Getting Away from it all in the Wild Wild West
By Margie Goldsmith
Sandwiched in between Big Bend National Park and Big Bend State Park in the Chihuahuan Desert of West Texas is Lajitas, the Ultimate Hideout. Named for the limestone rocks that formed the Rio Grande River bed (a river which abuts the luxury resort), Lajitas looks like a stage set right out of the Wild West. It's complete with a wooden boardwalk, historic turn of the century trading post, and 92 Texas-sized rustic luxury accommodations, each with complementary mini-bar (refilled before you can say Yeeehaw) and spacious porches overlooking the surrounding 8,000-foot-high mountains.
If you're looking for a place to get away from it all, look no further because this resort is in the middle of nowhere, but while it's a half-day drive from Dallas or Austin, there's a weekly charter flight from both airports directly to Lajitas.Â Here, tuning out is the name of the gameâ€”chilling by the pool with icy margaritas or shopping in the eclectic Boardwalk boutiques for everything from hot chili paste to bells from India. Two gourmet restaurants serve up specialties such as Venison chili topped with a jalapeno cheese cowboy biscuit.Â They offer gourmet cooking classes, wine and tequila tasting, and an Agavita Spa with an array of treatments (a brand new 30,000-square-foot Clubhouse with a 12,000-square-foot spa will open the end of 2007).Â Guests hike in nearby canyons, go river rafting, or golf on the only international 18-hole golf course in the world (tee off in the Lone Star State and sink a hole-in-one over the Rio Grande into Mexico).
One of Lajitas' main draws is the â€œSo You Wanna Be a Cowgirlâ€ (or Cowboy) program, in which you and a friend (or spouse) unleash your inner cow-person. The two-night package begins with a custom fitting for cowboy boots and cowboy shirt. Next, head out to Lajitas' Cowboy Action Shooting Range to learn how to shoot the same guns that Jesse James and Billy the Kid used. Shoot through open windows and swinging saloon doors just like John Wayne and kill all the â€œbanditsâ€ (metal targets). Then head out into the brush on a trail ride with an experienced cowboy or take a â€œcutting horseâ€ lesson with a world-class trainer.
By now, you'll be sore and tired, so head to the Agavita Spa for a treatment, which incorporates indigenous ingredients from the desert. Try the Rio Grande Mud Wrap followed by a scalp massage or the Desert Aroma Massageâ€”a gentle exfoliation followed by an essential oil massage. You'll zone out on the heady aromas of agave, eucalyptus, and ylang-ylang.
For more information call (877) 525-4827 or visit www.lajitas.com