The Stella Hotel
On a recent trip to Bryan, Texas, for the Messina Hof Wine and Roses Festival and 5K, we were thrilled to have the opportunity to stay at The Stella Hotel. The Stella is Bryan/College Stations’s first independent full-service hotel and boasts the most refined and modern hotel accommodations in the area. The staff at The Stella was very attentive and friendly, making us feel immediately welcome and at ease. A gorgeous floral arrangement awaited us in our room and filled the air with sweet scents of spring.
The volume of thought that went into the interior design and decor at The Stella is readily apparent upon arrival. The vibe is sleek and modern, yet comfortable and refined. Our room was well-appointed and the perfect place to relax between adventures. Sleep came easily amidst the down pillows and comforters. We loved how the use of different textures and materials in the design of the room added a richness to the space.
In addition to the beautiful flowers the hotel left us, we were greeted with all of the fixings to mix up some tasty Blood Marys when we arrived at our room – yes please! Our time at The Stella was filled with little thoughtful touches like this that made our stay memorable and really elevated it from a service standpoint compared to most other hotels.
We also received drink tokens upon arrival to use at the hotel’s main bar to redeem for any of their delicious specialty cocktails. Read on to see what we ordered!
The bath products were by LATHER, which we absolutely love and use at home regularly. The decor managed to be luxe, rustic, and contemporary all at once with subtle nods to the inspiration taken from the starry Texas night sky. The bright pop of lime green on the bathroom door created a fun, playful vibe within the space that balanced out all of the more refined details.
If you’re looking to stay active during your stay and connect with nature, The Stella also offers complimentary bicycles that guests can use on the nearby hiking and biking trails.
CAMPFIRE – “Central Texas Farm to Fork Goodness”
Campfire is The Stella’s main restaurant, featuring a creative seasonal menu filled with thoughtfully sourced ingredients that come together in flavor-packed dishes. The hotel’s three other eateries and bars were still under construction during our visit as the hotel is brand new, so we had the chance to dine at Campfire for both lunch and dinner during our stay allowing us to see the diversity offerings.
Like the rest of the hotel, Campfire’s design is filled with an artful mix of different materials, tiles, textures, and tones that come together to create a sense of refined rustic sophistication. At lunchtime, the dining area is flooded with bright airy natural light from the floor to ceiling windows. The lunchtime menu is simple, offering a decent variety of sandwiches, salads, soups, and sides. It was the perfect place to fuel-up before we attended the Messina Hof Wine & Roses Festival.
We decided to redeem the drink tokens we received at check-in for some specialty cocktails to take lunch to the next level! Below is “The One-Two Punch” – a delicious rum punch concoction with hints of pear, vanilla and serrano pepper.
We also tried the Paloma, which was brimming with bright grapefruit and was extremely refreshing – perfect for summer!
For lunch we ordered the Campfire Burger with aged cheddar and roasted garlic mayo on an egg bun with a side of hand cut fires. We also tried the Heirloom Tomato Caprese and Wild King Salmon. If we had more room, we would’ve liked to try the English Pea and Parmesan Bisque and the Open Faced Steak Sandwich.
In addition to an awesome craft cocktail list, Campfire also has a great wine selection and sizeable craft beer menu.
Bread baskets are not usually something we highlight in our reviews, but we could not get enough of Campfire’s homemade bread that arrived to the table hot out of the oven and was heavenly with a thin layer of butter on top.
We also dined at Campfire for Dinner and were very impressed by the creativity of Execute Chef Zac Ladwig’s menu and the focus on seasonal, local ingredients. Our favorite entree was the fish special of the evening, featuring a delicate white fish in a light broth with fresh spring produce – very herbaceous and satisfying.
The Filet of Beef was also on point and cooked perfectly to our specifications. For sides, we went with the slow roasted foraged mushrooms, glazed asparagus and leeks in tender herb butter, and roasted garlic polenta. The polenta was definitely a standout.
Aside from Campfire, the hotel also features three other food and drink options whether you’re looking for a quick snack on the go, happy hour small plates, lunch by the pool, or a night cap before turning in. Hershel’s in one of the hotel’s bars that is open nightly and has a laid-back, speakeasy vibe and serves up classic cocktails and small plates making the perfect place to relax and unwind. POV offers light bites on-the-go all day long, including baked goods and freshly brewed Merit Roasting Co. coffee in the morning, freshly made salads and sandwiches for lunch, and charcuterie with wine and craft beer in the evening.
We were excited to be able to sunbathe and swim at The Stella’s awesome pool, which includes private cabanas and a bar and cafe, but a cold front came through the weekend we stayed making it too cold. Luckily, we were able to warm up by one of the hotel’s fire pits! Now that it’s officially pool season, the pool’s cafe and bar, Watershed, will be serving up light options like chilled seafood on ice and thirst-quenching blended concoctions and Sangria.
If you ever find yourself in the Bryan/College Station area there’s really no question when it comes to where you should stay – The Stella Hotel is the answer. We highly recommend booking a room here or making a reservation at Campfire at the next time you happen to be visiting Messina Hof Winery, Texas A&M University, or simply find yourself in the area.
The Stella is offering a special Grand Opening deal for guests who book a stay through July 31, which includes 20 percent off the best available rate and two signature cocktails from Hershel’s.
Emily & Barbara
Many thanks to The Stella Hotel for hosting us!