Houston’s sheer size is enough to intimidate even the most adventurous of shoppers. But, allow the scale of our nations fourth largest city to scare you and you’ll miss out on a gold mine of shopping finds.
Pam Kuhl-Linscomb (an award-winning designer and UT-grad), has created a department-store-scale shopping experience that’s well-edited with labels rarely spotted in the South.
And, if size really does matter than look no further than home goods and gift emporium Kuhl-Linscomb. The lifestyle store spans an impressive 70,000 square feet of shopping, divided amongst five showrooms flanking two city blocks in the middle of Upper Kirby – the trendy neighborhood tucked between Montrose and River Oaks. Here, past-era houses have been repurposed into popular retail haunts much like the upcycled Rainey St bungalows. And if these walls could shop they would tell you that the Texas-sized design and lifestyle store is the go-to spot for discerning Houstonians on a gift search. Step inside the main entrance into Building 5 and follow your nose to a fully stocked apothecary and fragrance department as you pass a jewelry counter, fashion accessories, eyewear, pet supplies, books and beauty before you ever even leave the building.
Owner Pam Kuhl-Linscomb (an award-winning designer and UT-grad), has created a department-store-scale shopping experience that’s well-edited with labels rarely spotted in the South. Get lost for hours as you explore the collision of products that includes finds from Paris, Texas, to Paris, France. Don’t miss brands like local Houston shirt company Claridge & King alongside decorative Fornasetti candles and Hermes tabletop accessories.
Grab a map of the campus before making your move. It’s the only way to ensure you don’t miss a beat of eclectic outdoor furniture, antiques, a pint-sized stationery boutique, a furniture and accessories showroom, linens and lighting, baby and children’s items and an extensive collection of china, crystal, kitchen and other tabletop treasures.
If old houses and high fashion is your thing, look no further than the Upper Kirby bungalow housing Cheeky Vintage. The unique and cozy space is packed with handpicked finds from the 1940’s to the 1990’s including designer names Chanel, Valentino, Gucci and Lanvin. Tory Burch has been spotted shopping here, and the well-dressed women behind the landmark have sold gowns to plenty of celebs.
Wild catch yellowfin tuna, mom's chojang, fried Korean sesame leaf, avocado, cucumber, jalapeno, spicy sprouts
Spicy Pork Bulgogi
Berkshire pork collar, cucumber kimchi, micro cilantro
Open-Faced Soup Dumplings
Spanish duroc pork, roasted garlic, dashi gelee
Salmon Truffle Roll
Scottish salmon, truffle oil and salt, black tiger shrimp, avocado, cucumber and spicy sprouts
Korean Grill Room
Reserve a communal table for an authentic Korean BBQ experience
Slightly north things get a bit sleeker, though still slightly off the radar, at Laboratoria. The gallery-like space from a former jet-setting model plays hosts to higher fashion and lesser-found labels like Thakoon and Holly Fulton.
Grab a seat on the perfect-for-people-watching patio at Nara and indulge in the unique sushi and Korean creations.
A stone’s throw away, hit up a true Houston favorite at West Ave’s Tootsies. The famous department store, now with offshoots in Dallas and Atlanta, is stocked with a can’t-miss contemporary department. Don’t be afraid to solicit help from a salesperson – they are as fashionable as they are attentive.
While at West Ave, it’s the perfect chance for a lunch break. Grab a seat on the perfect-for-people-watching patio at Nara and indulge in the unique sushi and Korean creations.
Next Stop: Montrose, one of Houston’s most delicious and eclectic neighborhoods. Make a stop at Mio Boutique (formerly Coquette) for colorful caftans from Australian line, Camilla. Also in Montrose, Biscuit Home’s new location shows bloggers mean business. The style setter behind popular interiors blog Peppermint Bliss joined forces with textile designer Isabel Wilson to create a store filled with colorful bedding exclusive to Biscuit alongside other fun gifts and home finds. Head over during the store’s morning hours when the parking lot is empty so you can snap a pic in front of the jaw-dropping Biscuit Paint Wall commissioned by Houston-based artist Sebastien Boileau.
Finally, for a taste of all things eye candy, head to Rice Village, home to Saint Cloud Boutique. The store is ahead of the curve, stocking everything from Lem Lem dresses to Claire Vivier handbags with plans to add home goods this fall. You’re going to love perusing through Houston’s finest.
Other Spots to See
Kendall is a writer for Austin Tidbits, a digital lifestyle resource delivering what’s hip to Austin women through short-and-chic emails. CLICK HERE to subscribe.
Enjoy the rest of our walkable Houston city guide that lets you easily ditch your car and explore three neighborhoods by foot or bike.
Museum District / Montrose
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