Hi, friends! Today I’m excited to share with you the second day of Conor’s visit to Houston, including lunch at the Hobbit Cafe, a visit to the Menil Collection, and ending with a Houston Dynamo MLS game in downtown. You can read our Day 1 adventures here, if interested. Let’s get right into it, shall we?!
Saturday morning began with photos at Kemah Boardwalk with Tiffany, two outfits of which I’ve shared on the blog so far (here and here + more to come!). After photos Conor and I were starving, so we headed out to the Hobbit Cafe for a scrumptious fresh lunch on the patio.
I had only heard great things about this food gem in Houston, so I knew when Conor visited we had to give it a try! Even in the Houston heat and humidity, sitting outside on the patio was worth it. The pretty colored lights and light breeze made this afternoon lunch spot a perfect little pit stop for our weekend travels.
…and with sandwhich names that are straight out of J.R.R. Tolkien’s stories, who could resist?!
Conor went with the Jamaican Jerk Chicken with curry spiced rice, mango salsa, and fresh steamed veggies.
As for me, I got the Thorin Oakenshield sandwich, which came with fresh tabouli topped with melted swiss and roasted mushrooms on fresh rye bread. Yummm! Everything was just the perfect amount–not too much and not too little. A balance that can be hard to find when it’s in the middle of summer in Houston.
After a restful lunch at the Hobbit Cafe, we headed out toward the Menil Collection, an art museum that was recommended to me by a close friend. Photos were only permitted in very specific areas of the museum, so I’ve only included a few here, and the vast majority (99%) of art pieces we viewed are not shown below. It’s an experience that is meant to be had in person!
The Menil Collection is a 30-acre neighborhood of art located in the middle of Houston, but the experience I’ll be covering today only covers the main building where special exhibits and permanent collections are housed. It’s the main attraction, if you ask me! And it quickly became one of my favorite things to do in Houston. It’s open Wednesday through Sunday 11am to 7pm, but check this page for the most up-to-date information about planning your visit.
What I love most about the Menil Collection is its dedication to providing its visitors with the true spirit of art. First and foremost, the founders of the Menil Collection believe in making art accessible to everyone, and so no admission is charged. Ever. Period. I love that! Secondly, there are not didactics (informative plaques) near the artwork, which leaves the art to speak for itself–delivering a truly unique, individual, direct experience to each visitor. Yes! Totally love this too!
From ancient African art to the modern and abstract eras, there is a little something for everyone! So much to see!
The artwork and masks below were from aboriginal tribes in Alaska. I was so excited to show them to Allen, since he grew up there, so I was happy that they were some of the few pieces I could photograph.
Even the outside of the building and neighborhood is beautiful to walk around. So I’d definitely recommend taking a leisurely stroll around the area before or afterwards.
You may even spot a unique piece of artwork or two in the neighborhood!
We also stopped by Rothko Chapel while we were in the area. I wasn’t exactly sure what to expect, and perhaps I’m still perplexed! But it was an interesting spot to stop at and something that a lot of Houstonians talk about! So it’s worth a quick visit, if nothing else!
After spending a few hours at the Menil Collection, we headed further into downtown to watch a Houston Dynamo MLS game in the BBVA Stadium. If you are an avid soccer fan or even just a fan of any sport, watching the Dynamo (MLS) or Dash (NWSL) is a great way to spend a weekend evening in the city. One of my co-workers at JSC always gets season passes for both teams, so I tag along with her when I can!
This night in particular, the game was actually delayed for a torrential downpour that spontaneously moved through the Houston area. Conor and I ended up waiting (with hundreds of other people) under the covered portions of the stadium until the rain subsided and the game could begin. But it was all #worthit once the game commenced!
And if you’re lucky, you may even get to see a beautiful sunset behind the cityscape of Houston. Is this not the most beautiful stadium view you’ve ever seen?! That’s the silver lining of a huge rainstorm…the clouds create the most magical sunset!
Fun fact: While Conor and I were debating whether or not to get tickets to the game (since the sky looked so horrible at the time), a nice man offered us free tickets that he wasn’t going to use. The generosity of Texans and southerners never ceases to amaze me! Conor bought him a drink during the game as a thank you!
After the game, we headed back into Clearlake where I was staying for the summer. All in all we had a fantastic Saturday in the city, full of good eats, culture and arts, and even a sports game! There is seriously SO MUCH to do in Houston, it’s overwhelming at times. And I’m convinced that everyone can find something they love!