Even though gas prices are putting a huge dent in our cocktail budget, getting in the car and exploring another city is still an affordable way to travel. Heck, we spent less on gas round-trip to Houston than we normally do on checked-bag fees one-way (we have many costume changes when we vacation).
So as part of our occasional Road Trip series, we spent a few days in H Town living it up to find some new places to recommend. We had more fun than we can squeeze into a single story, so consider this Part One.
Getting there is half the fun, we always say. (Except when trying to bring our high school girlfriend to climax, that was work. And torture.) So if you’re going to embrace the Road Trip, you’ve got to allow time to stop and smell the truck stops.
Our favorite is Buc-ees in Madisonville. It’s the only time a giant beaver makes us smile. Inside, the restrooms are like mini amusement parks, except cleaner and less touristy. In the store, get everything from a bag of Beaver Nuggets to a $5,000 barbecue grill and a giant iced tea to wash it all down.
When you need to pull over and send a few e-mails, did you know that all Texas rest stops now have free wi-fi? Our favorite is the picturesque (yes, really) Walker County Safety Rest Area just north of Hunstville. It’s also very close to the giant Sam Houston statue from our nightmares.
For the perfect road-trip snack, make sure you save room for The Original Fried Pie Shop in Buffalo. Savory pies like Beef and Vegetables or Bacon, Egg and Cheese are delicious. And perfect for trying just before one of their decadent fruit or cream pies. This is one dive worth the drive.
Once in Houston, we have two favorite hotels. If you want something quaint near all the gay-bar action of the Montrose area, check out La Colombe D’or. It’s not a gay property, but with all the antiques and original art, it might as well be. They are extremely gay-friendly, though. Rejuvenate in one of only five spacious rooms in this historic landmark built in 1923 and feel like a Big Ol’ Queen for a Day.
If you want modern luxury in one of the hottest up-and-coming areas of town, the just-completed The Westin Houston, Memorial City is fantastic. Modeled after the Dallas W Hotel, it’s gorgeous from lobby to upper-deck infinity pool. It connects to Memorial City Mall via skybridge if you need to touch up your wardrobe, and stands right next to Memorial Herman Memorial City Medical Center if you need a little touch-up on your face from one of their world-famous plastic surgeons. The Heavenly Bed (pictured) and Heavenly Shower will make you never want to leave this great property. Plus, it still has that new-hotel smell.
Stay tuned for more of our Houston trip with details on some great restaurants, happy hour spots, and night clubs to keep you busy and out of trouble. Yeah, right.