Tiny Marfa, Texas is one of the most unique places in the entire United States. Nearly 3 hours southeast of El Paso, in the middle of nowhere lies an art community like no other. Formerly a stop on the railroad as a place to refill steam engines with water, ever since the 1970’s something began brewing in Marfa. Minimalist artist Donald Judd moved to town and led a movement to transform this town into a world-renowned art mecca. He and some of his buddies bought up property including an old military base from the 20’s and created an art enclave in this small high desert town that no one had ever heard of. Today, if you are someone who appreciates modern art it’s one of the most fabulous, fun, quirky and cool places you can visit in the United States. In addition to seeing loads of mind-bending art, we’ll enjoy a wine tasting, some creative yet scrumptious food and we’ll have a goat cheese class. Weather in El Paso and Marfa at this time of year sees highs of 60 and lows of 40 at night.
Here's a day-by-day itinerary of the trip.
Arrive early enough that you can check-in to The Stanton House and enjoy a relaxing spa treatment (included), either a float or a facial are in order. We’ll meet up for drinks and dinner at 7pm and go over our to-do list for the long weekend.
Overnight: The Stanton House
After a relaxing breakfast our driver will pick us up and we’ll head out to Marfa. We’ll stop outside of town after the almost 3-hour drive to snap pictures in front of the iconic Prada Store installation, while watching tumbleweeds roll by.
Once in town we’ll have lunch at The Waterstop, a local favorite. Weather dependent we’ll dine outside.
After checking in and resting a bit we’ll head out for a walk-in town to visit some of the smaller art galleries and boutiques and learn a bit about the history of this fascinating small town.
Tonight, we’ll dine at the hotel at their cooler than cool restaurant, La Venture.
Overnight: Hotel St. George
Today we’ll rise early for some optional yoga to start the day out right. Then we’ll mosey on over to the Chinati Foundation for a guided tour by an art expert. Revel in the permanent collection that spans the massive complex with works from: Donald Judd, Dan Flavin, Robert Irwin, Ilya Kabakov, Claus Oldenburg among others. You will walk away in awe of this place. We’ll make a pitstop at Marfa’s burrito for quick lunch because there is much to do today. This afternoon we’ll head over to La Mansana de Chinati and the Block with access to Donald Judd’s residence. Depending on time and availability we’ll strive to visit his studios as well including a selection of Juddʼs downtown spaces, such as the: Architecture Studio, Art Studio, and the Cobb House and Whyte Building. These spaces contain furniture by Judd, his early paintings from the 1950s and 1960s, an extensive collection of modernist and period furniture, and works by other prominent twentieth century artists and designers. Whatever we cannot cover today we’ll leave for tomorrow. Late afternoon we’ll savor a wine tasting at Alta Marfa winery and vineyard. This will be followed by dinner at Cochineal for our prix-fixe meal.
Overnight: Hotel St. George
This morning we’ll take a short drive to the devour some of the best donuts you’ve ever had.
After all of the visual stimulation over the past two days, a hands on activity is now in order. We’ll head over to Marfa Maid Goat Cheese for a milking, goat care and cheese workshop at the farm. Of course, we’ll enjoy a goat cheese tasting after class.
Then we’ll follow up with whatever we missed of the Judd Foundation buildings and tours plus and if time allows, we’ll stop into Building 98, an international women’s foundation.
Late this afternoon we’ll walk over to Planet Marfa’s Beer Garden for some nibbles and ale. Then for those we are ready for it, we’ll head over to the Lost Horse Saloon for some live music. Tonight, might just be the night for us to see those mysterious Marfa lights.
Overnight: Hotel St. George
It’s Monday and all of our fun sadly must come to an end. After breakfast we’ll pack up and depart for the trip back to El Paso. Flights home after 2:30pm will be your best bet.
The Stranton House, where form and function meet to create a thoughtfully designed hotel in the heart of El Paso.
Doni Belau is the creator and founder off Girls Guide to the World. She is an inveterate traveler. She has been to nearly 70 countries (and counting). She comes alive when she travels, when she is exploring, and when she is seeing, tasting and feeling something new. She loves to help other women experience this sensation as she truly feels it helps us see a larger world of possibilities within ourselves.
Real beauty starts with Texas
Today, Marfa is a tourist destination and a major center for minimalist art. Attractions include Building 98, the Chinati Foundation, artisan shops, historical architecture, a classic Texas town square, modern art installments, art galleries, and the Marfa lights.
4 nights accommodation in fabulous hotels
Two glasses of wine or beer with dinner
All excursions, classes, tastings and entry fees
Experienced art guides
All in-state transport, except your transfer in El Paso
One Spa service at the Stanton House
A wine tasting plus a cheese workshop
Roundtrip airfare to El Paso
Additional wine, beer, or spirits beyond what is offered at meals
All personal souvenirs or additional spa services
Yoga class fee
Travel and Medical Insurance (required)
The trip officially starts on the afternoon of November 30th but you may want to consider arriving a day early so you have time to relax before the trip starts. If you do decide to arrive early, please let us know and we will take care of booking your room for you and make sure that you are kept in the same room as you will be in when the trip starts.
We will have a zoom call about 6 weeks before the trip starts to discuss all that information and give you a packing list.Here is a great website that we love that will help you with packing and travel trips.
In Marfa during December average daily high temperatures decrease from 62°F to 57°F and it is overcast or mostly cloudy about 36% of the time.
Doni Belau will be your trip leader. Doni Belau is the creator and founder off Girls Guide to the World. She is an inveterate traveler. She has been to nearly 70 countries (and counting). She comes alive when she travels, when she is exploring, and when she is seeing, tasting and feeling something new.