Friday, September 6, 2013

i heart hou*

*not a typo. Say it aloud. I like it.

I am a huge fan of my city. In fact, if you rant about your hatred of Houston, I almost take it personally. Does the traffic suck? Absolutely. Would I rather have straight, pretty hair instead of a frizzy mess? Uh-huh. But do we have the best medical center in the country, an amazing, up-and-coming food scene, lots of jobs, and a low cost of living? Yes to all. So while I gripe about the traffic with the best of them, Houston is pretty great. I'm fortunate enough to be attending the BlogElevated conference right here in my city and I'm excited to welcome so many people here who may not have had a reason to visit before. I know the conference will keep us all pretty busy, but hopefully on your way into or out of town, you'll have time to visit one of the places I list below (and if you're coming to Houston for any other reason, this list is a good place to start planning your trip!).

Houston sign | an art car | Funnel Tunnel | President Heads |  Underbelly, yum | Inside OKRA

1) Pappasito's - There once was a family called Pappas who went and opened a bunch of pretty good restaurants. Pappasito's is my favorite. It's right by the venue for the conference, so skip the Tex-Mex place in the center and get yourself here for fajitas and margaritas. The plates sizzle and the margaritas are usually strong. It's loud and crowded and a real Houston experience. Everyone I know who has visited Houston or had to leave and come back for a visit has this on their must-list.

2) Underbelly/Provisions - Two of Houston's buzziest restaurants by far. Both cater to people who love food. I have never had a bad meal at Underbelly (some thoughts here) whereas Provisions has been a little more hit or miss but the cocktails are amazing (mostly hit - I am already planning to have my birthday dinner there!). Go to Underbelly if you want a ridiculously good food experience, but head to Provisions with your new conference friends to enjoy some yummy cocktails.

3) Check out a Museum - The Houston Museum of Natural Science is so fun. I love the butterfly exhibit. There are also tons of free museums if you have lots of time to kill. Bonus: If you go to the Menil Collection or are near the Museum of Fine Arts, there are usually food trucks in close proximity!

4) Drinks at Anvil. Or OKRA. Or Hay Merchant - If you have going out time, please go check out a cool bar. There are so many! Anvil doesn't believe in vodka, OKRA gives its proceeds to charity, and Hay Merchant has loads of beer on cask and on tap and a great food menu.

5) See the artistic side - I am in love with the Houston sculpture on I-10. There are also president's heads on the same freeway. There's a new tunnel thingy on a median. There's an entire museum dedicated to art cars, which are pretty much my favorite things ever. Basically, just get out and do something and you are bound to find something really cool to see.

This just scratches the surface of things to do in Houston. Have more time? Check out the Galleria. Sticking close to the conference? Ooh La La is one of my favorite cupcake places in the area. And you know that I am borderline obsessed with coffee from Blacksmith. No one paid me or asked me to write this post; I just really love my city and I want to give you reason to love it, too.

What's your favorite thing about your city? Any parts of your visit that I can help you plan? I have about a million more restaurant recommendations.

Linking up with Lauren and these ladies! Have a great weekend!

Venus Trapped in MarsTHE GOOD LIFE BLOG

             

19 comments:

  1. We had so much fun in Houston last week! Yes, the humidity sucks but its not different than in SC right now!! And the food was fabulous. I've been trying to run off all of my calories this week!

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  2. I've never been to Houston, but I love when people have big love for their towns.

    I love Philadelphia for the history that is all around me (birthplace of the nation baby!), the blunt and hard working people, the cheesesteaks and soft pretzels, and the seasons.

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  3. I have a ton of friends in Houston, it's on my bucket list of places I'm going to visit someday!

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  4. I've never been to Houston... I really really really want to go to that blogging conference!! I've also never been to a blogging conference, there would be so many firsts!

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  5. Wednesdays after 5 half price fajitas!! :-)

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  6. Houston is on the list of cities/towns I want to see. :) The Museum of Natural Science sounds fun.

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  7. I've lived here for 5 years and still haven't done some of those things you listed! I need to learn to be a tourist in my own city! Have a great time at the conference!

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  8. I've never been to Houston, but I want to visit so bad! It sounds like you have amazing restaurants in your area. The Museum of Natural Science sounds like something I would love... and all those neat art pieces look so fun! (The art car is too funny!)

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  9. So I have never even been to Texas. I want to get to all 50 states eventually, but I am still like 15 or something away, including TX.

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  10. I'm from Houston and I def agree with your choice of Pappacitos being #1! Miss it!!! Def don't find mexican food like that in Kansas City!

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  11. I love this post! Gonna have to try Underbelly soon I think. And Provisions! And you need to try The Pastry War!

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  12. I've heard such great things about Houston. I'll be honest and say it's not on my MUST VISIT list, but I really do think it would be fun to go. Plus...bring on the heat!!

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  13. i've never been to houston, just dallas but that was for business and they wouldn't let me explore the city because they expected me to work *sheesh*!! :D

    i live in toronto, canada and i love my city; there's always something to do, AMAZING restaurants and it's bustling with nightlife..it reminds me of new york :)

    -kathy
    Vodka and Soda

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  14. Love this post! I completely agree: I may complaint about the traffic, but I wouldn't want to be any where else! I love the city of Houston; It's my new hometown!

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  15. Pappacito's...one of the first places I ever ate here, and I think it will always be one of my favorites! I have only been to the Natural Science museum and Holocaust museum...we keep saying we will make it to the fine arts, but basically never do! Annd still haven't had any food truck food :(

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  16. Annnnd now I'm gonna go cry! :( I miss Houston every day and talk about it like a crazy lady.
    People that haven't been there or lived there don't understand how super awesome it is.

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  17. Is that We Love Houston sign new?! I just saw it yesterday for the first time and had to do a double take!

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  18. i would like to eat at underbelly with you.

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  19. Ughhh I love all of these suggestions! Hou is the best. Seriously. Also, I foresee a cocktail hour at Provisions in our future (I've never been there!).

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I like comments and read them all but I'm not great about responding to them, so please don't be offended. I would much rather visit your blog instead!