If you have one day to see Houston, start early in Rice Village area by visiting Crave Cupcakes, where you can indulge in one of its breakfast cupcakes along with a cup of joe made with real cupcake frosting. Then, take a detour onto Sunset Boulevard to admire the beautiful oak-lined streets of the Southampton residential area on the way to the Rice University Campus. Spend some time at the main campus admiring the wonderful architecture and landscaping.
When you leave the campus, head over to the Museum of Fine Arts Houston (MFAH). If it’s a weekday, look for one of the gourmet food trucks parked across from the museum and order something for a light mid-morning snack. With the food truck purchase, you will receive a voucher for two hours of free admission to the museum.
Once you’ve finished admiring the permanent collection at the MFAH, head over to Da Marco on Westheimer, one of the best Italian restaurants in Houston, for its fabulous prix fixe three-course lunch. Other options on Westheimer include Hugo’s for delectable regional Mexican, Chris Shepherd’s Underbelly for an interpretation of Houston cuisine, or Paulie’s for a more casual meal of sandwiches.
Next, plan to do a little shopping to burn off your lunch calories. Continue your drive along Westheimer toward The Galleria Mall, Houston’s largest destination mall. You’ll find designer labels galore, as well as high end retailers like Neiman Marcus, Nordstrom and Saks Fifth Avenue. On the way to the mall, take a detour onto River Oaks Boulevard to admire some of the grandiose Southern mansions and some of Houston’s most prestigious real estate.
Another detour on the way to The Galleria might be a stop at the boutique shopping area of Highland Village, a small cluster of retail shops that includes furniture and fashion.
Once you’ve had your fill of shopping, head back to your hotel for an afternoon siesta, then get dressed to the nines and visit the Tasting Room in Uptown Park for a pre-dinner drink and some people-watching.
For dinner, indulge in a superb meal at chef Robert Del Grande’s Cafe Annie on Post Oak Boulevard or the legendary Tony’s on Richmond Boulevard for a multi-course feast paired with wine, and enjoy the stellar experience that has kept Tony Vallone in business for more than 50 years.