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Old 03-17-2008, 05:49 AM
 
1 posts, read 2,507 times
Reputation: 10

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Hello all,
We're from the UK visiting my uncle in Spring, Houston for a week from 29th March 2008.

I would appreciate your suggestions on:

1) Where to stay?
We're looking for a decentish hotel (3* upwards) within a 30 minute drive of Spring preferably where there are some bars and restaurants.

2) What to do?
There will be four of us, 2 in our 30's and 2 in their early 60's. As my uncle is recovering from an operation and my father has bad knees, we can't do anything too active. Ideas so far include:
- Boating/fishing
- Sporting event
- Gun shooting (not hunting)
- Something motoring related - we're all petrol heads.
- Anything slightly off the wall - e.g. visiting the mirrored glass toilet downtown??!!

Any other 'must do's' you can suggest?

Thanks in advance.

Last edited by warp9; 03-17-2008 at 05:52 AM.. Reason: wrong font
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Old 03-17-2008, 10:10 AM
 
Location: where nothin ever grows. no rain or rivers flow, TX
2,028 posts, read 7,860,253 times
Reputation: 447
wanna race your rental? theres autocross at gulf greyhound, NASA area on the 30th
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Old 03-17-2008, 11:31 AM
 
64 posts, read 204,586 times
Reputation: 38
Miller Outdoor Theater for a picnic evening on your blanket under the stars.
It's free.
No glass bottles.
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Old 03-17-2008, 11:54 AM
 
64 posts, read 204,586 times
Reputation: 38
Brit-to-Brit.

Morning trip to Old Town Spring. Tourist Mecca. Lots of diddy shops.
Then up I-45 for,
Shopping in The Woodlands mall and lunch at one of the terrace cafes. Buy all the iPod gadets you want at Best Buy.

That's your retail fix easily dealt with.
~~~~~~~~~~~

Daytrip to Brenham - just don't go on MS150 weekend. Go see the minature ponies bred by the nuns and the Bluebell ice cream place.
On the way home:
Go to the drive in movies at Rosehill (FM2920 just west of Tomball). Get there early. Super cheap. Cheap hot dogs and popcorn, too.
~~~~~~~~~~~

Visit the Butterfly Center at the Natural Science Museum. And the Oil Exhibit while you're there. Park in the big concrete car park and pay the $5 or whatever it is. Lunch at Niko Nicko's on Montrose Road (big Greek place, can't miss it, park around the corner) which is directly up the street from the museum just past the lights at Westheimer Road. Then spend a couple of hours at Bayou Bend Gardens (just up the street from there on Memorial Drive) and wander around the house and grounds.

Eat at the Cheesecake Factory. Huge portions, massive choice.

Bayou Bend Park. Lots of friendly alligators. Sounds weird? It is weird.

Boat tour of the Port of Houston.

Hang out by the pool and do nothing.

Daytrip to Kemah or to Galveston and Moody Gardens.

That'll keep you busy.
~~~~~~~~~~~
And just in case . . .

Don't bang on in public about how cheap everything is until you actually live here and earn and spend dollars - sure, it's cheap when you are earning, converting, and spending pounds.

Never, ever, ever complain about the price of gas unless you are earning dollars - and remember, over here it really goes down as well as up unlike the UK. Plus, Houstonians probably drive 200-300 miles per week just pottering about and going to work.

Tip big. As in 20% or more. Don't be a whiner or a meanie it's how the place works. Imagine if you worked 10 hours a day for less than $3 p/h (and taxed!) and some cheap tourist with pounds or Euros tips you a crummy $3 after you spent 45mins waiting on 4 people just because it's 10%. Even if you eat somewhere that you pay at the counter - leave $4 or so on the table. It's just the right thing to do. Always, always tip. Maybe not at Starbucks but almost everywhere else. And in a bar, tip $1 per drink.

Enjoy.
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Old 03-17-2008, 01:04 PM
 
1,290 posts, read 5,242,118 times
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The Texas Gulf Coast has some of the best sport fishing in the United States, about 2 hours South of Houston. Maybe Rockport or Port O'conner area in the Matagorda Bay area. Google Texas Gulf Coast fishing and look for guides and packages if you are interested. They should help you with getting ready with supplies, licenses, etc.

If you can catch a Houston Rockets NBA game, they are currently on one of the longest winning streaks in NBA history. NBA.com

The Houston Museum District is one of the largest and under-rated museum districts in the United States. Houston Museum District (http://www.houstonmuseumdistrict.org/default.asp?id=1 - broken link)

Houston also has excellent golf courses which many of are very affordable. Welcome To Golf Houston Magazine Online Edition You'll also be here during the Shell Houston Open, Houston's annual PGA event. Shell Houston Open: PGA TOUR Event, Houston, Texas

Someone mentioned Old Town Spring, and while its touristy, it might not be that fun for four guys. There are a couple good burger joints there, as well as a couple good artists (Donny Hickmott's Walking Horse Gallery is one of my favs), but I can't imagine its that exciting...although, if you are in the Spring area, then might as well.

If you want to stay a little further away from Spring (about 40 minutes) you can get a hotel in the uptown area near the Galleria and be extremely close to the finest restaurants in Houston as well as the finest shopping. Either way, I suggest you go down to that area.

Restaurants that are great:

Mid tier: Pappadeax's (cajun seafood/its crawfish season on the gulf coast)
Pappasito's (Tex/Mex: get the fajitas)

Upper level: Houston has some of the best restaurants in the nation
Cafe Annie
Tony's
Fogo de Chao

Google any of them for details.

Tipping well in American restaurants is expected now, at LEAST 15%...upwards of 20% if you enjoyed everything, more if outstanding.

Rice Village has a good collection of bars. Ginger man is one of my favs. The Ginger Man, Houston Its a pretty long drive, but its among about a dozen other bars/restaurants/ice houses on a strip near Rice University.

Downtown also has a good collection of bars on main street.

There is also Nasa Spacecenter, but its a long drive, expensive, and surprisingly boring. So is the San Jacinto monument and Battleship Texas, both long, long drives for little enjoyment.

Also, don't get sucked into going to the downtown aquarium, boring and expensive in my opinion. Kemah boardwalk is also an expensive tourist trap.

Midtown has some decent nightlife, Pub Fiction comes to mind, but there are dozens of places.

If you want a quieter bar in the Spring area, perhaps go to Fox and Hound or Baker's Street near Willowbrook mall...if you want a place to drink but not drive to far if you are staying in Spring. There are also dozens of sports bars and hole in the wall pubs in almost every other shopping center in the burbs.

If interested in Gentlman's establishments, Houston is also world famous for those, just google appropriate search terms and look for reviews to make sure you go to one of the better places if interested.

The problem with hotels is they will mostly be corporate "garden style" hotels in the Spring area that service HP and the surrounding area. There is a decent Hilton Gardens near 1960 and 249, but they almost are all the same. To stay in a very nice hotel, you'll need to go into town more.

You are about to find out the awful truth about Houston: Its a great, great place to live, kind of boring to visit.

Last edited by Supermac34; 03-17-2008 at 01:16 PM..
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