Hotel ZaZa pool

Hotel ZaZa

THE SHORT VERSION

A thoughtfully curated experience exuding an edgy elegance for a high-end, high-culture getaway.

Scene

Treat Yo Self

Hotel ZaZa’s Museum District location is where elegance meets attitude. With just enough of an edge, this boutique gem is a perfect fit for the neighborhood, fully stocked with artful portraits of celebrities and also a lobby water feature fully stocked with real, live koi. 

The atmosphere ranges from luxurious to curious; a quiet undercurrent of mystery keeping things interesting from the lobby to the lounge, and those are just the public spaces. Accommodations are carefully curated works of art in and of themselves, with 10 unique concept suites, over-the-top “Magnificent Seven” suites and eight separate options for the simpler guest rooms. If you can’t find something you like here, it’s probably your own fault. 

Worthy of a scene in a Wes Anderson film, the pool is outfitted with perfect symmetry in shades of blues, whites and yellows. Other scenic spots include the terrace inside Monarch, the hotel bar and restaurant, which overlooks the Mecom Fountain and the Museum of Fine Arts. 

Location

In the heart of it all

A concentration of outdoor beauty and indoor explorations surround Hotel ZaZa in the form of Hermann Park, McGovern Gardens as well as 19 museums. It’s easily walkable, bikeable, centrally located and is in proximity to Houston’s METROrail. Here’s a few ideas to get you going before you dive into the best things to do in Houston

  • Literally across the street you’ll find the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, home to over 70,000 works of art and one of the largest museums in the United States. 
  • Honoring the legacy of African Americans in military service, the Buffalo Soldier Museum offers a comprehensive look into the history of some of America’s bravest heroes. 
  • Lions and tigers and bears and giraffes and meerkats and sea lions, oh my! These, plus many more species and specialized habitat exhibits like the Patanal and Texas Wetlands are just a few reasons to visit the Houston Zoo. Make it a point to observe the gorillas, feed the giraffes and sit for a few moments of contemplation at the reflection pool.
  • Immerse yourself in a world of fluttering butterflies, look up into the cosmos (projected onto the ceiling of the planetarium), explore the very distant pre-vertebrate past, feel just how small you are under the gaze of a dinosaur skeleton and watch the sparkle of massive natural gemstones at the Houston Museum of Natural Science. For the full experience, budget the whole day. Plan ahead and pick a specific path if you’re on a schedule.
  • The Rothko Chapel is a place for quiet contemplation, so if you’re seeking solace, this is the spot. Displaying 14 murals from late artist Mark Rothko, the chapel is a moving experience for those of any (or even no) faith.

Rooms

Decisions, decisions

If variety is the spice of life, then ZaZa is a masala in the world of hotels. The options aren’t endless, and certainly not cheap, but they are exciting, luxurious, fun and even a little naughty in the best kinds of ways. 

Magnificent Seven suites

Magnificent is truly the correct adjective for these large-scale suites meant for over-the-top experiences. Pick from the Bella Vita, Black Label, Fatal Charms, For Your Eyes Only, It Happened One Night, Rock Star Suite or the Tycoon because #YOLO. The creme de la creme of Houston accommodations, all range between 900 to 2,200 square feet (approximately) and spare no details when it comes to design and decor.

Concept suites

Ten options await, ranging in square footage from 448 to almost 2,000, each individually themed and then properly outfitted. All are standouts, but first-time Houston visitors may enjoy the “Houston, We Have a Problem” suite suited for meetings and out-of-this-world experiences. An astronaut (suit only, no real humans included) stands guard over a corner overlooking a space age bubble chair and crescent-shaped sofa. 

Guest rooms (and mores suites)

So variety, right? It continues. Still more suites are available, though with smaller footprints compared to their aforementioned siblings, but in keeping with individualized details and luxurious amenities. On varying levels are the king or double balcony options, pool villa or bungalow and “petites,” rooms under 300 square feet. Truly something for everyone.

Amenities

Luxury abounds

It’s both boutique and luxury, and the amenities here reflect that. In-room, look for: Egyptian bathrobes and slippers, custom bedding and Italian linens, blackout drapes, stocked refrigerators with thoughtful snacks and sundries, room service, high-speed Wi-Fi, LED televisions with HD cable channels and a safe. Select rooms and suites also offer full dining rooms, kitchens, half bathrooms, soaking tubs, hardwood floors, work areas and washer/dryers.

Onsite: A hotel spa with a laundry list of services, Monarch, their signature bar and restaurant, a fully equipped business center, a dedicated concierge, the resort-level pool, fitness center, 24-hour front desk and much more. 

FOOD‌ ‌&‌ ‌BEVERAGE‌ ‌

Fancy & fun

Monarch soars with options for breakfast, lunch, dinner and even an after-hours DJ and bottle service on Saturdays. Brunch is available for weekend mornings through 2 p.m. with a mix of cultural classics like chicken and waffles, chilaquiles, brioche French toast, eggs Benedict and classics like pancakes and bacon. Weekday breakfast is scaled back with simple options like oatmeal and breakfast tacos. 

Lunch and dinner offerings are fairly standard, upscale and broad enough to keep everyone in the group satisfied. Think pasta, seafood, steaks and sandwiches. The food is good but the atmosphere is also a star, versatile enough for a romantic dinner or a buttoned-up business lunch. 

Beer, wine, cocktails and a limited menu are also available poolside, with bottle service options. 

If you do venture out, Toasted Coconut is an adventurous departure with rum cocktails and tropical dishes, The Breakfast Klub is a Houston institution for soul food and Lucille’s is a hot spot for upscale Southern fare. All are within a small radius of the hotel.