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Texas Ranch Life Accommodation
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Reviews (68)
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36 - 41 of 68 reviews
Reviewed March 15, 2013

We came to Texas in February and loved the sunny, 71 degree days. The ranch experience was relaxing and we enjoyed the scenery, wildlife, horses and gardens. We stayed in the 1869 House which was charming and spacious enough for a family of four. The kids found a lot of fun things to do like feeding apples to the ponies, checking out all the ranch animals, and just walking around looking for longhorns and bison. A special treat was the morning a group of bison came right up to the fence in front of our house. And last, but not least, the hospitality was great as they made the effort to accommodate our needs and gave us just the right amount of attention.

  • Stayed: February 2013, traveled with family
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1  Thank Marsha V
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 15, 2013

We stayed at Texas Ranch Life in January. It was the perfect 'ranch' stay. The landscape is beautiful and peaceful. The ranch itself is kept in perfect condition with an impressive attention to detail in all the outside areas and the most wonderful furnishings and comfort in the house we stayed in. It felt like we were staying in one of those fabulous rich ranch houses or plantation houses that you might visit in a tour - but instead we got to stay overnight. Everyone at the ranch was thoughtful and helpful. Chris the cowboy was a fabulous source of information and took us on a tour of the animals including an unforgettable trip highlight where we sat quietly as a family of Bison wandered past our jeep. He also talked us through his work when he was training a horse which was fascinating. The family running the ranch have created a perfect combination of a real working ranch that cares for the environment with a luxury stay set up in their various cabins and houses.

  • Stayed: January 2013, traveled with family
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1  Thank Yahtzeetrip
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 16, 2013

If you're looking for something a little different this is certainly it. This is a proper ranch where guests are invited to take part in all sorts of activites irrespective of their level of experience! The staff there were incrdibly friendly and they made you feel like you were one of their friends! Chris, the activities co-ordinator was excellent he really made the experience complete! Highly reccommend the horse riding and having the chef come in and make a steak dinner (delicious)!

We went at a very cold part of the year and because of the nature of the buildings being old, restored houses it was hard to keep warm so bring lots of warm clothes in the winter! With that said the quaint, historic houses more than made up for the cold!

Highly reccommend this place - simply beautiful!

  • Stayed: December 2012, traveled with friends
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1  Thank CarolynAlisa
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 5, 2013

my best friend suggested a dude ranch vacation for us and our 3 sons. We're New Jerseyans although I live in Maine now so the potential for us to be really obnoxious certainly exists. This was a great time but you have to be forewarned about what you are getting. It's a working ranch, and a work in progress. It is NOT a four star hotel. The accomodations and meals are a little erratic as I'll explain. But the experience was real, the people were wonderful, and if the weather had been more pleasant (it was miserably and unseasonably cold) it would have been fantastic.
The website talks about dove hunting, deer hunting, coyote/racoon hunting, sporting clays, horse riding, tomahawk throwing and photography.
When my boys and I arrived we had gotten lost so our friends were already there. The directions on Apple maps tends to take you north off 290W toward Chappell Hill. This ain't correct and Taunia and Lacey, the mom and daughter who work the phones, told us this would happen. Why the website directions aren't more exact is beyond me. Once we got there, there isn't exactly a front lobby. We weren't sure where to go when we arrived and when we did get out of the car and found the office, John, the owner (he and Taunia are lawyers and he used to be a rodeo rider) couldn't have been more pleasant. Do not expect 4 star New York brisk standards here. This is Texas and a working ranch. But John was nice as could be and by the time we were done we were directed to our lodging which was about 1/2 mile up the road in the Confederate House and then at dusk we returned to go coyote hunting with Chris, the ranch cowboy. Chris is an amazing guy, former army, real cowboy, Bachelor's degree in animal science and very sharp. Unfortunately, coyote hunting didn't pan out as we'd seriously under packed for the weather and were freezing, but it was an interesting experience. When we got back to our room they had brought in local barbecue from the Silver Saddle Smokehouse in Belleville, which they happen to own, and the food, esp the smoked brisket was terrific.
The next day we couldn't ride because of the wind and cold, but we did shoot sporting clays which was a lot of fun and Chris was again quite instructive. We then helped him round up some horses, helped doctor a couple of sick horses, helped him shoe a horse, learned how to rope a calf (on a model, but it was still fun) and then had a lunch of chili in the kitchen at two long tables. We retired to a nap. At dinner we showed up at 7pm and it was one of the more odd things; we'd told Mark the chef we would come to dinner at 7. When we did, it was in the indoor of a main building set up with tables. Steaks, salad, potatoes, pie, and some vegetables were there. It was very good, not sensational (e.g. bottled dressings, simple baked potatoes, good standard green salad), but the steaks were just sitting on a platter, cold, and there was another mob of people who'd gotten there first and much of the plates and cutlery were gone; there were barely enough plates for us. there were no drinks. We made good though, as we'd brought our own drinks, and then Mark came by and righted things by heating up the steaks. A little odd, but the food was still good.
The next day we rode for 2 hours which was a great experience. We had lunch on our own.
Another odd thing was that when we arrived there were some carafes of granola and flakes with some bagels for breakfast in our house. This wasn't replenished so by the second morning we were kind of short on breakfast stuff for the 5 of us. At least one brochure, admittedly an old one, said that they would bring breakfast including sausage and bacon to our lodging. This didn't happen.
So as far as an experience - working with a cowboy, shooting, riding, etc. it was fantastic for a couple of east coast boys. As a hotel, or even a B & B, it needs a little more organization and a little more experience to really be competitive, and I think they know it because they are building a sort of centralized lodge and event center and new kitchen. I'm actually not that picky; i'd read the reviews so I knew what to expect, and they made it work for us. But it wasn't packed with 8-12h of solid stuff to do, and I'm not sure what would have happened if there were scheduling conflicts such that say Chris was doing sporting clays while we wanted to ride or something. But it worked. We did what we wanted to and had some great memories. I thought the Elick family was terrific; we really felt welcome; after dinner day 2 we just sat there with Chris and shared some Wild Turkey we'd brought. so if I were to offer suggestions it would be to have your arrival slightly more organized, have the events a little more organized, little clearer on what breakfast was going to involve and when, and so forth. in other words, ramp up the hospitality part of the experience a bit. Then it would 5 stars all the way.

  • Stayed: December 2012, traveled with family
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4  Thank chimayred
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 2, 2013

My wife & I travelled with a couple of friends to this ranch for a couple of days to experience the Texas countryside. We all thoroughly enjoyed ourselves. The place is situated about an hour from Houston & ok to locate with a Sat Nav but may be difficult without! The house we stayed in was Creekside lodge & it was a very authentic old house with modern kitchen/bathroom facilities.....a good blend to make you comfortable & still experience something different. The cowboys who took us on the activities (horse riding, skeet shooting, kawasaki ride to see the buffalo) were extremely friendly, professional & a great laugh. Also make sure & ask the owners to cook you up some steak one night as we had a great BBQ on our last night. Possibly the only thing that could have been improved which I have seen others have also written about, is the meet & greet upon arrival ie when we found the place it was late so no-one was around & we weren't sure whether we needed to inform someone we had arrived & had to look around the ranch to find our house. Maybe when you book the owners could send you a map of where your house is situated in respect to the headquarters & that you will need to find your own way if arriving after a certain time.

Room Tip: Creekside lodge was perfect for us but all of them are very unique in their own way. We were glad that we were in one of the houses within a 2 minute walk of the headquarters as a couple of the houses are quite far away.
  • Stayed: December 2012, traveled with friends
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2  Thank TravellerGC
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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