, based in the Driskill Hotel in Austin, into one of Austin’s best restaurants and competed on the Food Network’s “Iron Chef America.”
I started the evening meal with a Passionfruit Paloma made with the fruit, lime, grapefruit soda, and rosemary agave, switching the Mescal to vodka. Sitting next to me was a friendly newlywed couple from Oklahoma who gave me all sorts of sightseeing tips for Mineral Wells. This was the wife’s second trip to this town. She seemed to love it which is the reason she brought her fiancé along for her second ride.
I usually don’t keep red meat at home, so I splurged on a NY Striploin, served on a wooden cutting board. Made to medium perfection, the 14 ounces were gone in no time. My server recommended Troublemaker, a red mix of Syrah, Grenache, Mourvedre, Zinfandel, and Petite Sirah. The smoothness and full-bodied flavor blew me away. I’d never heard about this wine; now it’s on my “to buy” list.
The chef made me crispy rounds of hashbrowns, reminding me of my grandmother’s potato latkes on the inside, crunchy and stringy with just the right amount of chew. For the side, I had the farm-to-market veggies: cooked butternut squash and broccolini and a dash of fresh arugula mixed with a dijonnaise sauce. That worked surprisingly well for warm vegetables.
For dessert, I had chocolate cherry cheesecake. It tasted like billowy mousse chocolate with bits of dark chocolate. The real cherries on top were glazed in gelatin sweet enough not to interfere with the cake’s richness. The restaurant is open Thursdays through Sundays.
As you immerse yourself in the culinary excellence of The Second Bar & Kitchen, take a moment to appreciate the eccentric spirit of Mineral Wells. Whether you’re captivated by tales of yesteryear or enchanted by the quirky allure of Crazy Water, a stay in Mineral Wells promises an unforgettable experience.
Have you been seeking a solo retreat that caters to your unique spirit of adventure? Did you find a place you’d like to share with the community?
Tags Solo Travel