District by Midway - Spring 2022

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It’s spring! Celebrate the small moments of every day life.

The trends driving fashion, accessories, décor and more!

Head indoors for fun and entertainment—day or night!




3 What’s In Store


A look at the trends that are driving fashion, accessories, décor, and more this season.




Juanita’s Refined Tex-Mex Cantina Comes to Century Square.

12 Man On a Mission


Calendar of Events

Averegine Sanchez ART DIRECTOR

You’ll Find the Latest Services, Products, and Getaways Right Here in the District.

17 Curtain Going Up

A Houston spring arts preview.

19 Quiz: What Kind of Texan Are You?

Even personalities are bigger in Texas—find out what kind of Texan you are with this quiz.

A Plan for Food Justice

Lots of chefs want to make their mark in the kitchen. Jonny Rhodes, on the other hand, is ready to make a difference in the world.

Shannon Bedinger

15 Take Care

7 Giving Plate

Get Your “Share” of Great Food at Daily Gather.



Chris Izaguirre EDITORIAL TEAM

Shelby Sekaly Amanda Barron Emily McMenamin ADVERTISING INQUIRIES

Please contact: marketing@midway.team


Jonathan Horowitz is bringing insight and expertise in the Texas restaurant industry to help develop innovative, high-quality food and beverage experiences at Midway districts.


13 Great Escapes

When the heat is on, head indoors for fun and entertainment—day or night.


Kathy McFarland DESIGNER


Marianne Dougherty Trent Johnson Karen Krajcer Ryan Martinez Anne McCready Heinen Roger Munford Scott Ray CONTRIBUTING PHOTOGRAPHERS

Sabrina Miskelly Shannon O'Hara Kimberly Park Jeff Wilson CREATIVE SERVICES MANAGER





From left: Midway Creative Group's Amanda Barron, Averegine Sanchez, Shannon Bedinger, Emily McMenamin, and Shelby Sekaly. Photographed at Daily Gather by Jeff Wilson.



Dear Reader We began 2022 with a renewed sense of optimism and hope. More than ever, we are finding inspiration to focus on what matters most and to celebrate the incredible world around us. At Midway, we are celebrating many achievements with great enthusiasm: More than 50 years in business, the announcements of several milestone groundbreakings including our East River District along the banks of the Buffalo Bayou River, welcoming a multitude of many new tenants across the portfolio and sharing all that we have to offer in this issue of District by Midway. We feel it is important to celebrate now—not just the special occasions but the small moments that make up your everyday life. To that end, we want you to treat yourself. Whether you choose to do that with a colorful new frock, a personal training session or a massage or watching the sunset with friends over


craft cocktails or beers, the point is to take a moment for yourself to simply enjoy life. We’ve come a long way! In this issue of District by Midway, you’ll find many suggestions on ways to treat yourself. Art, beauty, style, and taste—you’ll find it here! Whatever (and however) you’ll be celebrating in the season ahead, know that my team and I are sending all our best wishes your way. Let daily life inspire you as you enjoy what’s in store at many of our Midway Districts.


Shannon Bedinger Senior Vice President Midway Creative Group

For more on District By Midway, visit:



CA LEN DA R OF EV EN TS W E E K LY Spring Yoga Series Saturdays at 9 AM, Century Square A free one-hour community yoga practice on The Green.

lululemon Run Club Tuesdays from 6-7:30 PM thru April, Century Square Join a 3.5-mile community run ending with a happy hour at PORTERS.

The Front Porch Fridays & Saturdays March: 6-9 PM April–October: 7-10 PM, Century Square Enjoy this tribute to Robert Earl Keen and Lyle Lovett with live music from local College Station artists.

Trivia Night Thursdays from 7-9 PM, Century Square Answer questions to compete and win prizes with friends.

CITYCENTRE Running Club Every Monday at 6 PM, CITYCENTRE Join a 3.5-mile community run followed by a happy hour at CITYCENTRE.

APRIL BLCK Market April 9 from 1-5 PM, East River The nation’s largest monthly gathering of Black-owned businesses and entrepreneurs hosting monthly markets

Spring Concert Series April 16 from 5-7 PM, Kings Harbor Enjoy monthly live music with Brian Thomas and Cody Kouba on April 16.

Tuesday Tunes Every Tuesday, GreenStreet Grab food to-go and enjoy live music on the Lawn downtown.

Live Music Thursdays April 21, Memorial Green Enjoy live music while you dine on the patio.

M AY Cinco de Mayo with Juanita’s Tex Mex Cantina May 5, Century Square Enjoy a day full of festivities, drink specials, live music, and so much more.

Dine Around Century Square May 14 from 5:30-9 PM, Century Square Sample a menu item from restaurants around Century Square while enjoying live music. Try all locations and be entered to win a grand prize.

BLCK Market May 14 from 1-5 PM, East River The nation’s largest monthly gathering of Black-owned businesses and entrepreneurs hosting monthly markets at East River.

Parachute Play Time Join Crayola Imagine Arts Academy in the plaza with fun activities for parents and young kids. In partnership with the British International School of Houston.

Spring Concert Series May 28 from 5-7 PM, Kings Harbor

Parachute Play Time April 15 from 10 AM-12 PM, CITYCENTRE Join Crayola Imagine Arts Academy in the plaza with fun activities for parents and young kids. In partnership with the British International School of Houston.

Green6.2 April 16 at 8 AM, CITYCENTRE

JUNE Global Run Day June 1 at 6 PM, Century Square Celebrate the Global Run challenge with a 5K starting and ending at Century Square. Be sure to use your exclusive discounts to shop and dine after!

Century Square Cinema | Summer Movie Series June 16, 8:45 PM, Century Square Grab a blanket and watch a familyfriendly movie on The Green monthly June–August.

Parachute Play Time

May 20 from 10 AM-12 PM, CITYCENTRE

at East River.

S P R I N G // S U M M E R 2 0 2 2

Enjoy monthly live music with Goodnight Copilot on May 28.

TUESDAY TUNES Every Tuesday, GreenStreet Grab food to-go and enjoy live music on the Lawn downtown.

Live Music Thursdays May 19, Memorial Green Enjoy live music while you dine on the patio.

Houston Running Club hosts the 12th annual 10K, 5K, and 1K in celebration of Earth Week.

ON THE COVER Spring comes to CITYCENTRE where models Ashley (left) and Milli share a laugh in front of artist Hugo Pérez’s mural “Mind Over Matter.” On Ashley: Pink floral tied crop top by Maeve ($120) and slip midi skirt in purple ($98) with cream braid-trimmed boater ($83), all by Anthropologie. Knotted crossbody bag in Pale Oyster woven leather ($118) from Madewell, and Florie sunglasses by Warby Parker. On Milli: Jovonna London blazer and short set with pearl and chain trim ($280) and linen tied crop top ($98) from Anthropologie. Gold chunky small earrings ($22) and gold paperclip chain necklace ($38), all from Madewell. Leta black sunglasses from Warby Parker. Photography: Jeff Wilson Hair & Makeup: Darcie Teasley, Page Parkes Agency Stylist: Todd Ramos, Page Parkes Agency Models: Ashley Ashworth and Milli Tejan-gbla, Page Parkes Agency Photo assistance: Travis Schiebel

June 17 from 10 AM-12 PM, CITYCENTRE Join Crayola Imagine Arts Academy in the plaza with fun activities for parents and young kids. In partnership with the British International School of Houston.

For more information or to confirm details of these events and more, visit websites provided for hours, fees, and more before heading out.

Century Square century-square.com/events CIT YCENTRE citycentrehouston.com/events East River eastriverhtx.com/east-river-happenings GreenStreet greenstreetdowntown.com/calendar/# facebook.com/greenstreethou/ Kings Harbor kings-harbor.com/calendar Memorial Green facebook.com/memorialgreen

Father’s Day Cars & Coffee June 19 from 11-2 PM, Century Square Peruse the cars from Texas A&M Sports Car Club while you drink a specialty coffee from Harvest Coffee Bar.

Juneteenth presented by BLCK Market June 19 from 1-5 PM, East River Join BLCK Market for the 3rd annual Juneteenth Celebration. Honor this historic day with family and friends at East River with a vendor market, music, entertainment, and more.

Movies Under the Moon June 16 at 9 PM, Kings Harbor Bring your lawn chairs and watch “The Parent Trap” on a widescreen under the stars.

of Black-owned businesses and entrepreneurs hosting monthly markets at East River.

Parachute Play Time July 15 from 10 AM-12 PM, CITYCENTRE Join Crayola Imagine Arts Academy in the plaza with fun activities for parents and young kids. In partnership with the British International School of Houston.

Century Square Cinema | Summer Movie Series July 21, 8:45 PM, Century Square Grab a blanket and watch a familyfriendly movie on The Green monthly June–August.

Movies Under the Moon July 21 at 9 PM, Kings Harbor


Bring your lawn chairs and watch “Beauty and The Beast” (live-action) on a widescreen under the stars.

July 4th Concert July 4 from 3-5:30 PM, Century Square Celebrate America’s Independence with patriotic performances on The Green.

Independence Day Fireworks Spectacular July 4 from 7-11 PM, CITYCENTRE Dance and sing to a Pop/Country Concert in the evening and enjoy fireworks at 9:30 PM.

BLCK Market July 9 from 1-5 PM, East River The nation’s largest monthly gathering

AUGUST Century Square Cinema | Summer Movie Series August 18, 8:45 PM, Century Square Grab a blanket and watch a familyfriendly movie on The Green monthly June–August.

BLCK Market August 13 from 1-5 PM, East River The nation’s largest monthly gathering of Black-owned businesses and entrepreneurs hosting monthly markets at East River.


Parachute Play Time

For more information and to view the portfolio of Midway places in Houston, College Station, and beyond, scan this QR code or visit midway.team.

Join Crayola Imagine Arts Academy in the plaza with fun activities for parents and young kids. In partnership with the British International School of Houston.

August 19 from 10 AM-12 PM, CITYCENTRE

Movies Under the Moon August 18 at 9 PM, Kings Harbor Bring your lawn chairs and watch “Finding Nemo” on a widescreen under the stars.

Shot on location at CITYCENTRE, Houston. Special thanks to The Moran Hotel, with kind assistance from Jamal Mazhar and staff, and Daily Gather restaurant.



Jovonna London blazer and short set ($280) and linen crop top ($98) from Anthropologie. Earrings ($22) and necklace ($38), all from Madewell. Leta sunglasses from Warby Parker.

Floral printed crop top by Maeve ($120) and slip midi skirt ($98) with braid-trimmed boater ($83), all by Anthropologie. Knotted crossbody bag ($118) from Madewell, and Florie sunglasses by Warby Parker.


On Milli ( left): High-Rise Perfect Vintage Jean, crop cardigan, crossbody purse, and jewelry, all from Madewell. Urban Outfitters hat. On Ashley (right): pink terry jumpsuit, necklaces, shoulder bag and ring, all Urban Outfitters.


Pink terry jumpsuit ($75), Marni layer necklace ($26) with King Ice tennis necklace ($29), Lara crochet shoulder bag ($35), and resin ring ($7), all from Urban Outfitters.

What’s In Store A look at the trends that are driving fashion, accessories, décor, and more. By Marianne Dougherty


fter a couple of years of working remotely in sweats and slippers and socializing over Zoom where no one could tell what you were wearing below the waist, fashion is suddenly important again. From what we saw on the runway for Spring/Summer 2022, business casual has undergone a transformation. Dolce & Gabbana and Michael Kors ditched the buttondown shirt to pair suits with bikini tops. Models walked the runway in oversized jackets and blazers or midriff-baring tops and dresses, while fringe showed up on dresses, jackets, and boots. And hemlines? They’re all over the place, from mini to maxi. You’ll also be seeing a lot of bold, bright color in everything from dresses and tops to handbags and footwear. Looking for an antidote to all that color? Pure white is having a moment. By now we’re probably all on a first-name basis with The Property Brothers and Chip and Joanna Gaines because, let’s face it, HGTV kept us sane while we were trapped at home. It also got us taking home décor seriously. There are a few trends worth watching as we move into spring. Printed wallpaper is making a comeback in a big way. So are traditional pieces like ornate mirrors and velvet sofas and chairs. Minimalism is out. Look for a mix of antique and contemporary pieces, bullion (a type of knotted fringe) on pillows or upholstered pieces, furniture with lots of curves and rounded edges, and cozy throws and pillows that add a pop of color or texture to any room. Gray paint, while not completely out of fashion, is trending downward, and shades of taupe, beige, and cream are giving stark white walls a run for their money. Recognized globally as a leader in the field of color trend forecasting, the Pantone Color Institute understands how color impacts our wellbeing. After combing the world for new color influences in art and fashion, all areas of design, and now the digital world, it has announced the Color of the Year for 2022: Veri Peri, which is part of the beloved blue color family yet with a violet-red undertone that displays a “spritely, joyous attitude.” Because it encourages creativity and imagination, it’s the perfect color as we emerge from an intense period of isolation, and you can expect to see it reflected in everything from clothing to home goods in the coming year.

Ready to spruce up your wardrobe or give your living space a ref resh? We’ve got the lowdown on where to shop.

1 Head over to Houston’s Memorial area to Free People at CITYCENTRE to catch their range of bohemian-inspired dresses, tops, and skirts in the Endless Summer collection. Whether you live at the beach year-round or only dream of making the great escape, you’ll find just what you’re looking for: minis, maxis that skim the ankles, dresses in a range of on-trend colors from ivory to turquoise, pants that are billowy and breezy with tiewaist detailing.




Discover who you were meant to be at Grass Stains in Century Square, which strives to find pieces that are both timeless and stylish yet have a certain edge. Committed to the “slow fashion” movement, Grass Stains boutiques offer a wide selection of sustainably and ethically made clothes that make you look good and feel good. New for spring: denim brands like Moussy and Redone, the brightly colored Angela Flower Power Bag, shoes and sandals in must-have colors, and an endless supply of earrings and hair accessories. Don’t forget to check out the eco-luxe skincare brand French Girl or the hand-poured Olio E Osso products made in Oregon with nourishing olive and shea oils.








3 Gearing up for rodeo season, Pretty Little Things Boutique, located at Kings Harbor, an upscale community located on Lake Houston, is your one-stop shop for all things western. The fringed jackets and boots in the Rhinestone Cowgirl collection are right on trend this season, but don’t forget to check out the denim jeans, shorts, jumpers, and rompers. So versatile and fun. You’ll also find wrap tops and a range of super-cute tees and accessories, like Art Deco Initial necklaces. Yeehaw!

4 No jewelry box is complete without a classic hoop, like the Audrey 14k Rose Gold Hoop in White Diamond that you’ll find only at Kendra Scott, at both CITYCENTRE and Century Square. The upscale Texas-based jewelry maker uses natural materials, including genuine stone and shell, at her Austin studio where each piece is thoughtfully crafted. Philanthropy is a big part of the mix at Kendra Scott, and all proceeds from her Shop for Good “giveback suite” help women and children live empowered lives. Look for Shawn Beaded Friendship Bracelets, designed in partnership with Ubuntu Life and handmade by Kenyan women, and the Metastatic Breast Cancer Charm Necklace Set in Rose Gold, which support programs for families with a parent battling metastatic breast cancer or other terminal illness. Come in and see what’s new for spring: rings for stacking, cuff bracelets in rose gold, statement necklaces, gold chain bracelets with a mix of stones, and so much more.


5 If you’ve been hankering for a pair of made-to-order boots for as long as you can remember, maybe it’s time to take the plunge. Skilled artisans at Lucchese Bootmaker in Century Square have been handcrafting boots from premium materials since 1883. Lined in leather with a leather-covered cushioned insole, the boots provide exactly the fit and comfort you’d expect. Come in to see the full range of styles and colors for men and women—vintageinspired western boots with rich belly crocodile vamps, versatile ropers, daring booties guaranteed to turn heads, horseman boots made with smooth ostrich, tall boots with detailed inlays, and that’s just a start. No wonder Lucchese boots are passed down from one generation to the next. They’re works of art!

6 Looking for swim and resort wear? Look no further than Hemline at both CITYCENTRE and Century Square. The versatile style empire has become a trusted and sought-after resource for covetable fashion. Key pieces for spring include brightly colored dresses like the Christina Mini Dress from Show Me Your Mumu, Chuck Tan Platform Sandals, and The Puff Dress in white, one of the season’s must-have shades.



Bright and happy colors are sparking joy in home décor this season whether they’re rich solids, whimsical prints, or trimmedto-perfection with decorative details. See what’s new at LAM BESPOKE in Memorial Green, just off Memorial Drive. For a relatively small investment, fun and vibrant pillows will add an instant dose of cheer to any interior. It’s all about cozy comfort these days so why not pick up a throw in a soft, sumptuous fabric like boucle. For those who prefer to shop online, LAM BESPOKE will soon start offering local pickup on smaller goods.

Century Square’s Merge Boutique keeps its style-savvy customers RSVP-ready with trendy pieces at affordable prices— everything in the store is priced under $60. For spring, the retailer is focusing on color: baby blues, pinks, pistachio, and pastels of all hues are in demand. Dresses with draping in the back, cutouts, and asymmetrical hemlines paired with braided party heels are top looks, as well as 90s-inspired high-waisted jeans, and bucket hats and beanies with smiley faces on them. Look for an array of white cowboy boots, both in tall and bootie styles, which college girls from nearby Texas A&M University are wearing with slip dresses topped with chunky sweaters.



You’ll want to see the retro resort line of leather goods at Brahmin in CITYCENTRE. New totes with the Brahmin logo are in stock as well as wallets, satchels, handbags, wristlets, backpacks, and crossbody bags in a palette of tropical colors. Brand-new for spring is the Fiora, an easy-to-wear shoulder bag with lots of organizational elements like pockets on the inside and outside. Men will love the duffels and wallets, especially the Charlie with space for a driver’s license and two credit cards. See it in a new shade for spring, Biscuit Valley. It’s a great neutral.

New trends in menswear favor patterns and bright colors, which are perfect to complement sneakers from NIKE, Jordan, Adidas, and more. You’ll find them all at the upscale fashion and sneaker boutique Social Status in CITYCENTRE. Come on in to experience the space and meet the team, who can show you what’s new in hoodies, tees, jackets, and much more from across the globe. The brand mix is geared to the fashion-focused consumer who appreciates quality: Kenzo, Timberland, Dr. Martens, Converse, and Reebok, as well as elite brands like Billionaire Boys Club (founded by Pharrell Williams and Nigo), A Herd of Bison, and American luxury fashion label Fear of God Essentials. u

9 There’s a whole spate of spirited new eyeglasses and sunglasses for spring at Warby Parker’s CITYCENTRE location: cloudless colorways, zestful tortoises, confident cat-eyes, and oversized silhouettes. Crystal acetates come in three new shades: Cactus, Plantain, and Conch. Prefer to dabble in dappled designs? Four new tortoises make a splash among the collection’s bold silhouette. Prefer a cat-eye frame? Two new styles, Cornelia and Priya (both eyeglasses) take a bow this season. For a new take on the reliable rectangular shape, you’ve got three new styles to choose from: Hector, Brady, and Donovan. And Kimball, the fan-favorite.

10 Designers are reimagining preppy style for Spring 2022, and no one understands the classic put-together aesthetic better than men's wear retailer Onward Reserve in Century Square. Core pieces from the latest collection include performance polos, shorts, and pants in a range of colors and fabrics. Moisture-wicking Flats Performance Tees with raglan sleeves have Jamie Calkin artwork on the back and offer UPF 30+ protection. The classic sports coat also gets an update in new patterns and colors: Blue Windowpane, Seagrass, Green Herringbone, and Brown/Red Plaid. Pair any of them with a traditional Quad Button Down shirt and you’re good to go.









Get Your “Share” of Great Food at Daily Gather By Suzanne Stavinoha // Photographs by Sabrina Miskelly and Kimberly Park



t’s an easy bet that some of your

happiest moments involve gathering for a good meal with family and f riends. Sitting elbow to elbow at a big table, passing appetizers, splitting entrees, sharing (or not sharing!) desserts while conversation f lows, laughter sparkles and memories are made.

Helping to recreate those special times is the mission of a new restaurant in Houston. Called Daily Gather, it’s the brainchild of Aaron Lyons who, along with his business partner Trent Patterson, owns H-Town’s well-loved Dish Society. Lyons describes Daily Gather as a progression of Dish, a way to serve the same foodie-centric customer in an elevated, full-service way, noting that while Dish Society is built around convenience, Daily Gather is for people who want to sit down and stay awhile. “I love meals with two or three couples or a bunch of friends,” says Lyons. “We order six or seven things so we can all try different dishes and everyone gets a bite of everything. That’s why Daily Gather puts an emphasis on shareable portions.” Located in Midway’s mixed-use CITYCENTRE development, Daily Gather is an upscale-yet-casual neighborhood spot that gives diners in Sugar Land, Katy, and Cypress an elevated restaurant option that doesn’t involve driving into the city. “You don’t always want to do that for a date night, business meeting or brunch,” says Lyons. “That’s why we loved the CITYCENTRE location. It’s a perfect mix of retail, apartments, condos, and office space. Midway is very forward-thinking. We like the way they do things.” Lyons also likes the restaurant’s location within CITYCENTRE, right off The Plaza. There are a variety of events there throughout the year, and diners get a front row seat thanks to Daily Gather’s generous outdoor seating area. “Because of The Plaza, we’ve put a little Concessions Truck on our patio,” says Lyons. “We serve coffee and pastries, some juices, and organic popsicles for the kids. We’ll adjust the menu to the events and the seasons.” So, what about the menu inside? That’s seasonal, too, according to Lyons. They’re sourcing from a lot of the same local farmers, ranchers, and fishermen they use for Dish Society. And while Venison Black Bean Chili might be on the wintertime menu, the spring and summer will feature lighter fare. One of the more unique “For the Table” appetizers is the Coconut Tuna Aguachile—yellow fin tuna seasoned with red onion, serrano pepper, lime, and cilantro in a ginger-coconut broth. As for entrees, Lyons recommends the Braised Short Rib with Parisian Gnocchi. The shareable concept behind Daily Gather really comes to life in the presentation of various “boards”—large platters of a variety of complementary food items that can be shared around the table. There’s an innovative take on the traditional Charcuterie Board, but there’s also the Ultimate Brunch Board, piled high with scrambled eggs, bacon, sausage, breakfast potatoes, chicken tenders, French toast bites, and seasonal fruit. The culinary mind behind these and other delectable creations is one of Houston’s favorite

chefs, Brandi Key, whom Lyons feels especially fortunate to have on the team. “When I first moved to Houston,” he says, “Brandi was starting to break out as a high-talent chef on the scene. I tried out all the restaurants she was a part of and finally a mutual friend introduced us. I discussed this concept with her and how we might bring it to life. Having somebody like her who can lead the charge in developing the Daily Gather kitchen is very exciting.” Lyons started out in business, but moved into restaurants with Dish Society, which now has six locations in Houston. His inspiration for Daily Gather goes back to the kind of eating experience he himself enjoys—dinner with a group of friends where they order a variety of dishes and share between them. “It’s that emphasis on sampling a little bit of a lot of things so you want to come back for more, maybe bring different people for new conversations,” he says. The idea of conversation over a shared meal is supported by the restaurant’s décor as well. The seating choices range from cozy two-tops to large tables to lounge areas that feel like being in someone’s living room. “It will be a great place to treat yourself, your family and friends,” says Lyons. “To be with people you’ve missed being with, have a four-hour meal, catch up, try new things. I know that’s a treat for me.” Speaking of treating yourself, one of Daily Gather’s spring seasonal offerings is the Martini & Oyster Social Hour, taking place weekday afternoons. For $20, you’ll get a chilled martini and three East Coast oysters on their icy half shells. The perfect prescription for a steamy Houston springtime! u

Facing page, from top: The delightful Sailor Smash cocktail is made with spiced rum, lemon juice, and simple syrup and garnished with a Thai basil leaf.

Center: A cozy dining room benefits from a wall of glass framing outdoor views.

Bottom: The mouth-watering rotisserie chicken with cauliflowerkohlrabi mash, grilled broccolini, and pistachio-sage gremolata.

This page, top: A welcoming entrance—the sign on the marquee says it all.

DAILY G AT HER, CI T YCEN T R E 800 S O R EL L A C T., S T E . 940 HO U S T O N, T X 77024 (713 ) 429- 0451



MEXTEXMEX Juanita’s Refined Tex-Mex Cantina Comes to Century Square. By Suzanne Stavinoha // Photographs by Shannon O’Hara



f you’re looking for a place that serves a more elevated version of your favorite TexMex dishes, some select interior Mexican flavors, and a range of top-shelf margaritas and tequillas, you could go to Mexico. Much easier, however, to head to Century Square, Midway’s premier mixed-use destination in College Station. There you’ll find the new Juanita’s Tex-Mex Cantina, opening soon. Juanita’s is an intriguing combination of classic Tex-Mex with exceptional Mexican offerings: what Don Cristopher, partner and operator of Juanita’s, calls “Mex-Tex-Mex.” “We have a strong team led by Texas chefs,” says Cristopher, “so guests will see several familiar items but in an elevated form. For instance, we’re doing Steak Tampiquena but with Wagyu beef. We have suppliers that bring in the best from the Gulf for dishes like our Snapper Veracruzano, but we’ll also offer East Coast oysters and Norwegian salmon. Our goal is a better taste profile with a crafted menu so we can master every item.” Cristopher chose Century Square because it’s “the only place to be in College Station for great restaurants.” Already a food-lover’s delight with eateries like PORTERS: Dining + Butcher, Piada, Sweet Paris, and Mess Waffles, Century Square features retail, offices, apartments, and two hotels. (In fact, soon guests at the George Hotel can order from Juanita’s and have it delivered to their room.) As a destination, Century Square draws both out-of-towners and locals looking for something a little special. Or, in the case of Juanita’s, very special. While a few menu highlights include a 19-ingredient mole sauce and a Japanese roll with a Mexican twist— imagine sushi but with Tex-Mex ingredients— Juanita’s will pay special attention to the non-

culinary aspects of the restaurant as well, starting with the entrance. The first thing guests will see is a very Instagrammable mural that stretches across the front of the building. Inside, the décor is lively with lots of colors and a graffiti mural in the bar. The emphasis on artwork extends to the presentation of the food. And because superior service is an art form, Juanita’s will focus on that, too. “We want everyone to have a wonderful experience,” says Cristopher. “The chefs will circulate throughout the dining room, answering questions about the food. Our servers won’t hurry diners but instead develop a personal relationship so that when you come to Juanita’s, you’re coming to see the people as well as for the food.” And, of course, there are the margaritas. Juanita’s will offer a variety of frozen and on-the-rocks options, each made with the freshest ingredients and the smoothest tequilas. You can even rent a private locker for your own bottle of tequila. “We have lockers at PORTER’s for wine and spirits,” says Cristopher, “but there’s a waiting list. I won’t be surprised if that happens at Juanita’s, too.” You can dip into that private tequila stash for any private functions you have at Juanita’s. From smaller birthday or anniversary parties in a semiprivate area of the restaurant to larger events on the outdoor patio, Juanita’s can work with you to plan your celebration. “Whatever you want to create, we can do that,” says David Cantu, market manager for DKC Group, who oversees the management of Juanita’s and PORTER’s. “You can order off the menu or we can work with the chefs to offer unique items.” Whether for a private event, a pre-game party, or a weekday happy hour, the grand dining room

at Juanita’s is a destination in itself. Situated right on The Green at Century Square, it has floorto-ceiling windows overlooking the pool at The George hotel. With an icy margarita in hand, it's a perfect location to relax and watch the world go by. So, how does Don Cristopher treat himself? With a meal at Juanita’s of course. “I love the weekend breakfast menu,” he says. “One of my favorites is a hand-rolled tortilla with breakfast stuffings.” And how might guests treat themselves at Juanita’s? Cristopher has a ready answer: “Order the Queso Fundido as an appetizer and have the bartender put a Sangria swirl in your margarita.” a Facing page: A feast for the senses! Juanita’s Chef’s Frites stickblanched fries drenched in Mexican cheeses, black bean puree, and molé; ceviche avocado tower with fresh plantains; spicy black bean puree with home-made tortilla chips; golden queso with housemade pico salsa; puffy tacos with honey-habañero shrimp; and an icy habañero mango margarita.

This page, clockwise from top: Prime steak and jumbo tuxedo-cut shrimp with mushrooms, sautéed red peppers, and spiraled onions, saffron arroz, and black bean puree; puffy tacos with Birria long-roasted spiced prime roast, roasted corn, heirloom grape tomatoes, avocado, and mango cream; and Mexican Flag enchiladas stuffed with roasted Tinga chicken, blistered heirloom tomato parcels, and robust red sauce, verde sauce, and a rich chardonnay sauce made with crispy herbs.




A PLAN FOR Lots of chefs want to make their mark in the kitchen. Jonny Rhodes, on the other hand, is ready to make a difference in the world. By Anne McCready Heinen


Treat Yourself!

HARVEST COFFEE Century Square Bliss out on the new romantic coffee drink for spring: the Chocolate Cherry Latte. Rich chocolate and sweet cherry make for a sumptuous latte that will check all the boxes for you and your sweetheart. Harvest Coffee has also recently unveiled its cute “coffee bike,” offering a full espresso bar with fun and customizable drink options, which can be set up at weddings and parties.

Man on a Mission Jonathan Horowitz is bringing insight and expertise in the Texas restaurant industry to help develop innovative, high-quality food and beverage experiences at Midway districts. By Anne McCready Heinen


onny Rhodes is a 31-year-old Houstonian and a James Beard Award semifinalist who is focused on ending food apartheid—the systemic lack of healthy, affordable, highquality food in low-income areas. Rhodes’s Broham Fine Soul Foods and Groceries— slated to open in 2023 at East River in Houston—will play a key role in that mission for the young chef who first made headlines and won recognition with his innovative Restaurant Indigo in Houston’s Lindale Park neighborhood. “One of the reasons I want to be involved in this (East River) project is that it’s way too close to home to allow someone who doesn’t understand or care about the community to step in,” Rhodes says. “I’m from the area and understand all the uphill battles. Our intentions are genuine.” While they work toward the opening, Rhodes and his team have unveiled BrohamGrocers.com, which features many of the chef’s products that will be carried at the store such as Curry Canary Mustard, Carolina Heritage Brown Mustard, Spicy Caribbean Sweet Chili Garlic, and Lemon Preserves. The site also provides opportunities to support Rhodes’s endeavor that includes Food Fight Farms, a seven-acre Cleveland, TX, farm where much of the store’s produce will be grown. The site also includes a production facility for prepared products. “The East River store will be a flagship for us,” Rhodes says. “It’ll give us visibility and a consistently high stream of income



that will allow us the ability to move freely and affect our community more directly.” A culinary school grad and Marine veteran who did stints as a line cook in renowned restaurants Oxheart in Houston and Gramercy Tavern in New York, Rhodes intentionally opened Restaurant Indigo in Lindale Park, a mostly Black and Latino Houston neighborhood near where he grew up in Trinity Gardens. Both are up the road from the East River development in the historically impoverished Fifth Ward. When creating Restaurant Indigo, Rhodes brought together his insights and experiences as a Black native Houstonian as well as time spent with a Nigerian family when he was growing up. He also linked African American history studies that he pursued at University of Houston– Downtown. The neo-soul menu hit culinary highs and illuminated the social conditions and oppression behind the culinary tradition, all while highlighting its inherent creativity and amazing flavors. Restaurant Indigo offered two prixfixe seatings a night where dishes reflected African American foodways and ingredients, many locally sourced. On the menu were offerings such as brassicaceae greens braised in slabber sauce with vegetable ham, and dry-aged, black-onion marinated grilled venison shawarma with ashcake. Desserts included an avocado parfait with dark chocolate, and preserved candy yam semifreddo with kettle-cooked molasses, pecans, and toasted marshmallow.

idway is all about finding the perfect tenant for a restaurant space, even when that entails the company owning, developing, or running its own dining concepts. In October, Midway brought restaurant veteran Jonathan Horowitz on board as senior vice president over hospitality development with the intent to amp up its restaurant and bar strategy. The executive is working toward bringing two to three on-target restaurant and bar concepts a year to new and existing Midway districts, from East River to CITYCENTRE, Century Square, and beyond. “Opportunities sometimes just present themselves,” Horowitz says. ”Other times we look at a location, the demographics of the area, and the competition, and say, this area could really use a certain concept. Then we get to ask whether we should go out and find a tenant for that or do it ourselves,” as a partner or even the operator of a restaurant concept.



Dishes carried provocative names like “Assimilation is Not Freedom,” and Rhodes would enter the intimate dining room mid-meal to share knowledge about African American history, foodways, and agricultural oppression, or the ways enslaved and impoverished people used ingenuity to create delicious foods from hunting, fishing, growing food, and leftovers, despite lack of land ownership. Elements of this social justice and history education will continue in the store. Over time, Rhodes’s focus shifted. “I could have kept my mouth shut and just kept cooking and making money on that (Restaurant Indigo) concept,” Rhodes says. “But when I look at what brings fulfillment to my life and family name, I never wanted to build off vanity.” As the pandemic set in, Rhodes pivoted to offering groceries and fresh produce, first the restaurant, and later, down the street at the first location of Broham Fine Soul Foods and Groceries. Both the restaurant and the original Broham Grocers are closed now, allowing Rhodes to focus fully on the development of Food Fight Farms, product production, and plans for the East River store that bears an evocative name: Broham is a term of endearment among Black men, while Rhodes uses the “fine soul food” to elevate the cuisine and give it the respect it deserves. At East River, Broham’s 4,000-squarefoot space will offer fresh produce

Horowitz came to Houston 31 years ago from New Hampshire to attend Rice University and afterward he earned a law degree. He pivoted to hospitality and restaurants more than sixteen years ago, becoming a partner in The Tasting Room and Max’s Wine Dive concepts, and later heading the parent company overseeing the Original Ninfa’s on Navigation Tex-Mex restaurant and the Antone’s Famous Po’ Boy sandwich business. Horowitz also serves as an officer on the board of the Texas Restaurant Association and has worked as a hospitality industry consultant. To accomplish the Midway mission, Horowitz brings together complex and ineffable variables including location, industry data analytics, operations, decor, and menu. “I always keep up on what is happening in the marketplace and the restaurant industry, taking into account demographics of the neighborhood/area, the location, emerging trends, and much more,” Horowitz says. “The marketplace will very quickly tell you if you hit it or not. It tells you what it wants, and you must listen.” Right now, the marketplace is clamoring for fast-casual dining, Horowitz says, that includes healthy options within cuisines such as Mediterranean or Asian, for both to-go as well as dining in. Already, Midway has engaged in partnerships at Century Square in

grown at Food Fight Farms such as strawberries, peas, sweet potatoes, onions, carrots, collard greens, and even coffee, alongside locally sourced meat, bread, pastries, cheese, and more. Shelves will hold products produced at the farm such as cornbread muffins, chicken rosemary breakfast sausage, yam skin molasses, okra seed oil, Carolina gold rice ice cream, and yellow barbecue sauce. A membership program will let customers support the Broham and Food Fights mission while reaping perks like tours of the farm. “We want to offer people transparency, and to let you see where your food is coming from,” Rhodes says. Key to store operation will be accepting all forms of payment, including food stamps, cash, and credit cards. While details such as decor are still in the works, Rhodes says the store won’t include a restaurant. Meanwhile, Rhodes keeps racking up accolades, including his 2022 inclusion among Business Journal’s Texas 100 people who are movers and shakers in the state. But his aspirations are linked to ending food apartheid, not the latest ranking. “These problems didn’t start today and they’re not going to end tomorrow,” Rhodes says. “But it’s easier to pass the torch when it’s lit and hot.” (Opening in 2023 at East River.) a

College Station, Horowitz says. PORTERS: Dining + Butcher is owned by Midway and is operated by a third-party restaurant management company, the DKC Group. Midway and DKC Group have also partnered in the recently opened Juanita’s Tex Mex Cantina which serves elevated Tex-Mex at the heart of Century Square. Midway also created Sharky’s Waterfront Grill for Kings Harbor in Houston, and once established, sold it to a neighboring restaurateur. Juanita’s also illustrates culinary trends, Horowitz notes, as it offers unexpected menu items like grilled salmon and healthy salads with a TexMex twist. The pandemic has brought changes that Horowitz says will be apparent going forward in new restaurants in Houston and around the country. Online ordering and third-party delivery are major aspects of operations now and will continue into the future. “That impacts how restaurants are designed,” he says. “Restaurants are figuring out how they’re going to handle both inperson dining and takeaway or delivery dining.” Horowitz adds, “Being able to contribute to the process of developing amazing spaces and restaurant experiences with a group that does awesome work is a very special opportunity.” a



GREAT ESCAPES When the heat is on, head indoors for fun and entertainment—day or night. Here are some ideas to have plenty of fun, but just not in the sun. By Trent Johnson

Star Cinema Grill Century Square


are familiar with how quickly the heat arrives (and endures) beginning in spring. And while it’s genuinely difficult to turn down any opportunity for a stroll or run along Hermann Park or an amble inside the Houston Arboretum & Nature Center even when the temperature inches toward triple digits, you may be better off seeking entertainment (and comfort) indoors. Luckily, throughout Texas, there are plenty of opportunities to head indoors for a day (or night) out. Three Midway districts—CITYCENTRE and GreenStreet, both in Houston, and Century Square, in College Station—provide a number of venues that offer everything from live music and even a brush with puzzle-solving, to ice cream treats and opportunities to simply rest, refresh, rejuvenate, and even play. When the heat’s got you down, head out to some of these spots and enjoy some indoor fun!

Movies have always, and will forever, be a great escape from reality…and also the heat! But why go to a mainstream cinema when you can enjoy an elevated experience featuring luxury recliners, a chic atmosphere, and a full menu complete with cocktails and beers. For those looking for dinner and a movie, the Star Cinema Grill offers a constantly evolving menu. “Everything is made fresh in our kitchen,” says Adam Parker, general manager, adding, “We try to offer a welcomed escape to our guests.” Check out the nightly specials, ranging from Bloody Mary’s on Sundays and Wine Wednesdays. 1037 UNIVERSITY DR., COLLEGE STATION // STARCINEMAGRILL.NET

Bowl & Barrel CITYCENTRE

Eat, drink, and bowl at this hybrid bowling alley, bar, and restaurant, which promises an “elevated” experience not typically found in bowling alleys. With its red-brick walls adorned with colorful paintings, the ambiance of this establishment is hip and inviting. As colorful as the rolling balls are, so are the cocktails and cuisine—which include beer and wine by the glass, as well as an array of mouth-watering cocktails and even “mocktails,” as well as a bevy of dishes ranging from appetizers, or “bites,” including Ghost Pepper Peanuts and Crab Hushpuppies, to crafted charcuterie boards and vibrant pizzas. Looking to add even more color? Order some royal blue cotton candy to finish! 797 SORELLA CT., STE. 118, HOUSTON // BOWLANDBARREL.COM/HOUSTON

Beverly Hills Revujenation Center CITYCENTRE

With “Beverly Hills” in the title, you’d expect to walk out of the center’s doors feeling as refreshed as a Hollywood A-lister, and you will. Beverly Hills Rejuvenation Center offers services ranging from age-defying regenerative therapies to body contouring, which are typically offered over the course of several visits. However, if you’re looking for a one-time experience solo or to spend some quality downtime with a friend, consider opting for one of several relaxing, restorative, and transformative facials offered here. It’s a great way to fight fatigue and stress and enjoy some “me” time while offsetting the effects of the sun’s harmful rays. 797 SORELLA CT. STE. 104, HOUSTON // BHRCENTER.COM/MED-SPA-LOCATION/HOUSTON-TX-CITYCENTRE

Lick Honest Ice Creams Century Square

The ice cream here is so good that it was listed in Thrillist’s “Best Ice Cream Shops in America” in 2021. Indeed, after building a following for its delicious and unique natural flavors in Austin and San Antonio, Lick Honest Ice Creams is making its way to College Station. Best known for crafting desserts with “responsibly sourced, peak-season ingredients from local farmers and food artisans that are soy-free, palm oil-free, and preservative-free,” according to co-founder Anthony Sobotik, this spot marks a perfect escape from the elements and the ordinary. As for what to try on the menu, co-founder Chad Palmatier lists Lick flavors such as Texas Sheet Cake, Hill Country Honey & Vanilla Bean, Goat Cheese, and even Roasted Beets & Fresh Mint among his favorites. 175 CENTURY SQUARE DR., COLLEGE STATION // ILIKELICK.COM


810 Billiards & Bowling GreenStreet

If you are in search of a little variety for your indoor getaway, one of Houston’s newest attractions is 810 Billiards & Bowling, which opened late last year. Offering fun in a relaxed, casual atmosphere, this cozy location offers something for everyone. Whether you want to take the family out for some bonding time or meet the gang for pitchers, sliders, and some frames, 810 Billiards & Bowling offers activity with options. Apart from slamming the pins, you and your guests can partake in games of pool, darts, foosball, corn hole, and team trivia—or even enjoy a rousing round of chess. Lean back into the sleek black leather couches and order shareables from the menu. Wash them down with a Million Dollar Margarita or a draft beer. The happy hour drink specials will keep the fun rolling! 1201 SAN JACINTO ST., HOUSTON // 810BOWLING.COM/810-BOWLING-HOUSTON-TX/

Smashed Clay + Studio CITYCENTRE

Creating art can be therapeutic. Either alone, in a group, or with a pal or your significant other, Houston’s Smashed Clay provides an opportunity for everyone to connect with their inner artist. This pottery studio provides classes and workshops for novices and experts alike, with memberships available for folks who already know their way around a slab of clay. If you are a newbie, don’t fret: Smashed Clay offers one-hour experiences for those only looking to dabble. Or sign up for a four-week intensive class and grow your pottery skills. Throwing and hand-building clay has never been more creative or fun! 12828 QUEENSBURY LN., STE. 204, HOUSTON // SMASHEDCLAY.COM

Treat Yourself!

Pete's Dueling Piano Bar GreenStreet

What’s better than one piano? Two, of course! From Tuesday to Saturday, there are few venues as energetic and fired up in Houston as Pete’s Dueling Piano Bar. Pete’s tosses away the sheet music and trades them in for singalong renditions of pop songs from the likes of Michael Jackson, Prince, and the Beatles, as well as Houston crowd favorites, including “Sweet Caroline” and “Callin’ Baton Rouge.” Whether it’s a waiter, a bartender, or even you, anyone can be lured onstage to sing along with the musicians as they tickle the ivories. “It’s one giant party of singing all your favorite songs,” promises co-owner Corey Urbach.

Fellini Caffe CITYCENTRE

With its motto, “Life is like gelato, enjoy it before it melts,” a visit to this café is like escaping to the sidewalks of Italy. Treat yourself to a coffee drink made with Lavazza coffee from Italy. Or try an Affogato al Caffee, an Italian coffee-based dessert, and indulge yourself with two treats in one! That’s a scoop of plain milkflavored gelato with chocolate shavings, drowned with a shot of hot espresso.


Studio Movie Grill CITYCENTRE

House of Blues GreenStreet

There’s a reason the House of Blues has nationwide staying power, given the brand’s commitment to music and ability to constantly deliver on stellar performances. Generally speaking, if a national act is touring through Houston, they’re likely making a stop at this 2,100-seat venue. This spring, Houston’s House of Blues is set to host a number of talented artists, including legendary blues guitarist Buddy Guy (March 19), moody dream-pop duo Beach House (March 26), pop icon Charli XCX (April 9), and indie alt-rock duo The Talbott Brothers (April 29). If you’re interested in a more intimate experience, check out a show at the Bronze Peacock, located off the main stage. The name of this 200-seat venue pays homage to the Bronze Peacock nightclub, a Houston Fifth Ward staple in the 1940s, which hosted a score of wonderful blues musicians.

With some sixty spirits listed on its bar menu, there’s no better place in Houston to sip a margarita or cocktail while taking in the latest cinematic features! After a 2016 remodel, the Studio Movie Grill doubled down on its mission to deliver Hollywood’s latest releases with class, comfort, and a full list of options. At the push of a button, moviegoers can order from the menu of fresh and delectable entrees as well as beer, wine, and expertly crafted mixed drinks (and get them delivered to your seat!). On the menu: burgers, pizza, sliders, salads, and dessert. There’s even a kids’ menu and, of course, gourmet popcorn! Plus, the luxe reclining rockers provide comfort and offer a unique experience for any film buff that’s better than home. 822 TOWN & COUNTRY BLVD., HOUSTON // STUDIOMOVIEGRILL.COM/LOCATIONS/TEXAS/ CITY-CENTRE/2022/1/6

The Escape Game CITYCENTRE

We all want to escape our surroundings on occasion. What if you were to escape to an escape? The Escape Game represents an opportunity to cool off while stretching your group’s brain muscles as you collectively review clues and try to solve puzzles to “escape” the room. Choose between several themes, including a prison break, painting heist, and hunt for gold, among others. It’s an adventure! While it’d be truly daring to sneak into the actual Museum of Fine Arts, Houston and attempt to lift a priceless art piece, The Escape Game offers the chance to pretend you’re living out scenarios like this and others such as you’d see in action films. If you’re an adrenaline junky in search of a rush, try thinking your way out of these rooms! But don’t solve the puzzle too quickly—you’ll only end up right back in the heat.





TAKE CARE You’ll find the latest services, products, and getaways right here. By Marianne Dougherty


You made it through the last two years, which have been a challenge, but now it’s time for a little self-care. It could be something simple like a new shade of lipstick, lunch with a friend, or a mani-pedi. Feeling more ambitious? Check out cosmetic procedures like CoolSculpting, injectables, teeth whitening or veneers. Learn how to play Pickleball. Or pamper yourself with a long weekend at a luxury hotel where fine dining and spa services are on the menu. We’ve got the lowdown on what’s new for spring and where you can find it. So, let’s get started. What we’re seeing for 2022: bleached brows, colored eyeliner, neon or pastel eyeshadows, and the return of lip gloss after a few seasons of matte lipstick. If you’re adventurous, you might want to borrow a look seen on the runway at Etro where makeup artist Lisa Butler applied crystal face jewels at random underneath the eyes. Or swipe a little glitter across your cheekbones to add a bit of glam to your beauty routine. This season, men will be asking their barbers for less polished looks in favor of textured cuts like shags and mullets. Speaking of the business-in-front-party-in-back hairstyle, the mullet is making a comeback. Zendaya admits that she got “dragged” for wearing a mullet as far back as 2016. Turns out that she was onto something. We’re also seeing a lot of hybrid looks now. Carving out a lot of weight through the top and crown updates a shag that lacks oomph. It’s not quite a shag, not quite a mullet, but a perfect combination of the two. Think of the Mixie as part mullet, part pixie, with longer hair in back and super-short hair on top. As for color, ask for a deep chocolate brown shade or something called bronde, which is described as a fusion of blonde and brown. What to expect in the health and wellness sectors: Mindful, plant-based eating tops the list, but followers suggest that this is the way we were meant to eat and that it’s not a diet but a lifestyle that will yield significant benefits. Watch for next gen wearables that track sleep and offer health metrics like body temperature and respiratory rate, and stock your pantry with spices like turmeric that reduce inflammation and boost the immune system. Want to experience the mind-body-spirit benefits of forest bathing, the meditative exercise from Japan that’s sweeping the globe? Simply taking a walk in a local park or sitting in silence in your own backyard can boost immunity and reduce stress. Engage in a little self-care this spring, from deep-tissue massage to non-invasive skin resurfacing treatments to plant-based bowls. Take a look.

A tradional Swedish massage is a surefire way to relax and unwind, but if you’re experiencing chronic muscle pain or soreness, check out Ashiatsu massage at the Galleria Spa Salon Boutique, Century Square in College Station. It’s serious deep tissue work. The massage therapist holds onto a bar on the ceiling and walks her feet across your back and legs, accessing an entire muscle group at one time. A powerful, non-invasive skin resurfacing treatment like the Hydrafacial is just the trick to remove dead skin cells and impurities, while driving moisturizing serums deep into the skin. It’s a simple indulgence but one that pays big dividends. Don’t forget to visit the 1,500-squarefoot boutique where you can pick up a Blue Capri Candle. Not only is the color right on trend, but you’ll love the citrus and sugar scent.


Getting in shape is one of the best ways to take care of yourself, and Orangetheory Fitness, Century Square, offers a total-body group workout that combines science, coaching, and technology to charge your metabolism and give you the confidence that makes all the difference in how you feel about yourself. Also check out Orangetheory Fitness at Century Square.

Ask a beauty consultant at Sephora, at CITYCENTRE, to show you what’s trending in makeup this season. They carry all the top brands, like Nars, Bobbi Brown, Make Up For Ever, Marc Jacobs, and Fenty Beauty. You’ll also want to ask about Cote d’Azur, the new fragrance from high end haircare line Oribe. Its sun-drenched notes of Calabrian bergamot, white butterfly jasmine, and sandalwood will lift your spirits.

Unwind and rejuvenate mindbody-spirit at Anthony Vince Nail Spa, located at CITYCENTRE, which promises to deliver the ultimate salon experience. Sink down into one of the luxurious spa pedicure chairs and let the expert staff pamper you for the next hour. Houston’s premier nail care destination also offers a full bar so sit back, enjoy a mimosa and leave the world behind.

If you’ve spent the last two years on Zoom calls staring at your own face for hours on end, you’ve probably noticed a few things you don’t like, from crow’s feet to age spots to sagging jowls. It’s called the “Zoom effect,” and it’s driving people into the Beverly Hills Rejuvenation Center, at CITYCENTRE in Houston’s Memorial area, for cosmetic procedures like Kybella, an injectible that improves the appearance and profile of moderate to severe fat below the chin. If you haven’t heard of PDO thread lifts yet, you’ll want to ask about the nonsurgical rejuvenation procedure that lifts and tones areas of the face, neck, or body by threading sutures through the surface of the skin. As the sutures disintegrate, they actually trigger a boost in collagen production that can last for up to a year. Millenials are asking about Baby Botox to smooth out the fine web of wrinkles in the neck area they’re noticing. It’s called “tech neck,” and it comes from looking down at their phones all day. Who among us has not put on a few pounds over the past couple of years? Go ahead, raise your hands. It’s called the “pandemic 15,” and there’s a cure for it. CoolSculpting is a noninvasive body sculpting procedure that literally melts away stubborn fat with no downtime. So many services, so little time, but isn’t making time for yourself what self-care is all about?



Jeni’s Ice Cream CITYCENTRE

Sapphire Smiles Dental Specialists

Kaviani Modern Dentistry Memorial Green

When we were all wearing masks, no one noticed your smile, but that’s not the case now that life is slowly returning to a new normal. Maybe your teeth don’t seem as white as they once were (aging, smoking, even that daily espresso may be culprits), but teeth whitening can reverse that. Sapphire Smiles Dental Specialists offers the service, which can be done in a single visit. Or ask about veneers, which can mask minor imperfections and bring a smile back to your face. “Everyone is into cosmetics now,” says Cat Carmichael, dental hygienist. Partly to blame for the whitening craze is social media, where “veneers are big,” she notes. Adults and children are also booking appointments with the on-staff orthodontist to get their teeth straightened. Regular dental visits are imperative, says Carmichael, particularly so that Sapphire’s dentists can check for gingivitis and gum disease, as well as to educate patients on the importance of good oral hygiene. To help with that, Sapphire Smiles recommends using the Oral B Genius smart electric toothbrush, which uses 3-D motion sensors and artificial intelligence to track how long and how well you brush. “Patients love it because it lets you know how to improve your brushing technique and gets the teeth really clean,” she notes. With three dentists, an orthodontist, a periodontist, an endodontist, a dental surgeon, and a dental implant practitioner on staff, Sapphire Smiles Dental Specialists is truly a “one-stop shop,” offering Saturday hours and on-call staff for emergencies. “We really provide a ‘no excuses’ opportunity for patients who aren't fans of going to the dentist,” says Derek Leonard, CEO.

In practice for some 25 years, Kevin Kaviani, D.D.S., credits new technology and digital tools—including artificial intelligence and augmented reality technology, digital scanners, 3-D printers, and more—with enabling him to “do things I’ve never been able to do before for patients.” Indeed, digital dentistry is helping Dr. Kaviani do a faster, better, and more precise job now. Before any numbing or drilling is done, a patient can experience how his or her teeth will look once an action plan is initiated with the dentist. “I call it a ‘smile test drive,’” Dr. Kaviani says. Using digital design, Dr. Kaviani reproduces a digital file that patients can put into their mouths to see what veneers, crowns, or straightened and whitened teeth would look like. “Patients are taking more ownership now of their mouths and smiles, and what we can deliver looks better, fits better—it’s just phenomenal,” he says. Using digital tools can also help uncover more than what’s going on with a patient’s teeth. The dentist has also spotted breathing problems, gum disease, bone loss, and more. Because he consults with a growing network of Houston medical professionals and specialists—including allergists, dermatologists, neurologists, oral surgeons, and even speech pathologists—Dr. Kaviani can take a more holistic approach to patient care now. “With digital tools, there’s a whole paradigm shift,” says Dr. Kaviani. u

CITYCENTRE Get the scoop at this gourmet ice cream shop, where service is an art. Treat yourself to a waffle cone with two scoops of Maple Soaked Pancakes— tastes like a tripe stack drowning in maple syrup and salted butter.

For a little instant gratification, visit ThrIVe Drip Spa at Memorial Green, an infusion therapy and lifestyle wellness spa that puts a modern spin on traditional medical treatments. Customized drips and injections allow your body to absorb 100 percent of the vitamins and nutrients it craves. Had Covid and can’t shake the lingering effects? The Immuno Drip packs a potent punch: 10 grams of vitamin C, zinc, and a double dose of the detoxifying agent glutathione. Looking to lose weight? Come in twice a month for the Slim Drip with B12 to increase energy and carnitine that revs up metabolism. To see faster results, ask for a Lipo C shot between visits or ask about the Emsculpt Neo, a non-invasive body shaping procedure that burns up to 30 percent fat and builds up to 25 percent muscle in one focused area with only four 30-minute sessions.

Or plan a staycation downtown at newly opened The Laura Hotel, Autograph Collection, at GreenStreet—it’s sure to cure what ails you. Experience fine dining at Hull & Oak Southern Kitchen where modern, southern-inspired dishes pay homage to the Lonestar State. Take a dip in the rooftop pool, book a facial or massage at the spa, or get a workout in at the onsite fitness center. The perfect end to your day? A craft cocktail at the hotel bar.

Thinking about switching to a plantbased diet? JuiceWell, CITYCENTRE, has been serving up delicious, plantbased foods since 2014. Sample any of the cold-pressed juices, like Recovery (kale, Asian pear, ginger, lemon) or Pineapple Sunrise (pineapple, apple, orange, cucumber, mint, chia seeds). Try one of their eight smoothies or make your own bowl with healthful ingredients like acai berries, a powerful antioxidant, or dragon fruit, which has high levels of vitamin C to boost immunity. There are lots of dairy-free options made from almonds, macadamia nuts, cashews, and pecans as well as seasonal items. It’s a plant-based menu to live for.

People are naturally social creatures and being isolated is not in our nature. No wonder we’ve been craving community and connection. That’s just what you’ll find at Life Time Athletic Resort with eleven locations, including CITYCENTRE and GreenStreet in downtown Houston,. They’ve just rolled out a new program called ARORA that offers the aging community group fitness classes, a complimentary personal training session, and, more important, a weekly coffee club meet-up where they can strengthen that sense of belonging that we’ve all been missing. Pickleball—a hybrid of tennis, badminton, and ping-pong—isn’t just for “active agers” anymore. Sure, seniors became addicted to the sport because it improved reflexes, balance, and range of motion, but at Life Time, there are a lot more forty-somethings on the court these days. Not ready for in-person classes just yet? Life Time offers a digital membership with an app that offers cycling, yoga, and more on demand or in real time.



CURTAIN GOING UP A Houston spring arts preview By Ryan B. Martinez

It's no secret

that Houston’s arts, like so many communities, were hit by the pandemic, and venues had to pivot to connect. “What’s been really hard about the past two years is just planning for who knows, anything,” says Rob Melrose, artistic director of The Alley Theatre. “Having to be nimble and having to change plans on a dime has been really challenging. We learned how to be filmmakers last year: We did our entire season online.” For many, the grit and innovation have paid off. Toying with formats, carving out safe physical spaces, and planning for better days just may have set up many local operators for a resurgence. From Dawoud Bey’s vibrant street photography at the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, to the striking designs of Turandot at the Houston Grand Opera, to the sheer fun of the Houston Art Car Parade, residents and visitors can enjoy a rich cornucopia this year. The city stands apart because of its diversity and broad support base, Melrose says. “Because there are people from all different kinds of cultures, there’s so much to draw from— from an artist’s perspective, but also from an audience perspective,” he says. “I think that’s what makes Houston unique.” Here, a peek at the offerings.

Alley Theatre Downtown’s Alley Theatre has three very different shows in store. Dead Man’s Cell Phone (April 15–May 8), a comedy by Sarah Ruhl playing in the Hubbard Theatre, begins with a café patron answering the obnoxiously ringing phone of a lifeless table neighbor and escalates wildly from there. Born with Teeth (May 6–June 5), a period play by Liz Duffy Adams set to world premiere in the Neuhaus Theatre, catches William Shakespeare and Christopher Marlowe in a web of political intrigue. Another world premiere, Noir (June 2– July 3), brings the vibes of the Alley’s Summer Chills series to its regular season. The musical boasts creative firepower from writers Duncan Sheik (Spring Awakening) and Kyle Jarrow (SpongeBob SquarePants) and director Darko Tresnjak (A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder).

The Menil Collection This year the sunlit Menil hosts exhibits of humanistic photography (Bruce Davidson, through May 29), Swiss Surrealism (Meret Oppenheim, March 25–Sept. 18), wild landscape drawings (Joseph E. Yoakum, April 22–Aug. 7), and geometric installations (Walter De Maria, Oct. 29, 2022–April 23, 2023). For a live musical experience, catch four dates of the Elias String Quartet’s DACAMERA series (March 28–29 and April 4–5), a six-show run of Beethoven’s complete quartets. (Remaining shows will be at the Hobby Center.)

Check schedules, programs, and fees directly with the arts institutions before heading out.


Treat Tip: Indulge in a pre-theater meal or a post-show cocktail at one of nearby GreenStreet's tony restaurants: The Palm, M&S Seafood|Steaks|Oysters, House of Blues Restaurant and Bar, and Guadalajara del Centro!

Roachster or the porta-potty go-kart make a return? Only one way to find out—show up!

Bowie. Originals (June 2–12), a showcase of spectacle and local talent, includes a returning original by Stanton Welch and the premiere of a one-act by principal dancer Melody Mennite. Welch’s acclaimed Madame Butterfly (June 16–26) sure-footedly wraps the season.

Hobby Center

Houston Grand Opera Ravishing set design, soaring music, and romantic strife mark the Houston Grand Opera’s run of Turandot (April 22, 24, 30; May 3, 6, 8). Director Robert Wilson and team deserve kudos for the sumptuous colors and stark shaping of their set design, which frames Puccini’s tale of a princess who blocks her suitors with riddles. Soprano Tamara Wilson plays the title character, and tenor Kristian Benedikt plays the one who makes it through. HGO will cap its season with Gounod’s adaptation of Romeo & Juliet (April 29, May 1, 7, 11).

Houston Art Car Parade The Houston Art Car Parade reached its zenith in 2019, when an estimated 250,000 people flocked downtown to cheer on more than 250 outlandishly decked-out cars. The event, a beloved staple since 1986, had to go virtual in 2020, but bounced back last year, and 2022’s revels may approach new peaks. The four-day frolic (April 7–10) includes the parade, live music, and food and drink on the main day (April 9), but expect sneak peeks and other side events before and after. Will the

The Hobby Center will host eclectic delights. Nineties era nostalgia awaits at Je’Caryous Johnson Presents: New Jack City (April 8–10), a night of storytelling and hip-hop based on the 1991 crime drama. Indian comic Kanan Gill (April 10), whose star was born on YouTube and has shone on Netflix and on tour, brings his stand-up to Zilkha Hall. Trixie and Katya (April 11), the drag queen duo who spun RuPaul’s Drag Race credits into cult-queer gold (their series, UNHhhh, is a spiritual heir to John Waters), will bedevil Sarofim Hall. Baroque musical ensemble Ars Lyrica Houston will present the English opera Dido and Aeneas (May 21–22).

Museum of Fine Arts, Houston As if its formidable permanent collection weren’t enough, MFAH has some impactful temporary exhibitions. Dawoud Bey: An American Project (through May 30), spans almost fifty years of the New York photographer’s work, with a focus on African American and other underrepresented subjects. The Obama Portraits Tour (April 3–May 30) features the iconic portraits of Barack and Michelle by Kehinde Wiley and Amy Sherald, respectively. Exhibitions of work by M.C. Escher (March 13–Sept. 5) and Pakistani American artist Shahzia Sikander (March 20– June 5) promise visual feasts of their own.

Miller Outdoor Theatre

Houston Ballet The Houston Ballet will finish its season with flair. Choreographic delights await at Pretty Things (May 20–29), featuring ONE|end|ONE by Finland’s Jorma Elo; Hush by the UK’s Christopher Bruce; and Trey McIntyre’s title dance, during which the men of the Houston Ballet preen to David


This scenic venue in Hermann Park stages an eight-month season of broad-ranging entertainment. While the 2022 lineup wasn’t available at press time, each year you can expect a spread of classical music, jazz, world music, Shakespeare, ballet, musical theater, movies, and more. All shows are free and family-friendly, and bookings are awarded via application, making the series a truly homegrown affair. Bring your lawn chairs or blankets— and be sure to space out. With seating for 1,705 patrons and a vast sloping lawn, there’s room to stretch your legs.

Treat Yourself!

Century Square & CITYCENTRE

Who doesn’t love warm cookies? Tiff's Treats recently launched Blue Ribbon Club™, a monthly subscription package with the option of three, six, or twelve months of warm cookie deliveries featuring a surprise flavor-of-the-month. And look for It’s Not Just Cookies: Stories and Recipes from the Tiff’s Treats Kitchen, by company founders Tiffany and Leon Chen. It’s their story of building the business from $20 and a college apartment kitchen to a rapidly growing brand with millions of customers and $100 million in funding!

DONKEEART Mother-Son Duo Are Painting “Big” in H-Town By Roger Munford


uralists Sylvia Roman and her son, Alex Roman Jr., may be better known by their tags, Donkeemom and Donkeeboy. Together they’ve collaborated on more than thirty murals for clients, including sports giants like the Houston Astros, Houston Dynamo, and the UFC, as well as prominent companies like Bosch, Fender, Jameson, and Porsche. The pair were also featured on Kelly Clarkson’s daytime talk show in 2020, when they unveiled their George Floyd mural in Houston’s Third Ward. Donkeemom and Donkeyboy have created several art projects for Midway, whose goal is to make its communities remarkable with impactful works of art. Donkeeboy’s out-of-this-world astronaut mural, created in celebration of the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 lunar landing, can be viewed in the GreenStreet district in the heart of downtown. The pair also contributed to two art pop-ups Midway held at GreenStreet, one of which showcased an impactful immersive exhibition by Donkeeboy and the National Association of Mental Illness (NAMI) to bring awareness to mental

An early photo of mother and son.

illness in the community. They also contributed to the public art project “Art of Soccer,” designing and painting a three-foot fiberglass soccer ball, which toured Midway’s GreenStreet and CITYCENTRE, promoting the Houston 2026 World Cup. Last summer, the pair created a mural at GreenStreet called “Bike Through H-Town,” which encourages more people to join the city’s recent bike boom. “I learned it all by watching my mom,” says Alex of his inspiration. “When I got a little older, in my teens and early 20s, I started trying to have art shows. My brother bought me an airbrush and I’d paint friend’s rooms at their houses, just for practice—that’s how I got the bug. It was fun, painting big.” Mom and son created their first mural at Sylvia’s house in 2005, but they never finished it. “She sold the house and that was that,” Alex says. “And then my brother passed, and that brought my mom and me together even more—that’s when we both decided to do something with this art thing.” When they started painting murals together, it was 100 percent what the client wanted, notes Alex.

The dynamic duo.

“Now we meet somewhere in the middle as they trust us with their brand and then we can explore,” he explains. “And then we have also created work that’s not paid—we’ll just find a wall and paint whatever we want.” How do they collaborate? “Sometimes my mom has a project that’s just hers, and I help her out, and vice versa,” Alex adds. “And sometimes the client just says ‘You guys do whatever you want,’ and that’s when my mom gets the last word. But you know what, the majority of the time she’s right.” After a friendly nudge from his mother, her son laughs, “Actually she’s right all of the time.” Using a mix of Montana 94 spray paint and Behr house paint, the family muralists expect their street art to be good for five-to-seven years. And they both like the permanence of that, how it becomes part of the neighborhood. “There are so many ways murals can inspire somebody,” Alex says. “I think the world is so much better when it’s full of color.”

Alex's mural at GreenStreet.

DELIVERING A COLORFUL MESSAGE With bright colors, graphic outlines, and vibrant elements from his Mexican-American heritage, multidisciplinary artist David Maldonado’s work merges street art and fine art at East River By Karen Krajcer


hether the image lives on a T-shirt or the side of a building, organic elements such as flowers, animals, and sky mingle with bold shapes and cubist elements in muralist David Maldonado’s work. At this convergence, the stories of diverse communities begin to sing. But before the Instagram “eye candy,” before the design partnership with The Houston Astros and Adidas, and before the commission from NASA, Maldonado hosted community open mic nights with piecemeal, borrowed equipment. These “Creative Nights,” Maldonado explains, were an “attempt to build a bridge” through art, music, and community. A microphone from one friend, a speaker from a neighbor, a coloring-bookstyle canvas by Maldonado, waiting for anyone and everyone to paint—these inclusive events brought people together. “Public art should serve as a reminder of humanity and empathy,” he says. Before Covid-19

pushed pause on these monthly gatherings, the Pasadena musician and visual artist bore regular witness to the impact that art can have on an audience, watching even the most “rugged and structured” people “just melt a little bit.” He explains: “Our systems have made us accustomed to seeking perfection, but art breaks that and reminds you that it’s okay to make mistakes.” Art gives people permission to be transparent and to connect with others. Today, the desire for connection and community continues to guide Maldonado’s art, including his largest work to date: A 60x20-foot spray-painted mural that welcomes visitors to Houston’s new East River development. Stretching across six shipping containers, Houston-centric symbols, such as bluebonnets and an astronaut, share space with images representing local communities: mosaic tiles, the bayou itself, and the bridges that connect people to each other, their past, and their future. A cargo ship features prominently—the artist’s nod

to the historic East End’s shipping industry and to the people who sustain it. Maldonado comes from a multi-generational family of longshoremen, and his mural honors this community in both subject and materials. Public art tells a story, and over the two-week period when Maldonado painted the East River mural, passers-by shared their stories as well. Community members hope the visitors to the new development will “keep in mind the people, keep in mind the reverence and respect to the people who were here,” he says. Maldonado believes that his mural illustrates this message of hope and that “we will continue to better this city.” Maldonado cherishes watching his work bring people together. “Public art is supposed to be a statement,” he says. “Not only should the art speak, but our actions should speak. It doesn’t stop with the painting. It doesn’t stop with the sticker. It stops when we stop. It’s our actions that speak.”

The artist's 60x20-foot mural stretches across six shipping containers and welcomes visitors to Midway's new East River development.



I F Y O U W E R E A TA C O Y O U ’ D B E _____?


1. Handmade tortillas filled with heirloom corn and ground roasted barbacoa 2. “Asada” means steak, right? 3. A breakfast taco, fuel for a morning of shopping 4. Filled with veggies—easy on the oil —and grabbed to go


Juanita's Tex Mex Cantina

I T ’ S S AT U R D AY A F T E R N O O N — W H AT A R E YOU DOING? 1. Sampling the tasting menu at the new cocktail bar 2. Checking out the axe-throwing bar with a cold brew coffee 3. Scoping out the latest trends at the local boutiques 4. Paddling a kayak down Buffalo Bayou

Even personalities are bigger in Texas—find out what kind of Texan you are with this quiz. Daily Gather

By Scott Ray

WHERE WOULD YOU GR AB YOUR N E X T I N S TA G R A M “ S E L F I E ” ? 1. Sharkey’s Waterfront Grill at Happy Hour 2. Wait, what’s Instagram? 3. Checking out my new look in the dressing room at Hemline 4. Local urban farm harvest Sharkey's Waterfront Grill

Part of the charm of the Lone Star State is its wonderful diversity and celebration of individuality. It’s a place that just seems to attract people with outsized personalities. Whether you are lucky enough to claim you are a sixthgeneration Texan or you just got here (welcome!), there’s surely room for everybody in a state that’s larger than Germany. Take our quiz and find out which quintessential Texan you are!


Premium denim A King Ranch Running W pattern belt The latest clutch from Brahmin lululemon yoga pants


WHICH OF THESE IS ON YOUR TEX AS B U C K E T- L I S T ? 1. Hitting all the spots on the Houston Taco or BBQ trail 2. Taking off a whole month to attend the Houston Rodeo 3. Scoring front row seats to Houston Fashion Week 4. Running the Houston Marathon

W H AT ’ S Y O U R D I N N E R ORDER: 1. White wine poached Chilean Sea Bass with the mushroom risotto and sauteed bok choy 2. How about a steak, as rare as the chef is comfortable with 3. A handful of almonds or a fruit-andprotein-filled smoothie 4. Hickory Smoked Cauliflower Steak, with a side of roasted brussels sprouts

T H E W O R D “ T E X A S ” M E A N S “ F R I E N D S H I P.” W H AT D O E S I T M E A N T O Y O U ? 1. Sharing a table with friends at Daily Gather in CITYCENTRE 2. Just don’t mess with it 3. Buying a friend a special gift (just because) 4. Wide open spaces from Big Bend to Sea Rim State Park

Memorial Green

SCORING Add up the totals you had for each numbered answer. If you have more answer #1s, you could be…

More answer #2s? You might be…

A majority of answer #3s? You are likely…

More answer #4s than any others? We’re guessing you are…







You know all the regional differences of Texas barbecue and can eloquently discuss the distinctions between Tex-Mex and other styles of Mexican cuisine. You know the true origin of Texas Sheet Pan Cake and King Ranch Casserole, but you also can name all the “mother sauces” of French cuisine. You are why a state the size of France has just as impressive a culinary history!



This ain’t your first rodeo, but you’re more city-slicker than hayseed. You’re a Texan through-and-through, and you enjoy the finer things as well. You know how to two-step, but you’ve also got a pulse on the latest hits. You may show up in boots, but you’re showing up to the next hot spot on the town.

There aren’t enough hours in the day to hit all the stores you plan on scoping out this season! Whether it’s the stylish shopping centers of Houston or the boutiques dotting the region, you know where to grab the best threads. Looking for athleisure wear, authentic western wear, or the hippest evening wear? You will truly shop until you drop.



Being a Texan, you love to be outdoors, and you know all the best bike paths and hikes, from Houston to College Station. Clean eating is more than just a hobby with you, and you know the best spots for healthy smoothies and green juice in every part of town.

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