16 Reasons Why Living in Houston Is Great

16 Reasons Why Living in Houston Is Great

1135
0

By Patrick Galvan, Storage.com

Houston is the largest city in Texas with more than 2.19 million residents. In addition, Houston is the largest city in the southern United States, America’s fifth largest metropolitan area, and fourth largest city in the U.S. overall. But its size isn’t the only thing Houston is known for. It’s also a major hub for space exploration, wind and solar technology, and higher education. If you’re moving to Houston or already a proud resident of this Texas city, you’ll love this list of reasons why Houston is a great place to live!

1. SPECTACULAR ARCHITECTURE.

Photo by Sarath Kuchi
Photo by Sarath Kuchi

Houston, especially the downtown area, is home to one of the tallest and most visually elaborate man-made skylines in the world! The JPMorgan Chase Tower, Williams Tower, and Bank of America Center are marvels of modern architecture that loom over the Houston horizon. These buildings are impressive not only in their stature, but also in the complexity of their design. For example, the Bank of America Center has several layers forming a great piece of postmodern architecture.

2. THE NATION’S NUMBER ONE EXPORTER.

Photo by Roy Luck
Photo by Roy Luck

In 2013, the Department of Commerce reported that Houston had surpassed New York City as the country’s top market for exporting. In the previous year, Houston had exported $110.3 billion worth of merchandise. The city exports vast amounts of petroleum products, chemicals, and oil equipment, which goes out through the Port of Houston, one of the busiest ports in the world!

3. WATER IS EVERYWHERE.

Photo by Roy Luck
Photo by Roy Luck

If you like fishing and boating, you’ll be pleased to know that Houston is within close proximity to several bodies of water. There’s Lake Conroe, a natural lake, and three large reservoirs: Lake Houston, Lake Livingston, and Sheldon Lake. All of these lakes are open to the public for boating, fishing, and camping. There’s also San Jacinto River and Buffalo Bayou, as well as Burnet Bay, Tabbs Bay, and Trinity Bay. And, of course, the Gulf of Mexico isn’t far either.

Learn more about using boat storage in Houston.

4. DISTRICTS OF DOWNTOWN HOUSTON.

Photo by Mike Fisher
Photo by Mike Fisher

Three distinctive districts make up Houston’s downtown area: the Historic District, the Skyline District, and the Theater District. The Historic District is the oldest part of the city, dating back to the 19th century, and features a large number of historic buildings. The Skyline District is where you can see the city’s beautiful architecture and find the headquarters of Fortune 500 companies like Shell, Continental Airlines, and JPMorgan Chase. The Theater District is where Houstonians go for entertainment, as the area is home to the Downtown Aquarium and fine arts centers, such as Alley Theatre and Hobby Center for Performing Arts.

5. THE MUSEUM DISTRICT.

Photo by etee
Photo by etee

Separate from the other districts of Houston, the Museum District owes its name to the 20+ museums in the area. Popular stops include the Houston Museum of Natural Science and The Museum of Fine Arts, but visitors interested in the arts can find entertainment and education at places like the Holocaust Museum Houston, Bayou Bend Collection and Gardens, and The Jung Center of Houston as well.

6. HOUSTON TUNNEL SYSTEM.

Photo by Laurence Simon
Photo by Laurence Simon

Twenty feet beneath the busy streets of Downtown Houston exists a network of caverns and pathways that make up the Houston Tunnel System. Six miles in length, the tunnel system covers an underground expanse measuring the equivalent of 95 city blocks. Like the above-ground portion of the city, the Houston Tunnel System is filled with restaurants and shopping venues. It also expands on the surface level of the city with elevated skywalks connecting buildings in the downtown area.

7. A STURDY, PROSPEROUS ECONOMY.

Photo by Roy Luck
Photo by Roy Luck

Not only was Houston the first major city to recover from the economic downturn of 2008, but it’s also one of the world’s top sites for the energy industry, excelling in the fields of wind and solar technology, as well as oilfield equipment. What’s more, Houston has been ranked by Forbes as the top city for paycheck worth and by the Bureau of Labor Statistics as one of the top cities for job growth. Among Houston’s top employers are Memorial Hermann Health System (19,500), University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center (19,290), Exxon Mobil Corporation (13,191), Shell Oil Company (13,000), and National Oilwell Varco (10,000).

8. WORLD’S LARGEST MEDICAL CENTER.

Photo by Katie Haughland
Photo by Katie Haughland

Houston has a large foothold in the health care industry (as seen above), but it’s best known for having the world’s largest medical center. Originally established in 1945, the Texas Medical Center strives for “pioneering patient care, research, education, and prevention” with its 54 facilities, which include hospitals, medical schools, nursing programs, and institutions for research and medical specialization in fields such as dentistry and pharmaceuticals. It’s the most complex medical center in the world, and all of its components are nonprofit, seeking only to provide and enhance medical technology and treatment for the future.

9. GET SCHOOLED.

Photo by Ed Schipul
Photo by Ed Schipul

Top-notch educational venues are abundant in Houston, beginning with University of Houston, which educates close to 40,000 people every semester and offers more than 300 degree programs ranging from optometry and pharmacy to biomedical sciences and engineering. Other local institutes include University of Houston-Clear Lake and University of Houston-Downtown (which are part of the University of Houston system but are considered stand-alone institutions). There’s also Rice University, a private university that’s been recognized as one of the best research universities in the country for space science, nanotechnology, and materials science (for which it was ranked first in the world by the Times Higher Education in 2010).

Attend college in Houston? Learn how students can use self storage for college students during summer break.

10. THE BEST SHOPPING IN THE U.S.

Photo by Jerald Jackson
Photo by Jerald Jackson

In 2010, Houston was selected by Forbes as the top city for shopping in the country, outranking cities like New York City, Chicago, Los Angeles, Memphis, and Philadelphia. As the best city for shopping, there are numerous shopping centers in Houston, including the Galleria, the largest shopping mall in the state of Texas. This mall has mainstream brands like Gap and Urban Outfitters, department stores like Nordstrom and Macy’s, and high-end designers like Louis Vuitton, Bulgari, and Chanel. Other prominent shopping centers include Highland Village Shopping Center, Rice Village shopping district, and Willowbrook Mall.

11. A LEAGUE OF YOUR OWN.

Photo by Ed Schipul
Photo by Ed Schipul

Sports fans, you’ve found your paradise! With the exception of hockey, Houston serves as home to a professional team for all of the nation’s professional leagues. Baseball fans congregate at Minute Maid Park to watch the Houston Astros in their MLB games. For the NBA, Houston has the Houston Rockets based at the local Toyota Center. And the Houston Texans represent the city in the NFL. Did we mention that Houston’s NRG Stadium is currently planned to host Super Bowl LI in 2017?

12. DOWNTOWN AQUARIUM.

Photo by Katie Haughland
Photo by Katie Haughland

Voted one of the best restaurants by locals, Downtown Aquarium functions as a restaurant, amusement park, and exhibit of global marine life. The restaurant offers a variety of meals, including seafood, salads, and desserts. Also, on the second floor, there’s The Dive Lounge bar, an ideal place to relax and unwind. To satisfy the kids, take them to Downtown Aquarium’s many attractions. Between the Diving Bell Ferris Wheel, Aquatic Carousel, Frog Hopper, and other rides, there’s more than enough to keep the kids occupied. Don’t forget about the aquatic exhibits! More than 500,000 gallons have been devoted to displaying marine animals from all around the world, from the swamps of Louisiana to the exotic coral reefs of the sea! Oh, and there are a few rare white tigers to watch, too!

13. THE HOUSTON ZOO.

Photo by Mike Fisher
Photo by Mike Fisher

The Houston Zoo promises to give visitors “a fun, unique, and inspirational experience fostering appreciation, knowledge, and care for the natural world,” and it most definitely fulfills its goal with its beautiful scenery, diverse animals from around the globe, and activities for members of all ages!

14. HOUSTON, WE HAVE A PROBLEM.

Photo by vagueonthehow
Photo by vagueonthehow

The Lyndon B. Johnson Space Center, to which that memorable phrase was directed, is in Houston, as is its visitor center, Space Center Houston. You may not go into space, but you can see equipment, as well as artifacts from space, experience digital screenings of astronomy-related material, and tour various facilities.

15. RESTAURANTS FOR EVERYONE.

Photo by T.Tseng
Photo by T.Tseng

When it comes to food, Houston is spoiled for choice. But don’t take our word for it! Alison Cook, food critic for the Houston Chronicle, has compiled a list of the 100 best restaurants in the city. Among those venues are Pondicheri, a “chic” Indian restaurant, and Japanese restaurant MF Sushi. Then there’s Underbelly, beloved for its mouthwatering burgers and scrumptious cornmeal squares. Taking the top spot on Cook’s list is Oxheart, which offers both a garden menu and tasting menu for a unique dining experience.

16. TX FEST.

Photo by Joe Van
Photo by Joe Van

An average of 10,000 people congregate in Downtown Houston every spring for TX Fest, a gathering dedicated to celebrating “everything that’s great about the Lone Star State.” TX Fest is complete with live musical performances, delectable cuisine, shopping opportunities, and a sampling of local beers, wines, and spirits. When you’re done with the performances, there are plenty of games and activities to partake in, including beer pong with the cups arranged in the shape of Texas!

Did we miss anything on our list? Tell us what you’d add in the comments!

All images have either been provided by a listed organization or are licensed under the Creative Commons.
NEED SELF STORAGE IN HOUSTON?

How Self Storage Helps with Living Downtown

How Self Storage Helps with Living Downtown

1379
2

By Graci Woodworth, Storage.com

Finding your place in this world can be pretty difficult, not to mention how hard it can be to move there. Storage.com is here to help with the moving process, either by providing storage or helping you find the ideal place to call home.

An apartment or loft right above the hustle and bustle of downtown is ideal for many young professionals today—and for good reason. The proximity to local hot spots, job opportunities, and vibrant cultural atmosphere are a few of the reasons why people are drawn to life in the heart of downtown areas.

Unfortunately, there’s a trade-off for living downtown. Apartments and lofts are pricey in urban areas. To put things in perspective, the median price for a one-bedroom apartment in Lincoln Park, Chicago would cost you somewhere near $1,540 per month. Add another bedroom to that equation, and your price per month jumps up to around $2,295 on average. Move to a coastal city like San Francisco, and the median rent for a one-bedroom downtown apartment is $3,400 per month with the two-bedroom coming in at a whopping $4,580 per month. So your options are either ditch downtown or get used to being cramped.

That said, you do have another option, one that will make it easy to get both the cool downtown apartment or loft you’ve always wanted and enough space for all of your things. That option is self storage.

Storage

Save Serious Cash

While it’s logical to go with the smaller space that lines up with your budget, you don’t have to sacrifice space altogether—you can gain roughly the same amount of space as an extra bedroom with a 5×5 or 5×10 storage unit. With prices starting as low as $39 in Chicago and $49 in San Francisco, you can get more space for all of your belongings. Start searching for storage units in your city now!

RESERVE A CHEAP STORAGE UNIT NEAR YOU
CALL 866-432-8525 TODAY!

Safer Spots for Your Valuables

If your living space comes without a place to keep things locked up, let a storage unit do the safekeeping for you. In a city with so many people, a secure unit nearby is an easy way to keep your mind at ease when storing valuable items (or even just the things you want out of your roommate’s reach). When searching for downtown storage units, look for storage facilities that offer security features like gated access, alarmed units, on-site management, or video surveillance to better protect your belongings.

A Short Walk Away

Storing your belongings at a downtown storage facility that’s not too far from your living space is extremely convenient—especially if you’re a walker or rely on public transportation to get around. Many facilities are open 24/7 and offer a free or discounted moving truck with initial rentals, so be sure to inquire about those options to help make your visits for drop-off and pick-up as convenient as possible.

loft_living

Before you pour an entire paycheck into one month’s rent for more room in your downtown living space, find a storage unit! That way, you can have the best of both worlds: a great pad downtown and a unit nearby to keep any valuables, seasonal clothing, recreational gear, or extra furniture safe and out of the way.

FIND FOR SELF STORAGE NEAR YOU

  • http://www.livecolumbusga.com Samantha Radloff

    Great article about the lovely Columbus, Ga! If anyone out there is moving to Columbus or Harris County, visit http://www.livecolumbusga.com to see homes for sale! Stunning new craftsman homes and build/design your own home solutions.

  • Shawn Letaro

    Thanks for the great post. I just bought a home in San Antonio http://www.drhorton.com/Texas/San-Antonio/San-Antonio/Riposa-Vita-Express.aspx and its perfect for me, i love the area and the general vibe that i get in Texas. But i have been in a search for the best places to visit, restaurant and attractions. I really appreciate your list.