For anyone who is a fan of The Pioneer Woman, a weekend stay at The Boarding House in Pawhuska, Oklahoma is a must.
In a way Oklahoma is like one big family. When anyone from Oklahoma becomes famous, we all root for them. Carrie Underwood, Blake Shelton, Troy Aikman, we love them all. So when a small town girl starts a blog and builds an empire, we all flock to support! You know who I’m talking about – Ree Drummond, the Pioneer Woman.
Pawhuska, Oklahoma is an hour and half east of Stillwater which takes it an easy location for a quick weekend trip. Though I grew up in Tulsa I’d never been to Pawhuska and I really wasn’t sure what to expect. If I’m being completely transparent, I worried a little bit that we’d run out of things to do. I mean, is there anything worse than a hotel room full of bored kids? Yes, but it’s still annoying. Luckily I didn’t have to worry about this because we ended up having SO much to do!
Pro Tip: Booking a Room at the Boarding House
The Boarding House in Pawhuska is Ree Drummond’s boutique hotel and it’s infamous for its lack of availability. This place is known to book up to a year out which means if you want to go you have to PLAN which is not something I’m fantastic at. We lucked out because my husband decided to go all out this year for my birthday. He called the Boarding House to ask about booking a room and they let him in on a little secret that ended up being the best pro tip we could have received!
My husband was told that most cancellations happen at night so the trick was to get on the website every night and look for cancellations. That’s exactly what he did!
"As soon as he saw a reservation become available for a Saturday night, he jumped on it! Thus how we got a coveted booking in the Boudoir Room."
Planning the Trip
The Boarding House makes trip planning ridiculously easy. The week of our stay they called my husband and hooked us up with reservations at The Mercantile for lunch and P Town Pizza for dinner. All we had to do was show up!
The Mercantile is a huge store, a restaurant AND a bakery. It’s two stories and for those of us obsessed with housewares, this place is a dream. And for people who like food, this place is a dream. For people who like BOTH housewares and food, get ready. They have so much of both!
My daughter and I got matching cupcake print aprons and I got one of those old school kitchen timers. Necessary purchases? No. But they bring us joy Marie Kondo style! We also had to try some of the pastries and coffee while we waited for our reservation at the restaurant downstairs. Pro Tip #2 - Eat the cinnamon rolls, even if it's 2:00 in the afternoon!
Pizza, It's What's For Dinner
P Town Pizza is a crowd pleaser. The pizza is GOOD. Like, REALLY GOOD. The cocktails are also REALLY GOOD. The atmosphere is super chill which vibes with the rest of the town. We hung out a bit longer than we probably would have had there not been a basketball game on that went into overtime. It was apparent that every dude in the room was hooked on the game which worked out for me as I needed to finish my Apple Pie Martini. Isn't it amazing how things work out some time?
The Boudoir Room
The Boarding House in itself is a lesson in design. They definitely play towards a country chic theme with vintage inspired light fixtures and large portraits of horses. The original flooring ads so much charm to this space which welcomes guests immediately.
Each room at The Boarding House has a different theme. My parents were lucky enough to get a room the first weekend it opened and were able to tour each of the rooms. We stayed in the Boudoir Room which sounded pretty sexy for a weekend trip with the fam, but I'm always down for a little spice!
This room was undoubtedly GLAM! Black and gray walls, sparkly chandeliers and bright red furniture created an air of luxury that had me feeling fancy as soon as we walked into the room.
The bathroom had a separate vanity area and claw foot tub that made getting ready extra relaxing. They even included a little rubber ducky for the kids.
The bathroom had separate sinks divided by the HUGE shower. If this wasn't awesome enough, in addition to this bathroom, there was also a small powder bath which was unexpected and ultra convenient since there were four of us in the room.
The best thing about the room was what my husband had waiting for me when we walked in. He had a HUGE floral arrangement and a box of cupcakes waiting for our arrival. They were gorgeous and I couldn't wait to take them home and put them in our kitchen! I have to give a huge shout out to the staff who helped coordinate this great surprise.
My second favorite thing about the Boarding House was Happy Hour! At exactly 5:00 p.m. a selection of beverages and delicious snacks awaited us! My daughter and I went out to the second story patio to enjoy the weather and our beverages (rose for me and Sprite for her, but I think they had the same effect).
We took a couple of beers back to the room for my husband (he earned them!) to relax before our dinner reservations. My five year old daughter said it best as she climbed into the big comfy bed with her Sprite, "I'm just living my life!" Me too, girlfriend. Me too.
The next morning we reluctantly checked out of our room and decided to take a drive through the Tall Grass Prairie bison preserve before heading back home. Now at the risk of sounding like a bad Oklahoman, I truly thought these big guys were buffalo the entire time. Maybe even my entire life. In fact, I'm still not sure of the difference and though I'm sure a quick Google query could enlighten me, I'm just too lazy!
Bison Pro Tip - GoogleMaps will tell you this place is 20 something miles from The Boarding House, but don't despair. The visitor's center is 20 something miles away, but the entrance to the preserve is only 4-5 miles away. It's just a HUGE preserve that you could drive around in forever. We eventually turned around though because really, you see one buffalo/bison, you've seen them all, am I right?!
We had such a great time in Pawhuska that we can't wait to go back and why wouldn't we? If you like good food, shopping and big, squishy animals, plan your trip now! But if you can't find the time to get away, don't fret! I've linked some of my favorite items below so you can take a little bit of Pawhuska home without having to leave the house! Until next time.
All the Radness.
SHOP MY FAVES