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#1
Old 08-31-2012, 11:40 AM
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Looking for resort & vacation stuff in/around/within driving distance of Amarillo TX

My mother is old, frail, and recovering from cancer, but not totally without energy yet. I've told her in the past that I'd like to do a mother/daughter vacation with her at some point. I was thinking Paris or Hawaii or wine country in Northern California, but she's thinking she wants to visit relatives in Amarillo, TX. <sigh>

I've never been to Amarillo before, but Mr. Athena has, and his description of it is not flattering at best. So I'm thinking maybe I can find something in the vicinity that the relatives may be able to drive to and stay/visit with us.

What would be ideal would be a nice resort-y kind of place where I could rent a suite or small casita, with a nice pool, gardens, restaurants, etc. I know there's a bunch that fit the bill around Santa Fe, but was hoping to find something closer and not at high altitude (which could be difficult for her). Mom can manage maybe 2-3 hours a day of actively doing stuff - a bit on her feet but no huge hikes or anything, or sightseeing by car, or easy shopping, that kind of thing. But she'll want to sit & relax at least a few hours a day as well, which is why I'm thinking someplace with nice grounds/a pool/etc.

Now that I think of it, a casita kind of thing where we can cook basic meals would be ideal, as I don't think she'll be up for going out for every meal.

Does such a thing exist anywhere around there? Can it be had for a reasonable amount of money? I'm OK with spending some cash - I want this to be nice, and am not looking for bargain basement prices - but at the same time I'd rather not put myself in the poorhouse for this thing.
#2
Old 08-31-2012, 12:10 PM
The Turtle Moves!
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Athena View Post

I've never been to Amarillo before, but Mr. Athena has, and his description of it is not flattering at best.
Mr. Athena is a wise man.
#3
Old 08-31-2012, 12:19 PM
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Originally Posted by silenus View Post
Mr. Athena is a wise man.
I know... this is what makes it so hard. I don't know that my Mom knows what she asks for when she says she wants to go to Amarillo. I'm giving it my best shot, though, so I can at least tell her I tried.
#4
Old 08-31-2012, 12:21 PM
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It looks like Amarillo's tourism industry is about to have a record year thanks to you. I have never been there but a friend stayed there a few months ago. If your mom is into strip clubs, I have one mediocre suggestion. Other than that, nothing.

Last edited by Shagnasty; 08-31-2012 at 12:21 PM.
#5
Old 08-31-2012, 01:26 PM
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Please note that I also mentioned "within driving distance" - if there was someplace a few hour's away that the relatives could drive to and spend a night or two, that would be great. I realize this is probably my only hope.

For the record, I contacted the relatives as well, and they were lukewarm about the whole thing. I'm very much open to saying "Mom, I tried, but you wanted to go to a butthole for a vacation and it's just not going to happen."
#6
Old 08-31-2012, 01:46 PM
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Originally Posted by Athena View Post
Please note that I also mentioned "within driving distance" - if there was someplace a few hour's away that the relatives could drive to and spend a night or two, that would be great. I realize this is probably my only hope.

For the record, I contacted the relatives as well, and they were lukewarm about the whole thing. I'm very much open to saying "Mom, I tried, but you wanted to go to a butthole for a vacation and it's just not going to happen."
The problem is that Armarillo, TX is smack in the middle of the ass end of nowhere. There isn't anything else of significance around that I know of. Sante Fe, NM is the closest place that draws a significant number of tourists and that is almost 300 miles away.

Amarillo does have the Cadillac Ranch however. If that doesn't make you want to go, nothing will.

Last edited by Shagnasty; 08-31-2012 at 01:50 PM.
#7
Old 08-31-2012, 02:17 PM
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How hungry do y'all get? If you'll finish The Big Texan's 72 oz steak and fixins in a hour it's free.

Honestly, we drive through Amarillo a couple of times a year heading up and back from Colorado and usually, like much of the area there, it's just a place to get through quickly. There is Palo Duro Canyon to the south but it's definately more of a hiking place. Same with Alibates Natl' Monument around Borger. Awesome Indian relics but requiring more physical effort.

If you drive to Sante Fe, I usually take the less travelled route NW out of Tucumcari, but then it might be a bit desolate for non-geologists.
#8
Old 08-31-2012, 04:31 PM
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I'd love to do Santa Fe or Taos, but I fear that the altitude would be too much for her; they were there several years ago when she was in better health, and she could feel it but was OK. My Dad, on the other hand, was really miserable. She's frail enough now that she tires just about every afternoon; I think adding in high altitude would make her that much more tired and potentially ruin the vacation.

OK, so I think we've concluded Amarillo is out. I can't say I'm not relieved. Now I gotta figure out Plan B. Anyone got any great ideas, given the info I've already shared?
#9
Old 08-31-2012, 04:58 PM
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Athena - are you limited to the Southwest? Or is anywhere ok?
#10
Old 08-31-2012, 05:30 PM
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Originally Posted by Missy2U View Post
Athena - are you limited to the Southwest? Or is anywhere ok?
Anywhere is OK, though we're thinking November and I'd prefer someplace warm or at least warm-ish (60s & 70s are fine). I'm even thinking Europe or Hawaii, though I'm a bit concerned that a very long plane trip combined with a big time difference might be overly taxing, so if I can find someplace closer that would probably be my preference.
#11
Old 08-31-2012, 05:43 PM
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Phoenix?

Here's a list of some very nice resorts in Phoenix - a friend of mine loves the Phoenician.

There's also this one in Santa Ana Pueblo, NM - I wish I could go there!
#12
Old 08-31-2012, 05:56 PM
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Sorry to double post but I missed the edit window.

The second one in NM is about 300 miles - that'd be KIND of driveable.
#13
Old 08-31-2012, 06:15 PM
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Originally Posted by Athena View Post
Anywhere is OK, though we're thinking November and I'd prefer someplace warm or at least warm-ish (60s & 70s are fine). I'm even thinking Europe or Hawaii, though I'm a bit concerned that a very long plane trip combined with a big time difference might be overly taxing, so if I can find someplace closer that would probably be my preference.
I went to Hawaii a few months ago. You are starting just a little closer than I did but that is a brutal plane trip even for a healthy 39 old like me. Most people don't realize just how far Hawaii really is. Let's put it this way. The plane flight from Los Angeles to Oahu is about six hours or roughly the same travel time from Boston to Western Europe (and you have to get to LA first before you even start that long leg of the trip). I wouldn't recommend Oahu as a first choice for Hawaii either so you would be looking at at least three plane legs in one day with a total time of about 14 hours with layovers. Europe would be about the same and I wouldn't recommend either trip for someone with health problems unless they really want to do it.

Both trips are world-class however if you think it is worth the experience. If travel time and stress are a big concern, you could just go South to a tourist city like New Orleans or Charleston, SC. Those are both world-class as well and pretty warm that time of the year.

Last edited by Shagnasty; 08-31-2012 at 06:16 PM.
#14
Old 09-04-2012, 08:38 AM
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Originally Posted by Athena View Post
Anywhere is OK, though we're thinking November and I'd prefer someplace warm or at least warm-ish (60s & 70s are fine).
Missy mentions Phoenix and we really enjoy the J.W. Mariott Camelback which is near but away from the bustle, nestled in Paradise Valley. It's beautifully landscaped, the restaurants are very good and there's plenty of others nearby. The shopping, museums and art galleries in Scottsdale are very nice (Gallery Russia is our favorite) and FLWright's Taliesin West is a short drive. Sedona too is only a couple hours north.
#15
Old 09-04-2012, 12:07 PM
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Well I live in Amarillo so this will be me beating the drum so to speak. There are a few things that are worth checking out. Yes the Palo Duro canyon is good to see, and you can do that with a drive through. The Cadillac ranch is a drive by as well. The Downtown area has been renovated with a Marrott available, just check out you google on Amarillo for resturants, I know of B&B's but the best is in Canyon about 45 miles South. This is the land of cattle and agriculture, not quiet as flat as Kansas but really close. Love the weather here year round, it changes but in Nov its just the last of fall, so its very changable at that time. Earliest snow storms start last of Oct. Maybe there is something here but as this isn't considered a real vacation resort probably not up to Big citty ideals.
Hope your mom is up to this at the time you mentioned.
If it were earlier I'd say go to Alburquerque the first of Oct for the balloon festival, or to see the colors in Taos and the Colorado area, all about 6 hrs from Amarillo (driving time)
#16
Old 09-04-2012, 01:37 PM
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Thanks for all the replies - I think we've decided on a different vacation for now.
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