Article from About You

"We have heard several times lately from friends that if you haven’t been to Bentonville in a while, you probably should check it out. So, the Baker clan hit the road and set out for what would end up being one of the most incredible “long weekends” we have had in a long time — exploring new places here in Arkansas. 


First, I must say that it was one of the easiest and most convenient trips that our family has ever planned. We didn’t have to worry about blocking off a huge section of our time (which is priceless for us Bakers); it was simply a three-day trip bookended with a short drive from our home outside of Little Rock to the northwest corner of the state. 


When we arrived in Bentonville, check-in for the weekend was at the 21c Museum Hotel in Bentonville, a dual hybrid of art and lodging. Many visitors of the region and beyond flock to the facility every day to see the unique exhibits, but we were fortunate to have the opportunity to stay in the hotel portion of the building. It was immaculate in every way. 


21c is actually modeled after the award-winning flagship hotel in Louisville, Ky., which is a really neat place for the state to have. Our room was stunning, spacious and trendy, and actually included a blacklight wand for guests to see just how neat and clean it really is, beyond just what our eyes can see. If I check into a hotel that invites me to check its cleanliness, I know that I am staying somewhere truly special.


And somewhere with a sense for comedy, apparently. There are giant penguins that also inhabit 21c which are moved around secretly and randomly. You might call it, “Penguin on a shelf,” except they are huge and won’t fit on shelves. Someone kept moving a penguin in front of the door to my hotel room. Probably just looking to borrow some sugar. 


But the penguins aren’t the only greeting cards when visiting 21c. Outside the entrance sit two eye-catching attractions. The first is what they call Orange Tree that has a pole for a trunk and dozens of basketball hoop branches with actual basketballs scattered underneath. Second is the Making Change art piece which is a Fleetwood Cadillac limousine that is covered in thousands of coins. 


The inside of the museum is filled with art, most of which were unlike anything I had ever seen and all physical pieces of art, like sculpture, are displayed rather than wall hangings. The words that immediately came to mind were things like eclectic, abstract and unique. 


Not to be outdone by the art and the penguins is The Hive, an on-site restaurant and bar helmed by the decorated executive chef, Matthew McClure. We were lucky enough (my husband and I, that is) to make The Hive’s happy hour where we partook in a delicious bourbon cocktail. The bartender was even kind enough to give us some pointers on making drinks at home that may not taste as good as his but could get us pretty close. "

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