7 Funky Houston Buildings
Houston boasts an eclectic blend of quirky architecture. We’ve compiled seven of the funkiest spots in town you can check out.
Memorial Hermann Hospital
Nicknamed The Pineapple, Memorial Hermann Hospital is a blending of mismatched architectural styles, highlighted by a crown-like feature. The unique building has become a staple in the booming Memorial City area and often glows a variety of festive colors at night.
Beer Can House
We would be remiss to compile this list and leave off the infamous beer can house. The house is in an innocuous residential neighborhood, and you might hear beer can chimes blowing in the wind before you see the residence. Over the past 18 years, the owner has added over 50,000 cans to his house. We’ve yet to determine if he’s more of an IPA or lager kind of guy.
Julia Ideson Building
Built in the Spanish-revival style, the building opened in 1926 as the Houston Central Library and was supposed to be the centerpiece of a multi-building civic center. Those construction plans never came to fruition, so the surrounding buildings were designed in a more modern style. If you’re feeling brave, visit the building at night, it’s said to be haunted.
Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas - Houston Branch
While it’s up for debate whether this building is funky or just plain ugly (we like it, ourselves), the Federal Reserve Bank certainly makes its presence known on Allen Parkway. The unique building looks like it was built out of larger-than-life legos and features the somewhat questionable accent color of teal.
Orange Show Monument
The Orange Show Monument is a folk-art environment in Houston’s East End. It was hand-built by the late Jefferson Davis McKissack, a Houston postal worker. The maze-like 3k SF outdoor environment is made of concrete, brick, steel, and a variety of objects including tiles, wagon wheels and mannequins.
If you’re feeling like going on a grand adventure, the Hobbit Cafe is worth a stop. The under-the-radar restaurant has been serving patrons since 1972 and is a favorite of Lord of the Rings fans. You will truly feel like you’re traveling to the Shire as you enter the quirky restaurant.
The only example of Italian Renaissance architecture in Downtown, the interesting buildings feature detailed columns, great urns, terraces and a grand tempietto at the top. Constructed in 1927, the Esperson buildings add intrigue to Houston’s skyline of glass-walled skyscrapers. The top of the building is often lit up at night, creating a glow of imposing columns.