Big hair, big money, big personalities: Dallas is a city that embraces big. From fashion and finance to professional sports, the city vibrates with a boisterous spirit all its own. Pleasant weather, in the form of 223 sunny days a year (and mild winter temperatures), adds to the allure of exploring Dallas with the one you love, no matter the season.
Visit these places together, each an easy drive from Four Seasons Resort and Club Dallas Las Colinas, and you’ll understand why the city likes to say, “Big things happen here.”
Arts District stroll
One of the biggest things to happen recently in the city is the completion of the Dallas Arts District, a 30-year project that spans 68 acres (27.5 hectares) and 19 blocks in the heart of the city. It’s the largest contiguous urban arts district in the U.S., and it shouldn’t be missed. The Nasher Sculpture Center, designed by Pritzker Prize–winning architect Renzo Piano, houses famous works like Rodin’s The Age of Bronze and Matisse’s Madeleine I. It’s hard not to enjoy the beauty of the Calders, Giacomettis and Picassos beneath the sunlight spilling through the Center’s glass roof.
For more culture, catch a play, an opera or a concert at one of the many venues in Dallas’ AT&T Performing Arts Center. Or explore the other splendid museums and public spaces nearby, which blend effortlessly with a mix of old brick buildings and historic churches.
Klyde Warren Park
Share an impromptu picnic and a glass of wine at Klyde Warren Park, a USD 110 million urban green space near the Arts District downtown. At night, the park sparkles in the glow of neon-trimmed skyscrapers and starry skies. During the day, it beckons with fountains, gardens and glass-walled contemporary restaurants. Stretch out on the grass or thumb through shelves of free books in the reading and games room. Before leaving, grab a meal from the food trucks that set up along the park’s southern edge.
Photography Bowl & Barrel
Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Garden
Photography courtesy DCVB
Love is in the air year round at the Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Garden, a 66-acre (27-hectare) sanctuary that tumbles down to the shores of White Rock Lake Park. Each spring, thousands of azaleas bloom in the Margaret Elisabeth Jonsson Color Garden, bursting open in firecracker colours. Stroll the grounds and enjoy the serenity. Once hot summer days give way to cooler autumn nights, chrysanthemums take centre stage. While it’s illegal to pick these blooms, they add a touch of romance to your stroll.
The best Italian restaurant in Dallas is also one of the city’s most romantic eateries. On the edge of the upscale Highland Park neighbourhood, Nonna is the perfect spot for an intimate meal. Dim lighting, cosy tables and attentive service marry perfectly with Chef Julian Barsotti’s rustic cuisine. The wine list is wholly Italian; the pastas and wood-fired breads are made by hand; and the impeccably fresh fish is often roasted with soft herbs and anointed with citrus butter. A meal at Nonna is special any day of the week.
Whether or not your home is as large (3 million square feet) or as expensive (USD 1.2 billion) as the one owned by the Dallas Cowboys sports team, you’re sure to be impressed during a 90-minute VIP Tour of AT&T Stadium. With your all-access pass to the largest domed stadium in the world, you might bump into Tony Romo or another of the Cowboys football players. The tour will take you through the locker room, the Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders’ locker room and the postgame interview room. Finish down on the field, where you can throw touchdown passes to each other. (Bring your own football or buy one in the gift shop.)
Gondola cruise for two
For a quiet, romantic getaway, there’s little that compares to a gondola ride for two across the still waters of Lake Carolyn, a short drive from the Resort. A pilot serenades you as your traditionally adorned gondola glides along a quiet stretch of Mandalay Bay Canal, passing below arched stone bridges and into private nooks along the lake. Steal a kiss at sunset, bring a bottle of Champagne and toast your special occasion.