Whether arranging a week-long vacation to Hot Springs or just a one-day outing, traveling with pets requires extra planning. When leaving a pet behind is not an option, the pet is a service animal, or the pet owner just prefers to have their furry friend along for the ride, it's important to devise a plan ahead of time to find the most pet-friendly options.
Finding pet-friendly lodging is one of the most important tasks when planning a multi-day trip, and Hot Springs has a growing number of options from hotels to bed and breakfasts to RV parks.
The largest hotel in Arkansas, the Arlington Resort Hotel & Spa at 239 Central Ave., accommodates pets on its "pet floor," the sixth floor, to make it easy for pet owners to walk their dogs on the mountain trails surrounding the hotel. An Arlington spokesperson said that pets are only allowed in the Historic Rooms, which consist of a king or queen bed and a shower, and the Standard Rooms, the hotel's largest regular room, which offers a king bed or two double beds and a bathtub with shower.
A non-refundable pet fee of $30 will be charged and pets must not exceed 65 pounds total.
Also in the downtown historic district is Park Hotel Hot Springs at 211 Fountain St., a boutique hotel ideal for pet owners. The hotel will accommodate two dogs of any size for an additional $25 fee per stay. Cats may be permitted with prior approval from hotel management.
Other pet-friendly hotels in the Spa City include Embassy Suites Hot Springs -- Hotel & Spa, 400 Convention Blvd., who will allow pets not exceeding 75 pounds for a $75 non-refundable fee, and Staybridge Suites Hot Springs, 103 Lookout Circle, who will allow pets for a $75 non-refundable fee up to five nights.
Lookout Point Lakeside Inn at 104 Lookout Circle is a pet-friendly bed and breakfast on Lake Hamilton that welcomes dogs of all sizes. The bed and breakfast offers four dog-friendly rooms, each complete with a porch with direct access to the property's gardens. Each dog guest receives a special welcome gift and personalized note. Dogs must be up-to-date on vaccinations, fully potty trained, and a $25 lodging fee per night will be charged.
If an RV park is more suitable for pet and owner, pet-friendly RV parks in Hot Springs include J&J RV Park at 2000 E. Grand Ave., Young's Lakeshore RV Resort at 1601 Lakeshore Drive., and Timbercrest RV and Mobile Home Park at 3921 Central Ave.
Hot Springs also has a variety of pet-friendly dining options for those who would rather not leave the dog behind when it's time for dinner.
Rolando's Restaurante, located downtown at 210 Central Ave., offers Latin American eats with a pet-friendly outdoor patio during the spring and summer months only. The newly opened Bubba Brews on Lake Hamilton at 1252 Airport Road and Sam's Pizza Pub & Restaurant at 401 Burchwood Bay Road will also accommodate pets on their outdoor patios. Fisherman's Wharf, 5101 Central Ave., will accommodate service dogs only in their outdoor dining area. Dogs must be leashed at all times while dining at these restaurants.
More pet owners than ever are choosing to travel with their furry companions, and more local businesses and attractions are opening their doors to pets.
Cedar Glades Park at 461 Wildcat Road sits on 432 acres and features 10 miles of bike and hiking trails, perfect for a day of recreation with a pet. The city of Hot Springs also governs 16 parks totaling 160 acres.
Though closed for the month of January, Garvan Woodland Gardens, a pet-friendly botanical garden located at 550 Arkridge Road, occupies 210 acres and welcomes leashed dogs for a $5 fee. Retractable leashes are not allowed. Leashes must not exceed 6 feet. One dog per person will be admitted. Water is available at the dog fountains in front of the Welcome Center, at the Pavilion and Perry Point Restrooms and at the Chipmunk Cafe. Service dogs are admitted for free.
A unique way to view Lake Hamilton is a cruise on the Belle of Hot Springs Riverboat, located at 5200 Central Ave. Leashed dogs may cruise on the upper level deck only.
If the need for pet boarding arises, KEP Doggie Dude Ranch & Farm, 3799 Albert Pike Road, offers day boarding and long-term boarding.Local on 01/15/2018