Houston--Please explain!

May 15th, 2005, 05:18 PM
  #1  
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Join Date: Jun 2003
Posts: 16
Houston--Please explain!

I was recently on a business trip to Houston. I stayed off the Sam Houston Parkway, Rte. 249 and Ella Road, at a Hilton Garden Inn. My impression of Houston is not good. My co-workers and I drove for miles looking for places to eat, and could find only check cashing places, nail salons, pawn shops, strip bars and "washaterias". The "landscape" was nothing but concrete--multi-level highway systems, pylons and feeder roads. It's like a bunch of engineers and planners got to together to figure out how to most hideously mar the land--and they did so for as far as the eye can see. We finally broke into laughter, remarking, as we drove around hoping for some signs of civilized life, that perhaps we'd died and gone to h---. Surely there must be more to Houston than this. Often when I travel on business my spouse will come along and we make a long weekend of it. Please help me understand if it would be worth it if ever I find myself on a return visit. In fairness, I will say we did meet very nice people in our business dealings--it's just the place itself that seemed lacking.
beverlysmith is offline  
May 15th, 2005, 05:27 PM
  #2  
 
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 10
Having lived in the Houston area for
4 years I can relate to what you saw.
There are many highways, unfortunately
you were not in the best location for
restaurants, etc. Next time try the
Kingwood area or the Willowbrook area.
Fantastic restaurants, shopping etc.
The downtown Houston area is great as well. Be cautious since the highways
can change names quickly and your sense
of direction can be challenged.
A lot of the areas don't have planned
zoned areas so any kind of business can
open. Try the area again, the Pappasitos restaurants and seafood restaurants are great..........
beautifulsky is offline  
May 15th, 2005, 05:53 PM
  #3  
 
Join Date: Feb 2004
Posts: 23,074
Beauty is in the eye of the beholder. You mention the multi-level freeways. Let me direct to this webpage:

http://www.texasfreeway.com/houston/.../bw8/bw8.shtml

The 4- and 5-level "stacks" on Beltway 8 (Sam Houston Tollway) are some of the best in the country. At least I am impressed by them.

I haven't visited any of the local strip joints, so I can't comment on those.
rkkwan is offline  
May 16th, 2005, 08:50 AM
  #4  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 7,114
I agree that it sounds like you were not in the best area to experience what Houston has to offer. It's not the most cultural city in the world, but it certainly has a lot to offer visitors.

Try checking out the below websites before your next visit and I'd highly advise checking out downtown, the theatre district, the museum district, Clear Lake, Galveston, the Kemah Boardwalk, NASA, etc.

http://www.houston-guide.com/
http://www.houston-guide.com/guide/
http://www.visithoustontexas.com/
http://www.houstontravelguide.com/
http://www.houstonpage.com/main.htm
http://gotexas.about.com/od/houston/

I think that if you research and plan some activities for your next trip, you'd probably find some things in Houston that interest you.
Statia is offline  
May 16th, 2005, 09:28 AM
  #5  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 268
You were staying what I can best describe as the "Bermuda Triangle" of sububrban North Houston. It is area that is underdeveloped, waiting to fill in between the suburbs and the exurbs. You were pretty much 5 miles from anything decent.

A long weekend can be fun here. (Okay, maybe not in August). It depends a lot on what you like to do. Sports, theater, museum, dining, shopping. However, you will need to stay some place different than where you were.
LDLee is offline  
May 16th, 2005, 09:51 AM
  #6  
 
Join Date: Sep 2004
Posts: 7,142
Agree you were not in the best areas. Much better to go to the areas of Houston with pedstrized streets, open squares, cobblestone pavers and wall to wall outdoor cafes that have a buzzing street vibe. Enjoy the street musicians, street artists and stunning historical architecture. A bottle of wine at a waterside on the east side of the city is also very nice.
bardo1 is offline  
May 16th, 2005, 11:09 AM
  #7  
 
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 4
As others have already said, where you stayed is pretty much in the middle of friggin nowhere. Houston certainly is not the most beautiful city in the world (unless you like strip malls and freeways), but it does have a good bit to offer. I would suggest next time staying in the Galleria area (610 West Loop around Westheimer). In that area you'll find tons of great restuarants, great shopping (if you can afford it), and you are relatively close to downtown and the museum district. If you are into sports, Minute Maid Park, Toyoya Center, and Reliant Stadium are all great venues to watch a game. Hope your next visit is a little more to your liking.
lsufanatic is offline  
May 16th, 2005, 02:10 PM
  #8  
 
Join Date: Aug 2003
Posts: 114
I don't know where you are from Beverly, but it's pretty much the equivalent of judging a visit to Chicago based on your stay at an airport motel at Midway.
michaelcrane is offline  
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