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Omni Houston Hotel – A Boutique Hotel with Unique Extras

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Love fabulous pools and a boutique hotel feel? Welcome to the Omni Houston Hotel! Plenty of nearby shopping and dining options plus its Swan Pond (named for its avian inhabitants) add to the hotel's allure. My friend, Laurie and I were hosted by the Omni during a girlfriend getaway to Houston to see Oprah's Life Class.

Omni Houston Hotel's chic pool

Omni Houston Hotel's chic pool

Chic room with pool view

While there was no balcony, the view from our room was a-mazing. The vast pools beckoned to me. Alas, there was no time for splashing or sun-bathing. We came with a mission: to see Oprah and to do some serious girl-bonding during our two-night Houston vacay.

The Swan Pond just beyond the pools lived up to its name: we spied both black swans and white swans paddling gracefully through the waters during our stay.

As with most boutique hotels, the rooms at Omni Houston are not huge. The decor is chic, however, and you do feel quite hip when bedding down there.

Omni Houston Hotel room

It's hard not to feel hip in the Omni Houston's modern rooms

Mokara spa

Laurie and I made a point to squeeze in some spa-time during our stay at the Omni Houston Galleria Hotel. Upon arrival we were asked to choose our preferred massage lotion scents from such flavors as Oolong, Mandarin and Sun. We, of course, spent way too much time debating the qualities of each before settling on the perfect perfumes. (I think I chose Mandarin.)

Omni Houston Hotel's Mokara Spa massage lotions

A buffet of massage lotions at the Mokara Spa

Most hotel spas I have visited offer a bowl of apples and maybe some herbal teas in terms of waiting room refreshments. The Mokara Spa, however, offered an array of treats from dried and fresh fruits to chocolates and nuts. We tasted a delicious mystery drink; when we asked what it was, we learned it was none other than apple juice. (No wonder my preschooler loves that beverage so much!) Bubbling hot tubs, relaxing saunas and a serene meditation lounge should lure you to your appointment a half hour early.

Mokara Spa snacks at the Omni Houston Hotel

Tasty snacks at the Mokara Spa

Omni Houston Hotel's restaurant and bars

The Omni Houston Hotel's NOÉ GRILL offers an upscale, sustainable menu with such tempting items as Pan Seared Salmon with pineapple relish, roasted enoki mushrooms and cilantro pesto or Grass Fed Beef Tenderloin with black garlic butter and roasted root vegetables.

Or you can do as Laurie and I did and opt for small bites with more affordable price tags from NOÉ's adjacent bar. Options include bar standards like quesadillas and burgers as well as more exotic fare like Lobster Macaroni and Cheese or Carmelized Brussel Sprouts.

Laurie and I made our way down to the hotel's nightclub, The Black Swan for cocktails one night. But after a long day filled with bucket list wish fulfillment and the Queen of Daytime TV, we did not last long and missed the real par-tay. Apparently the dance club draws a good crowd of locals and post-wedding revelers on Friday and Saturday nights.

If you're looking for something else to eat or do, just six minutes away by car you'll find the Galleria shopping mall, replete with stores and dining options.

The decked-out Kids Suite at the Omni Houston Hotel

The decked-out Kids Suite at the Omni Houston Hotel

Kid's Fantasy Suite

Omni's incredible Kid's Fantasy Suites really make this hotel brand stand out among other accommodation options. Some Omni hotels, like the Omni Houston, offer special Kid's Fantasy Suites outfitted with Pottery Barn Kids furnishings (for boys or girls, depending upon your offspring's gender) and plenty of extras. Your kids may never want to leave the room when they discover the blackboard wall and chalk for drawing, a basketball hoop for dunking, and even an electric guitar for strumming.

There is only one Kid's Fantasy Suite at this location and it is a popular option for traveling families so be sure to book this room early. You can choose to sleep en famille in this one room, or reserve the connecting room as well so parents can enjoy some privacy and rest sans kiddies.

Omni Houston Hotel's Kids Suite

Sports corner in the Omni Houston Hotel's Kids Suite

The Verdict

The Omni Houston Hotel would make for a delightful family stay, especially if you splurge on the Kid's Fantasy Suite! What kid wouldn't want to take a dip in that pool or stroll the ground spying on swans?

With its swanky restaurant and adjacent bar plus a nightclub, the hotel makes a great choice for a grown-up getaway too, whether for a romantic retreat with your honey or a girlfriend getaway with one of your best gal pals. Would I go back? You bet! Especially if I can talk Laurie into joining me again!

What do you look for when choosing a hotel? Let us know in the comments below!

A Note from The Travel Mama: Thank you to the Omni Houston Hotel for hosting our stay!

All photos by Colleen Lanin.

About Colleen Lanin

Colleen Lanin is the founder/editor-in-chief of TravelMamas.com. As the author of her book, "The Travel Mamas' Guide," she teaches parents not only how to survive a trip with children, but also how to love exploring the world with their offspring. Her stories have appeared online and in print for such outlets as the "Today" show, NBCNews.com, Parenting Magazine, Orlando Sentinel, Chicago Tribune, Expedia, San Diego Family Magazine, and more. Colleen gives tips on television, radio, and as a public speaker. She has a master’s degree in business administration with a background in marketing. She lives in Arizona with her husband and two kids.

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