02/15/13 4:30pm

Before this pedigreed property in Shadyside had air conditioning, the breeze sometimes carried the sound of lions roaring at Houston Zoo. And when some monkeys escaped from there decades ago, they apparently found temporary amusement in some of the trees on this 1926 estate. Or so goes some of the lore shared (and overheard) by those touring the home’s brief transformation into the Villa de Luxe designer showcase, a 17-day fundraising event benefiting Preservation Houston — and ending this weekend. For those who miss that rare opportunity to get behind the gates of the just-north-of-Rice gracious-living neighborhood, this mansion’s re-listing today extends its appearance in the limelight. Access to it, though, jumps from the tour’s $30 entry ticket, which includes lectures and presentations, to the far loftier asking price: $8,390,000.


03/09/09 9:35am

A reader stumbles across this oldish-fashioned gated compound of brand-new $650K-$800K townhomes in the northern part of the Heights and sends in a photo report:

Driving to my favorite taco stand this morning, I happened on this “gated community” within the Heights on E. 22nd just west of Gostic. Thank God they will be gated in. We in the Heights don’t like having to interact with such snooty riff raff.

The 4 homes at 621 E. 22nd St., labeled The Court at 22nd Street, were developed by the Frankel Building Group. How will they do in the court of public opinion?


01/14/08 8:50am

House on Farnham Park, Houston

Intrepid bicycle blogger Robert Boyd ventures into two more tony westside residential neighborhoods: Farnham Park and Charnwood — only to be hassled by security guards:

Now apparently some residents were alarmed to see me riding in their neighborhood taking photos. So the guards gave me a lot of shit when I left, and they strongly implied that this was private property and that I was not allowed to take photos. It was a humiliating dress-down, which I would have gladly avoided. I was afraid they’d try to hold me or call the cops, but they took my personal information (which if I had any guts, I would have denied them*) and let me go.

No pics of the security gates guarding a public street in his report, but plenty of languorous estates nestled behind twiggy foliage. A sympathetic commenter offers Boyd these words of encouragement:

I understand that these people are wealthy and value their privacy, but if you don’t want people taking pictures, don’t build such a great house.

A great number of Houstonians in other neighborhoods are already taking this advice.

After the jump: Boyd provides photographic evidence that Briarbend Park has Buffalo Bayou’s best front-row seats.