Posts tagged with "arbor hotel"

#LIVELOVELUBBOCK

By Armon Hayes

Let’s face it: we’re all reluctant and concerned to begin traveling again. Nonetheless, the world is doing its part, implementing tactics and precautions to combat the coronavirus during the reopening process. I encourage you to stimulate your mental health; what better way than to consider exploring during a weekend getaway. Take a trip out of town or stay local, depending on your comfort level. I challenge you, especially in times of heightened anxiety and isolation, to welcome new adventure and engagement. 360 Magazine, on behalf of Geiger & Associates traveled to Western Texas to experience all that the city of Lubbock has to offer.

“Everything’s bigger in Texas;” cliche as it sounds, this experience nevertheless made a grand impact. The three-day media tour refocused the lens of the “new normal.” Hopeful yet cautious lodging at Arbor Hotel & Conference Room, hospitality reminiscent of grandma’s house welcomes you with each encounter. Our first time in Texas offered a glimpse of what’s to come from a revitalized city that’s rich in spirit and overflowing with promise. Each day of our travels filled were filled with culture and inspiration: tours through local wineries, fine dining “Texas style,” and an inspiring visit to the cornerstone of the arts district.

Wine

Believe it or not, Texas is the fifth largest wine producing state in the US. Nearly 90% of the wine grapes in Texas are grown from the high plains, surrounding Lubbock. This robust main ingredient has been the means for families and will be for generations to come. For entrepreneurs like Steve Newsom and Tommy English, owners of English Newsom Cellars, their winery was our first stop. I had the pleasure of meeting Steve Newsom for a tour of their efficient facility and occasional event space, all while wine tasting, of course. Easy going and well-versed on the history of wine and business, Steve’s passion for their product controlled from dirt to glass is ideal. Finding ourselves newly indulgent in wine during quarantine and cultivating a palette, during 360’s visit we enjoyed the distinctive Picardan and Roussanne, while a personal favorite was the Cabernet Sauvignon for its woody chocolate notes.

Having undergone a tremendous renovation, Burklee Hill is family owned. The Hill Family is the charming family which owns this vineyard, winery and bistro. Shortly after the pandemic hit, the operation was forced to close, but has since undergone a resurgence. The tasty lunch spread prepared was curated with wine pairings and included a sampler of various aged cheeses and premium cut Italian meats, collaged on a wood slab cutting board. Nestled with nuts and fruits, it made for the perfect Happy hour snack. Rightfully so, Burklee was featured in Texas Wine and Trail magazine. For its trendy and pristine interior, its spot is one to consider for hosting wedding celebrations for its Cathedral stature. As part of the revitalization of downtown, they are reaching new audiences by growing grapes on the Texas High Plains since 2002 on land farmed by the Hill family for five generations.

Like any successful business “focusing on what does well” says Kim McPherson makes entrepreneurship sound simple. Owner of McPherson Cellars, also known for being the historic Coca-Cola bottling plant in the 1930s. Restored, it is located in Lubbock’s depot entertainment district and has been transformed into a world class winery. What started as experimental vine planting in the 1960s, Kim’s father Clint “Doc” McPherson began growing grapes and by 1971 the winery became a reality. Doc was a founder and pioneer of the Texas wine industry, and the family business is respected as such. The cellar blossomed into a small but thriving operation focused on sustainably farmed, expertly crafted, small-batch wines exclusively from the backyard of the Texas High Plains. The renowned James Beard Foundation has twice nominated Kim as a semifinalist in the “Outstanding Wine, Beer, or Spirits Producer” category. McPherson Cellars wines have been recognized and awarded in several international wine competitions, as well. During these times, the future is thriving online through e-commerce allowing individuals to purchase on their website. Yet, visit them in person for a lovely patio view and a taste of wine that has won over 600 medals in state, national and international competitions.

Dining

Lubbock is expanding into a dining destination: from Spanish tapas and locally sourced dishes, to the traditional chicken fried streak and Chilton cocktail. A simple cocktail, pure as the West Texas sun, this drink is tart but refreshing. Make it yourself: 1 lemon, 1 1/2 oz Vodka preferably Lubbock’s Pinkerton Vodka. If not, Tito’s will do. Don’t forget the bubbles, Topo Chico or club soda of your choice. Legend has it that a Lubbockite known as Dr. Chilton requested this beverage at the local country club, and thus the staple drink was born. Inspired by the thriving art scene, the transformation of the city with color and creativity has also translated to its dining experiences.

What better breakfast than pies in Texas! Cast Iron Grill will satisfy your sweet tooth with their homemade pies. So good, locals know that they are sold out if they don’t order a pie before noon. Our guilty pleasures were the Cherry Banana split, the Millionaire, and the Texas delight! Satisfying to the sweet tooth, but not overpowering. In this current moment, baking has become an act of joy Clearly, owner Teresa takes after her pies: she is a treat to whomever she meets. An infectious big smile, with charm that will keep you coming back. She’s most proud of the growth of her ministry. Starting with 55 seats, she now has seating for over 200 at a time. She has learned that ministry doesn’t only apply to church. It happens every single day at the CIG, serving comforting pies and meals of the heart.

For a pick me up, look no further than Monomyth Coffee, a friendly and inviting craft coffeeshop. Started by Randell Jackson and his brother in June 2019, the first-time business owners are adapting to a pandemic. On a mission to make people happy, the brothers write quick encouraging notes on coffee cup sleeves for guests. In light of reopening, tables are monitored with marker mats indicating whether they are clean. Locals and the university community share this downtown converted antique shop, a gathering place for all kinds. A bright atmosphere makes it the perfect spot to enjoy a morning brew with cozy seating arrangements. The iced latte w/ almond milk and gluten free peach cookie were the best selections to start a morning on a day full of travel.

For lunch, craving BBQ we visited Evie Mae’s who has been listed as a top 10 best in Texas Monthly. After Arnis, the owner, was diagnosed with Celiac Disease and became Gluten free, it became necessary for them to prepare all of their meals at home to avoid contamination. Ahead of the curve, now all sides at the restaurant are served gluten free. Satisfying with comfort, Evie Mae’s is named after his daughter and started out in Arizona with an electric smoker on the patio. A chef at heart, Arnis took on the challenge of making his take on the reverse-flow to perfect the cooking process. Affectionately called the Black Pearl, it was completed in February 2014. “We want people to like the sauce but not be what they come back for” says Arnis. Holding tightly to the secret, we did learn it consists of three recipes, and the based is coffee. Serving pounds of certified grain feed angus daily, ribs tender to the touch, and smoked sausages, all cuts are prepared in the Central Texas style.

Arts

If you ever find yourself in Lubbock, Texas be sure it’s the first Friday of the month. Why, you ask? Lubbock is home to the first cultural arts district recognized by the state. A trail of fine art galleries and print studios to enjoy, as well as food trucks to complete the experience on these first Fridays. We delighted in exploring the trail despite it not being a First Friday, nonetheless it proved educational and inspiring to unearth a cultural area dedicated to the arts. A creative myself, I found the Charles Adams Studio most intriguing. It is an inclusive environment that is mutually beneficial for working artists, curators, galleries and students. The successful collaboration has led to four live-work studios open monthly, on the first Friday of the month, allowing visitors to connect with individual artists.

While visiting the cultural district, I encourage you to learn about Rock N’ Roll and a pioneer of the genre, Buddy Holly. Lubbock’s native son, there is a tribute center at The Buddy Holly Center which features a chronological exhibition on Holly’s life and music. It features Holly’s Fender Stratocaster guitar, glasses, stage clothes, photographs, letters, tour itineraries and much more. If that wasn’t enough, a documentary film on the life of the entertainer and his impact on the Beatles, the Rolling Stone and worldwide is available for viewing.

Places of Interest:

Buddy Holly statue & West Texas Walk of Fame: Formerly located in front of the Lubbock Memorial Civic Center, it is now located in the park on the northeast corner of 19th and Crickets Avenue, named after the band Buddy played in. Witnessing the bronze statue coming in at 2500 pounds, it is notable for its strong presence and the jubilance it brought when it was unveiled September 5,1980.

Lubbock High School: Where Holly attended from 1952 to 1955 and where he wrote an autobiography near the end of his sophomore year; “I have thought about making a career out of western music if I’m good enough, but will just have to wait and see that turns out”. After graduation in 1955, the school features a small exhibit in the main hallway that includes Buddy memorabilia.

Buddy Holly’s Home in 1957: 1305 37th Street where he and his family were living when “That Will be the Day” became the #1 record in the country. If visiting, simply drive by and please do not impose on those living in the home now.

Lubbock Entertainment / Performance Arts Association is proud to announce that the community vision for the Buddy Holly Hall of Performing Arts & Science is now becoming a reality. The Buddy Holly Theatre was built to accommodate and become a cultural hub of Lubbock while being the cornerstone of downtown revitalization. Expected to open Nov/Dec 2020, it is meant to become an inclusive event space for all acts of life. Furthermore, it hopes to fuel the economy for years to come. The hard hat tour explored the luxury suites and amenities that will be available but were delayed due to COVID-19.

Art and culture permeate throughout the city of Lubbock. The Public Art Program at Texas Tech University was initiated by the board In 1988. Yes, there’s an app for that, with the intention to enrich the campus environments and extend their educational and artistic mission. The Texas Tech public art collection features over 100 items displayed by some of today’s leading artists. It was named one of the top art collections in the US by the Public Art Review. The Agave Dreams piece in particular resonated with me because of the positioning and the color of choice of the figure; navy blue, kneeling and tending to the earth. Part of the biology building, standing 10ft by 12ft long, Agave Dreams was created by Julian Voss-Andreae in 2015. Completely made of triangles, simple but complex, it encourages us to question our attitude toward nature and web of life. A fulfilling viewing experience to anyone interested in art.

In the heart of Lubbock, Texas you’ll surely be smitten at the unmatched hospitality the “Hub City” provides. A pioneering spirit will certainly have permission to live and love Lubbock.

“Hub of the Plains” × TX

Lubbock, “Hub of the Plains” & Leader of the Mains.

By Ana de Cozar × Vaughn Lowery



Located in Northwest Texas, Lubbock earned the name “Hub of the Plains” in 1909. It’s appellation was followed by Lubbock County’s expansive business markets, which resulted in its numerous appearances in national survey rankings. Among them, we find Lubbock as the 24th Best City for Small Business in the U.S. in 2017 by ValuePenguin, No.7 on Forbes’ List of 19 Opportunity Cities in 2014, the 15th Best City to Start a Business in 2016 according to WalletHub and the 6th Best City for 20-Somethings in the U.S. in 2016 by Move.org.

But as we say in the title, not everything is about business in Lubbock. 360 Magazine had the pleasure to visit the Texan city of opportunities, and had a taste of its terrific culinary range.

Our team stayed in the West Texas’s only AAA Four-Diamond hotel, the Overton Hotel & Conference Center. The Overton is located in the heart of the “Hub City”— just steps from Texas Tech University. As Lubbock’s largest hotel conference center, The Overton Hotel & Conference Center is the ideal destination for corporate business events, weddings, Texas Tech visitors and visitors to Lubbock, Texas. At the Overton, we had a reception of grilled veggie display for those green lovers and a fiddlehead fern. But we can highlight their dessert selection, the strawberry cheesecake mousse shooters combined with a bavarian cream with fruit truffle mousse shooters is all you need to satisfy your sweet palate.

Another delicious option for a lunch in Lubbock was Evie Mae’s Pit BBQ. Quickly becoming a local favorite, Evie Mae’s was recently featured on the cover of Texas Monthly as one of the Top 25 New and Improved BBQ Joints in Texas. Here, you’ll discover melt-in-your-mouth brisket, green chile sausage, homemade sides and an assortment of gluten-free desserts. Arnis Robbins nicely greeted us while we tasted the brisket and an outstanding gluten free cornbread with sausage. For dessert, we had ice cream on a gluten free brownies.

Another option is the La Diosa CellarsHidden in the heart of downtown Lubbock, La Diosa Cellars offers an exceptional wine menu along with Spanish-inspired tapas and live music. In this Lubbock must-see you can try an escargot accompained by 3 different hummus: pesto/basil, cranberry/beets and garlic lemon.

Moving up to dining our first selection is the West Table Kitchen and Bar. This upscale restaurant and full bar offers a unique style of food and beverage to its patrons. Be sure to check out their website for their seasonally evolving menu. Here, 360 Magazine met Cameron West, who provided us with an amazing Caesar salad with anchovies, short ribs and bread pudding. Cagle Steaks, a pure Texan family-owned steakhouse serves specialty steaks, barbecue, smoked salmon, grilled chicken, fajitas and more in a Southwestern, casual atmosphere.

On the other hand The Crafthouse Gastropub is the dining restaurant you can’t miss. Be sure to try the Texas Burger, named in Texas Monthly’s 2016 list of the Top 50 Burgers in Texas. You’ll also find a wide variety of dishes and a Sunday brunch menu that’s both sweet and savory. We tried lamb chili and baked cheddar with swiss, roasted red peppers, green onion and mayo, and also steak frites.

After a big meal, 360 Magazine picked up the best dessert options at Lubbock. If you ever dreamed about building your own dessert, Pie Bar Drop is your perfect hot spot. We created an Oreo pie filled with crushed vanilla wafer with pecan, a pineapple coconut filled with crushed graham cracker, caramel drizzle and coconut savings on top. Yes, unreal but glorious for your palate. Yet we had our dessert, a good shot for those instagram bloggers while enjoying a coffee would be The Coffee Shop with its friendly decoration.

Keeping up with Lubbock’s succulent food array, we discovered marvelous breakfast selections at Arbor Hotel & Conference Center. A locally owned and operated hotel, is a true jewel to West Texas. The new hotel features a year-round outdoor hot tub, conversational fire pits, hotel bar and much more. The hotel offers 3,000 square feet of meeting space as well as a pre-function space. We enjoyed a Chuck Wagon Breakfast with National Cowboy Symposium, true made in Texas!

The advance of agriculture in Lubbock made it the marketing center that it is now, and in that process wine making had an important role. We selected our top winery, and it is clearly not an easy selection in this Texan county. Here there is a list of our top wine stations:

  • At the Funky Door Bistro & Wine Room  you can “wine and dine” like nowhere else. Known for its fondue and wine bar, this fine-dining restaurant showcases some of the most unique varietals of wines and pairings of food. We tried their salmon and sashimi ahi tuna.
  • The Wine Nest is your place if you love music. Three vineyards, one family-owned winery and multiple award-winning wines, all located just on the outskirts of Lubbock. From aromatic Malbec to sweet Gewürztraminer, wine lovers with any palate will enjoy the selection we tasted at Trilogy Cellars. The Wine Nest is a premier boutique wine and gift store, perfect for shopping, sipping a glass of wine and listening to live music.
  • Find award winning wines at Pheasant Ridge Winery. It proudly boasts the oldest vines in Texas. The bold flavor and character of their wines reflect the Cox family’s mastery of wine production. Pheasant Ridge received the first gold medal ever awarded to a Texas red wine for their Cabernet Sauvignon in the San Francisco Wine Competition in 1986.
  • Tour and tasting at the Llano Estacado Winery. The simple mission of Llano Estacado, from its beginning in 1976, has been to embody the potential of Texas wine. Today, Llano Estacado is the largest, bestselling Premium Winery in Texas, producing wines of World Class Quality, and has been an ongoing pioneer in introducing not just Texans, but also the entire world to the great wines made in the Lone Star State.
  • Tour and tasting at McPherson Cellars. Our new friends The McPherson family has been a part of Texas winemaking for over 40 years. Owner and Winemaker Kim McPherson greeted us and showed how he has beautifully restored the historic Coca-Cola Bottling Plant, located in Lubbock’s Depot Entertainment District, into a world-class winery. We tasted their Texas wines that have won over 600 medals in state, national, and international wine competitions. They also sell cute wine merchandising, such as the famous T-Shirts with messages like “My doctor says I need glasses” or “This wine is making me awesome”.

360 crew surely adores food and wine, but Lubbock had much more to offer. During our visit to the northwest city of Texas, we discovered enough from our country at the following attractions:

  • National Ranching Heritage Center-Dedicated to preserving and interpreting the history of ranching, it is a museum with seven exhibit galleries and a 19-acre historical park. Authentic, restored ranching structures dating from 1780 to 1950, tell the story of how early ranchers and their families adapted to a harsh environment. Annual events include Candlelight at the Ranch, an event hosted in December to recreate a frontier Christmas, and Ranch Day, an April event designed to make history come alive with cowboys, chuck wagons and horses. We were surprised by some goodies like the Smith and Wesson model revolver or the Native American real Comanche Feather Headdress.
  • Lubbock Lake Landmark– Smithsonian Magazine named Lubbock Lake Landmark one of the top five destinations to see evidence of first Americans. In fact, signs of human life from 12,000 years ago have been uncovered at the Lubbock Lake Landmark, the oldest continuously inhabited site in the country. This internationally recognized archaeological and national history preserve provides a perfect family outing and regularly hosts Night Hikes on a 3-mile scenic trail through the Yellow House Canyon.

Texas stands for its art in many aspects. They are well known for its modern art and the beautiful Marfa is an exceptional demonstration. Lubbock possesses art exhibitions as well;

  • You can experience an interactive art space like no other at Lubbock’s Tornado Gallery.  Tour the gallery that showcases Tony Greer’s Plasma sculptures featuring Xenon tube pieces and other neon objects. Learn more about the process of creating these masterpieces and the art of glassblowing. We loved those @unityinglass pieces.
  • Roberto Bruno was the best architecture artist in Lubbock and his house remains as a must-see. He moved to Lubbock in 1971 to teach art at Texas Tech University’s school of architecture. He started working on The Steel House in 1973, two years after sculpting a similar piece of art, which inspired him to build something bigger to live in. This three story, 2,200-square-foot house overlooks Ransom Canyon, and remained uncompleted before his death in 2008. The city also counts with several murals and a photographer alley, where the creativity spreads around the streets.

A city is not a city without its nightlife. 360 Magazine especially enjoyed performances of Charlie’s Tout and Jaime Wyatt at The Bluelight Live. Other music selection we had was at Lubbock Moonlight Musicals. It inspires audiences throughout the summer with fun and exciting musicals at their outdoor amphitheater located in Mackenzie Park. Making use of local talent, as well as bringing in various Broadway professionals, Lubbock Moonlight Musicals is able to produce shows that thrill all audiences, from sophisticated theatergoers to first-timers. We saw a fascinating performance of Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain.

With a flourishing restaurant and bar scene, not to mention the unprecedented rise of craft beer and creative cocktails as of late, there’s truly something for everyone in America’s finest city. You’ll also find championship golf courses, museums, and some other awesome restaurants as the Chimy’s , Giorgio’s Pizza and Torchy’s tacos within city limits.

Other honorable attractions include:

Bars:

http://www.charleyb.net/

http://www.facebook.com/flipstavernlubbock/

http://www.clubluxor.com/

http://chimys.com/

Coffee Shops:

http://www.goldstripecoffee.com/

http://www.sugarbrowns.com/

http://yellowhousecoffee.com/

http://www.jandbcoffeeco.com/

Attractions:

American Wind Power Center

Bayer Museum of Agriculture

Buddy Holly Center

Charles Adams Studio Art Project

Museum of Texas Tech

National Cowboy Symposium

Silent Wings Museum

Southwest Collection

Vietnam Center and Archive