If you told us a year ago that we’d take a trip to Marfa not once, not twice, but three times – We would have been a little skeptical. While Marfa had all of the allure of adventure, photo-ops and unique spaces – Three times seems a little excessive. Then we went. Marfa feels like a home, an oasis and a never-ending trip of fun finds and a surreal break from our day-to-day. It’s simultaneously like time stands still, with a mix of modern pop-ups and unique eats. Our third trip was with purpose, however, and on our calendar for a few months. Each year El Cosmico is responsible for their own music festival in West Texas called the Trans Pecos Festival of Music and Love. With a great line up and the chance to visit Marfa again – we were in.
"We loved staying at 105 Lincoln! We've stayed at almost all the hotels in Marfa, and this is by far our favorite stay. Clark and Adam are wonderful hosts, and we can't wait to see their space fully renovated. Do yourself a favor and do Marfa the right way."
Trans Pecos has grown in numbers year after year. This year Trans Pecos brought in hundreds of festivalgoers to the El Cosmico grounds. If you don’t snag one of their airstreams (See our El Cosmico: Revisit for a Full Review), or any other accommodations, you camp for the weekend. Camp. For one of us camping equates fun, exploration and excitement – for the other it brings back memories of Girl Scout camp and calling her mom to come pick her up. Not naming names here. Word of advice if you plan on heading out next year, come a day early and stay in one of Marfa’s hotels or an AirBnb. Since we’ve made our rounds at Marfa’s stays, we decided to chance it in an AirBnb. We immediately fell in love with 105 Lincoln (Seriously – this is going to be the cutest place when its done) and our hosts, Clark and Adam. They are conveniently located next to Squeeze, Marfa’s iconic City Hall and the Pasiano and within walking distance of Marfa’s best restaurants and galleries. They’re working on a series of units that will make up 105 Lincoln with full plans for a fire pit, courtyard and even a pool. Hands down we’ll be back, and can’t rave enough about their hospitality and attention to detail in this tiny town.
With coming a day early, we were able to snag dinner at Stellina, a relatively new restaurant in Marfa serving up a Mediterranean-Italian fusion of carefully crafted and ever-changing dishes. This place was so good we’re doing a full review (and how could we not? We went twice). That Thursday we woke up bright and early, drove out west to experience the sunrise. Hours later we were pulling into El Cosmico with tent in tow. So as we've mentioned time and time again, one of us is kind of outdoorsy, the other has some trouble without access to an indoor shower and the luxury of a television. But, with patience, Patricio led us in building our little home for the next few days and we settled in. Later that night we were able to explore as Trans Pecos came to light. Much like other festivals Trans Pecos has the allure of varying musical acts, vendors and food trucks. Trans Pecos also hosted numerous workshops and held a day party featuring Giles & Brothers. All of this in one of the most unique towns. One of the beauties of Trans Pecos is still how intimate it can be. Nothing beats laying out a mat on the grass and listening to these bands with others. There’s no fuss of the big festivals, and even with some of the bigger acts, there were good vibes only. Acts like Ben Kweller, Kacey Musgraves, Neko Case and Calexico were some of the amazing artists on the line up, and all put on intimate sets that could have only been appropriate in Marfa.
Festival Packing List
Pool Floats instead of an air mattress (easier to blow up!)
Large blanket (or in our case yoga mats for easy listening)
Water, tons of water
Your best desert clothes
Boots and Birks
Snacks – because you’re bound to get hungry late night
While the music was great, exploring the vendors was even more satisfying– many from Texas including Feathers, Manready Mercantile, and San Antonio based Outland Provisions, but others that traveled from LA and beyond. Each seemed to curate small collections from their shops that would appeal to the crowd that Trans Pecos brought in. Patricio snagged an amazing vintage denim jacket (is anyone surprised here?) from Feather’s at the same time we caught one of fashion’s biggest icons doing a little shopping as well. Hint? She loves Marfa too, and believes leopard is a neutral. If you guessed Jenna Lyons, you’re correct here. The people are wonderfully nice, open to conversation and ready to have a good time. Day after day we were surrounded by serious style, amazing eats like macaroni grilled cheese and peanut butter and bacon sliders, with full access to serious musical acts.
Whether you snag an airstream, a teepee or choose to camp – you’re going to have a blast. Nights are full of music (even a ‘secret’ show or two), days can be spent lounging in a hammock or taking a workshop about candle making or making your own indigo-dyed items. If El Cosmico isn’t magical enough on it’s own, spending the weekend with hundreds of others makes it even better. You can count us in next year – Prepped and ready for rain or shine, and without fail: a ton of adventure.