Photo courtesy of The Houstonian Hotel, Club & Spa
The Houstonian Hotel, Club & Spa
Set on 18 literally green acres, this amenity-rich hotel feels like a secluded retreat among the towering pines, sprawling oaks, and manicured grounds—despite its proximity to the bustling Loop 610 and the Galleria. It affords so much peace and quiet, along with accessibility, that President George H. W. and Barbara Bush used the Houstonian as their home address while he was in office, and stayed on property during visits back to Houston.
The lobby has a warm, luxury lodge feel with soaring ceilings, wood details, and a massive stone fireplace. Guest rooms feel more elegant and traditional, with lavish textures and verdant floor-to-ceiling views. Every room has a 42-inch HDTV, complimentary Wi-Fi, a Keurig coffeemaker, and terrycloth bathrobes. (There are 67 concierge-level rooms that include daily continental breakfast, after-dinner sweets and cordials, plus additional services.) For the nature-minded, there’s a mile-long walking trail around the serene property.
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Although it’s smack-dab in the center of the city—about two miles from many well-loved shopping districts like the Galleria and Uptown Park (home to the first Restoration Hardware flagship gallery store and the first BHLDN in the country) and other attractions—the hotel is remarkably calming and nature-inspired. Memorial Park—Houston’s version of Central Park—has tennis courts and a 600-acre municipal golf course and is just a quarter-mile away, as is the Houston Polo Club. The nightlife of Washington Avenue is also a quick car ride from the Houstonian.
Need to Know
Rooms: 280 rooms, 9 suites. From $335. Check-in: 4 p.m.; check-out: noon. Dining options:Olivette is open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner seven days a week until 10 p.m. Executive chef Neal Cox serves “modern American with a Mediterranean accent.” Dinner includes starters like kale salad, heirloom tomato salad, and crab fritters, and main dishes such as bouillabaisse, pan-seared salmon, grilled trout, and filet of beef. The Manor House serves lunch (with Cajun leanings) only to hotel guests and club members. Center Court Café is the place for a post-workout pick-me-up. And Arbor Grill, opened in 2014, is a poolside alfresco eatery with a fire pit, televisions, cocktails, and casual, fresh fare like salads, wraps, bison burgers, and tacos, open March through October. Spa and gym details:Trellis Spa is a plush, 17,000-square-foot Mediterranean-style spa with 21 treatment rooms, steam and sauna, indoor float pool, and a tranquility room with a fireplace. Don’t forget the chaise lounges and free-flowing warm neck wraps. One of the country’s Top 10 fitness centers, the Houstonian Club is an exclusive, members-only “fitness country club” for Houston VIPs, but hotel guests also have access to the more than 125,000-square-foot health club—free of facility fees.
Who's it for: Luxury and business travelers, families, couples, golfers, fitness nerds, spa-goers, and nature lovers. Our favorite rooms: The hotel’s 1,177-square-foot Capitol Suite features a remote-controlled fireplace, wet bar, and dining table for six, plus executive-level service and amenities. Good to know:Guest rooms ending in the 60s are on the north end, closer to the pools and fitness club, and the odd-numbered rooms directly overlook the pools. Ask about basketball pointers with a former NBA player for a fee.