Wowzers. I stay in a lot of hotels for my job. Luxury resorts in Maui, big city high rises in New York City, historic mom and pop hotels on Route 66…but who knew that one of my absolute favorite hotels of ALL TIME would be in Fort Worth, Texas?
I’m not going to lie…I found out about this hotel through the Marriott Bonvoy app (a place I spend more time these days than Instagram), and after a quick getaway, I came home ready to convince everyone I know that their next trip needs to be, not to Hawaii, but to Fort Worth. People probably think I work for the visitor’s bureau (hire me please), but I really was just super impressed.
And then the week after I came home, I got the latest issue of Southern Living in the mail and low and behold…their entire travel feature was on the Fort Worth Stockyards. I’ll admit I did feel a bit vindicated with my seemingly left field recommendation (the Southern Living travel section is pretty much my travel Bible).
If you know anything about Fort Worth, you probably know that it’s nicknamed “cowtown.” Because of its prime location on the Chisholm Trail in the old days and then the railroad coming to Fort Worth in the late 1870s, Fort Worth has always been in the cattle business.
Well the industry has changed, but Fort Worth’s western lore still mixes with the modern city in the absolutely coolest way. And ground zero for that is the Hotel Drover in the Fort Worth Stockyards.
The Fort Worth Stockyards are located just about 3 miles north of downtown and it’s a whole world. The Hotel Drover sits in a newly developed (to look old) portion of the historic stockyards called Mule Alley. Valet your car at the hotel and you can walk everywhere in the area.
You’ll find it all at the Stockyards…luxury western wear stores (have you ever seen a pair of $20K boots?) and tattered souvenir shops, old steakhouses and bbq joints and new bistros, places that have been there a hundred years and places that just opened last year.
Western luxe. That’s it. That’s the vibe. It’s not subtle in any way, and it’s completely glorious. I often use the word “vibe” to describe the feeling of a place, but the Hotel Drover IS a vibe. If you’re not ready to fully commit to a western lifestyle by the time you leave here, there’s something the matter with you haha.
I’ll leave the beaucoo number of photos I took to clue you in on the details of what exactly “western luxe” looks like, but a bit about the energy of the hotel…I would say the Hotel Drover is very much a hangout spot. It’s the epicenter of the newer, more upscale side of the stockyards and people are drawn to it even if they’re not staying there.
The lobby is very much a watering hole and pretty much at all times of the day and night it’s full of people having a drink at the bar and spilling out over the different seating areas to play cards, read, or catch up with friends. And when the weather is nice, The Backyard has got to be one of the best places to be in Fort Worth. Besides the luxe pool, they’ve got plenty of outdoor games, fire pits, and places to just “be”. This property really does have a resort feel.
The rooms at the Hotel Drover are VERY fun, and they have a ton of different categories featuring different amenities and styles.
I booked a spa king room because I just had to have that crazy tub, and ended up getting upgraded to a spa king with a kitchenette suite (Marriott Bonvoy platinum status). What a sweet room! There are also room types with bunk beds, terraces, and fireplaces.
Also I never stepped foot in the fitness center, but it supposedly has three Peloton bikes and two Lululemon Mirrors.
The Hotel Drover is both kid friendly (kid robes and stools available upon request) and pet friendly. Pets are allowed on certain floors and certain places in the Backyard. I believe there’s a $125 pet fee (no fee for kids ; )
I went into this trip thinking it would be a good regional travel destination. A nice getaway if you live within a few hours drive. But after my stay, I’m fully recommending Fort Worth as a major US travel destination if you’re interested in western culture, Americana, or Texas. Like, get on a plane and fly into DFW.
Fort Worth (especially the stockyards) has suuuuuch a strong sense of place and if you’re from, well, not Texas or somewhere with any type of western culture, you just might feel like you’re on another planet. And those are really the best kinds of places to visit right?
So if you’re an east coaster, a west coaster, or even an international visitor, I 10/10 recommend a trip to Fort Worth. I’m going to say it should rival Nashville, New Orleans, and Austin if you’re looking for a southern/southwestern US destination.
And while I’m speaking in broad terms about Fort Worth as a destination, a huge part in my recommendation is the Hotel Drover. The stockyards themselves are kind of a gritty place (it’s not just for show…people really work here and live this kind of life) but having the luxurious (but very on brand) accommodations right there is what makes it such a destination for all kinds of people, not just cow people ; )
Because of the nature of my job, I don’t usually stay at the same places very often (even if I go back to the same destination) because I’m always trying to check out new places, but I will 100% be back to the Hotel Drover.
I really value hotels (and destinations in general) that have a strong sense of place. So many cities and towns these days are all starting to look the same, but there’s no doubt in your mind where you are when you’re at the Hotel Drover.
Pricing & Booking
Let’s talk numbers. There is a LOT of fluctuation in price at the Hotel Drover. Sunday through Thursday night it’s usually in the $300-$450 range but jumps into the thousands on the weekends. Remember, there’s a rodeo EVERY weekend at the Coliseum and it’s a huge draw.
So if you’re looking for a weekend getaway be prepared to spend $$$, but if you’re flexible and aren’t going to attend the rodeo, then you can get a much better deal during the week.
And remember, the Hotel Drover is part of Marriott Bonvoy’s Autograph Collection so you can book with points or earn points on cash stays.
Check rates at the Hotel Drover here.