Gaylord Texan – Grapevine, Texas

I love this hotel, especially in the summer and at Christmas time!


Lobby of the Gaylord Texan at Christmas

This is my favorite Texas hotel…although others do come close (Hyatt Lost Pines, Hyatt Hill Country, Hyatt Wild Oak Ranch).  They have so many photo op places where you can take pictures of your kids.  At different times of the year, it can get pretty busy, so be aware of this if you were looking for something quiet.  The hotel is full of restaurants and shops, and throughout the year they have different activities. I know they have a Thanksgiving feast, an Easter Egg hung, and some sort of trick-or-treating for Halloween.

During Christmas the entire hotel is decorated with a million lights. It’s so beautiful. And there’s a different themed Christmas tree every where you turn.  One of the major activities that they’re known for is their production of Ice!  It begins around November 15th every year.  It’s where they fly in men from China and these men create spectacular ice sculptures related to whatever their theme is for the year (Madagascar, the Nutcracker, etc.)  They have snow tubes for the kids to slide down on and ice slides. Bring veryyyyy warm gear. They give you giant snow jackets, but bring hats, gloves, scarves, and stuff for the kids (and yourself!).  I wore glasses once and it was impossible to walk through. They kept getting fogged up from the ice. I’m telling you, it’s COLD!


Caris and her best friend Gwen at Ice! Madagascar at the Gaylord Texan

During the summer, they have the best water park. It’s about a mile from the resort, but a bus shuttles you to and from the water park, and I think it leaves every 10 minutes.  The great thing about this water park is that it’s big enough so that the kids don’t get bored, but it’s small enough where they can kind of run around on their own.  The do offer cabanas that you can rent, which I highly recommend. I love any kind of cabana, I think it’s nice to have a centralized location that everyone can meet at. Their cabanas, depending on which ones you select, are equipped with a ceiling fan, flat screen, beach lounge chairs, an ice cooler, and plug outlets. I would do it just for the ceiling fan!

Grapevine is known for their wine, so you can go to the city of Grapevine and do wine tours and stroll  through their historical Grapevine Main Street.  They have all sorts of festivals, and the city also decorates Main Street at Christmas.  Their mall also has an aquarium and a Lego Land, if you wish to venture off of the hotel property and off of Main Street.


Caris and Gabriel on Main Street at Christmas time

We come here a couple of times a year and we are never disappointed. The hotel does have professional photographers that walk around. HINT: When they take your picture, they will give you a little card with a number on it.  Keep this card and any time anyone takes a picture, have them put it on this card. You have an option to put all the pictures on a USB drive for one price, and it doesn’t matter if there’s one picture or 100 pictures, it will be the same price.

They offer a fabulous buffet breakfast where the Madagascar characters come out and you can take pics of them with your kids. Sometimes it’s Madagascar and sometimes it’s Shrek. But the breakfast is always well worth the price.  They also have different activities like gingerbread decorating, how to train your dragon, and a free scavenger hunt.  And at Christmas time, of course they have a great Santa!


Caris kissing the Madagascar lion at the character meet-and-greet breakfast

Categories: My Favorite Texas Hotels

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