Laced with a rich legacy of history and culture, Houston’s Third Ward has become a hub for veteran and burgeoning African American business owners. Storied neighborhood thoroughfares like Emancipation Avenue and Scott Street provide the backdrop for a plethora of restaurants, shops, and markets beloved by the community. We’ve rounded up three Third Ward locales to lunch and lounge around while you’re bobbing through the bustling neighborhood.
There are two types of people in the world — those that pile burgers with frills and those that prefer a classic rendition. At Cream Burger, — a Third Ward institution since 1961 — the latter prevails. This traditional drive-up burger stand churns out staples that will bring you back to childhood — downhome smash burgers with staple toppings like chopped onion, chopped lettuce, pickles, tomatoes, and cheese; Frito pies with chili and melted cheese, and straight forward milkshakes. The cherry on top? A full meal will still run you less than $5. Don’t forget: this al-fresco-only dining destination is cash only.
Courtesy of @edubalicioustreats on Instagram
If you find yourself in Third Ward Houston with a hankering for something sweet, head to Emancipation Avenue for one-of-a-kind treats from Crumbville, Texas — a bakery helmed by owner Ella Russell. Nestled on the first floor of the historic El Dorado Ballroom, Crumbville touts vegan, non-vegan, and gluten-free confections, so everyone can enjoy. On the menu: cupcakes like sweet potato + butter pecan crunch, vegan 24K carrot cake, banana pudding, and strawberry key loco; plus flirty cookie flavors like the Cookie Minaj — strawberry oatmeal dough filled with white chocolate chips — and the Netflix and Chill — vegan oatmeal dough filled with tangy cranberries, crystalized ginger, English walnuts, and organic kale popcorn.
Courtesy of @darikashi on Instagram
Stay in the heart of Third Ward at this charming bed and breakfast. Anchored by a boutique guest house, Houston Towers is stationed in an 80-year-old structure, which has since been renovated into the digs you see today. Take in the backdrop of the Downtown skyline before diving into Houston Towers’ offerings — think everything from a backyard pool + waterfall to a diverse art collection displayed throughout the residence, which features seven different accommodation options. An added bonus: this oasis provides a location that’s just a stone’s throw away from things to do in Downtown Houston, the Houston Museum District, and the Houston Zoo.
Courtesy of @3rdwardtours on Instagram
3rd Ward Tours offers private and public bike tours throughout Third Ward. Book a custom bike tour with family and friends, or experience one of the company’s themed monthly rides.