Exclusive: Travel inside the historic Barfield hotel

The remodeled hotel is set to open in April
The historic Barfield is set to open in April, making its mark as Amarillo’s first luxury hotel.
Updated: Feb. 8, 2021 at 10:15 AM CST
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AMARILLO, Texas (KFDA) - The historic Barfield is set to open in April, making its mark as Amarillo’s first luxury hotel.

The lobby features social space, Amarillo’s first bourbon bar and a high-class Italian steakhouse.

“We’re not just trying to put heads in beds every night, we’re trying to make this part of the community...a social space where people want to spend time,” said Patrick Dougherty, general manager.

All rooms preserve the original 1920′s decor, with special nods to Barfield creator, M.D. Oliver.

“We want to give homage back to 1927. It would be a poor design choice not to,” explained Dougherty. “M.D. Oliver was fully against liquor, but had a speakeasy. The Chicago mob came down here and tried to take her out multiple times...so she carried a gun, a Daranger gun in her purse, and actually throughout the hotel you’ll see that sprinkled in. We’ll have bullet holes (and) we’ll have guns crossed. We’re going back to this M.D. Oliver, the matriarch of progress, which is our mark. She’ll be throughout the hotel.”

The basement offers a speakeasy full of secret pool tables, poker rooms and pass codes.

“There are secret rooms in our secret rooms,” said Dougherty. “So you can have meetings and parties. There’s so much secret stuff throughout the property.”

An actual speakeasy during the prohibition era called the Paramount Recreation Club, the venue brings the 1920′s to life with live music, small plates, cocktails and beer.

“We have a 12-tap system (and) every beer has its own carbonater so it stays at a perfect carbonation, perfect temperature, and it has an insta-froster to frost the glass,” explained owner Todd Harmon. “Every beer is a perfect pour in a frosted glass every time.”

Those staying at the hotel will get a clue on how to access the speakeasy.

A mix between Roaring 20′s aesthetics, West Texas culture, and modern luxury, the Barfield believes they represent Amarillo’s history, both to community members and tourists.

“This is going to bring back the history of the families that founded Amarillo,” said Beth Duke, executive director of Center City of Amarillo. “The Barfield hotel is going to enhance the downtown experience.”

“Growing up in Amarillo, downtown left a lot to be desired,” said said Christy King, director of marketing and sales for the hotel. “To see this downtown revitalization happening and to be a part of it is really exciting...Amarillo deserves a luxury hotel. We’ve never had it before and it’s time.”

The hotel sits on the corner of Historic Route 66 and Polk Street, making it the perfect stop for Route 66 travelers, according to Barfield Staff.

“The Barfield Hotel sits on the crossroads of Amarillo and really the crossroads of our country because its on Historic Route 66 and Polk St., our main street, so just think of the history on this corner,” added Duke.

Above their bourbon bar and Italian steakhouse, The Barfield combines Amarillo culture with modern luxury.

“My favorite saying about The Barfield is that we are everything that is luxurious about West Texas,” said King. “When you go into a West Texas woman’s home, what you feel and what you see, that is what we try to achieve.”

The hotel features 96 specialty designed king rooms, 16 doubles and two expanded suits with parlor rooms.

All rooms are filled with furniture designed specifically for the hotel by award-winning firm, Flick-Mars.

“We are a luxurious hotel, but we have the grit of Amarillo,” added Dougherty. “We have a cattle background, there’s leathers, deep dark colors. It’s very warm in here. Everything was made for this room.”

The rooms also feature streaming services such as Netflix, a master light switch to save you from getting out of bed and a full valet service.

A part of the Marriott Autograph Collection, visitors will be able to use Marriott reward programs, bringing more tourists to the city.

“Route 66 has so many attractions, but not a lot of lodging. So this is exciting because this is going to give us just a showpiece of lodging on Route 66,” said Duke. “This is making downtown truly a destination, and that’s our long range goal - to make downtown a destination so people come, spend the night, spend some dollars, and really enjoy everything Amarillo has to offer.”

To view the rest of the tour, watch the video below.

The historic Barfield is set to open in April, making its mark as Amarillo’s first luxury hotel.

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