Omni Dallas Hotel: It should be a home run for Dallas

The new Omni Dallas Hotel, just across the river from Oak Cliff, should be a winner for Dallas and a boost for Oak Cliff shops and restaurants.

This is the first hotel in Dallas to be directly connected to the convention center, via above-ground, air-conditioned walkways. The hope is that many more conventioneers will be in Dallas in the future.

In addition to the ever-changing light show on the exterior of the Omni, the interior contains some wonderful surprises. Works by local artists are featured in the common areas and local food is sold in the gift store (a shout-out to Oak Cliff’s own Dude, Sweet Chocolate). And I can’t wait to go to a meeting at the Oak Cliff, Bishop Arts or Fair Park Rooms. But the highlight is a view of downtown Dallas from the pool deck at night. Even if the exterior lighting of the Omni is not on, you have a 180 degree view of downtown Dallas, from the Reunion sparkly ball to the Flying Red Horse. If you are lucky enough to be there when the exterior lights are reflecting off the buildings that border the Omni, it’s quite an experience to be enveloped by that light show.

As the Dallas weather changes, you may want to try the Owners Box sports bar. With more than 70 TV screens and some incredible-sounding cocktails, this could turn into the next “scene” in Dallas. For the more laid-back, there is Bob’s Steak & Chop House. Prediction: This hotel will rejuvenate downtown.

About the Author:

Scott Chase
Neighborhood blogger Scott Chase is an attorney and Stevens Park resident. Email editor@advocatemag.com.                                                                                        


  1. Laura January 2, 2012 at 4:40 PM

    I hate to hear that we are cutting back services for the residents of this city like library hours and then see us pour money in to a gauche distraction like that hotel. I think it detracts from the unique and interesting skyline downtown we used to have. I totally agree with Anita! My husband and I were really disappointed when we drove by it.

  2. Schase November 24, 2011 at 11:08 AM

    I drove by last night and it was a new light show, not an ad.  I still like it and the federal building across the street looks nice in the reflected light.  The Reunion ball is getting new lights too.

  3. Oakcliffooo November 24, 2011 at 4:46 AM

    Did anyone else noticed it the other night?  No pretty lights just “Omni Hotels and Resorts” scrolling across.  At that point, it is no longer decorations but a 23-story electronic billboard.  Tacky.

  4. Rick Wamre November 22, 2011 at 1:37 PM

    Anita, good point about the lighting. As you will note from this comment string, I have never been a hotel supporter since we as taxpayers were forced to pay for it. The idea of a little lighting on the building was a good one, but I tend to agree with you that a lot of lighting seems to be overkill. The intent is to create a landmark, but the lighting seems kind of forced.

  5. Rick Wamre November 22, 2011 at 1:35 PM

    Luci, my only negative (and I have been consistent) is that I don’t think the city should be in the process of using tax dollars to compete with private hotel owners. As for the Bishop Arts parking issue, I don’t have an answer and don’t presume to have one. But additional parking is going to be needed to help the retail there survive and thrive, and the only solution is going to be one fostered and brokered by the city, and it’s likely to require city money to support it. Unfortunately, the cupboard is kind of bare right now, and the hotel is largely to thank for that.

  6. Anita1836 November 22, 2011 at 11:56 AM

    Does the hotel have to use garish Las-Vegas style lighting?  It completely eclipses the rest of downtown, and seems a bit tasteless.  How about some subtlety? 

  7. Luci November 22, 2011 at 10:00 AM

    I love the new Omni Hotel and downtown looks Awesome.  I just hate that everyone always has a something negative to say.  The city of Dallas did an excellent job and hope this is just the beginning.  Now for Rick on the the parking issue for Bishop Arts is in the middle of a neighborhood.  Would it make you happy if the city starts to tear down the homes near by to construct the new parking for it.  Should we tear down the old homes around Bishop Arts to construct parking.  I have live in Oak Cliff all my life and I love it the way it is.  I just hope it does not turn out to be like Uptown. I like the beauty of the old homes and friendly neighbors. 

  8. Anonymous November 21, 2011 at 12:41 PM

    I can completely understand that. But, then again, I would rather the city own it out right (or at least a share of it) rather than going the TIF route where we pay for it and don’t ever see anything back other than promises of “Economic Development”. At least this way, if it IS successful the city makes money on our investment. 

  9. Schase November 21, 2011 at 11:27 AM

    I admit I voted for the hotel, primarily because I think it will increase convention business and not take away revenue from other hotels. But that wasn’t the reason for my post. The hotel is unique in Dallas and deserves to be acclaimed for its uniqueness. Dallasites and conventioneers like to be entertained and this hotel is entertaining, from its bars and restaurants to its light show and views of downtown. We all profess to believe in the “shop local” movement and the hotel offers works from local artists and vendors. That’s good for our tourism industry. Let’s celebrate it, just for awhile anyway.

  10. Rick Wamre November 21, 2011 at 10:13 AM

    Thanks for the post, dallas. It does sound like a great hotel. I just wished we, meaning us as taxpayers, didn’t own it.

  11. Anonymous November 21, 2011 at 9:50 AM

    We stayed a night in the Hotel for my Wife’s Birthday last weekend. It’s really a neat place, and we had a great room. Also, they are having a great opening rate right now. 

    Was it worth $500,000,000? I don’t know. I’m sure the other hotels in the city don’t think so, and they have a fair beef with the hotel -it’s going to be tough to compete with. On the other hand, it is a fantastic advertisement for the city and is filled with thousands of pieces of art done by local artists that are all for sale. 

    It’s definitely worth a night’s stay. 

  12. Rick Wamre November 18, 2011 at 1:04 PM

    I hope you’re right about the new hotel rejuvenating Downtown, Scott, but I continue to have my doubts. True, the convention center needed an attached hotel, and this one certainly fits the bill. But as I have since the beginning, I think it’s a mistake for city money to be used to essentially compete with private hotels. There are a lot of places around the city that could use city funds, if the goal it to jack up private investment — figuring out a solution to parking in Bishop Arts is just one. Putting all of our eggs Downtown seems like a shortsighted, economic mistake. Soon enough, a private developer with proper city incentives would have funded a hotel on his/her own, and we would have been left with additional revenue bonding capability to spread throughout the city.

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