Comfort Suites West Energy Corridor
7111 Rancho Mission Drive
Houston, TX 77083
Phone: (832) 379-2800
Fax: (832) 379-2806
Arts et Musées
We all love sugar and this is where most of the Texas sugar refining is done. On the same grounds since 1843, the plant now imports most of its sugar. Everyone with a sweet tooth or an interest in industrial processes can tour the facilities to see how sugar is cultivated, processed and packaged. The company got its name in an unusual way. The original owner visited Manhattan and stayed in the luxurious Imperial Hotel. Impressed with the property, he decided to adopt the name for his company. A few years later the city (Sugar land) was named in honor of the plant.
If you want to learn about everyday life in the south during the 19th century, head to the Museum of Southern History. It features mid-19th century artifacts, clothing and quilts along with Civil War uniforms and weapons. Special exhibits include a sharecropper's cabin, a chuck box that was used on cattle drives, the Texas Rangers and the Battle of Galveston displays of the American Civil War. The museum also has a research library and a separate room for traveling exhibits.
A local leader in contemporary art, Heritage West gallery showcases leading artists like Staunton Gilchrist, Peter Brown and Mona Marshall. It also offers some Texas-inspired art. Be sure and check the event calendar for coming attractions when visiting. Many of the artists personally appear for exhibitions, book signings and presentations. The gallery prides itself on displaying an assortment of artwork, including abstracts, photographs, sculptures and landscapes.
Tucked away on the west side, Golden Eye Gallery of offbeat art caters to eclectic tastes. Exhibitions change frequently and the gallery features many local artists throughout the year, including work by Emily Joyce, Richard Alexander, Peter Precourt and Tresa Varner. Stop by for numerous special events, including informal talks about the exhibits and the gallery's popular annual fund raising celebrations.
Located inside the sprawling Houston Galleria, Zen Art Space courts local Houston artists for its always-changing exhibition space. It's hard to pass by Zen Art Space's retail location without being intrigued by the brightly colored and eccentric window display that features an explosion of painted knick knacks, sculptures and canvases. Pricing varies depending on in-store appraisals, but the gallery's emphasis on local artists ensures that costs are reasonable.
There is something about small, famous museums that draw people from afar, and this is one of the state's gems. Maybe it is because it was the dwelling place of Jane Long, "The Mother of Texas," or maybe because of the historical ranch activity. Whatever the attraction, visitors are able to follow much of Fort Bend county's history from the start of the Austin Colony in the early 1800s to the sugar cane pioneers. On the grounds you will be able to view the 1840s Long-Smith home as well as the 1883 Victorian residence of Texas Congressman John Moore.
Located on Houston's gallery row, the John Cleary Gallery showcases the finest in fine art photography, both in the gallery and at prominent photo fairs in Los Angeles, New York and San Francisco. Previous exhibits have featured Jeffrey Becom, Jeffrey Conley and Charles Cramer. The gallery holds a Christmas show each year featuring several artists' work.
Not just another art gallery, this company is committed to assisting clients in the selection and purchase of art, as well as generally supporting artists and promoting the arts in the community. It exhibits and sells a wide range of contemporary works, including original paintings and prints, photography, sculpture and furniture art. The elegantly modern space is also available to rent for special events.
McClain Gallery was established in 1980 by Robert and Cynthia Cage McClain. Their thoughtfully-selected collection features contemporary work as well as art from the 20th Century. A great alternative for aficionados and collectors, this venue hosts inspiring exhibitions by European, Asian and national artists. Among the myriad media showcased here are painting, sculpture, photography, paper art and three-dimensional installations.
Bayou Bend is the former home of Ima Hogg, a famous philanthropist. Visitors can wander through 14 acres of woodlands and formal gardens, or check out the house that contains 4,800 various works of art. This art represents the American style from colonial to mid-19th Century. The house is a lovely lifestyle museum of that century. Please take note that children under ten years of age can wander the gardens but are not allowed in the house.
Those who appreciate the European decorative arts will eventually find their way to this mansion in the River Oaks district. Surrounded by beautiful gardens and tall trees on five acres, the mansion is elegantly furnished in the Italian, English and Roman styles. Although the estate is now part of the Museum of Fine Arts, it was originally owned by the local Masterson family who hired architect John F. Staub in the 1950s to design a modern version of an Italian country estate. Admittance is by reservation only. Call to schedule a guided, peaceful tour through a contemporary palace.
Train-lovers, history buffs, and even children will enjoy this journey back in time at the Rosenberg Railroad Museum. Your guided tour includes stops at the museum gallery where you can enjoy the exhibits of historical railroad artifacts as well as a video. Next stop: the education station complete with model trains, educational videos and train-themed activities featuring Thomas the Tank Engine for the children. Visit Tower 17 and find out how to keep trains on track or set off the warning bells for an arriving train. The little red caboose enchants children and adults alike as you find out what traveling on a train really looks like. Finish your trip with both free souvenirs for the children and a selection of gifts and magazines in the main station. - Lisa Carey