Neighborhood Guessing Game: Hard Rock Bar

Think you’ve got what it takes to win a membership in the Rice Design Alliance?

Ordinarily, an individual membership only takes 45 bucks. But if you want to win one through Swamplot, you’ll have to guess the location of this home. Guess correctly, and you’ll be the newest RDA member!

If more than one of you guesses the correct neighborhood, the prize will be awarded to the player who provided the best explanation for the guess.

If you know this property already, or if you see the listing while the game is being played, don’t ruin the fun for everyone else by blurting out the answer. Instead, send Swamplot an email with a link to the listing. Then submit your own brilliantly argued incorrect guess. If you do this well, maybe throwing a few fellow players off the scent, you’ll earn special recognition when we announce the winner. And if nobody guesses the correct neighborhood, you could walk away with the prize!

Ready to play, players? Then dig these photos:


Okay, uh . . . where are we? Got a clue?

Your guesses belong in the comments! The answer will be revealed on Thursday!

Update, 8/13: The secret can now be revealed!

Photos: HAR

36 Comment

  • Looks like an inner loop remodel for a history professor at Rice. I see brick walls, oh my, and lay-in ceilings(!). I’ll say south of Rice U between Holcombe and University,either side of Greenbriar.

  • Well, this is kinda interesting. Some old touches (stone, stairwell) and all the modern touches make me think it’s an older house in Montrose with a multi-story modern-ish addition. Especially since the newer rooms are small and seem to be high in the air.

  • Wow, that bathroom is about as odd as I’ve seen. Look at that standard-issue toilet sandwiched between two ornate sinks. And is that hot tub located upstairs?
    I’ll guess Fondren Southwest.

  • All I can say is : That is one big ass mirror over that bed.

    Wink wink. Nudge nudge.

  • Are we sure this isn’t the home/office/studio for a porn director in Van Nuys? I mean, it’s got all sorts of useful spaces for scenes. Several staircases, indoor hot tub, fancy bar, several fireplaces, dining room big enough for a camera crew, king-sized bed with a mirror…

    And for no good reason whatsoever, other than proximity to the Westheimer strip clubs, I’ll say Briargrove.

  • I’m going with outer Memorial toward the energy corridor. A geologist’s retreat in Nottingham or Westchester around Dairy Ashford.

  • I want to know what planet that house is on. Every picture adds more weirdness to the puzzle. That brink wall is upstairs? Is that GIANT home office a converted garage? Why do half these rooms look like dance studios? I have to disagree with the guesses so far but I am at a loss. I think inner loop, for sure, but the property values can’t be super high, the renovations are of such different quality, but clearly only a couple of owners’ handiwork is left over. I think Meyerland, but I can’t guess closer.

  • So odd, so odd.
    And so many mirrors!
    I think this was a ‘60s commercial building with a residence above it. Then, the remodeling started… Once for a growing family (room with painted brick wall was a nursery), Once for a working office (aluminum window suppliers) Once to create a duplex.
    Every room has been repurposed in the most peculiar ways!
    The cavernous dining room could have been a coupla bedrooms originally & the paneled roller rink (my! what symmetrical wall plugs) looks like the original living room. I think one current living space includes the aforementioned & the hunting-lodge-style den, and entry (?) which seems off of a parking garage (bordered terrazzo doesn’t say residential to me.)
    The pics of the bedroom, efficiency-style kitchen and wood-stove containing living area show the other residential unit.
    I’m guessing this is in an area where anything goes: Either west along Long Point or east off Navigation.

  • Wowza, what a place…a little something for everybody, and how about that rearview-mirror effect in the master bedroom?

    Something about the wood- and stone-laden ground floor, and the random remodels or additions says lake house. But the nearnes of neighbors belies that. I will venture east by northeast to the neighborhoods north of Channelview.

  • My, my, with all that stone…..perhaps a remodel in the Flintstone subdivision, just south of Fugly. Yabba dabba dooooo!

  • Whatever this is, it is GODAWFUL. The cheeseball iron staircase reminds me of a tacky 1970ish townhome and I do not even know what to make of those strip windows (?)
    in the panelled den. The Van Nuys porn studio is the best explanation for this monstrosity but just for kicks I’ll say this
    is in the Northwest quadrant–Jersey Village or greater Champions.

  • Fly me to the moon, Steve-a-rino!

    This is one crazy pad! Hot tub parties, daquaris and broads. Yeah , baby!

    Clear Lake. Those space geeks are a randy bunch.

  • The scale and slopes of the roof definitely scream modern or contemporary, most likely from the 60’s. Obviously has gone through a remodel or two, and I agree with the posters above on how it looks like a porno or dance studio of some sort. I’ll have to say…somewhere either around Westpark, just outside the loop, or somewhere around HBU/Chimney Rock vicinity.

  • Speaking of Van Nuys the iron grillwork on the floating circular staircase is very 60s and very Van Nuys but as for California dreaming the house for the most part looks more like a California nightmare.

    I’m terrible at guessing games which is why I never play this one but wherever the house is, somewhere beneath it all is an original house that was redone at several points in several styles. There appear to have been several additions made.

    My hunch would be Southwest Houston. Something about that terrazo floor. One of the “better” neighborhoods in Alief perhaps.

  • i just saw this home while house hunting with my husband…how funny to see this on my fav site just a few days later…. i will keep my mouth shut..great pick

  • To begin on a positive note… The bar looks nice. Great find, this has a little bit of everything when it comes to things not to like. Even I, with my shameful lack of decorating/design skills, would not have done that bathroom. The retired porn director from Van Nuys is selling this gem located in Sharpstown, near Hillcroft.

  • I’d love to meet the sellers. I bet these are fun people, and that they entertained for years in this place. Plus, they may or may not be running some type of home business (private dance lessons???) I’m guessing NE part of Bellaire. There are still plenty of fun people in Bellaire, right?

  • tara,tara,tara –
    Does this mean that your realtor thought this house would be just right for you?

  • honestly.. i think swamplot pulled a fast one on us.. these pics can’t possibly be the same house.

  • I think I just threw up in my mouth. All this house needs is some teenagers smoking pot in the basement by the fireplace while the adults are at the bar in their plaid polyester suits drinking Amaretto Sours and listening to the BeeGees. Meanwhile, the Whitesnake and jean shorts crowd would be having a party in the lovely mirrored room and the indoor hot tub room. In the ballrrom with the beautful track lighting and jailbar windows the younger kids are playing floor hockey. And even though it’s 10:30pm on a Friday and the boss is party hopping from room to room, several poor employees of the quickly failing home-based Beta video mail order business are still toiling away. The only place to find solitude in this house is on the toilet nicely wedged between the two overly ornate vanities while admiring the view of the oddly out of place southwestern tile pattern above the oddly out of place tub. This can only be one place…..Deer Park.

  • Holy Tackiness Batman! This has to be a multiple building property. The office was an adition built in the early 80’s. The house; built in the mid 70’s when the owners hit a well in their pasture. They rolled in the dough, but as this house is evidence of… money doesn’t quite take the QVC out. The bar is a refurbishment of the garage cause, well, they park on the front lawn anyway… This house could only be a fine example of the craftsmanship and refinement of Richmond, Texas, possibly near Pecan Grove, but not in Pecan Grove… My guess is that it is on some acreage, but the sprawl has approached the edges of the property.

  • To quote Bob Dylan: “everybody must get stoned”

    I’ve gotta go out 290 on this one. 290 and Beltway-ish. I think they pieced together remnants of several homes left in their yard after Hurricane Ike.

  • Spring/Tomball/Conroe. Somewhere in that general area, where the nouveau riche like to flaunt their status by buying a triple-wide, and the “we just hit the jackpot honey” set like to flaunt their status by buying a home like this and furnishing it with a mix of 1970’s Las Vegas hand-me-downs, 1980’s Floridian cast-offs, 1990’s OfficeMax clearance items, and 2000’s Home Depot close-outs.

    I’m guessing that the owners run tutorials on how to play the slots and card games, and need the office space to keep up with (or, more likely, cook) the books.

  • This is one of those NGG picks where each picture is more bizarre than the one before it.
    Definitely agree that at least part of this structure was used commerically at some point (dance studio… acounting office… um, massage parlor…)
    Actually, the porn studio is much more likely. The giant mirror gives it away, and the large office could either be for the real business end of things or a stage for some kind of “naughty secretary” scene.
    Spring Branch West, in the area bordered by Hammerly and the I-10, Gessner and the beltway.

  • Whoa! I can’t figure out if this is useful for a family or not.

    We have a modern master bedroom w/ a sitting area (see the reflection in the mirror over the bed? it shows what is in another pic.).

    The entry looks commercial.

    The bar area looks like a basement, window unit A/C and all.

    The office area has three workstations and looks like a converted garage, esp w/ the accoustic ceiling tiles.

    The brick wall upstairs strikes me as odd; it has a window that seems to look into another room or is completely tinted w/ black out film.

    I agree w/ movocelot that this was a commercial bldg. I think it’s been added to so that the owners can live on-site.

    I’ll guess Magnolia Park area.

  • The post asks “where are we?”

    Architectural and interior design hell?

    It is obviously older, 50’s or early 60’s I think. Looks to be somewhere that you could get a big house for not too much money, since the furniture and decorating indicate someone who is not that affluent, I am going to say one of the towns east like Baytown, Galena Park, something like that. Or like I said earlier, architectural and interior design hell.

  • Definitely this monstrosity must be on a busy street, in an area that saw some building in the early 60s and then they kept on adding “features” throughout the decades. And it is not in an expensive area, or they would have redone the metal staircase in the entry. And several other things.
    I’ll guess the northwest side, perhaps off Hempstead Highway?

  • I think this is modern two story residential building from the 60’s. The house is large, and the owner, maybe in construction/remodeling business converted part of it to office space, maybe with a separate apartment and rented out.
    Upstairs area looks definitely more contemporary, with updated windows and new floors, light and bright. But the remodeling is still in progress – the big room has new pergo floors but still old wood paneled walls in different color.
    The sliding door from the living room upstairs leads to big terrace, and maybe to the partially enclosed whirlpool.
    The other part of the house is more traditional, with lots of paneling and mirrors, brick wall accents, stone fireplace, old fashion wet bar and tile/terrazzo floors. The bathroom is a headache – he can’t decide which direction he wants to go (lol)
    Definitely outside the loop but inside the Beltway, probably in semi-residential area.
    It could be around Montgomery, Hempstead or Stuebner Airline – just a wild guess.

  • Finness…
    HAHAH thats very funny…no way i found it on har and made her take me. she was not thrilled with me….

  • Somewhere in the near Southeast side of town.

  • Hard to believe it’s one house!

  • The award for this game should have been the “personal lubricant” package that was last week’s prize.

    Best NGG ever.

  • Judging from the interior and picture of the neighboring home’s roof in one of the pictures I am going with definitely the burbs. Which one? A bit older but not too old. Some of the amenities are rather interesting – I liked the porn comment – so I am going with a northern suburb. Champions / 1960 area is my guess.

  • This Hobby-airport area crown jewel’s multi-dimensional nature means that it could be recycled in other sections of the Swamplot site one day soon:
    1. It should instantly be placed in the “Swamplot Price Adjuster” section, because whatever they are asking, it is too much if it is over lot value!
    2. Along those same lines, it will likely make it to the “Daily Demolition Report” one day soon.
    3. It could certainly use some “style” tips from Joni Webb’s “Small Stylish Already Sold” post!

  • I have to comment on the vase of flowers in the photo with the spiral staircase. It has to be the most out of place item in this house that is utterly filled with things that are out of place. Post the results, Gus!!

  • The best part of this contest is reading the comments..

    I’m going to guess Pasadena.