Review: Rosewood Mansion on Turtle Creek
By Luxury Travel magazine | Published #70, Winter 2017
Few things have survived Dallas’s tumultuous history, but Rosewood Mansion is one of them. More than a century has passed since the palatial private estate of a cotton baron was built along Turtle Creek Boulevard. Following a fire that destroyed large parts of the building, much of the structure was rebuilt during the early 1920s, with the owners taking inspiration largely from the Renaissance architecture of Spain, Italy and France. Since then the mansion has passed through several owners, hosting exuberant society parties and guests such as Franklin D Roosevelt and Tennessee Williams, before oil heiress Caroline Rose Hunt transformed the manor into a boutique hotel and restaurant in 1980.
Rosewood Mansion sits in the upscale Oak Lawn neighbourhood, a vibrant and trendy area that has long been known as the heart of Dallas’s gay community. Mostly walkable and full of bars, restaurants and shops, the district is known for its community events and fun nights out, but is also home to quieter, upscale residential areas. Situated just north of the city’s energetic Arts District and five minutes from the downtown CBD, the hotel is still close enough to the centre of town to take advantage of the shopping, dining and culture Dallas has to offer.
Look and feel
The mansion has managed to retain its palatial feel, with opulent outdoor spaces and stately interiors. Much of the pastel-coloured exterior looks like what you may find in Florence or Seville: an eclectic mix of Venetian balconies, Roman fountains, a terracotta-tiled roof and almost-Oriental mosaic patterns. The grand, dignified interiors are quite different – think hand-carved fireplaces, marble floors, oak desks and hanging chandeliers. The 143 rooms and suites are spacious and opulent, but are also quite modern following the hotel’s recent renovations.
The renowned Mansion Restaurant has long been hailed as one of Dallas’s best fine dining restaurants, serving modern American cuisine for more than 35 years. Come here for extravagant dishes such as venison with chestnut and gin, or Rouen duck with exotic spices, faro and kumquat. The outdoor Restaurant Terrace offers al fresco dining by the fire, while the Mansion Bar serves late-night bites with the ambience of a private club.
Recline on a sun lounge by the opulent outdoor pool with a cocktail in the warmer months, or relax with an hour-long massage. A fitness centre with massage, steam and sauna rooms is open daily.
If you wish to have friends visit the hotel, staff will happily arrange private drinks on the terrace along with a dinner reservation.
Weather to go
Due to the size of the state, the weather in Texas varies from city to city. The capital of Dallas has hot humid summers with frequent thunderstorms. The west and Southwest of the state is drier and receives less rainfall. Temperatures in Texas range from 34 to 36ºC during summer and 12 to 14ºC during winter.
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