Your Expert Guide
West University Place: Exemplary schools and a great location for close-knit community
There are so many great places to live in Houston that it helps to have an expert on your side. The Neighborhood Guide presented by Martha Turner Sotheby's International Realty gives you insider access from the agents who live and work there, providing in-the-know info about your possible new community.
Some Houston history: West University Place originated from its close proximity to Rice University. The city was declared incorporated on January 2, 1924, and the streets are named after universities and colleges throughout the country. It's only minutes away from the Texas Medical Center, Museum District, Galleria, and downtown, and it's an area that real estate agent Melinda Dawes-Ewing lives and works.
"West University has been my home for the last 20 years," she says. "The elementary school, the close-knit community, and safety have provided a unique neighborhood in which to raise my family."
It was also a natural spot for Dawes-Ewing to focus on when she began her real estate career eight years ago (though she also services surrounding areas of Houston). Families and professionals enjoy the small-town feel in the middle of a big city. Some even refer to West U as Mayberry, she says.
Few may know, but Dawes-Ewing's relationship with homes goes back even further. She worked behind the scenes of the popular TV show Extreme Home Makeover when it filmed in Houston in 2010.
Dawes-Ewing shared a few of her personal favorites about life in West University Place. Here's her guide:
Where to eat & drink
"Coppa Osteria and Tiny's No. 5 both have a quaint and social atmosphere, outstanding service, exceptional food, and great patios" she says. "I call Tiny’s No. 5 and Tiny's Milk & Cookies our hidden gems."
Where to play
West University Place is known for its various parks — so much so that the Friends of West University organization holds an annual Park Lovers' Ball to continue to preserve, develop, and grow these spaces for future generations.
Colonial Park offers a community pool, pavilion, tennis courts, and playground, Dawes-Ewing says, while the Rec Center has a lap pool, weight room, cardiovascular room, and racquetball courts. Additional classes such as yoga, Jazzercize, and dance are also offered.
Some of her favorite memories are volunteering on the Auxillary for West University Little League and West University Softball Association when her children played ball.
"In the spring, you can take a walk over to Wallin Field, grab a bite to eat at the Dugout, and watch a West University Little League Game,” Dawes-Ewing suggests. “It is such an amazing community."
Where to live
The uniqueness of West University Place is that all properties feature distinct architectural styles, shares Dawes-Ewing. From cottages to traditional homes to new construction, everyone can find the perfect home for their family.
One stunning custom home, 3763 Garnet St., is a recent sale of Dawes-Ewing's.
The four-bedroom home by acclaimed architect Travis Mattingly, masterfully crafted by Stonehenge Classic Homes, sits on a prime corner lot in desirable Southside Place, a separate city within West University Place.
Listed at $4,950,000, the home went under contract in less than 24 hours with multiple offers significantly over asking price, and resulted in the most expensive home ever sold in Southside Place.
“Melinda exhibited unbelievable professionalism from the very beginning of the process all the way through closing," says the seller. "She held our hand and guided us to a truly amazing outcome ”
Melinda Dawes-Ewing lives, works, and plays in West University Place. For more information on buying and selling a home in the area, click here, email email@example.com, or call 713-302-6765.