Newsroom

Seven Years in the Making: Steve Earle Wrap-up

17 Jun 2015

Steve Earle, June 14, 2015. Photo by Alex Marks.

Steve Earle, June 14, 2015. Photo by Alex Marks.

Rainbow outside Steve Earle and The Dukes, June 14, 2015. Photo by Lesley Brown.

After seven years of trying, we were finally lucky enough to host the legendary Steve Earle and the Dukes in Marfa last Sunday, June 14, 2015. It was worth the wait. He played for two hours; the house was packed; it thunderstormed; and the most epic double rainbow of all time formed outside the theater, right before Steve played. Couldn’t ask for a better sign.

A huge thank you to Steve, the Dukes, Eleanor and Chris Masterson, his crew, all the wonderful people from far and wide who came to the show (we even had some folks from Japan!), and all the folks who took a risk on standing room tickets to join us (we think it worked out?). We also want to thank Matt & Mikelle Kruger, Ballroom Marfa members, and our ever-wonderful, ever-supportive friends at Big Bend Brewing Company, SAVED Wines, and the Crowley Theater.

Particular shoutout to our sound and light team — Rob Crowley, Gory Smelley, and Chris Hillen — and all the others who made it happen: Lesley Brown, Tim Crowley, JD DiFabbio, Hilary duPont, Cuca Flores, Liz Janoff, Mallory Jones, Vance Knowles, Marfa Public Radio, Alex Marks, Jose Martinez, Jeff Matheis, Tom Michael, Suzy Simon, and Jonathan Wyckoff. It’s a pleasure and gift to work with all of you.

In case you missed the show, check out the photos below, listen to the interview with Steve Earle over at Marfa Public Radio, and purchase the poster, designed by Mishka Westell, here.

Sam Falls Limited Edition Vinyl from Ballroom Marfa

1 May 2015

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Created in collaboration with a group of musicians, this limited edition, blue-marbled vinyl stems from a sound piece by Sam Falls, which plays on a loop in Ballroom Marfa’s gallery as part of his 2015 solo exhibition. The limited edition record features a woman’s voice repeating the word “now” alongside simple chords played by four musicians. The LP that plays in the exhibition contains a thin metal strip that causes the record to skip, creating an original composition with each rotation. This sound work speaks to another work in the show, Falls’ video piece Untitled (Now), where he continuously writes the word ‘now’ into sand with a stick before it gets repeatedly washed away by waves at the ocean shore. Roshe Run For Womens
Together the works reflect the artist’s interest in capturing the passage of time and its elements, providing viewers with various mediums in which to consider the present.

20150407_BM_Falls_218
Sam Falls
Untitled (Now, record), 2015
12” Vinyl LP with turntable and speakers
17 x 13 x 5 inches
Courtesy of the artist and Ballroom Marfa
Photo © Fredrik Nilsen

“I wanted to visualize how we can see or hear time as it passes to be reminded of its unified past, present, and future; every moment is ‘now,’ or will be ‘now,’ or was ‘now.’ ‘Now’ is a temporal shifter as I see it, and so these works regenerate the word to inform the moment both as specific and as the works progress elliptically ‘now’ becomes abstracted and wholly representational.” — Excerpt from Sam Falls artist statement

Click here to read more in the Ballroom Marfa shop. See more of our limited editions here.

Sheer Mag Jam (Because It’s Friday)

24 Apr 2015

From the desk of the music director: Can’t get enough of Sheer Mag’s “Fan the Flames” — this video is carrying us through Friday. More info about the band here, and thanks to Dan Chamberlin (and Pitchfork) for the heads up.

Steve Earle and the Dukes in Marfa!

21 Apr 2015


Steve Earle and John Prine singing Townes Van Zandt’s “Loretta” at the Ryman Auditorium, Nashville, Tennessee on October 26, 2013. As the video says: Bless you, John and Steve.

Ballroom Marfa is proud to present Steve Earle and the Dukes at the Crowley Theater on June 14, 2015.

A protégé of legendary songwriters Townes Van Zandt and Guy Clark, Earle quickly became a master storyteller in his own right, with his songs being recorded by Johnny Cash, Willie Nelson, Emmylou Harris, Waylon Jennings, Travis Tritt, The Pretenders, Joan Baez, and many others. 1986 saw the release of his debut album, Guitar Town, which shot to number one on the country charts. What followed was a varied array of releases including the biting hard rock of Copperhead Road (1988), the minimalist beauty of Train A Comin’ (1995), the politically charged masterpiece Jerusalem (2002), and the Grammy Award-winning albums The Revolution Starts…Now (2004), Washington Square Serenade (2007), and Townes (2009).

On his 16th studio album, Terraplane, Earle pays tribute to the blues, influenced by the blues giants he saw growing up in Texas — Lightnin’ Hopkins, Freddy King, Johnny Winter, Jimmie and Stevie Ray Vaughan, Canned Heat, and Billy Gibbons. Recorded in Nashville, the new collection is his homage to the music that he calls “the commonest of human experience, perhaps the only thing that we all truly share,” and a record he has wanted to make for a long time.

It has long been a dream of ours to bring Earle to Far West Texas; we hope you can join us for this special evening with a country legend. Ballroom Marfa members and tri-county residents can purchase tickets for $15 by stopping by or calling the Ballroom Marfa gallery until May 1. Tickets are available to the general public for $30 at the Ballroom Marfa website.

Explore Steve Earle’s canon on YouTube (his 1991 concert at McCabe’s is heartbreaking), and read BOMB Magazine‘s interview with him from 1998.

Dev Hynes + Carly Rae Jepsen (Because It’s Thursday)

9 Apr 2015

To celebrate the forthcoming weekend: A slice of ’80s pop love from Carly Rae Jepsen of “Call Me Maybe” fame (we are fans, of course), cowritten with Dev Hynes, who was just here a few weeks ago doing his recording residency as part of Marfa Myths.

There is an expression which roughly translates as who does not marry a Damascene will never know a night of peaceIt’s a daily battle with me,” Meyer said. The lack of a Stoic emphasis on virtue and character is painfully apparent here, as athletes have lost their integrity and honour in pursuit of victory as the final end. The family will have to wait to watch a video recording of the ceremony that will be sent to them afterwards. I’m assigned a young punkish male camel,

Thank You + Marfa Myths Polaroids by Alex Marks

20 Mar 2015

We just want to say a huge thank you to everyone who came out to Marfa Myths last weekend, and everyone who made it possible. The festival was beyond our wildest dreams, and we can’t believe it actually happened. We’ll be doing a proper wrap-up soon, and adding all the photos, from Alex Marks and Luis Nieto Dickens (our former intern [!] who traveled down to shoot for Oak NYC), but first we want to share these amazing Polaroids, taken by Alex Marks, part of our ongoing Polaroid portrait series. They kind of capture it all.

Dev Hynes and Connan Mockasin by Alex Marks, Marfa, Texas, March 14, 2015.

Grouper by Alex Marks, Marfa, Texas, March 14,   2015.

Grouper by Alex Marks, Marfa, Texas,   March 14, 2015.

Co La by Alex Marks, Marfa,  Texas, March 14, 2015.

GABI by Alex Marks, Marfa, Texas,    March 14, 2015.

Jefre Cantu-Ledesma by Alex Marks, Marfa, Texas, March 14, 2015.

Jefre Cantu-Ledesma by Alex Marks,  Marfa, Texas, March 14, 2015.

Weyes Blood by Alex Marks, Marfa, Texas, March 14,  2015.

Weyes Blood by Alex Marks, Marfa, Texas, March 14, 2015.

Suicideyear by Alex Marks, Marfa, Texas,   March 14, 2015.

Bitchin' Bajas by Alex Marks,   Marfa, Texas, March 14, 2015.

Steve Gunn by Alex Marks, Marfa, Texas, March 14,   2015.

Steve Gunn by Alex Marks, Marfa, Texas,   March 14, 2015.

Gregg Kowalsky by Alex Marks, Marfa, Texas, March 14,  2015.

Thug Entrancer by Alex Marks, Marfa, Texas, March 14, 2015.

Tamaryn by Alex Marks, Marfa, Texas, March 14, 2015.

Iceage by Alex Marks, Marfa, Texas,  March 14, 2015.

Iceage by Alex Marks, Marfa, Texas, March 14, 2015.

The primary radical (Fig Amira Foods has a presence in 40 countries since it launched 6 years ago. But even with the lead, it took a while for Franklin to find its flow, as the Warriors managed just two runs on three hits over the first four innings. Aiken Getty ImagesG Justin Blalock Age: 31 Notes: Blalock started 125 games for the Falcons after joining the team as a second round pick in 2007. Catwell claims he was beaten by three bodyguards used by Waka Flocka Flame after the musician posed for a photograph outside a Toronto club in August, 2012. That’s because Hottinger did not have to worry about party leaders stirring up the passions of extremists,

So You’re Coming to Marfa Myths: Insider Tips (The Final Part in a Series)

17 Feb 2015

We wrap up our Marfa Myths guide with insider Marfa tips (see previous installments here, here, here, and here). Be sure to check out the Wrong store’s recommendations, too, which are excellent.

Mimms Ranch.    Courtesy of the Dixon Water Foundation.
Mimms Ranch. Courtesy of the Dixon Water Foundation.

Laura Copelin, associate curator
Take a walk on Mimms Ranch.

 

SEAN DALY AT DO YOUR THING
Ballroom super pal Sean Daly enjoying coffee at Do Your Thing. Photo courtesy of Do Your Thing.

Susan Sutton, executive director
Get a coffee at Do Your Thing and make friends with Bear, one of the coolest dogs in town.

 

marcus tillaeus, courtesy of flickr
Photo of Stripes by marcus tillaeus, via Flickr.

Liz Janoff, intern
Stripes rules!

 

Ironheart Gym
Ironheart Gym: Hammer Strong. Photo courtesy of Ironheart.

Daniel Chamberlin, communications director
Practice good physical fitness at Ironheart Gym, our world-class workout center housed in Marfa’s former Masonic Lodge. And listen to Inter-Dimensional Music on Marfa Public Radio!

 

The Overlook at Mimms Ranch, Marfa, Texas.
The Overlook at Mimms Ranch

Nicki Ittner, music director
1. Wander around Donald Judd’s untitled 15 works in concrete at Chinati. Free, and beautiful.
Check in with the front desk before visiting.
2. Visit Mimms Ranch. If you have the time and energy to do a five-mile run or walk (round-trip), head out to the Overlook, designed and built by Joey Benton.
3. Drive down Pinto Canyon Road/2810 at night.
4. Get a Żubrówka buffalo grass vodka martini at Cochineal (it tastes like cookie dough?!).
5. Just (literally, two hours ago) learned that there’s a walking labyrinth at Building 98.

 

New Star Grocery by Charlie Villyard.
New Star Grocery by Charlie Villyard, via Flickr.

Ross Cashiola, artist/contributor to Marfa Myths zine
Go to Linneaus Lorette’s new museum, the New Star Grocery Art Museum (301 West Dallas).

 

MARFA BURRITO BY SPENCER BROWN
Marfa Burrito by Spencer Brown, via Flickr.

Susannah Lipsey, owner of Freda/Host of the Marfa Myths Pop-Up
1. Drive down Pinto Canyon Road
2. Have a beer at Planet Marfa
3. Go to Moonlight Gemstones
4. Eat a Marfa burrito
5. Have a Mexican martini at Maiya’s

Ballroom Marfa.  Courtesy of Jen Siska.
Ballroom Marfa. Courtesy of Jen Siska.

And of course, no visit to Marfa is complete without a stop by Ballroom Marfa. We’ll have our spring exhibition up — a solo show by Sam Falls — so please swing by. And for general info about Marfa, you can download our visitor guide — which has more details about eating, tours, and shopping — or visit visitmarfa.com and marfalist.org, where you can find housing suggestions, ride shares, and more.

Buy tickets to Marfa Myths here. Residents of Brewster, Jeff Davis and Presidio counties may purchase tickets at a discount in-person at Freda and the Ballroom Marfa gallery.

So You’re Coming to Marfa Myths: Where to Eat (Part Four in a Series)

13 Feb 2015

Ballroom Marfa and Mexican Summer are presenting the Marfa Myths Festival over March 13-15, 2015, and we hope you’re coming out for it. If you are, our Marfa guide can help. Check out parts one, two, three, and read on for tips on eating in our fair town.

HOURS HERE CAN BE WEIRD
Remember: Marfa is a town of 1900-ish people. Alabama T-Shirts It’s not a big city that offers all-hours convenience. Restaurants have odd hours, or can be closed unexpectedly. When it comes to eating, just keep an open mind, be patient, adjust your expectations and take comfort that Stripes is open 24-7. As our communications director Daniel Chamberlin admitted the other day after finding closed doors at every lunch spot on a Tuesday, “Even after five years I don’t remember when things are open sometimes.”

Boyz 2 Men
Boyz 2 Men. Photo by Cody Kern, via Flickr.

WHERE SHOULD GO I FOR BREAKFAST?

Boyz 2 Men
220 W San Antonio Street (behind Padre’s) | Saturday & Sunday, 8am–3pm
Breakfast tacos, great for vegans, lot of sass behind the (Airstream) counter. Cash (pesos o dólares) only.

Buns ‘n’ Roses
1613 W San Antonio St | Thursday-Sunday, 7am-2:30pm
Low-key and reliable breakfast + lunch + donuts + flowers.

Cochineal
107 W San Antonio St | Sunday only, 9am-1pm
Upscale brunch.

Do Your Thing
213 S Dean St (in community room) | Friday-Monday, 8:30am-1pm, 3pm-6pm
Delicious espresso drinks and toast, plus (mindblowing) porridge on the weekends, 9:30am-12:30pm.

Frama
120 N. Austin St | 7 days a week, 7:30am-8pm
Big Bend coffee, smoothies and scones (if you get there early enough; weekdays only).

Mando’s
1506 W San Antonio St | Monday-Saturday, 6am-2pm (Closed Sunday)
Traditional breakfast, plus Mexican and American comfort food.

Memo’s
905 W. San Antonio St | Thursday, Friday, Sunday & Monday 8:30am-2:30pm (we think)
Mexican breakfast plates + burgers.

Marfa Burrito
Route 67, on the way to Chinati | Monday-Saturday, 7am-2pm-ish
Delicious breakfast burritos. Cash only.

Squeeze Marfa
215 N Highland Ave | Tuesday-Sunday, 8am-3pm
European-style breakfast with muesli, yogurt, toast & jam and paninis for lunch.

Mando's.  Courtesy of Fat Lyle's Instagram.
Enchiladas at Mando’s. Courtesy of Fat Lyle’s Instagram.

NOW WHAT ABOUT LUNCH?

All of the above, plus…

Comida Futura
120 N Highland Avenue | Monday-Friday, 11:30am-4pm
Hearty lunches, innovative sides and delicious desserts.

Food Shark

Airstreamland (220 W San Antonio Street) | Friday–Sunday, 12pm–3pm
The original Mediterranean-by-way-of-West-Texas food truck. Cash only.

Thunderbird Restaurant
603 W. San Antonio | Wednesday–Monday, 11am–3pm
Gourmet sandwiches, salads, fried chicken, homemade ice cream, the best biscuits. On Sunday and Monday: Marfa’s only Asian cuisine. Cash only.

Thunderbird Restaurant. Courtesy of Fat Lyle's Instagram.
Fried chicken, sesame cabbage slaw, two dick billy goat hot sauce and a buttermilk biscuit at the Thunderbird Restaurant/Capri Kitchen. Courtesy of Fat Lyle’s Instagram.

AND FINALLY DINNER?

Cochineal
107 W San Antonio St | 7 days a week, 5:30-10pm
Inventive American cooking. Reservations.

Grilled Cheese Parlour
300 W San Antonio | Friday, 9:30pm-midnight + Saturday, 9:30pm-1:30am
Late-night grilled cheese.

Jett’s Grill at the Hotel Paisano
7 days a week, 5:30pm-9pm, open until 10pm on Friday and Saturday
Classic Southwestern + American fare. Reservations.

Maiya’s
103 N Highland St | Wednesday-Saturday, 5pm-10pm
Modern Italian. Reservations.

Padre’s
209 West El Paso | Wednesday-Friday, 5pm–10pm; Saturday, 2pm–10pm; Sunday, 3pm-10pm
Burgers, tuna melts, & fries (plus Italian Tuesdays).

Planet Marfa
200 S Abbot St | Thursday-Sunday, 2pm–10pm (re-opening on March 12!)
Not exactly a dinner place, but awesome nachos + good vibes.

Beyoncé, Food Shark. Courtesy of Food Shark
Beyoncé at the Grilled Cheese Parlour. Photo via Food Shark, originally from Beyoncé’s tumblr (!).

YO IT’S FRIDAY AND 5PM AND I WANT A BEER AND A SNACK
A few choices: Planet Marfa, Mando’s, Maiya’s and Padre’s. (Jett’s and Cochineal open at 5:30pm.)

YO IT’S MONDAY AND 5PM AND I WANT A BEER AND A SNACK
Mando’s!

WTH IT’S 10PM AND I’M HUNGRY!
If it’s Friday or Saturday, you’re in luck: head to Grilled Cheese Parlour. Otherwise, all the kitchens are closed, except Stripes (the east location, near the flashing stoplight).

IT’S SUNDAY NIGHT, WHERE DO I EAT DINNER?
Cochineal, Jett’s or Dairy Queen. Or a light dinner of nachos at Planet Marfa.

I ARRIVE THURSDAY NIGHT AROUND 9PM, WHERE CAN I EAT DINNER?
Maiya’s may still be serving food, but Cochineal and Padre’s are sure things (for at least 30 minutes). You can also grab some nachos at Planet Marfa, or…there’s always Dairy Queen.

DO I REALLY HAVE TO MAKE RESERVATIONS FOR DINNER?
We recommend it. It’s Spring Break, and the town is going to be bonkers. Cochineal, Jett’s and Maiya’s all accept dinner reservations.

IT’S SUNDAY AT 2:30PM, WHERE THE HECK CAN I GET LUNCH?
Food Shark, Planet Marfa (nacho time), Squeeze Marfa (but hurry, they close at 3), and maybe (maybe?) Boyz 2 Men. And there’s always Dairy Queen and Subway (inside Stripes West!).

IT’S MONDAY AT 2:30PM, WHERE THE HECK CAN I GET LUNCH?
Thunderbird Restaurant and Comida Futura are your best bets. (Comida may be low on food, but you can always get a peasant bowl.) Marfa Burrito may still be open, but it’s a longshot. Plus our old friends Dairy Queen and Subway.

WHAT’S OPEN EVERY DAY?
Frama, Cochineal, Jett’s, Dairy Queen and Subway!

Jett's pistacho fried steak
Jett’s insane pistachio fried steak. Photo by Andrea B, via Flickr.

NEXT UP
Check back next week for our final installment, where we reveal insider tips (!!!!). Again, for general info, check out visitmarfa.com and marfalist.org, where you can find event listings, housing suggestions, ride shares, and more.

So You’re Coming to Marfa Myths: Day Trips, Side Trips, Things of Note (Part Three in a Series)

10 Feb 2015

Ballroom Marfa and Mexican Summer are presenting the Marfa Myths festival over March 13-15, 2015, and we hope you’re coming out for it. If you are, our Marfa guide can help. Check out parts one and two, and read on for tips on what to do during your visit.

Marfa Myths, design by Rob Carmichael

IN TOWN
Obviously there are loads of things to do in Marfa (chilling, appreciating the landscape, shopping, eating, gallery cruising), which can fill your time most agreeably. But if you’re the more ambitious sort, here are a few around-town or near-town journeys:

Larry Bell, 6 X 6 AN IMPROVISATION.  Photo by Alex Marks
Larry Bell, 6 x 6 An Improvisation. Photo by Alex Marks.

Chinati Foundation
We wouldn’t be here if it weren’t for the Chinati Foundation, the contemporary art museum based upon the ideas of its founder, artist Donald Judd. If you have any interest in contemporary art, or Minimalism, you really shouldn’t miss it. They offer various tours, but if you take the full collection tour, you can see a temporary exhibition by artist Larry Bell, which focuses on Bell’s large freestanding glass sculptures, which are quite something (see photo above).

Judd Foundation
Judd Foundation holds and maintains artist Donald Judd’s private living and working spaces in Marfa, Texas. Comprised of a total of 15 spaces, these properties include studios installed with artwork by Judd and others, living quarters, ranch and architecture offices, and libraries, many of which are available to tour. The more time we spend at the Judd Foundation, the more we admire Donald Judd and the scope of his work.

McDonald Observatory
The night skies in our area are some of the darkest in the United States, making for excellent star gazing. Head to the world-renowned McDonald Observatory for a Star Party (hosted every Tuesday, Friday and Saturday nights), and enjoy a tour of the constellations and view the moon, planets, stars and galaxies through telescopes. We waited four years to go to a Star Party and felt the serious fool afterwards. Just the sheer number of stars will blow you away. (Though if it’s cloudy, or rainy, save it for another time.)

Marfa Lights
What are the Marfa Lights? Have we seen them? Is it worth it? WHO KNOWS? To do your own investigating, wait till dark, then drive out to the Marfa Lights Viewing Station (nine miles east of Marfa on Hwy 90 — be on the lookout for the sign directing you to the observing area), or, if you’re feeling adventurous, drive down Pinto Canyon Road/2810, pull over, and look east, south, and southeast. Mysticism abounds.

Prada Marfa. Photo by Lizette Kabre
The legendary Boyd Elder at Prada Marfa. Photo by Lizette Kabré.

Prada Marfa
Maybe you’ve heard of Prada Marfa? Or seen the sign on Gossip Girl? The permanent land art project by artists Elmgreen & Dragset was produced in 2005 by Ballroom Marfa and Art Production Fund and has seen no end to visitors, scandal, and graffiti. The installation is about 40 miles from Marfa, right outside of Valentine, on the south side of highway. Blink and you’ll miss it. Best viewed at sunset or in the early morning stillness, when its out-of-placeness feels the most extreme.

Scenic Loop Drive
Just want to take a leisurely car ramble? Head up to Fort Davis, the starting point for one of the most scenic drives in Texas. Seventy-five miles long, the drive leaves Fort Davis, proceeds up Limpia Canyon, past the McDonald Observatory, then into Madera Canyon and a quiet, pine-shaded picnic area (you can pick up picnic fare at Stone Village Market in Fort Davis, or load up on french fries and chocolate malts pre-drive at the Fort Davis Drugstore).

OUT-OF-TOWN TRIPS
If you really want to really explore the area, or love to hike, or have time to burn, check out these longer excursions:

Balmorhea, Courtesy of Texas Parks & Wildlife
Balmorhea State Park. Photo courtesy of Texas Parks & Wildlife.

Balmorhea State Park
Dive into the cool waters of the world’s largest spring-fed swimming pool, which covers 1.75 acres and stays at 72–76 degrees year round. The pool is open daily, 8am to 8pm. The park is about 1.5 hours from Marfa, and some Marfans go there every chance they get. Muy relaxation.

Big Bend National Park
Let’s get real: Big Bend National Park is incredible. If you have enough time, make the journey (overnight is ideal; if you go one day, you’ll wish you’d gone two). Trails are relatively well documented in the various guide books available, and in the park literature. A few popular favorites:

– Lost Mine Trail: Lovely day hike in the high country of the Chisos Mountains. Scrub, some forest, big views.
– Window Trail: Easy afternoon walk across the Chisos Basin to a rock window formation looking over the desert lowlands.
– South Rim Trail/Boot Spring: Lots of high country trails, easily customizable from day hikes to Boot Spring to an overnight backpack (or STRENUOUS day hike) to the South Rim and the most amazing views available in Texas. Though most parts of this trail are closed until the end of peregrine falcon nesting season in May
– Hot Springs Trail: Chill 1 mile walk to Rio Grande-adjacent springs.
– Santa Elena Canyon: Another easy hike into one of the grandest canyons of Far West Texas.
– Boquillas: If you have your passport, a mellow trip across the border into the tiny Mexican town of Boquillas for tacos, sand dunes and frosty post-hike brews.

Also of interest: Terlingua is the weird and wonderful town just outside the park boundary. A world unto its own, full of rebels and off-the-gridders. (Our own Daniel Chamberlin wrote an excellent profile of Terlingua and its inhabitants a few years back for Arthur Magazine.)

The river road
The River Road from Terlingua to Presidio. (Note: This is just a lousy picture taken by us, with our IPHONE — that’s how beautiful it is!)

Big Bend Ranch State Park
A bit more obscure than Big Bend National Park, Big Bend Ranch State Park is a bit closer and offers more lowland delights. Plus, the ride along the River Road from Terlingua to Presidio is well worth it. Closed Canyon is on the road, too, another easy one hour (more or less) hike down a lovely slot canyon.

Chinati Hot Springs
An oasis nestled in the Chinati Mountains of West Texas, Chinati Hot Springs has provided healing waters to the people of the area for thousands of years. From Marfa, the journey is about 2.5 hours. We recommend a high-clearance vehicle to get there. Hippie attitude also a plus.

Chinati Hot Springs, photo by Alberto Tomas Halpern
Chinati Hot Springs. Photo by Alberto Tomas Halpern, courtesy of Texas Co-Op Power.

NEXT UP
Check back later this week for our penultimate installment, where we discuss all the eating options in Marfa. Again, for general info, check out visitmarfa.com and marfalist.org, where you can find event listings, housing suggestions, ride shares, and more.

So You’re Coming to Marfa Myths: Where to Stay (Part Two in a Series)

5 Feb 2015

As you may have heard, Ballroom Marfa and Mexican Summer are presenting the Marfa Myths festival over March 13-15, 2015. If you’re coming out, use our Marfa guide to help navigate your journey. See part one here, and read on for tips on where to stay.

Marfa, Photo by Justina Villanueva
Marfa. Photo by Justina Villanueva.

HOTELS
Marfa has four hotels:

Hotel Paisano
432.729.3669
West Texas gem. Restored hotel with original architectural details, plus an outdoor pool and a restaurant. The cast of Giant — Elizabeth Taylor, James Dean, and Rock Hudson—stayed here during filming. Rooms start at $99.

Thunderbird Hotel
877.729.1984
1950s motel converted into minimalist-chic retreat with modern art-laden rooms, a pool & fire pits. Bicycles also available to rent. Rooms start at $180.

El Cosmico
432.729.1950
El Cosmico is an 18-acre trailer, tent and teepee hotel and campground. Bicycles and wood-fired hot tubs are available to rent. A hammock grove and an outdoor kitchen with a fridge, sink and barbecue grills add to the bohemian vibe. Camping is risky business in March in West Texas, but you never know, the weather may cooperate. Rates start at $95 for a safari tent (which have beds with heated mattress pads and are pretty swank).

Riata Inn
432.729.3800
Roadside motel with big rooms and a cold pool. Cheapest option in town. Note: You probably need a car to stay here, unless you’re a good walker, or plan on renting a bike from Bizarro Bikes.

RENTAL HOMES ON VRBO AND AIRBNB
There are many great houses and rooms available for rent in the area — check out all the options on VRBO and airbnb. We recommend booking as soon as you have your travel plans in place.

WHAT IF I CAN’T FIND A PLACE TO STAY IN MARFA?
If you can’t find anything in Marfa, never fear! Try Fort Davis (21 miles away) and Alpine (27 miles away). Though a bit of a trek, both are pretty manageable. Plus Alpine is a university town, so there are lots of budget motel options — not to mention Alicia’s and Big Bend Saddlery. Fort Davis has the historic Indian Lodge, which was developed by the Civilian Conservation Corps, and a great thrift store.

Mimms Ranch, October 4, 2014. Photo by Jennifer Boomer.
Mimms Ranch, Marfa. Photo by Jennifer Boomer.

JUST A NOTE ABOUT PUBLIC DRINKING
Although Marfa can feel carefree, please remember that you may not drink in public after public drinking hours. As hosts of 2011’s Railroad Revival Tour pointed out, “According to the Sheriff’s Department, public drinking hours end at 12:15 am Friday night, 1:15 am Saturday night, and at 12:15 am Sunday night. Absolutely no drinking can occur in public after these hours. This will be enforced.” Fair warning.

CAUTION: SMOKING IN THE DESERT
A few years ago, West Texas suffered from terrible wildfires that ravaged the area and destroyed homes, livestock, and land. Many of these fires can be traced to human carelessness. While we are not currently in a burn ban, it is best to follow these simple rules:

• NO open fires. No exceptions.

• Do not park or drive over dry grass.

• Use extreme caution with anything that produces a spark, including ashes or cigarettes.

• If you do not have an ashtray, do not smoke. Do not dispose of cigarettes out of car windows or on the ground, anywhere. Instead, extinguish the cigarette and keep the butt in your pocket or pack until it can be disposed in a waste bin or ashcan.

Marfa. Photo by Aurora Tang.
Marfa. Photo by Aurora Tang.

NEXT UP
Check back later this week for our next installment, where we discuss things to do in the area (#1: take photos of the sky). For general info about Marfa, check out visitmarfa.com and marfalist.org, where you can find other housing suggestions, ride shares, and more.

Special thanks to Railroad Revival’s visitor guide from 2011 for some of these tips.