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Nov
14

A Guide to the Perfect Bachelorette Weekend in Hot Springs

Kati Mallory Photo + Design

We showed you the perfect bachelorette weekend in Little Rock, but the state capital isn't the only city to take your besties for a party. Hot Springs is home to relaxing spas, decadent restaurants and incredible opportunities for fun, so even if you're not a native, this is the perfect destination for your weekend out of town.

First, book your stay. Hot Springs is home to hotels in the midst of the action and on the edge of nature, so whether you want fun or relaxation, we have a room for you.

Hotels

The Arlington Resort Hotel & Spa

Vibe: Royal, decadent and historic.

Why You Should Book Now: The Arlington opened in 1875 and is now the largest hotel in Arkansas. If the Crystal Ballroom doesn’t pique your interest, perhaps you’ll enjoy the Thermal Bathhouse.

Cost: A parlor suite with a king bed is $295/night.

The Waters Hotel

Vibe: Luxurious, elegant and newly renovated.

Why You Should Book Now: The Waters Hotel has prime access to Bathhouse Row, so the charms of Hot Springs are at your fingertips. You can also appreciate the local artists and beauties of the city’s nature.

Cost: The king room with a city view will cost you $245/night.

Lookout Point Lakeside Inn

Vibe: Cozy, intimate and peaceful.

Why You Should Book Now: The B&B gives a gorgeous view of the Ouachita Mountains and Lake Hamilton, but you’re still only a short drive away from the features of Hot Springs.

Cost: A king suite runs about $359/night.

Embassy Suites by Hilton Hot Springs Hotel & Spa

Vibe: Fun, casual and close to major attractions.

Why You Should Book Now: Right in the middle of Hot Springs National Park, Embassy Suites offers easy access to the airport for your out-of-state friends and also the bulk of Hot Springs’ fun restaurants and features.

Cost: A king bed, 2-room suite is $169/night.

The Hotel Hot Springs & Spa

Vibe: Sleek, modern and trendy.

Why You Should Book Now: The 14 stories give the top floors an amazing view of the city, and the hotel features and grill and a bar, and a spa is coming soon. You also have easy access to Bathhouse Row.

Cost: A king room will cost $149/night.

Arkansas Department of Parks and Tourism

Now that you've booked where you and your girls are staying for the night, you need dinner plans for the special occasion. If you're feeling elegant or laid-back, Hot Springs has you covered.

Restaurants

The Vault

Vibe: Elegant, unique and chic.

Food: Steak, fish and fowl. Varied wine menu and appetizers.

Reservation & Cost: Reserve the Vault Room for private dining. Entrees range from $22 to $50.

501 Prime

Vibe: Cutting edge, hip and exciting.

Food: Buffets, custom menus, wine list and cigar lounge.

Reservation & Cost: The restaurant is coming soon, and you will be able to book private events for groups of eight to 150.

Via Roma Italian Restaurant

Vibe: Classy, fun and romantic.

Food: Italian and European food

Reservation & Cost: Entrees around $6-26.

Rolando's Restaurante

Vibe: Lively, fun and unique. 

Food: Latin American cuisine

Reservation & Cost: You're going to want to make a reservation in advance because Rolando's is so popular — especially if you want a spot on the gorgeous patio. (And you definitely want a spot on the patio!) 

Deluca’s Pizza

Vibe: Casual, fresh and chill.

Food: Oven-baked pizza with fresh ingredients.

Reservation & Cost: Call in your orders ahead. Pizza range $19-29.

Arkansas Department of Parks and Tourism

Now, remember, this is a time for fun and celebration! You can relax all day with your friends and enjoy the royal treatment, or you can embrace the wild side with fun hikes and exploration, but either way, take lots of pics.

Activities

  1. Rent a Lake House on Lake Hamilton Spend a whole weekend relaxing on the lake or partying with your girls.

  2. Enjoy a Spa Day on Bathhouse Row Hot Springs is famous for the many spas to kick back and relax before your big day.

  3. Oaklawn Racing & Gaming  Try your luck at the casino or watch the horse races with your squad. (The horse races only run from January-April, but the casino is open year-round.) 

  4. Ohio Club Listen to live music and enjoy amazing food at Hot Springs’ nightclub and restaurant.

  5. Magic Springs — Who says water parks are for kids? You can float the lazy river or take on the craziest rides with your besties.

  6. Garvan Woodland Gardens — Explore this beautiful botanical garden for a bit of peace before the big day. Spring is an especially beautiful time at Garvan, and if you're in town during the Tulip Extravaganza, be sure to stop by to see the tens of thousands of brilliant Dutch tulips.

  7. Hike the Grand Promenade — Get outdoors and enjoy the beautiful views of Hot Springs’ historic district with this fun hiking trail in Hot Springs National Park.

  8. Go Ziplining — Take a unique tour with a forest zip line course if you’re feeling adventurous!

  9. Hot Springs Mountain Tower — Get the best view of your hometown by going up this incredibly tall tower for a panoramic view.

  10. Superior Bathhouse Brewery — If you want a locale to gather all your girls for food and plenty of brews, you have to check out this place.

Courtesy of Garvan Woodland Gardens

For more Arkansas bachelorette party ideas, click here!

Nov
6

New Venue Alert: Coulter Farmstead

Photos courtesy of Brad Hauser

Have you ever dreamed of a wedding venue that's completely unique, rustic yet upscale and full of history? Coulter Farmstead in Washington is the perfect blend of rustic farm charm and upscale Southern elegance. 

Owner Brad Hauser has completely reimagined the 11-acre property into a wedding, event and lodging venue. The space features four log cabins that Hauser has expertly renovated and a Greek Revival-style main house built in the 1860s. Hauser even had the original general store from the 1880s moved to the property, keeping every board intact. 

We're just smitten with this new venue in Arkansas and we think you will be, too.

The History

Hauser comes from a business background having served as a controller for large companies for over 20 years. But his dream was always to own a bed and breakfast and wedding venue. 

"I am an insatious extrovert and love meeting new people," he says. "What better way than a bed and breakfast and wedding venue? This allows me to interact with people from all over the country in the bed and breakfast and most importantly, share in one of the most important days in a couple’s life."

Photos courtesy of Brad Hauser

Coulter Farmstead sits on the historical grounds with buildings that date back to the mid-1800s. The old general store served the Washington community as a store and doctor’s office during the 1800s and early 1900s. Hauser has converted it into a magnificent space with the feel of an old, Southern country church.

The Space Itself

History was Hauser's main inspiration for decorating and renovating his property. "The rustic, historical Southern charm in the cabins to the minimal open canvas of a rural church inside the general store," Hauser says. "The farm animals and the beautiful pool, as well as the grounds themselves, lend such a beautiful, serene setting for someone’s special day."

Photos courtesy of Brad Hauser

Hauser describes his venue as "elegant Southern simplicity with historical character woven with ultra luxurious modern design elements." We think so, too.

What Brides Can Expect

Coulter Farmstead's price points start at $1,500 and climb to $5,000 for an all-inclusive wedding and reception venue, with overnight stays in the cabins and a horse and carriage.

On the 11-acre property, there are a number of perfect places to tie the knot. Some of our top picks include the Coulter Plantation House, the historic Wolff General Store (that's been renovated to look like an open Southern chapel) and the Bozeman barn surrounded by the gorgeous Arkansas landscape. 

Photos courtesy of Brad Hauser

Photos courtesy of Brad Hauser

Hauser envisions the Coulter Plantation House as a bridal suite on the day-of and the Stills-Kirksey Cabin as a groom’s suite. He also offers horse and carriage as a unique bridal entrance to the ceremony. The cabins are available for overnight stays before and after the wedding and the pool is a wonderful backdrop for the rehearsal dinner. Hauser also has tables and chairs on-site available to brides, as well as linens, vases and a PA system.

"I am very excited to offer Coulter Farmstead to the brides of Arkansas and surrounding areas," Hauser says. "I truly believe it is a magical place unlike any other in the state."

To learn more about Coulter Farmstead, head to their website or call Hauser at (501) 650-2296.

Oct
29

How to Plan A Little Rock Bridal Shower

Courtesy of Sydney Anderson

Planning your perfect wedding isn't just about the ceremony venue and the bachelorette party. You want to start strong with an amazing bridal shower, and Little Rock is the perfect place to rent a space like no other.

Here are 14 locations with all the necessary details to find the perfect spot that fits your size and budget needs.

DOWNTOWN: 

Heifer Village

Space: Heifer Village offers meeting and event space with seating for up to 200 but the option to divide into smaller groups.

Perks: Wireless internet and audio/visual equipment come with the space.

Rate: For four hours, the rate is $1,000.

Chuck Haralson

Little Rock Tech Park

Space: The Mary Good Conference Center is 600 square feet and seats about 40 people.

Perks: You have the options of a projector and microphone, and Blue Sail Coffee is in the same building.

Rate: $75 per hour.

Capital Hotel

Space: The Cherokee and Quapaw Parlors can be used separately or together. The Cherokee room is 312 square feet, and the Quapaw is 740.

Perks: The two rooms have audio and visual capabilities, and the Capital Hotel is historic and beautiful.

Rate: For a half day event on the weekend, the Cherokee Parlor is $200, the Quapaw Parlor is $400 and both are $500.

Little Rock Convention & Visitors Bureau

A Touch of Quality Event Center

Space: The space includes a buffet area, kitchen, dressing rooms and selfie lounge.

Perks: The space is nicely decorated, and there’s plenty of parking.

Rate: The standard deposit is $150, and the standard fee per hour is $125, but the price may vary.

Trapnall Hall

Space: Trapnall Hall allows for 50 people for dinner and meeting settings.

Perks: The space is beautiful and close to downtown, and they’ll provide nearly everything you need.

Rate: Wedding receptions are $450 for four hours.

Bill and Margaret Clark Room at the River Market

Space: The room can hold 100 people.

Perks: The lofts is large and open, and you have access to a kitchen, or you can have your event catered.

Rate: On the weekend, you can rent the room all day for $750. During the week, the morning rate (6 a.m. to 3 p.m.) is $350, and then evening rate (4 p.m. to 12 a.m.) is $600.

Curran Hall

Space: There’s plenty of room for whatever event you’re planning with both inside and outside space.

Perks: Curran Hall is historic, and the gardens are gorgeous.

Rate: The deposit is $200, and you must rent for at least two hours at $150/hour.

Christopher Nolan Photography

The Terry House

Space: There’s space for 150 people inside and 800 outside.

Perks: The Terry House is a mansion with that old Southern look. Simply the Best Catering is the caterer for the Arkansas Arts Center and The Terry House.

Rate: For non-members, the rental rate is $2,125.

NORTH LITTLE ROCK:

North Little Rock Burns Park

Space: The Hospitality House holds 150 people, and the Heritage Room accommodates 80.

Perks: Both rooms have kitchen capacities. The Hospitality House has a fireplace, and the Heritage Room boasts a balcony.

Rate: The Hospitality House is $215 during the day (10 a.m. to 4 p.m.), $250 for the evening (6 p.m. to 11:30 p.m.) and $430 all day with a $200 clean-up deposit. The Heritage Room is $230 all day during the week and $280 all day on the weekend with a $200 clean-up deposit.

WEST LITTLE ROCK:

Pinnacle Valley Receptions

Space: The large room holds 76 people, the small room 20 people and the outdoor patio 30 people.

Perks: The rooms are beautifully decorated, and catering is an option.

Rate: Varies case by case.

Castle on Stagecoach

Space: The Castle on Stagecoach has both indoor and outdoor options, so you can invite as many friends as you want.

Perks: The castle is gorgeous and unique, and you can have your event catered.

Rate: You can rent the inside of the castle for $500 for two hours.

SOUTH LITTLE ROCK:

The Empress of Little Rock Bed and Breakfast

Space: The bed and breakfast offers beautiful rooms to stay the night, but you can also rent out the Quapaw Conference Center for 12-30 people depending on the layout.

Perks: The venue is gorgeous, and you can rent out rooms stay the night if needed.

Rate: You can pay $350 for a full day or $300 for a half day.

SOMA:

Rock Town Distillery

Space: They have the space for dinner for 150 people or a warehouse get-together for 300.

Perks: The distillery also offers private tours and tastings.

Rate: For a group of about 25 people, the space is $500 for the first hour and an extra $100 for each following hour. Cocktails, beer and wine range about $7-10, and table rentals are extra. The deposit is 50% of the cost.

Courtesy of the ESSE Purse Museum

Esse Purse Museum Special Event Room

Space: The room fits 15-25 guests with access to a kitchenette and a parking lot.

Perks: The Special Event Room is private, but you can also explore the fun wonders of the museum.

Rate: You must rent for at least two hours at $100/hour.

Oct
19

A Guide to the Perfect Bachelorette Weekend in Little Rock

Lela & Lyla Photography

You booked the venue, sent out the invites and said yes to the dress, but what about that last fun night with all your closest friends? The bachelorette party is a time to celebrate your besties, but you need to do a little planning to make the night (or weekend) truly memorable. Whether you're a hometown bride or someone looking to get out of town, Little Rock is the place to be for the bachelorette party of your wildest dreams.

First, you need a place to stay. You probably have friends arriving from all over the state, and with last-minute wedding plans spread all over your kitchen table, you don't particularly want them at your place. Besides, you deserve a night in a fancy hotel before your big day.

Hotels

  1. Capital Hotel

Vibe: Classy, elegant and Southern.

Why You Should Book Now: The Capital Hotel is part of Historic Hotels of America and includes the restaurant One Eleven at the Capital, not to mention the Capital Bar & Grill. Plus, you can stay in a suite or king room.

Cost: The Grand Capital Suite is $195/night.

Little Rock Convention & Visitors Bureau

  1. DoubleTree by Hilton Little Rock

Vibe: Fun, exciting and in the loop.

Why You Should Book Now: DoubleTree is in a convenient location in the midst of Downtown and close to the airport for your out-of-town friends. You also wake up to a gorgeous view of the Arkansas River.

Cost: A king bed, 2-room suite runs about $184/night.

  1. Hilton Garden Inn Little Rock Downtown

Vibe: Sleek, energetic and vibrant.

Why You Should Book Now: Hilton Garden Inn puts you in an ideal location where all of Downtown is within walking distance. You can hit the River Market for some fun or explore the classy business district. Plus, they have a new rooftop bar with a great view.

Cost: A king, queen and sofa bed, 2-room suite will cost you $189/night.

  1. Courtyard Little Rock Downtown by Marriott

Vibe: Modern, upscale and urban.

Why You Should Book Now: The prime location puts you right next to the River Market District, and ladies, there’s a Starbucks in the building. You can also eat dinner at the Bistro and enjoy the courtyard fire pit at night.

Cost: A king and sofa bed, 2-room suite is $179/night.

  1. Embassy Suites by Hilton Little Rock

Vibe: Chill, peaceful and natural.

Why You Should Book Now: Located in West Little Rock, you can get away from the hustle and bustle of Downtown, but you have easy access to the city’s amazing features as well as the natural beauty of Pinnacle Mountain.

Cost: A king bed, 2-room suite runs about $139/night.

Little Rock Convention & Visitors Bureau

Now that you've booked where you and your squad are staying for the night, you need primo dinner plans. Whether you're feeling classy, adventurous or casual, Little Rock has a restaurant for you.

Restaurants

  1. Trio’s Restaurant & Catering

Vibe: Chill, cozy and comfortable.

Food: Seafood, Tex-Mex, pasta and Southern-standard beef tenderloins and chicken. A little of everything.

Reservation & Cost: The Pavillion Room for 50 people or less is $50, but the reservation deposit is $100.

  1. Arthur’s Prime Steakhouse

Vibe: Elegant, memorable and exclusive.

Food: Prime steak, seafood and decadent desserts.

Reservation & Cost: The private Crystal Room holds 8-14 people. Entrees range from $22 to $52.

  1. Cache Restaurant

Vibe: Classy, fun and chic.

Food: Steak, seafood and pasta.

Reservation & Cost: You can reserve an upstairs balcony, Private Dining Room or Banquet Room. Entrees range from $19 to $56.

  1. Brave New Restaurant

Vibe: Old World, hipster and unique.

Food: French-inspired menu with seafood, steak and duck. Also wine and roasted coffee.

Reservation & Cost: You can reserve a private dining room, but the whole restaurant only seats 68 people. Entrees range from $16.50 to $37.

  1. South on Main

Vibe: Artistic, Southern and cute.

Food: Southern food including steak, chicken and fish.

Reservation & Cost: You can reserve private spaces for events.

Arkansas Department of Parks and Tourism

Activities

Treat yourself:

  1. Little Rock Day Spa & Lash Bar Treat yourself and your friends, too, with these great spa packages for an entire bachelorette party. You deserve a massage before the big day!

  2. Face Your Day — This beauty salon offers massage therapy and facial rejuvenation if you want another option for spa treatments for the whole crew.

  3. Stand Up Paddleboard Yoga If you’re feeling a little stressed but want more than the typical yoga class, then why not do yoga with your friends on the Arkansas River? SUP 501 offers private yoga classes, so you can go through your poses on a paddleboard floating in the water.

  4. Promenade at Chenal — Shopping is always a good idea, and now is the time to treat yourself to something special.

Have Some Fun

  1. Bowling — Reserve a few lanes and have fun with your girls with some bowling! Dust Bowl Lanes & Lounge is a hip new spot in downtown Little Rock that's perfect for a more upscale bach party bowling experience. 

  2. Bike the Little Rock River Trail or Kayak the Arkansas River More of an outdoorsy bride? Head Rock Town River Outfitters to rent bikes and kayaks for a day on the Arkansas River or the River Trail. If you're feeling a bit nervous about being out on the water with little to no experience, they also offer guided tours. 

  3. Hike Pinnacle Mountain — Stretch your legs and enjoy a gorgeous view with your girls as you hike up one of Arkansas’ beautiful mountains.

  4. Mystery Mansion Escape Room — What better way to spend a memorable night with your besties than working together to solve a puzzle? The Mystery Mansion Escape Room offers a variety of rooms, and you and your group have one hour to figure out the riddles and escape.

  5. Paint & Sip — Painting with a Twist offers a fun night of painting (no need to bring any experience) and enjoying your beverage of choice (feel free to bring wine or whatever you want).

  6. Board & Brush — Similar to Paint and Sip, you can sign your crew up for a DIY wood sign workshop and you’re welcome to BYOB.

  7. Live Music/PerformancesThe Robinson Center hosts all manner of amazing shows, plays and musicals, so check the schedule to see if something interests you. For other live music spots, try South on Main, Stickyz Rock 'n' Roll Chicken Shack or the White Water Tavern

  8. ESSE Purse Museum— What better place to take your lady friends than a museum celebrating the history of women and their purses?

Go Out on the Town

  1. ZIN Wine Bar If you want a classy intimate affair, the ZIN Wine Bar has a private party room where you and your girls can sample wine and food. They offer over 40 different wines.

  2. The Pantry Crest  If you’re feeling a more casual atmosphere, enjoy the cute and cozy vibes of The Pantry in Hillcrest. The food's great and the drink options are endless. 

  3. Lost Forty Brewing — Whether you come for brunch or the craft beer, Lost Forty is a great place to relax with your besties.

  4. Agasi 7 Rooftop Bar — Get a big city feel in downtown Little Rock at Agasi 7 Rooftop Bar located in the Downtown Hilton Garden Inn. Agasi 7 offers prime views and tasty craft cocktails. 

  5. Fassler Hall  This new German beer hall-inspired spot downtown is a great place to come for apps and drinks before heading out on the town. And when the weather's nice, the outdoor patio is the place to be. 

  6. Rock Town Distillery — Tour Arkansas' first legal distillery of any kind in Arkansas since prohibition and sample some of their whiskeys and vodkas. Tastings are just $10-15 and are held Tuesday-Sunday. Call (501) 907-5244 to check on times. 

Joe Tobiason

For more Arkansas bachelorette party ideas, click here!