It set the standard for luxury when it first opened in the 1980s, and it continues to impress.
It was a dreary day when I stepped into Hotel Crescent Court to check in for an overnight staycation, but my mood was instantly cheered by the property’s bright and welcoming lobby. The hotel sits in the heart of Uptown, a destination and commercial district that didn’t exist prior to Caroline Rose Hunt developing the landmark Crescent complex in 1986—seven years after she founded Rosewood Hotels and Resorts and six after she opened The Mansion on Turtle Creek.
Hotel Crescent Court is the anchor amenity at The Crescent, which includes three connected office towers (1.1 million square feet), 11 restaurants, upscale shopping and more. The complex is owned by Crescent Real Estate’s John Goff, who bought it last year—for a third time, after initially doing a 50-50 partnership with Hunt in the property’s early days. (The Crescent was so meaningful to Goff, he named his company after it in 1994.)
Today, Uptown is one of the most successful markets in the nation, a remarkably balanced collection of hospitality, restaurant, entertainment, office, and residential space. Hotel Crescent Court remains at the center of it all.
My staycation had begun prior to check-in with a blissful afternoon at The Spa at The Crescent, a 22,000-square-foot urban oasis. I rarely pass up an opportunity for a massage—and the treatment menu offers several intriguing possibilities, including the Aromasoul Massage (with essences from the Far East, the Mediterranean, India, and more) and a Tranquility Pro-Sleep Massage (Indonesian Sea Malay Massage and Ayurvedic soothing techniques to bring about a state of deep rest).
Other options at the full-service spa include a Body Active treatment (with Brazilian yellow clay and energizing plankton—really?), Montalcino Thermal Mud (with thermal waters of Montalcino, Tuscany), and Cryotherapy.
But with a milestone birthday fast approaching, an age-protecting Joy of Beauty facial was in order. Plus, the spa had recently formed an exclusive partnership with [comfort zone] products, and I wanted to give the Italian sustainable skincare brand a try. I came away impressed—enough to stop off at the spa store and stock up on my way out.
The products are restorative and moisturizing without being heavy. My favorite was (is—I use it religiously) the Remedy Cream to Oil, a Marula extract-based cleanser that, as its name describes, turns from cream to oil as it’s rubbed into the skin.
My treatment also included a detailed, high-tech skin analysis, where I allegedly scored impressively well for my age in terms of wrinkle frequency and depth, hydration, and other measures. (Take that, milestone birthday!)
Afterward, as I made my way to my room, I took a fresh look at the hotel’s $33 million redo, which was completed in 2018. Waldrop + Nichols of Dallas led the redesign of all 186 guest rooms and 40 suites, as well as corridors and elevators. Michelle Meredith & Associates oversaw the revamp of the spa and fitness center. The result is décor that’s both sophisticated and cozy.
The rooms are comfortable and offer all the perks you’d expect, including Nespresso coffee makers (the best). Standard accommodations range in size from 380 to 625 square feet. The hotel also has 40 suites, extending all the way up to the Presidential—a two-story suite that tops 3,000 square feet and includes a grand piano.
Dining Options Abound
Later that night, a friend met me for dinner at the Crescent Club, a private dining club to which hotel guests have access. It’s on the 17th floor of the center office tower and known for its skyline views from a massive half-moon-shaped window that takes up nearly an entire wall. Starter options include the Crescent’s signature Tortilla Soup, Lobster Ravioli, and a few salads. Four entrees are offered—Jidori chicken, striped bass, filet mignon, and pasta—and three desserts: Madagascan Vanille Crème Brûlée, Sacher Torte with praline popcorn ice cream and caramel sauce, and New York Style Cheesecake.
Far more memorable was a recent dinner at another of the hotel’s four restaurants: Nobu. Afterward, I became so obsessed with the Chef Nobu Matsuhisha’s famous Black Cod with Miso, I hunted down a recipe for the dish and spent three days making it, due to the marinating time required. (I’m not one who enjoys cooking—to me, it’s like a combination of math and science homework—so the fact that I went through this effort should tell you just how good that Black Cod with Miso is.) I managed a fair replication, but in the end, I decided it was much easier, and far more enjoyable, to get it at the restaurant.
Nobu opened in the former Beau Nash spot in Hotel Crescent Court in 2004. Beau Nash, which had debuted with the hotel in 1986, was brought back as part of the 2018 renovation in the form of a bar in the hotel’s lobby. Along with a respectable selection of wine and spirits , it offers nibbles that range from cheese and charcuterie boards to sandwiches and sweets.
The hotel’s fourth restaurant is The Conservatory. There, breakfast and lunch is served in a beautiful sunroom that overlooks a courtyard garden. Several additional dining options are part of The Crescent development but not Hotel Crescent Court; they include the venerable Capital Grille, Sixty Vines, and Moxie’s. Of course, the property is surrounded by endless other Uptown restaurants within walking distance, including Uchi, Truluck’s, Miriam’s Cocina Latina or Mi Cocina at Klyde Warren Park, and an incredible concentration of high-end steakhouses.
The next morning, after a restful night’s sleep, I went in search of caffeine. With both Starbucks and Ascension on site, I opted for the local brand and treated myself to a Doki-Doki (Kyoto-style cold brew) and a Coconut-Chia Seed Pudding—two of my favorites. Nourished, I set off on a morning walk to the nearby Klyde Warren Park.
By this time, the dreary clouds were gone. The sun had come out, and with it, the promise of another beautiful day in Dallas.