Direct Flight: Big city amenities, small town charm converge in Plano, Texas

Downtown Plano Mural at Georgia's
This colorful mural on the wall of George’s Famers’ Market celebrates Plano’s rich agricultural and industrial history.

(NewsUSA)—When travelers to North Texas hang their hats in Plano, they enjoy prime access to all of the Dallas-Fort Worth area’s cultural, sporting and entertainment offerings. But this dynamic city is also a destination in its own right, one that blends cosmopolitan flair with vintage charm for the perfect weekend getaway.

Here are the makings of a memorable weekend in Plano.

Stay

For extra pampering, consider the Renaissance Dallas at Plano Legacy West, known for its “cowboy meets Samurai” décor and rooftop pool and cabanas.

Looking for something truly over-the-top? Take over Southfork Ranch, home of the TV series “Dallas,” for the night. The package includes a private tour of the mansion and a steak dinner fit for J.R. Ewing. (If opting for one of Plano’s many other hotels, visitors can still enjoy a Southfork trail ride by day.)

Sip and Savor

With more than 1,000 eateries, Plano has more restaurants per capita than New York or San Francisco and an incredibly diverse dining scene.

Legacy Hall, a European-style food hall located at Legacy West just steps from the Renaissance, lets visitors sample a mouthwatering variety, all under one roof, often with a side of live music.

Along the brick-lined streets of Plano’s charming, historic Downtown Plano Arts District, you’ll find everything from Japanese robata at Ebesu and pub fare at The Fillmore to artisan pizza at Urban Crust and tacos at its sister restaurant, Urban Rio.

The Boardwalk at Granite Park is another fun “restaurant row” with everything from burgers to English high tea.

Shop, See and Do

With four major walkable retail districts, Plano is a shopper’s dream.

At Legacy West, Teslas are on offer alongside home furnishings, décor, and more.

The nearby Shops at Legacy are the place to stroll outdoors, shop for popular brands, catch an indie film, or indulge in a spa treatment.

The upscale Shops at Willow Bend offer a well-rounded mix of stores anchored by Neiman-Marcus. They also house a special attraction for families — one of only five Crayola Experiences in the nation.

The streets of quaint Historic Downtown Plano brim with charming art galleries and independent boutiques like Lyla’s and La Foofaraw, and shoppers can also take in colorful murals, a farmer’s market, and outdoor concerts.

Direct flights from the Washington, DC area to Plano are available from BWI and DCA via Southwest to Dallas Love Field Airport (DAL), from DCA to DFW via American, and from IAD to DFW via United and American..

Troy Petenbrink

Troy, also known as The Gay Traveler, is a well known travel and food writer. His has been a regular contributor to a variety of outlets including National Geographic, Travel Channel, DCRefined, CBS Local, and Metro Weekly. He also appears on local Washington news outlets as a travel expert.

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