The Wyndham Tulsa, an elegant hotel conveniently located in southeast Tulsa, holds the distinction of having the only indoor water playland in the city. The playland is called Leapin' Louie's Lagoon, and it's filled with slides, a rope bridge, and mounted water cannons. Along with this indoor aquatic playground, there's an outdoor pool and whirlpool for cooling off in the dry Tulsa heat.
When you're finished splashing, you can head to the onsite restaurants for a bite to eat—either Beechwood's Restaurant, which serves a laid-back American breakfast and lunch buffet, or Mulligan's Sports and Spirits, which stays open until 1 a.m. At bedtime, retire to a newly renovated standard room and snuggle into one of the Wyndham's famed Sleep Number beds, which let you select your preferred level of mattress firmness and monster-under-the-bed protection.
Tulsa, Oklahoma: Renowned Art-Deco Architecture and World-Class Art Museums
As oil poured out of Tulsa in the early 20th century, wealth poured in—and the city’s skyline still reflects that prosperity. Downtown Tulsa is peppered with buildings that emulate the French art-deco style of architecture that swept the nation in the 1920s. One notable structure is the 72-room mansion of petroleum producer Waite Phillips, which he donated to the city in 1938. It’s now the Philbrook Museum of Art, home to an eclectic collection of works by artists ranging from Pablo Picasso to Giovanni Bellini.
Tulsa has a prime location along the banks of the Arkansas River. Its River Parks system offers 26 miles of paved riverfront trails that wind past playgrounds, sculptures, and fountains. North of the river are the Brady Arts District and Cain's Ballroom, Tulsa's legendary dance-hall-turned-music-venue. Cain's rose to fame as the favored spot of Bob Wills and His Texas Playboys, who pioneered the musical genre of western swing in the late 1930s.
A touch of the cowboy era lingers at the Gilcrease Museum, a University of Tulsa institution that displays paintings by Frederic Remington depicting the Wild West. Tucked into the Osage Hills on the outskirts of town, the museum also helps preserve Native American art and artifacts.