The Gaylord Texan Resort in Grapevine, Texas is the site of the 2018 FileMaker DevCon. I recently took a scouting trip to the resort to get all the details so you can have the best trip possible. Here’s what I learned.
The Gaylord is managed by the Marriott resorts so you can get points for future vacations by being a Marriott Rewards Member. Be sure to sign up and make sure they know your rewards number on the reservation to get point credits for future vacation stays. During you stay you can choose to opt out of housekeeping for an extra 500 points/night. As a rewards member, you also get free in room speedy Wifi that you login with your room number and last name.
The convention center where the conference sessions will go on is accessed via a walkway from the huge central atrium of the resort. There are several shops located on the 2nd level as well.
The Gaylord Texan is only a short drive north from the Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport – DFW 2400 Aviation Dr Dallas TX 75261
The Gaylord provides transportation for $39 FROM the airport (for 2 people, $5 each additional). It’s only a 6 minute drive so taxi or Uber may be more economical depending on the number of people you’re traveling with. Taxi fair is around $25.
If you’re renting a car, the parking is nearby thanks to a large onsite resort parking ramp. You can walk indoors nearly all the way from your car with the conference addition recently added to the resort. Keep in mind self-parking costs $22/night and valet is $31/night. Hertz has an onsite rental location at the hotel.
The Gaylord also provides shared transportation for $15/person but only TO the airport that runs from 5 am-2 pm daily.
The best conference experience is to stay at the resort hotel. The resort address is 1501 Gaylord Trl, Grapevine, Texas 76051. There is a Great Wolf Lodge nearby with a water park but you’d need regular transportation to get the the sessions so it is less convenient. The conference pricing for rooms is pretty good considering the level of accomodations of this resort.
There are several food choices onsite with “resort pricing” that is on the more expensive side.
- Texan Station – A large centrally sports bar and restaurant. Includes an outdoor area in the atrium.
- Zeppole Coastal – High end Italian restaurant.
- Riverwalk Cafe Cantina – Recreates the feel on San Antonio’s river walk inside the atrium where it never rains.
- Marketplace – Behind mission plaza on the second floor. It includes several box lunch options and coffee drinks.
- Coffee / Starbucks – Near the lobby.
- Glass Cactus nightclub – A 10 minute walk from the resort.
For water activities, the Gaylord Texan has two onsite pools … one indoor and the other outdoor. There is also a water park called Paradise Springs for guests only that is located a couple minutes from the resort. You can get a wrist band at the activities desk and then take a free shuttle to that runs every 15 minutes to enjoy Paradise Springs. They have a larger pool, lazy river, and water slides. Since it requires a bus ride you have to plan a little around the times it is open which is 9:30 am to 8 pm during the week. If you’re enjoying all the conference sessions, it will be difficult to get away for this as it isn’t open that late.
Take a walk through the beautiful hotel atrium as well as the vineyard. The Gaylord Texan is the only resort to have a vineyard within it’s walls. They are running Summerfest activities featuring the Smurfs for family fun. The resort also includes a spa, fitness center, and jogging trails.
You could spend an afternoon in Fort Worth at the Stockyards. History, shopping, restaurants, and a cattle drive down main street. That’s one thing we did while there that was fun.
Video and Photos
Following is a video tour and many photos so you can get a good feel of the location.
The first view of the Gaylord Texan coming from the back entrance from the airport. The convention center is on the left.
The indoor walk from the parking lot to the main building goes through a brand new meeting space. Note: This area is NOT the main convention center where the DevCon sessions will be held. This does have the Tate ballroom that will be used for the opening keynote on Monday night and the closing session on Thursday according to the DevCon schedule.
Alamo Plaza in the main atrium.
The skyway from the resort rooms to the convention center.
Hallway to other convention meeting rooms.
Hotel rooms hallway and elevators.
The MarketPlace is a grocery store/deli option for food.
The MarketPlace has coffee drinks.
The indoor pool.
The resort water park Paradise Springs. You need wrist bands and a short bus ride as a hotel guest to get there.
The Italian restaurant at night.
The Riverwalk restaurant at night.
The Riverwalk Market District.
The Texan Station restaurant and sports bar.
You can get basic necessities as well as souvenirs in the Lone Star Sundry.
An actual vineyard lies within the resort between the outdoor pool and the conference walkway entrance.
The vineyard area is peaceful.
Meals and the developer showcase will be held in Longhorn Exhibit hall F on level 1.
Also published on Medium.