Hiking before a cup of coffee might frighten some people, but National Parks TravelingMom recommends it to energize your day. The Chickasaw Retreat and Conference Center features a mile-long trail right outside its door for guests to explore some of the 1,750 acres of wilderness in the Arbuckle Mountains of South Central Oklahoma, a couple hours north of Dallas/Ft. Worth.
Why visit Sulphur, Oklahoma?
Located steps away from the Chickasaw National Recreation Area, I discovered the Chickasaw Retreat and Conference Center set on a high point in the Arbuckle Mountains. Formerly the Platt National Park, it features a secluded area to discover the rolling landscape of South Central Oklahoma. With a revitalized downtown, Sulphur, Oklahoma, offers families hiking, boating and swimming a few hours north of Dallas/Ft. Worth.
The Chickasaw Retreat and Conference Center
With over 1,750 acres of secluded mountain top to explore, the Chickasaw Retreat and Conference Center ($ to $$) offers the ideal spot for families to reconnect. The facilities are large but not the crowds. With just 43 rooms on the property, during my March stay, I easily secured a table at the complimentary breakfast and a chaise by the pool.
If traveling with a group of extended family or friends, consider the Great Room on the second floor. With unparalleled views of the mountains from the floor-to-ceiling windows, this space offered seating groups and a central fireplace, gaming table and television. The opportune spot to congregate in the evening.
Got laundry? Get it done at their guest laundry facility, along with a business center, meeting and conference space.
What I loved at the Chickasaw Retreat
- The secluded area allows families to reconnect with each other without roughing it.
- The hiking path located on the property allows for views of the lake.
- The wellness center offers lots of machines along with a steam room and sauna.
What I wanted at the Chickasaw Retreat
- An outdoor poolscape is always a nice feature for family travelers.
- More breakfast options, like make-your-own waffles.
My Room at the Chickasaw Retreat
During my stay, I enjoyed a Junior Suite with a pair of queen beds with my family. With a spacious room, I found plenty of room for a roll-away or pack-n-play.
In-room amenities included an in-room safe and alarm clock with an iPhone dock along with charging plugs on all the lamps. The large flat-screen TV sits atop a full-size credenza. A large balcony with a pair of chairs allowed for morning coffee, thanks to an in-room Keurig coffee maker with coffee and tea.
A separate kitchenette provides a small refrigerator, a full-size microwave, and separate sink. Lots of storage, but I didn’t find any dishes. I would have liked to see real glassware and mugs to accompany the deluxe ice bucket.
With neutral walls and modern art, my room exuded calm sophistication. The beds featured ecru coverlets and sage-colored bolsters with upholstered headboards and benches.
My Bathroom at the Chickasaw Retreat
The luxurious bathroom included a soaking tub for rejuvenating. The stone vanity offers ample space along with decorative lights and upscale toiletries. I found a closet area in the bathroom area outfitted with an ironing board, extra bedding, and towels.
My room included a separate water closet area with a separate glass-enclosed shower with decorative tile work. A family-friendly feature that allows for sink use with a kid in the shower.
Activities at the Chickasaw Retreat
In a separate building, I found a wellness center that rivals any health club. Equipped with treadmills, stationary bikes, and Cybex equipment, I found plenty of equipment and not many users.
Enter an immaculate, modern locker area with several separate shower stalls with decorative tile. After showering off, use the sink with a decorative lighted mirror outfitted to finish off dressing.
With your choice of a steam room or a dry sauna, relaxing comes easy at the Chickasaw Retreat and Conference Center. I also discovered the Sole’renity Spa, with services like manicures and pedicures, massages, facials, wraps and waxes.
The indoor pool is the standard rectangle though features a spa. With the deepest section at 4-feet, kids rule the pool in the evening.
The Chickasaw National Recreation Area is minutes away with hiking, boating, and swimming. Or walk and shop around the revitalized historic downtown Sulphur.
Dining at the Chickasaw Retreat
A complimentary continental breakfast buffet is served daily from 7 a.m. to 10 a.m. daily, in the dining room, next to the registration area. During my stay, I found muffins, pastries and cereals along with coffee. Yogurt, hard-boiled eggs and biscuits and gravy were on the buffet along with orange and apple juice.
Where’s the Chickasaw Retreat?
Located in South Central Oklahoma 12 miles from Interstate 35 and 87 miles south from Oklahoma City. The address is 4205 Goddard Youth Camp, Sulphur, Oklahoma, the closest town.
Tips for a TravelingMom:
- During my visit, I had spotty cell service.
- Self-park is complimentary. Valet parking is not available.
- The Pool and Wellness Center are open until midnight.
- The complimentary Wi-Fi doesn’t require a password, a great feature for tech-savy kids.
- Chickasaw Retreat and Conference Center is a pet-free and smoke-free facility.