09/30/14 4:15pm

COMMENT OF THE DAY: TOP HOUSTON PUNCH LINES Laughing Monkey“If an out-of-towner wanted to make fun of Houston, there are a multitude of easier targets than the Rothko Chapel. Just the drive in from the airport on I-45 will give any out-of-towner loads of risible material.” [Robert Boyd, commenting on Sniffing Out the Subtle Secrets of the Rothko Chapel] Illustration: Lulu

09/30/14 2:45pm

27258-paula-01

A seaside escape in Oak Ridge North? Despite its landlocked lot in Montgomery County, a sandy-colored 1968 property of brick and bric-a-brac has been beaching it, starting with the palm trees at curbside. For the shells and such, skip the trip to the coast and head inside . . .

CONTINUE READING THIS STORY

Seashore Envy
09/30/14 12:00pm

Former Kuko's Taqueria, Future Teotihuacan Mexican Cafe, 3707 Irvington Blvd., Near Northside, Houston

Former Kuko's Taqueria, Future Teotihuacan Mexican Cafe, 3707 Irvington Blvd., Near Northside, HoustonThe Teotihuacán Mexican Café at the corner of Irvington and Cavalcade (now helpfully labeled “Festively adorned Tex-Mex restaurant” on Zagat-powered Google Maps) will be relocating a few blocks south once renovations to a structure the 3-restaurant chain’s owners purchased in late May can be completed. Kuko’s Taqueria shut down at 3707 Irvington Blvd., between Alber St. and Collingsworth, this past June. It appears some work on the interior is already taking place, notes reader Christopher Andrews.

Photos: Christopher Andrews

Going South
09/30/14 10:00am

SNIFFING OUT THE SUBTLE SECRETS OF THE ROTHKO CHAPEL Rothko Chapel, 3900 Yupon St., Montrose, HoustonExploring the Menil’s quiet, deep-purple monument, the Chronicle‘s Leah Binkovitz turns up a couple new lines of investigation: “In a turn Rothko, with his proscriptions for proper viewing, could never have anticipated, the chapel has its own Yelp page. ‘Whatever, some people don’t like to think too much about life and what our place is and if you’re one of those people, this isn’t the place for you,’ writes Eric J. in his recent review, ‘You need to head on down to Moody Gardens for “Pirates” or whatever.’ Inside, there’s a collection of Rothko paintings — dark and turbid — that surround the viewer. When the sun sifting through the clerestory shifts, the purple panels shine like scars. People meditate on cushions on the ground or lean against each other on the benches. The occasional crinkle of a plastic bag breaks the silence. There’s a smell, a specific Rothko Chapel smell. That’s the first thing two dashing young men in khaki shorts comment on when they leave the chapel.” [Houston Chronicle] Photo: Ed Uthman [license; cropped]

09/30/14 8:30am

BG Group Place at 811 Main

Photo of BG Group Place at 811 Main: Bill Barfield via Swamplot Flickr Pool

Headlines
09/29/14 4:45pm

A LIFEBOAT FOR THE ROYALTON’S CORRODING CROWN? Top of Royalton at River Oaks Condominiums, 3333 Allen Pkwy., HoustonJudging from court filings, there appears to have been some sort of resolution to the lawsuit filed more than 2 years ago by the condominium association of the 253-unit Royalton at River Oaks highrise over the design of the steel grid at the top of the building at 3333 Allen Pkwy. The lawsuit claimed the structure was corroding and was designed in such away that made maintaining it or recoating it impossible — and sought damages from the building’s contractor, architect, and other parties. The condo association dropped its claims against many of those parties late last month. And a reader wonders if the attachment seen hanging below the structure in the recent photo at left, which “almost looks like a hot tub,” is part of some newly devised cleaning solution. [Prime Property] Photo: Swamplot inbox

09/29/14 4:15pm

8312-cedarspur-01

8312-cedarspur-04

Over in the Brighton Place neighborhood in Spring Valley, a 1979 contemporary quietly observed its shift into middle age this year. The property has kept its bones but also updated some of the padding. It’s been listed since mid-September for $729,900.

CONTINUE READING THIS STORY

Wraparound Pool
09/29/14 3:15pm

A RANDALL DAVIS-FLAVORED HIGHRISE FOR THE EAST SIDE OF THE WEST LOOP Aerial View of Parcels at Former Westcreek Apartments, 2021 Westcreek Ln., HoustonThemed-residence developer Randall Davis is planning another Galleria-area condo project, and it looks like this one won’t have to share space with any fast-food drive-thrus — unless, of course, he wants it to. The HBJ‘s Paul Takahashi is reporting that Davis plans to construct an 85-to-100-unit highrise on a 1.8-acre site at 2021 Westcreek Ln., until recently occupied by a portion of the Westcreek Apartments. (It’s labeled Parcel D in the view at left.) Davis’s block is immediately north of the SkyHouse River Oaks, which is already under construction. It fronts San Felipe, across from Ashley Furniture, and its eastern flank abuts the Target parking lot. If Davis still wants some sort of fast-food spot to land next to his so-far-unnamed project, though, he could certainly make it happen: Takahashi reports he’ll be building on a little less than half of the site, and selling off 45,000 sq. ft. of it to developers. [Houston Business Journal; previously on Swamplot] Image: CBRE

09/29/14 2:00pm

8402 Glenscott St., Meadowbrook Freeway, Houston

If you’re wondering why there are no photos of the foyer in this listing for the ranch home at 8402 Glenscott St. in the southeast Houston neighborhood of Meadowbrook Freeway, it’s likely out of respect. Because that’s the room where Sybil Berndt, the previous owner of this 3-bedroom, 2-bath home, fell, lay still face down on the floor for 3 days, passed away, and then slowly decomposed over the course of 3 months, all while her twin 48-year-old sons Edwin and Edward carried on with their lives, staying inside and watching TV and eating popcorn, potato chips, and candy.

There was a brief period after their mother fell, 2 days before her 89th birthday, when the twins considered getting her to a hospital, but they worried they might not be able to pay for her medical bills, according to investigators. Later, they worried how they might pay for her funeral. (It appears their mother had more than enough money to cover both.) Their mother, according to the twins’ account, never asked for help.

CONTINUE READING THIS STORY

Paint and Carpet Magic
09/29/14 11:30am

Site of Hamilton Apartments, 1800 St. Joseph Pkwy. at Chenevert, Downtown Houston

With nary an announcement, preliminary sitework appears to have begun for the 148-unit Hamilton Apartments, on a 1.12-acre lot at the southeasternmost corner of downtown (actually, the southern corner if you don’t pretend, as most direction-givers do, that the downtown grid has no tilt to it). The block, hugged gently by a flying overpass at the intersection of I-45 and Hwy. 59, is surrounded by Hamilton, St. Joseph Pkwy., Pierce, and Chenevert streets.

CONTINUE READING THIS STORY

Overpass Pads
09/29/14 8:30am

deer park

Photo of Deer Park Refinery: Russell Hancock via Swamplot Flickr Pool

Headlines
09/26/14 4:45pm

brookshire-mod-05

brookshire-mod-01

brookshire-mod-25-300

Will a mod-minded buyer be willing to commute from Brookshire? What if it means calling this “ultra-swank one-owner mid-century rancho deluxe time capsule” — priced at $275,000 — home? Located up the road a spell from the Energy Corridor, the long-and-lean 1954 custom property comes with “Mad Men” finishes, vintage tiles in the bathrooms, and mod-era fixtures and hardware. Intrigued? Grab yourself a high ball, why don’t you, and take this tour . . .

CONTINUE READING THIS STORY

Country Chic