Good morning, good afternoon, good evening, good night; wherever you are reading right now 🙂 My name is Viet Dinh and I’m originally from Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. I moved to Houston, Texas in July 2014 for my studies so I’ve been here for about a year and a half now. It may not be long enough to know everything about this gigantic town but I’m going to tell you everything that I adore about “H-Town”. Let’s begin!
- The Bellaire Area:
This is also known as the “Asian area” where most of the Asian restaurants and markets are located. It includes the Bellaire Boulevard and the surrounding streets. You’ll never be hungry here! Whenever I crave for Vietnamese food as well as snacks and drinks such as boba tea, Vietnamese street foods, etc., I’d definitely go to the area. Some of the places I’d recommend are One Hot Pot, Pho Dien, etc. Typing them makes me hungry already!
- The City Center:
I love this part of the town so much! They have all the good clothes shops like Urban Outfitters, JCrew, etc. and a few good American restaurants here; my sister and I enjoy “Ruggles Green” since it is healthy and super yummy. Plus, for party people, there are famous bars and clubs that are perfect for making memories with friends and family. On the weekends, there are bands playing here for free and you’ll see people dancing and enjoying a great time with one another. There are no strangers; it’s up to you to open up with the others.
- The Galleria:
“Everything is bigger in Texas” and this couldn’t be truer when it comes to The Galleria – Texas’, its biggest shopping mall. I didn’t really believe it was that big and one day, my friend and I decided to explore its entirety. Can you guess how long it took us to finish our shopping spree? About 7-8 hours (No kidding!). There are brands which you will never find in other parts of Houston such as Zara, Topshop, Topman, Free People, etc. You name it, they have it. Moreover, since this mall is for consumers with different budgets, they also offer high-class brands like Louis Vuitton, Chanel, Fendi, etc. besides other brands. I love the fact that they include such a variety of stores here since I am a fashion-oriented guy and sometimes I just visit here to enjoy the beauty of fashion. What could be better than when I can look at and touch a Chanel Boy Bag or a Birkin from Hermes in real life without actually paying tons of money for them?
- Westheimer and Montrose Area:
My sister tells me this is the “LGBT Area” of Houston 😀 This area is really interesting to me since there are lots of vintage clothing shops and shops in general with unique designs and paintings on the walls. Gorgeous coffee shops for friends’ gatherings, delicious bakeries for the sweet-tooth, “American Apparel” (the only store in Houston is located here), etc. All are in one place. The area brings me a more “countryside” feeling for some reasons; like a more upscale countryside I’d say. This is another part of H-Town which I not only fall in love with but also feel related to 😉
This is where the skyscrapers, businesses, reputable hotels with modern architecture are situated. There is also an immense park called “Discovery Green” here. It is such a great combination between nature and modern, hectic life so that people won’t feel too knackered after work. The park is where lots of events are held. The most recent event which I and my dancer friends were a part of was Houston KFest. At night (I believe on the weekends) they have an open movie screening where people would gather around the big screen at a stage and enjoy a movie night with their beloved ones. They let you know what movie they are going to show before the date which I haven’t figured out how. That’s my new mission!
- The River Oaks District:
We also call it the “Rich District”. Just a drive or a walk around the area would give you goosebumps and lots of motivation to work harder! Million-dollar dwellings owned by doctors and members of the high society, Ferraris parking in front of the houses, etc. Looking at those you’ll understand how hard the owners have worked for a life like this. There is another shopping center in the area which is currently under construction and expected to be done in 2016-2017. Again, this is the “Rich Area” so the stores here are worldwide famous brands such as Dior, Hermes, Cartier, Chanel, and all the brands that I, right now, wouldn’t even dare to walk in their doors. Some parts of the area have security and random strangers can’t have access to go further into them but you can go around to take a look and admire people’s work 🙂
That’s a wrap for today’s tour led by me, Viet Dinh. I cannot put enough in words to illustrate the whole Houston for you but I’ve tried my best 🙂 These pictures just show a part of it. Thus, whenever you have a chance to visit H-Town, shoot me an email (firstname.lastname@example.org) and if my vagabond self is still here, I’ll definitely take you around when I’m free and I bet we’ll have a blast! Until then! ~XOX
Note: Pictures of places are from Google images