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Your group can benefit from these exciting and fun-filled experiences
You know what they say about all work and no play. Rally the troops and spice things up with post-meeting play at one of Houston’s go-to group hot spots. From kayak excursions through Downtown and tea tasting Asian heritage tours to batting practice at Minute Maid Park and Tunnel Walks in underground H-Town, the possibilities are endless.
Buffalo Bayou pontoon and kayaking adventure
Give your group an inside peek at the city with Discover Houston Tours. On weekdays, explore Downtown in a Tunnel Walk & Rail Tour. The leisurely paced, two-mile tour includes lunch and a stroll through the awe-inspiring Downtown Tunnel System. Other tours include Broomstick Adventures on Friday and Saturday nights with ghost stories of La Carafe wine bar, set inside Houston’s oldest building; the Hanging Oak; and Lifestyles of Houston’s Rich and Famous.
Dig into dim sum or experience a Chinese tea ceremony on one of the many Asian Heritage Tours sponsored by Houston’s Chinese Community Center. Tour highlights include the best of Asian culture, a tea tasting, herbology, studying and practicing the art of Chinese calligraphy, shopping at the Hong Kong City Mall and learning about Buddhism at a traditional Buddhist temple.
Corporate group outings at the Children's Museum of Houston allow you to take your crew on a spy adventure as you join the Special Elite Crime Resolution and Espionage Team (a.k.a. S.E.C.R.E.T.). Your mission is to defeat the bad guys, the Ridiculously Intelligent Villainous Agent League (a.k.a. R.I.V.A.L.) and stop them from causing chaos within the Museum’s exhibits. Go undercover and complete a series of missions as a team including: laser maze challenge, decoding a mainframe, deactivating energy pipes and more.
Speaking of games, clear out the cobwebs and fuel creativity with hours of full-tilt fun at Joystix Classic Games and Pinballs. Joystix offers groups new and classic arcade games in a recently expanded 9,600-square-foot showroom, just across the street from Minute Maid Park. The company is also happy to bring the blast-from-the-past games (think Pac-Man, Golden Tee Golf and Pinball) to you.
Near the Uptown/Galleria area, Dave & Buster’s offers a wealth of entertainment options that blend the fun and food concept. There, your team will find classic billiards and tabletop shuffleboard, as well as an endless array of arcade games. The spot also offers organized team challenges like puzzle solving, scavenger hunts and midway game competitions.
Do you think your group has what it takes to make it out of the Crazy Cat Escape Room in less than an hour. From inside a locked room, your team is given 60 minutes to solve the puzzles, crack the code and unravel the mystery that stands between the group and freedom. Choose adventure themes like The Western Saloon Robbery, The Deadly Dining Room or The Scene of the Crime.
In Downtown’s GreenStreet, Lucky Strike Lanes & Lounge blends state-of-the-art bowling with a plush atmosphere featuring designer seating, party space, sophisticated menus, full-service bars, billiards and 13 big screens that can be customized for parties. Treat the group to the Luxe lounge — Lucky’s premium suite complete with four private lanes, a separate bar, sound system and video wall.
In west Houston, attendees can show off their skills at 300 Houston. The high-energy bowling alley — set along Bunker Hill in Memorial — takes an upscale approach to the game with large, flat-screen TVs, a cocktail lounge, premium stereo system; and a well-heeled catering menu.
Step up to the plate for practice or a softball game at the Astros’ Minute Maid Park. Teams can use the dugouts, shake the dirt off their cleats and swing for the Crawford Boxes just like the pros. The AT&T Conference Center in Union Station offers Grand Slam Scavenger Hunts and Nintendo Wii Break Sports packages, too.
Treat the team to a Major League experience at Big League Dreams. Thirty minutes from Downtown, in League City, the park features scaled-down replicas of six famous Major League stadiums. Each loaded with impressive detail, the fields give groups the thrill of hitting a homer at Fenway, catching a fly ball at Yankee Stadium, and rounding the bases at Wrigley. Big League also features sand volleyball courts, batting cages and indoor soccer.
Joining the third floor of Downtown’s GreenStreet scene is Pete’s Dueling Piano Bar. Imported from Austin’s popular Sixth Street, the high-energy, nightlife spot opened in late summer 2009, offering patrons hours of interactive, singing, clapping and musical entertainment. Each Tuesday through Saturday night, Pete’s comes alive onstage as piano players put their talent to the test, facing off on a pair of baby grand pianos. Here, Beethoven is traded in for Blink-182, Bon Jovi and The Beatles, along with audience-submitted selections from every other era imaginable.
Part piano bar, part sing-along, Midtown-set Howl at the Moon features two baby grand pianos and a ton of audience participation. Located near many major hotels and the convention center, the high-energy spot specializes in corporate parties of 10 to 400 people, with full-service catering packages, customized company songs and interactive activities.
Forget the bird’s-eye view. One of the coolest ways to explore Houston can only be seen from below — on a pontoon boat or kayaking adventure along Buffalo Bayou. Beginning at the Shepherd Street Bridge, paddlers travel to Allen’s Landing and eventually wrap up near the Theater District. Along the way, spot blue herons, loggerhead turtles and an occasional alligator sunning itself along bayou banks.
Who cares if it’s 70 degrees out? Grab the team and strap on your skates. Each year, from late November until mid-January, Discovery Green’s Kinder Lake is transformed into a 7,200-square-foot outdoor ice skating rink just across the street from the George R. Brown Convention Center. Powered by 100 percent renewable energy, the area features skate, snack, gift shops and a model boating pond.
Start planning today so your group can benefit from these exciting and fun-filled experiences. Whether through sports, tours, or nightlife activities, H-Town has plenty of options for everyone to leave with lasting memories.
“If you are a meeting planner and haven't been to Houston in a while, you owe it to both yourself and your attendees to…”
– Jonathan Erwin, Halloween & Party Expo
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