While we know that the beach is the most popular reason people choose Galveston especially in the summer, don’t forget our historic downtown is the perfect way to spend the afternoon or evening. Galveston’s downtown is always welcoming new businesses so you may just find a new favorite place to shop or eat. By the way, make sure you take a selfie in front of the murals at Saengerfest Park and on Postoffice Street.
New dining and nightlight options:
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 tried the chocolate raspberry pie and it was delicious. 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 mid-July next door to one of Galveston’s most popular pizza joints Mama Teresa’s Flying Pizza. On the left side of Mama Teresa’s, work is still underway at Shuck’s Tavern & Oyster Bar.
Update: Hubcap Grill &Cocktail Bar, 2021 Strand, replaced Harborside Merchantile. The restaurant is known for its amazing burgers and variety of French fries. You’ll love it.
Sound Bar, 2411 Mechanic, is the only Karaoke bar in Galveston. So if you are fan of karaoke, stop by to belt out your favorite tunes. Shows start at 9 pm with matinees on Sunday. They opened last October.
Sharkey’s Pizza Tavern, 504 25th Street, is slated to open later this summer. Next door will be Devil and Deep Brewery opening in the fall. Follow their Facebook page for updates.
Look for The Proletariat Gallery and Public House, 2221 Market, which opens daily at 4 p.m. You’ll appreciate the eclectic feel of this hangout for art lovers, while you have a drink.
Three Doors Down at The Marketplace at Peanut Butter Warehouse, 102 20th, opened last summer. The owner describes this new waterhole as a quaint little bar offering beer and wine. It’s a great spot to rest your feet after browsing The Marketplace. They also offer live music on weekends.
New activities and businesses downtown:
Visitors have four new shops to enjoy on The Strand. 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, is opening 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. Arts on Mechanic, 2309 Mechanic, opened across the street from The Tremont House. They specialize in art by local, regional and national artists. Other new boutiques include Style Co, 2113 Postoffice, and Blu, A Boutique by the Beach, 2118 Postoffice. Style Co. opened in its new location in July 2016 and Blu opened in March.
Look for Relax LifeWear, 2418 Strand Suite C, opened in June. This new boutique is specializing 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.
Play on the Strand, 2029 Strand, is a toy store that carries specialty toys that you won’t find on Amazon or in most toy stores. You’ll also find a few arcade games to enjoy.
Galveston has a new escape room called Escape the Island, 910 21st Street. Current rooms include “Unlock the Lost Treasure of Jean Lafitte” and “Escape the Raid, Balinese Galveston.” An escape room is a game where people use clues and puzzles to escape the room within a specified time.
We are also excited about Island Treasure Hunts which offers three scavenger hunts that highlight different areas of Galveston. Current tours are Scavenger on The Strand (Strand, Tremont, Pier 21), Hysterical Historical Hunt (Postoffice, Mansions, Strand), and Seawall Stroll (Hotel Galvez, Pleasure Pier, Seawall). The price is $14.95 for The Strand and Seawall while the Historical Hunt is $19.95.
You may also be interested in a new walking food tour. Check out www.TasteofTheStrand.com for their two hour culinary tours. The cost is $84.86 per person. Tours are offered Thursday though Sunday.
Although it’s not located downtown, we have to mention The Bryan Museum, 1315 21st Street. The Bryan Museum is a “must do” for history buffs. The Museum is home to the world’s largest collection of Southwestern art and artifacts.
Galveston Arts Center, 2127 Strand, has returned home and has three galleries featuring rotating exhibits of contemporary Texas artists as well as weekly art classes and gift shop along with a weekly yoga class on Wednesday.
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.
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.