21c Museum Hotel Bentonville
What We Love
- Art exhibits throughout the ground floor, rotating every six months
- The genuine, friendly staff: Southern hospitality at its finest
- Easy access to Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art via a path from the hotel
What To Know
- It’s the newest 21c hotel, opened in early 2013
- Hive restaurant and bar are fantastic and a destination for locals, too, so reservations are recommended
- Dogs under 50 pounds are welcome for a fee of $100
- Free WiFi
- Parking On Site
- Room Service
The reception area of the 21c Museum Hotels’ latest addition is bright, airy and big — more gallery than lobby. Wander the high-ceilinged halls and rooms of the first floor and you’ll discover a rotating collection of contemporary artwork that’s worth a visit in itself. But, forgoing the formal, quiet atmosphere of a gallery, the 21c creates an immediate sense of warmth with a hearty helping of Southern hospitality from the helpful, friendly staff.
Bed & Bath
There’s room to spread out in the stylish, Deborah Berke–designed guestrooms. Starting at 363 square feet, spaces include comfy sitting areas with tables, floor-to-ceiling windows and original art. Suites have separate living and dining areas and modern bathrooms with double vanities, a tub and a shower. All rooms come stocked with Malin + Goetz bath products, plush robes and Nespresso coffee and espresso makers.
Northwest Arkansas’s culinary scene takes a giant step forward thanks to chef Matthew McClure’s contemporary Southern fare at the hotel’s Hive restaurant. A menu with choices such as slow-cooked pork belly and grits, top-notch service and a gimmick that works — the hotel’s signature green penguin statues dining alongside you for part of the meal — add up to a stellar dining experience. The Hive’s bar serves such cocktails as the Arkansawyer (Hendrick’s gin, lavender, ginger and fresh lemon) and is a favorite of locals as well as guests. Afterward, work off your meal in the well-equipped gym, where artist Virginie Barré’s Fat Bat sculpture of an overweight Batman hangs from the ceiling. Fitness fans will also appreciate the Saturday “Yoga with Art” classes, held in the hotel’s gallery.
In the Area
Opened in 2011, the stunning Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art is just a short stroll away along the Art Trail. Walk past sculptures by Robert Indiana and James Turrell, then explore the museum’s collection of works by such renowned American artists as Norman Rockwell and Andrew Wyeth (admission is free). Also worth seeing is the Walmart Visitor Center, which is housed in Sam Walton’s original dime store on Bentonville’s town square. Explore the history of the company that put Bentonville on the map, then cap off your visit with a shake at the attached Spark Café Soda Fountain. When hunger strikes, head to the Big Rub BBQ truck across from the 21c for a quick bite, or Tusk & Trotter for a sit-down meal (we can vouch for the pig ear nachos).
How to Get There
I loved the hotel but some of the art was inappropriate for children. I wish I had known that before- my kids are 11 and 7. I kept having to shield their eyes in the lobby. Most of the art was interesting, and the kids loved the green penguins.
We were greeted graciously at 3 AM after a late flight in. Room is spacious and quiet. Bed extremely comfortable, luxurious bedding, smart furnishings. Bathroom comfortably sized. Art exhibit was interesting and the art makes it not just another hotel.
I stayed here for 2 nights on a business trip. Location is fantastic. That's where the positives end. And all my criticism is based on the Value. You're paying a fair amount of money (compared to other non-art-gallery hotels in the city), and in exchange you don't even get breakfast included. The decor is interesting, room has good size... but please, we're in the middle of nowhere there's no reason to charge this amount of money. But they know lots of companies pay the rates for guests going to meetings with WalMart so they can charge more. Next time I will happily stay at one of the mainstream chains, for half the price, and go to 21c for a walk around the galleries.
What an amazing spot. Gorgeous room with great amenities. Delicious restaurant. Lovely staff. I wish I had reason to visit again soon, and will definitely check out others in the chain. No complaints at all!
I've never stayed at a hotel like it. I loved the roaming penguins and beautiful rooms. It was close to the town square and walking distance to pretty much anything you would need in Bentonville. I hear there are bikes you can borrow and explore the local trails. It would be an easy ride to get to Crystal Bridges from the connecting trails. I can't think of a better location.