As an international port city, Houston attracts guests for both business events and hard-earned pleasure activities. Considering the city’s extreme sprawl of over 600-square miles, location is vital when choosing the perfect place for a family stay.
1/Omni Houston Hotel
4 Riverway, Galleria
The Omni Houston Hotel strives to make kids feel at home. Parents who want to give their teens some space can book the Kids’ Sensory Suite which provides two double beds in their own room that connects to Mom and Dad’s. This suite features a flat screen TV, an X-box One for movies and games, and an iHome stereo system. My little ones love the complimentary backpacks with goodies and a nightcap of milk and cookies on your first evening in the hotel. Starts at $212/night.
2/Hotel Derek Houston
2525 West Loop S., Galleria
Black granite lines the Hotel Derek, displaying a gentle nod to this city’s oil and gas heritage. While this hip and trendy hotel is large in size, it provides quality and custom service, giving it a boutique feel. Situated inside the I-610 loop, it’s easily accessible to most major freeways and in close proximity to the Galleria Mall for all your shopping needs. Starts at $219/night.
3/Hotel Galvez & Spa
2024 Seawall Blvd., Galveston
Constructed in 1911 and cementing its reputation as popular hotspot during the Jazz Age and Big Band Era, Hotel Galvez and Spa offers 224 luxury guestrooms and a full-service spa. Located directly on the beach with an outdoor heated saltwater swimming pool, the hotel offers jet-ski rentals and horseback riding. The outstanding Galvez Bar and Grill has locally-sourced Gulf Coast seafood and live Jazz on Fridays and Saturdays from 6-10 p.m. Starts at $179/night.
KidTripster Tip: Kids (12 and under) eat free when dining with a parent at Galvez Bar & Grill.
4/Moody Gardens Hotel
7 Hope Blvd., Galveston
Well-located for an active family vacation, Moody Gardens Hotel is near the Moody Gardens Aquarium Pyramid, Rainforest Pyramid, and Discovery Musuem, as well as a golf course, theater, paddlewheel cruise boats, and a five-story ropes course and zip line. Send the kids off to a science-based summer camp while kicking back at the pool’s swim-up bar. Admission to Palm Beach, the on-site water park, is included, so everyone can stay, splash, and surrender to the sun. Starts at $359/night.
KidTripster Tip: Shuttle services run from the hotel to various locations around the island including the cruise ship terminal.
111 N Post Oak Ln., Galleria
Despite living in Houston, our family routinely visits The Houstonian for weekend getaways and extended staycations. The hotel boasts three gorgeous swimming pools (including a slide integrated into a rock wall and a baby pool), rock climbing, and tennis. The Houston Arboretum and Nature Center and Memorial Park are a short 15-minute walk away. Starts at $179/night.
KidTripster Tip: The Houstonian offers a kids’ “Camp Out” special, a perfect alternative to Houston’s summertime mosquito blues. Kids receive a play tent with lanterns, glow-in-the dark stars, stuffed raccoons, and sleeping bags. Have a free dinner off the Campfire Menu and enjoy s’mores and milk for dessert! Starts at $379/night.
6/The Westin Galleria
5060 W Alabama St., Galleria
Shoppers rejoice! The Westin Galleria is located within the Galleria Mall! The resident White Oak Kitchen provides dining and room service options, ranging from a healthy kid’s’ menu to nourishing juices and smoothies. Kids can also grab an amenity bag upon arrival and then their towels as they head to the pool. Starts at $229/night.
1100 Texas Ave., Downtown
Hands down, I think that the Magnolia Hotel is the best place to stay in downtown Houston. Built in 1927, it’s a stylish and elegant high-rise, previously owned by the Shell Oil Company and The Houston Post Dispatch. Families feel pampered with a rooftop pool and complimentary cookies and milk at bedtime. Starts at $186/night.
KidTripster Tip: While deep in the heart of Houston, explore the six miles of downtown tunnels 20 feet below the city that connect 95 city blocks. Head downstairs at the Wells Fargo Plaza or the McKinney Garage on Main Street for hundreds of shops, dining, and retail locations.
8/Residence Inn by Marriot
904 Dallas St., Downtown
Astros, Rockets, and Texans fans should seriously consider the Residence Inn Houston Downtown/Convention Center. Centrally-located in downtown, the hotel is just a few steps from the George R. Brown Convention Center, the Toyota Center, and Minute Maid Park. Grab a burger at the Lake House down the street and play at Discovery Green Park. For the football fans, just hop on the METRORail for easy access to NRG Stadium. In March, the stadium houses one of the largest rodeos in the world. Starts at $175/night.
9/La Quinta Inn & Suites at Greenway Plaza
4015 Southwest Fwy. Museum District/Rice University
The Crowne Plaza Hotel holds a special place in my heart, as we spent several years living in the River Oaks area when we first moved to Houston. With Memorial and Buffalo Bayou Parks to the north, the Museum District to the southeast, and the chic West University neighborhood to the south, staying at the Crowne Plaza can quickly get you to your destination, if you get the kids out of the pool. Starts at $117/night.
Carla Reed first encountered sleep deprivation working a summer in Belize, fighting off howler monkeys harassing her tent in the middle of the forest. The experience appropriately prepared her for nighttime antics traveling with her three boys.
This writer received some complimentary stays for the purpose of this review. However, all opinions expressed are solely her own.