The holiday season is the perfect time to enjoy Historic Downtown Galveston. There are new monthly shopping events and Galveston’s downtown is always welcoming new businesses so you may find a new favorite place to shop or eat.
1. First Friday in Postoffice District (Dec. 1). Browse your favorite shops from 6 to 9 p.m. on Friday, Dec. 1 and get some holiday shopping done. Travel tip: First Friday is a new monthly event when retailers on and near Postoffice Street stay open late for shoppers. You’ll also find a variety of dining options.
2. Sip N Shop on The Strand (Dec. 14). Enjoy lite hors d’ oeuvres and beverages as you visit your favorite shops on the Strand on Thursday, Dec. 14 from 5 to 8 p.m. Participating shops include: Admiralty, Bungalow, Dorothy Mays, Gracies, Head to Footsies, Jewel Garden, Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory, Santa Fe Trails, Strand Brass, Tina's on The Strand, Tsunami, Pardon My French and Yaga's Restaurant and Bar. Travel Tip: Sip N Shop on The Strand is now scheduled monthly on the second Thursday of the month.
3. Downtown Lanterns and Lights (Ongoing through Jan. 2) at Saengerfest Park, 23rd and Strand. Saengerfest Park makes the perfect holiday photo stop both day and night with huge Christmas Trees and décor. The park also features an interactive photo frame and a giant snow globe that visitors can step inside for family photos. The photo props are available Dec. 9, 16 and 23.
4. New downtown businesses that have opened in recent months…
New dining and nightlight options:
Pelican Joe’s, 2217 Strand, Ste. 204, opened in November and serves Smoked BBQ, and Cajun Style Steamed Seafood. The restaurant is open for lunch and dinner and offers balcony
Old Moon Deli and Pie, 408 23rd Street, opened in mid-May. Made-to-order sandwiches and signature sandwiches are on the menu along with their delicious pies. We recommend the chocolate raspberry pie. Currently, they are open Tuesday through Sunday.
Also, new to The Strand is Bubba’s Galveston, 2508 Strand, which opened Memorial Weekend. The bar offers live music and casual dining.
The Wine Next Door, 418 21st Street, opened in June. They offer a huge selection of wines as you take a break between shopping.
Sharkey’s Tavern, 504 25th Street, opened in November. The Tavern offers live music, a variety of beer and brick oven pizza. Next door to Sharkey’s and coming soon is Devil and Deep Brewery. Follow their Facebook page for updates.
New activities and businesses downtown:
The newest gallery to open in downtown Galveston is Studio 84, 2315 Mechanic. The gallery opened this summer across the street from The Tremont House.
Betsy by Design, 2415 Mechanic, to its new location in September. They feature gifts, stationery, greeting cards, art and more. We picked up some wonderful Christmas cards.
GIANT, 404 25th Street, is an art and design showroom that opened in July. They specialize in gift items created from unusual materials as well as custom furniture.
Emboldened Elegance Boutique, 2211 Strand, is Galveston’s newest boutique carrying such brands as Lucky Brand, Dex, and Sage as well as Three Bishops Jewelry and Virgin Saints Angels Jewelry.
The Spice and Tea Exchange, 2309 Strand, opened mid-April. The shop has locations across the country and offers an exclusive selection of spices, blends, loose-leaf teas, naturally-flavored sugars, sea and mineral salts, gourmet gifts and accessories.
Relax LifeWear, 2418 Strand Suite C, opened in June. This new boutique specializes in comfort shoes, island casual apparel and accessories including such brands as Patagonia, Prana, Howler Brothers and Sea Bags made from recycled sails from sail boats.
Also, newly opened on The Strand is Strand Gallery, 2418 Strand, featuring artwork by local artist Joey Quiroga and nationally known artists. Next door, The Cruise Stop, 2418 Strand A, is a convenience store which also offers sundries, luggage and luggage storage for cruise ship crew and passengers.
If you love coffee, look for the new Galveston Coffee Roasters, 532 23rd Street. You’ll find it next to the ever popular Kitchen Chick. It’s a new local coffee roaster with a retail shop offering a variety of coffee and coffee related items. Travel Tip: Kitchen Chick will move to a new location in 2018. Look for them at 2402 Market just a block away from The Tremont House.
Where to Stay:
• For a beach view with history, stay at Hotel Galvez & Spa. The hotel provides a courtesy shuttle to transport hotel guests downtown.
• For a stay in The Historic Strand District, book your stay at The Tremont House.
• Or if you want to enjoy of view of the harbor, consider Harbor House Hotel & Marina at Pier 21.