Search
Treat Yourself: Stay & Play in Houston
BUFFALO BAYOU PARK
The fourth-largest city in America is home to some of the best food, art, and luxury spas in the nation—and a 50-million-square-foot medical complex.

Your bags are packed, and you’re heading to the airport to catch a flight. Ideally, your destination is an island getaway, a remote respite, or just a long weekend with friends. But if you’re ill and heading to Houston, you’re joining the almost 10 million patients who seek medical care every year in the nation’s fourth-largest city. Houston is home to the Texas Medical Center (TMC), the world’s largest medical complex with 50 different medical institutions covering an area of 50 million developed square feet.

Book an acupuncture treatment with Dr. Sonya Patel, owner of Mirvana Acupuncture and Chinese Herbs. Patel is recognized for her expertise, research, and experience in working with cancer patients. “Research has proven that acupuncture is effective in alleviating the side effects of standard cancer therapy treatments, like chemotherapy and radiation, and can enhance a patient’s care program,” Patel says. For patients experiencing hair loss, Houston is home to TM Hair which offers a human-hair prosthesis enabling the wearer to recreate their pre-loss look.

COMFORT FOOD

Maintaining a healthy diet while traveling is always a challenge, but Houston’s diverse dining scene makes it easy to find delicious and good-for-you options in restaurants brimming with positive energy. James Beard-nominated chef/owner, Anita Jaisinghani of Pondicheri Café, creates creative and nourishing Indian food from morning to night with dosas, thalis, and curries that can be enjoyed by both vegan and gluten-free diners. Pondicheri’s Bake Lab + Shop offers takeaway snacks and sweets, including purportedly amazing chocolate chili cookies and spiced nuts.

PONDICHERI'S

Vibrant is a contemporary restaurant serving a plant-rich menu that’s gluten-free, dairy-free, and refined-sugar-free. The beautiful, airy space provides a relaxing dining environment where the interior’s clean color palette allows the artfully plated dishes to stand out. The most ardent bread fans will be won over by Vibrant’s chickpea flatbread and walnut cardamom bliss balls.

A short distance from TMC, you’ll find Green Seed Vegan in Houston’s historic Third Ward. This small restaurant with a handful of tables and barstool seating owes its popularity to cold-pressed raw juices, smoothies, and sandwiches and wraps that can all be made gluten-free. Must-order highlights include the BBQ-jackfruit sandwich and tacos filled with sunflower walnut “chorizo.”

Head over to nearby Emancipation Park for a stroll, and then cruise across the street to Crumbville, TX to treat yourself to the best vegan cookies and stuffed cupcakes you will ever eat—samples are offered so you can try before you buy. Don’t leave without a loving hug from baker/owner, Ella Russell, who will quickly become your new best friend.

If you’re not in the mood to dine out, order meals-to-go from Houston chains, Local Foods and bellagreen. Both restaurants have multiple locations around the city and are known for accommodating a range of dietary preferences—from vegan to keto, with an emphasis on freshly prepared food.

Whatever brings you to Houston, stay and play in style with the best food, entertainment, and accommodations in all of Texas.

JAPANESE GARDEN

TRELLIS SPA

According to Seliece Womble, the Houstonian’s director of marketing and public relations, the staff places importance on “providing physical comfort and nourishing treatments to guests visiting from out-of-town for medical treatment.” Many guests undergoing cancer treatments book the spa’s NB-Ceutical Facial by Natura Bissé, a paraben and alcohol-free facial that alleviates tightness, irritation, and flaking while soothing delicate skin. “[Guests] often share that visiting Trellis is a lovely indulgence and haven during their challenging time,” Womble says.

Reflexology and acupressure massage can release the knots created through the stress of treatment and sitting all day in waiting-room chairs. Midtown Reflexology’s signature $40 one-hour treatment is delivered while you relax in a cozy recliner. River Oaks Advanced Bodyworks’ larger menu of services includes reflexology as well as acupressure massage to relieve tension and improve circulation.

Book an acupuncture treatment with Dr. Sonya Patel, owner of Mirvana Acupuncture and Chinese Herbs. Patel is recognized for her expertise, research, and experience in working with cancer patients. “Research has proven that acupuncture is effective in alleviating the side effects of standard cancer therapy treatments, like chemotherapy and radiation, and can enhance a patient’s care program,” Patel says. For patients experiencing hair loss, Houston is home to TM Hair which offers a human-hair prosthesis enabling the wearer to recreate their pre-loss look.

COMFORT FOOD

Maintaining a healthy diet while traveling is always a challenge, but Houston’s diverse dining scene makes it easy to find delicious and good-for-you options in restaurants brimming with positive energy. James Beard-nominated chef/owner, Anita Jaisinghani of Pondicheri Café, creates creative and nourishing Indian food from morning to night with dosas, thalis, and curries that can be enjoyed by both vegan and gluten-free diners. Pondicheri’s Bake Lab + Shop offers takeaway snacks and sweets, including purportedly amazing chocolate chili cookies and spiced nuts.

PONDICHERI'S

Vibrant is a contemporary restaurant serving a plant-rich menu that’s gluten-free, dairy-free, and refined-sugar-free. The beautiful, airy space provides a relaxing dining environment where the interior’s clean color palette allows the artfully plated dishes to stand out. The most ardent bread fans will be won over by Vibrant’s chickpea flatbread and walnut cardamom bliss balls.

A short distance from TMC, you’ll find Green Seed Vegan in Houston’s historic Third Ward. This small restaurant with a handful of tables and barstool seating owes its popularity to cold-pressed raw juices, smoothies, and sandwiches and wraps that can all be made gluten-free. Must-order highlights include the BBQ-jackfruit sandwich and tacos filled with sunflower walnut “chorizo.”

Head over to nearby Emancipation Park for a stroll, and then cruise across the street to Crumbville, TX to treat yourself to the best vegan cookies and stuffed cupcakes you will ever eat—samples are offered so you can try before you buy. Don’t leave without a loving hug from baker/owner, Ella Russell, who will quickly become your new best friend.

If you’re not in the mood to dine out, order meals-to-go from Houston chains, Local Foods and bellagreen. Both restaurants have multiple locations around the city and are known for accommodating a range of dietary preferences—from vegan to keto, with an emphasis on freshly prepared food.

Whatever brings you to Houston, stay and play in style with the best food, entertainment, and accommodations in all of Texas.

JAPANESE GARDEN

The serene surroundings of the Menil Collection campus in Houston’s Montrose neighborhood immediately elicit a sense of relaxation. Feel like a kid again with a seat on the red wooden swing while people watching. Step inside the main building to view the light-filled galleries where the museum’s minimalist curatorial approach encourages you to spend time with the art.

ON THE BAYOU

Explore the hiking and biking paths at Buffalo Bayou Park. Opt for a serious trek or a leisurely paced walk among the wildflowers and wildlife. For a more urban refuge, the Houston Arboretum & Nature Center maintains five miles of trails winding through 155 acres of forest, wetlands, and meadow habitats. Stop for a moment of meditation at the observation deck overlooking a pond frequented by colorful dragonflies and turtles.

TRELLIS SPA

PAMPER YOURSELF

Spend an entire day unwinding at the Trellis Spa, a Forbes Travel Guide Four-Star spa, nestled in the 18-acre wooded grounds of the Houstonian Hotel. Guests are encouraged to arrive early to appointments to enjoy the included amenities: an indoor float pool, relaxation rooms, and hydrating stations with selections of cucumber water, juice, and the spa’s signature short-bread confetti cookies.

TRELLIS SPA

According to Seliece Womble, the Houstonian’s director of marketing and public relations, the staff places importance on “providing physical comfort and nourishing treatments to guests visiting from out-of-town for medical treatment.” Many guests undergoing cancer treatments book the spa’s NB-Ceutical Facial by Natura Bissé, a paraben and alcohol-free facial that alleviates tightness, irritation, and flaking while soothing delicate skin. “[Guests] often share that visiting Trellis is a lovely indulgence and haven during their challenging time,” Womble says.

Reflexology and acupressure massage can release the knots created through the stress of treatment and sitting all day in waiting-room chairs. Midtown Reflexology’s signature $40 one-hour treatment is delivered while you relax in a cozy recliner. River Oaks Advanced Bodyworks’ larger menu of services includes reflexology as well as acupressure massage to relieve tension and improve circulation.

Book an acupuncture treatment with Dr. Sonya Patel, owner of Mirvana Acupuncture and Chinese Herbs. Patel is recognized for her expertise, research, and experience in working with cancer patients. “Research has proven that acupuncture is effective in alleviating the side effects of standard cancer therapy treatments, like chemotherapy and radiation, and can enhance a patient’s care program,” Patel says. For patients experiencing hair loss, Houston is home to TM Hair which offers a human-hair prosthesis enabling the wearer to recreate their pre-loss look.

COMFORT FOOD

Maintaining a healthy diet while traveling is always a challenge, but Houston’s diverse dining scene makes it easy to find delicious and good-for-you options in restaurants brimming with positive energy. James Beard-nominated chef/owner, Anita Jaisinghani of Pondicheri Café, creates creative and nourishing Indian food from morning to night with dosas, thalis, and curries that can be enjoyed by both vegan and gluten-free diners. Pondicheri’s Bake Lab + Shop offers takeaway snacks and sweets, including purportedly amazing chocolate chili cookies and spiced nuts.

PONDICHERI'S

Vibrant is a contemporary restaurant serving a plant-rich menu that’s gluten-free, dairy-free, and refined-sugar-free. The beautiful, airy space provides a relaxing dining environment where the interior’s clean color palette allows the artfully plated dishes to stand out. The most ardent bread fans will be won over by Vibrant’s chickpea flatbread and walnut cardamom bliss balls.

A short distance from TMC, you’ll find Green Seed Vegan in Houston’s historic Third Ward. This small restaurant with a handful of tables and barstool seating owes its popularity to cold-pressed raw juices, smoothies, and sandwiches and wraps that can all be made gluten-free. Must-order highlights include the BBQ-jackfruit sandwich and tacos filled with sunflower walnut “chorizo.”

Head over to nearby Emancipation Park for a stroll, and then cruise across the street to Crumbville, TX to treat yourself to the best vegan cookies and stuffed cupcakes you will ever eat—samples are offered so you can try before you buy. Don’t leave without a loving hug from baker/owner, Ella Russell, who will quickly become your new best friend.

If you’re not in the mood to dine out, order meals-to-go from Houston chains, Local Foods and bellagreen. Both restaurants have multiple locations around the city and are known for accommodating a range of dietary preferences—from vegan to keto, with an emphasis on freshly prepared food.

Whatever brings you to Houston, stay and play in style with the best food, entertainment, and accommodations in all of Texas.

JAPANESE GARDEN

Nearby Hermann Park is filled with picturesque spots for a moment of zen, free of charge, like the peaceful Japanese Garden accented by a waterfall, koi pond, and flowering trees. However, the stunner of this 445-acre park is the McGovern Centennial Gardens. A grand lawn bordered by two perfectly landscaped pergola pathways leading to a 30-foot garden mount which greets you at the main entrance. Stroll the themed gardens decked out with roses and native plants before making your ascent on the wheelchair-friendly incline. Upon reaching the top, you’ll be treated to views overlooking Miller Outdoor Theatre, the Museum District, and the TMC skyline.

CHERIE FLORES

ART THERAPY

The serene surroundings of the Menil Collection campus in Houston’s Montrose neighborhood immediately elicit a sense of relaxation. Feel like a kid again with a seat on the red wooden swing while people watching. Step inside the main building to view the light-filled galleries where the museum’s minimalist curatorial approach encourages you to spend time with the art.

ON THE BAYOU

Explore the hiking and biking paths at Buffalo Bayou Park. Opt for a serious trek or a leisurely paced walk among the wildflowers and wildlife. For a more urban refuge, the Houston Arboretum & Nature Center maintains five miles of trails winding through 155 acres of forest, wetlands, and meadow habitats. Stop for a moment of meditation at the observation deck overlooking a pond frequented by colorful dragonflies and turtles.

TRELLIS SPA

PAMPER YOURSELF

Spend an entire day unwinding at the Trellis Spa, a Forbes Travel Guide Four-Star spa, nestled in the 18-acre wooded grounds of the Houstonian Hotel. Guests are encouraged to arrive early to appointments to enjoy the included amenities: an indoor float pool, relaxation rooms, and hydrating stations with selections of cucumber water, juice, and the spa’s signature short-bread confetti cookies.

TRELLIS SPA

According to Seliece Womble, the Houstonian’s director of marketing and public relations, the staff places importance on “providing physical comfort and nourishing treatments to guests visiting from out-of-town for medical treatment.” Many guests undergoing cancer treatments book the spa’s NB-Ceutical Facial by Natura Bissé, a paraben and alcohol-free facial that alleviates tightness, irritation, and flaking while soothing delicate skin. “[Guests] often share that visiting Trellis is a lovely indulgence and haven during their challenging time,” Womble says.

Reflexology and acupressure massage can release the knots created through the stress of treatment and sitting all day in waiting-room chairs. Midtown Reflexology’s signature $40 one-hour treatment is delivered while you relax in a cozy recliner. River Oaks Advanced Bodyworks’ larger menu of services includes reflexology as well as acupressure massage to relieve tension and improve circulation.

Book an acupuncture treatment with Dr. Sonya Patel, owner of Mirvana Acupuncture and Chinese Herbs. Patel is recognized for her expertise, research, and experience in working with cancer patients. “Research has proven that acupuncture is effective in alleviating the side effects of standard cancer therapy treatments, like chemotherapy and radiation, and can enhance a patient’s care program,” Patel says. For patients experiencing hair loss, Houston is home to TM Hair which offers a human-hair prosthesis enabling the wearer to recreate their pre-loss look.

COMFORT FOOD

Maintaining a healthy diet while traveling is always a challenge, but Houston’s diverse dining scene makes it easy to find delicious and good-for-you options in restaurants brimming with positive energy. James Beard-nominated chef/owner, Anita Jaisinghani of Pondicheri Café, creates creative and nourishing Indian food from morning to night with dosas, thalis, and curries that can be enjoyed by both vegan and gluten-free diners. Pondicheri’s Bake Lab + Shop offers takeaway snacks and sweets, including purportedly amazing chocolate chili cookies and spiced nuts.

PONDICHERI'S

Vibrant is a contemporary restaurant serving a plant-rich menu that’s gluten-free, dairy-free, and refined-sugar-free. The beautiful, airy space provides a relaxing dining environment where the interior’s clean color palette allows the artfully plated dishes to stand out. The most ardent bread fans will be won over by Vibrant’s chickpea flatbread and walnut cardamom bliss balls.

A short distance from TMC, you’ll find Green Seed Vegan in Houston’s historic Third Ward. This small restaurant with a handful of tables and barstool seating owes its popularity to cold-pressed raw juices, smoothies, and sandwiches and wraps that can all be made gluten-free. Must-order highlights include the BBQ-jackfruit sandwich and tacos filled with sunflower walnut “chorizo.”

Head over to nearby Emancipation Park for a stroll, and then cruise across the street to Crumbville, TX to treat yourself to the best vegan cookies and stuffed cupcakes you will ever eat—samples are offered so you can try before you buy. Don’t leave without a loving hug from baker/owner, Ella Russell, who will quickly become your new best friend.

If you’re not in the mood to dine out, order meals-to-go from Houston chains, Local Foods and bellagreen. Both restaurants have multiple locations around the city and are known for accommodating a range of dietary preferences—from vegan to keto, with an emphasis on freshly prepared food.

Whatever brings you to Houston, stay and play in style with the best food, entertainment, and accommodations in all of Texas.

JAPANESE GARDEN

Start your journey at the neighboring art-filled grounds of Rice University, where greenery and inviting oak-lined walkways provide the perfect antidote to the fluorescent lighting of hospital halls. Outdoor sculptures like Jaume Plensa’s “Mirror” and Houston artist Joseph Havel’s bronze spheres reward viewers who take a closer look. Start or end your day with an outdoor experience at James Turrell’s “Twilight Epiphany” Skyspace. The artist’s 40-minute LED light show enhances the sunrise and sunset viewed through what looks like a modern-day Mayan temple. (Free; reservations recommended for “Twilight Epiphany.”)

GREEN SPACE

Nearby Hermann Park is filled with picturesque spots for a moment of zen, free of charge, like the peaceful Japanese Garden accented by a waterfall, koi pond, and flowering trees. However, the stunner of this 445-acre park is the McGovern Centennial Gardens. A grand lawn bordered by two perfectly landscaped pergola pathways leading to a 30-foot garden mount which greets you at the main entrance. Stroll the themed gardens decked out with roses and native plants before making your ascent on the wheelchair-friendly incline. Upon reaching the top, you’ll be treated to views overlooking Miller Outdoor Theatre, the Museum District, and the TMC skyline.

CHERIE FLORES

ART THERAPY

The serene surroundings of the Menil Collection campus in Houston’s Montrose neighborhood immediately elicit a sense of relaxation. Feel like a kid again with a seat on the red wooden swing while people watching. Step inside the main building to view the light-filled galleries where the museum’s minimalist curatorial approach encourages you to spend time with the art.

ON THE BAYOU

Explore the hiking and biking paths at Buffalo Bayou Park. Opt for a serious trek or a leisurely paced walk among the wildflowers and wildlife. For a more urban refuge, the Houston Arboretum & Nature Center maintains five miles of trails winding through 155 acres of forest, wetlands, and meadow habitats. Stop for a moment of meditation at the observation deck overlooking a pond frequented by colorful dragonflies and turtles.

TRELLIS SPA

PAMPER YOURSELF

Spend an entire day unwinding at the Trellis Spa, a Forbes Travel Guide Four-Star spa, nestled in the 18-acre wooded grounds of the Houstonian Hotel. Guests are encouraged to arrive early to appointments to enjoy the included amenities: an indoor float pool, relaxation rooms, and hydrating stations with selections of cucumber water, juice, and the spa’s signature short-bread confetti cookies.

TRELLIS SPA

According to Seliece Womble, the Houstonian’s director of marketing and public relations, the staff places importance on “providing physical comfort and nourishing treatments to guests visiting from out-of-town for medical treatment.” Many guests undergoing cancer treatments book the spa’s NB-Ceutical Facial by Natura Bissé, a paraben and alcohol-free facial that alleviates tightness, irritation, and flaking while soothing delicate skin. “[Guests] often share that visiting Trellis is a lovely indulgence and haven during their challenging time,” Womble says.

Reflexology and acupressure massage can release the knots created through the stress of treatment and sitting all day in waiting-room chairs. Midtown Reflexology’s signature $40 one-hour treatment is delivered while you relax in a cozy recliner. River Oaks Advanced Bodyworks’ larger menu of services includes reflexology as well as acupressure massage to relieve tension and improve circulation.

Book an acupuncture treatment with Dr. Sonya Patel, owner of Mirvana Acupuncture and Chinese Herbs. Patel is recognized for her expertise, research, and experience in working with cancer patients. “Research has proven that acupuncture is effective in alleviating the side effects of standard cancer therapy treatments, like chemotherapy and radiation, and can enhance a patient’s care program,” Patel says. For patients experiencing hair loss, Houston is home to TM Hair which offers a human-hair prosthesis enabling the wearer to recreate their pre-loss look.

COMFORT FOOD

Maintaining a healthy diet while traveling is always a challenge, but Houston’s diverse dining scene makes it easy to find delicious and good-for-you options in restaurants brimming with positive energy. James Beard-nominated chef/owner, Anita Jaisinghani of Pondicheri Café, creates creative and nourishing Indian food from morning to night with dosas, thalis, and curries that can be enjoyed by both vegan and gluten-free diners. Pondicheri’s Bake Lab + Shop offers takeaway snacks and sweets, including purportedly amazing chocolate chili cookies and spiced nuts.

PONDICHERI'S

Vibrant is a contemporary restaurant serving a plant-rich menu that’s gluten-free, dairy-free, and refined-sugar-free. The beautiful, airy space provides a relaxing dining environment where the interior’s clean color palette allows the artfully plated dishes to stand out. The most ardent bread fans will be won over by Vibrant’s chickpea flatbread and walnut cardamom bliss balls.

A short distance from TMC, you’ll find Green Seed Vegan in Houston’s historic Third Ward. This small restaurant with a handful of tables and barstool seating owes its popularity to cold-pressed raw juices, smoothies, and sandwiches and wraps that can all be made gluten-free. Must-order highlights include the BBQ-jackfruit sandwich and tacos filled with sunflower walnut “chorizo.”

Head over to nearby Emancipation Park for a stroll, and then cruise across the street to Crumbville, TX to treat yourself to the best vegan cookies and stuffed cupcakes you will ever eat—samples are offered so you can try before you buy. Don’t leave without a loving hug from baker/owner, Ella Russell, who will quickly become your new best friend.

If you’re not in the mood to dine out, order meals-to-go from Houston chains, Local Foods and bellagreen. Both restaurants have multiple locations around the city and are known for accommodating a range of dietary preferences—from vegan to keto, with an emphasis on freshly prepared food.

Whatever brings you to Houston, stay and play in style with the best food, entertainment, and accommodations in all of Texas.

JAPANESE GARDEN

Although M.D. Anderson has plenty of amenities on its premises, a change of scenery is recommended given Houston’s status as a 2019 must-visit destination according to The New York Times and Travel + Leisure. The TMC’s central location offers many nearby opportunities to take a break in between appointments and enjoy the city’s art, nature, and cuisine.

JAUME PLENSA

BACK TO SCHOOL

Start your journey at the neighboring art-filled grounds of Rice University, where greenery and inviting oak-lined walkways provide the perfect antidote to the fluorescent lighting of hospital halls. Outdoor sculptures like Jaume Plensa’s “Mirror” and Houston artist Joseph Havel’s bronze spheres reward viewers who take a closer look. Start or end your day with an outdoor experience at James Turrell’s “Twilight Epiphany” Skyspace. The artist’s 40-minute LED light show enhances the sunrise and sunset viewed through what looks like a modern-day Mayan temple. (Free; reservations recommended for “Twilight Epiphany.”)

GREEN SPACE

Nearby Hermann Park is filled with picturesque spots for a moment of zen, free of charge, like the peaceful Japanese Garden accented by a waterfall, koi pond, and flowering trees. However, the stunner of this 445-acre park is the McGovern Centennial Gardens. A grand lawn bordered by two perfectly landscaped pergola pathways leading to a 30-foot garden mount which greets you at the main entrance. Stroll the themed gardens decked out with roses and native plants before making your ascent on the wheelchair-friendly incline. Upon reaching the top, you’ll be treated to views overlooking Miller Outdoor Theatre, the Museum District, and the TMC skyline.

CHERIE FLORES

ART THERAPY

The serene surroundings of the Menil Collection campus in Houston’s Montrose neighborhood immediately elicit a sense of relaxation. Feel like a kid again with a seat on the red wooden swing while people watching. Step inside the main building to view the light-filled galleries where the museum’s minimalist curatorial approach encourages you to spend time with the art.

ON THE BAYOU

Explore the hiking and biking paths at Buffalo Bayou Park. Opt for a serious trek or a leisurely paced walk among the wildflowers and wildlife. For a more urban refuge, the Houston Arboretum & Nature Center maintains five miles of trails winding through 155 acres of forest, wetlands, and meadow habitats. Stop for a moment of meditation at the observation deck overlooking a pond frequented by colorful dragonflies and turtles.

TRELLIS SPA

PAMPER YOURSELF

Spend an entire day unwinding at the Trellis Spa, a Forbes Travel Guide Four-Star spa, nestled in the 18-acre wooded grounds of the Houstonian Hotel. Guests are encouraged to arrive early to appointments to enjoy the included amenities: an indoor float pool, relaxation rooms, and hydrating stations with selections of cucumber water, juice, and the spa’s signature short-bread confetti cookies.

TRELLIS SPA

According to Seliece Womble, the Houstonian’s director of marketing and public relations, the staff places importance on “providing physical comfort and nourishing treatments to guests visiting from out-of-town for medical treatment.” Many guests undergoing cancer treatments book the spa’s NB-Ceutical Facial by Natura Bissé, a paraben and alcohol-free facial that alleviates tightness, irritation, and flaking while soothing delicate skin. “[Guests] often share that visiting Trellis is a lovely indulgence and haven during their challenging time,” Womble says.

Reflexology and acupressure massage can release the knots created through the stress of treatment and sitting all day in waiting-room chairs. Midtown Reflexology’s signature $40 one-hour treatment is delivered while you relax in a cozy recliner. River Oaks Advanced Bodyworks’ larger menu of services includes reflexology as well as acupressure massage to relieve tension and improve circulation.

Book an acupuncture treatment with Dr. Sonya Patel, owner of Mirvana Acupuncture and Chinese Herbs. Patel is recognized for her expertise, research, and experience in working with cancer patients. “Research has proven that acupuncture is effective in alleviating the side effects of standard cancer therapy treatments, like chemotherapy and radiation, and can enhance a patient’s care program,” Patel says. For patients experiencing hair loss, Houston is home to TM Hair which offers a human-hair prosthesis enabling the wearer to recreate their pre-loss look.

COMFORT FOOD

Maintaining a healthy diet while traveling is always a challenge, but Houston’s diverse dining scene makes it easy to find delicious and good-for-you options in restaurants brimming with positive energy. James Beard-nominated chef/owner, Anita Jaisinghani of Pondicheri Café, creates creative and nourishing Indian food from morning to night with dosas, thalis, and curries that can be enjoyed by both vegan and gluten-free diners. Pondicheri’s Bake Lab + Shop offers takeaway snacks and sweets, including purportedly amazing chocolate chili cookies and spiced nuts.

PONDICHERI'S

Vibrant is a contemporary restaurant serving a plant-rich menu that’s gluten-free, dairy-free, and refined-sugar-free. The beautiful, airy space provides a relaxing dining environment where the interior’s clean color palette allows the artfully plated dishes to stand out. The most ardent bread fans will be won over by Vibrant’s chickpea flatbread and walnut cardamom bliss balls.

A short distance from TMC, you’ll find Green Seed Vegan in Houston’s historic Third Ward. This small restaurant with a handful of tables and barstool seating owes its popularity to cold-pressed raw juices, smoothies, and sandwiches and wraps that can all be made gluten-free. Must-order highlights include the BBQ-jackfruit sandwich and tacos filled with sunflower walnut “chorizo.”

Head over to nearby Emancipation Park for a stroll, and then cruise across the street to Crumbville, TX to treat yourself to the best vegan cookies and stuffed cupcakes you will ever eat—samples are offered so you can try before you buy. Don’t leave without a loving hug from baker/owner, Ella Russell, who will quickly become your new best friend.

If you’re not in the mood to dine out, order meals-to-go from Houston chains, Local Foods and bellagreen. Both restaurants have multiple locations around the city and are known for accommodating a range of dietary preferences—from vegan to keto, with an emphasis on freshly prepared food.

Whatever brings you to Houston, stay and play in style with the best food, entertainment, and accommodations in all of Texas.

JAPANESE GARDEN

Hotel Ylem is a locally owned, family-run boutique hotel which received a major makeover from its past life as a Holiday Inn Express. Local art is displayed inside along with a three-story mural on its exterior, making this hotel a popular spot to snap a picture for Instagram. Sales from their mini-bars and cocktail lounge go to a charity devoted to providing clean drinking water to underserved parts of the world. Medical rates are offered as well as a shuttle service, complimentary breakfast, and a tablet concierge in every room to assist with logistics. Hotel Ylem is also within walking distance of NRG Stadium—home to the Houston Texans football team, concerts, and the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo.

HOTEL YLEM

For those who prefer a residential feel rather than a hotel room, Luxurway specializes in rental properties near the TMC with many one-story homes available, so there’s no need to climb stairs. Discounted extended-stay rates for TMC patients are offered, as well as a generous first right of refusal to medical care guests and their caregivers who might need to book a longer stay after their arrival.

BEYOND THE MEDICAL TOWERS

Although M.D. Anderson has plenty of amenities on its premises, a change of scenery is recommended given Houston’s status as a 2019 must-visit destination according to The New York Times and Travel + Leisure. The TMC’s central location offers many nearby opportunities to take a break in between appointments and enjoy the city’s art, nature, and cuisine.

JAUME PLENSA

BACK TO SCHOOL

Start your journey at the neighboring art-filled grounds of Rice University, where greenery and inviting oak-lined walkways provide the perfect antidote to the fluorescent lighting of hospital halls. Outdoor sculptures like Jaume Plensa’s “Mirror” and Houston artist Joseph Havel’s bronze spheres reward viewers who take a closer look. Start or end your day with an outdoor experience at James Turrell’s “Twilight Epiphany” Skyspace. The artist’s 40-minute LED light show enhances the sunrise and sunset viewed through what looks like a modern-day Mayan temple. (Free; reservations recommended for “Twilight Epiphany.”)

GREEN SPACE

Nearby Hermann Park is filled with picturesque spots for a moment of zen, free of charge, like the peaceful Japanese Garden accented by a waterfall, koi pond, and flowering trees. However, the stunner of this 445-acre park is the McGovern Centennial Gardens. A grand lawn bordered by two perfectly landscaped pergola pathways leading to a 30-foot garden mount which greets you at the main entrance. Stroll the themed gardens decked out with roses and native plants before making your ascent on the wheelchair-friendly incline. Upon reaching the top, you’ll be treated to views overlooking Miller Outdoor Theatre, the Museum District, and the TMC skyline.

CHERIE FLORES

ART THERAPY

The serene surroundings of the Menil Collection campus in Houston’s Montrose neighborhood immediately elicit a sense of relaxation. Feel like a kid again with a seat on the red wooden swing while people watching. Step inside the main building to view the light-filled galleries where the museum’s minimalist curatorial approach encourages you to spend time with the art.

ON THE BAYOU

Explore the hiking and biking paths at Buffalo Bayou Park. Opt for a serious trek or a leisurely paced walk among the wildflowers and wildlife. For a more urban refuge, the Houston Arboretum & Nature Center maintains five miles of trails winding through 155 acres of forest, wetlands, and meadow habitats. Stop for a moment of meditation at the observation deck overlooking a pond frequented by colorful dragonflies and turtles.

TRELLIS SPA

PAMPER YOURSELF

Spend an entire day unwinding at the Trellis Spa, a Forbes Travel Guide Four-Star spa, nestled in the 18-acre wooded grounds of the Houstonian Hotel. Guests are encouraged to arrive early to appointments to enjoy the included amenities: an indoor float pool, relaxation rooms, and hydrating stations with selections of cucumber water, juice, and the spa’s signature short-bread confetti cookies.

TRELLIS SPA

According to Seliece Womble, the Houstonian’s director of marketing and public relations, the staff places importance on “providing physical comfort and nourishing treatments to guests visiting from out-of-town for medical treatment.” Many guests undergoing cancer treatments book the spa’s NB-Ceutical Facial by Natura Bissé, a paraben and alcohol-free facial that alleviates tightness, irritation, and flaking while soothing delicate skin. “[Guests] often share that visiting Trellis is a lovely indulgence and haven during their challenging time,” Womble says.

Reflexology and acupressure massage can release the knots created through the stress of treatment and sitting all day in waiting-room chairs. Midtown Reflexology’s signature $40 one-hour treatment is delivered while you relax in a cozy recliner. River Oaks Advanced Bodyworks’ larger menu of services includes reflexology as well as acupressure massage to relieve tension and improve circulation.

Book an acupuncture treatment with Dr. Sonya Patel, owner of Mirvana Acupuncture and Chinese Herbs. Patel is recognized for her expertise, research, and experience in working with cancer patients. “Research has proven that acupuncture is effective in alleviating the side effects of standard cancer therapy treatments, like chemotherapy and radiation, and can enhance a patient’s care program,” Patel says. For patients experiencing hair loss, Houston is home to TM Hair which offers a human-hair prosthesis enabling the wearer to recreate their pre-loss look.

COMFORT FOOD

Maintaining a healthy diet while traveling is always a challenge, but Houston’s diverse dining scene makes it easy to find delicious and good-for-you options in restaurants brimming with positive energy. James Beard-nominated chef/owner, Anita Jaisinghani of Pondicheri Café, creates creative and nourishing Indian food from morning to night with dosas, thalis, and curries that can be enjoyed by both vegan and gluten-free diners. Pondicheri’s Bake Lab + Shop offers takeaway snacks and sweets, including purportedly amazing chocolate chili cookies and spiced nuts.

PONDICHERI'S

Vibrant is a contemporary restaurant serving a plant-rich menu that’s gluten-free, dairy-free, and refined-sugar-free. The beautiful, airy space provides a relaxing dining environment where the interior’s clean color palette allows the artfully plated dishes to stand out. The most ardent bread fans will be won over by Vibrant’s chickpea flatbread and walnut cardamom bliss balls.

A short distance from TMC, you’ll find Green Seed Vegan in Houston’s historic Third Ward. This small restaurant with a handful of tables and barstool seating owes its popularity to cold-pressed raw juices, smoothies, and sandwiches and wraps that can all be made gluten-free. Must-order highlights include the BBQ-jackfruit sandwich and tacos filled with sunflower walnut “chorizo.”

Head over to nearby Emancipation Park for a stroll, and then cruise across the street to Crumbville, TX to treat yourself to the best vegan cookies and stuffed cupcakes you will ever eat—samples are offered so you can try before you buy. Don’t leave without a loving hug from baker/owner, Ella Russell, who will quickly become your new best friend.

If you’re not in the mood to dine out, order meals-to-go from Houston chains, Local Foods and bellagreen. Both restaurants have multiple locations around the city and are known for accommodating a range of dietary preferences—from vegan to keto, with an emphasis on freshly prepared food.

Whatever brings you to Houston, stay and play in style with the best food, entertainment, and accommodations in all of Texas.

JAPANESE GARDEN

Many M.D. Anderson patients stay at Rotary House International, a hotel connected conveniently to M.D. Anderson via skybridge and managed by Marriott. However, there are also lodging options nearby beyond the major chains.

Hotel Ylem is a locally owned, family-run boutique hotel which received a major makeover from its past life as a Holiday Inn Express. Local art is displayed inside along with a three-story mural on its exterior, making this hotel a popular spot to snap a picture for Instagram. Sales from their mini-bars and cocktail lounge go to a charity devoted to providing clean drinking water to underserved parts of the world. Medical rates are offered as well as a shuttle service, complimentary breakfast, and a tablet concierge in every room to assist with logistics. Hotel Ylem is also within walking distance of NRG Stadium—home to the Houston Texans football team, concerts, and the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo.

HOTEL YLEM

For those who prefer a residential feel rather than a hotel room, Luxurway specializes in rental properties near the TMC with many one-story homes available, so there’s no need to climb stairs. Discounted extended-stay rates for TMC patients are offered, as well as a generous first right of refusal to medical care guests and their caregivers who might need to book a longer stay after their arrival.

BEYOND THE MEDICAL TOWERS

Although M.D. Anderson has plenty of amenities on its premises, a change of scenery is recommended given Houston’s status as a 2019 must-visit destination according to The New York Times and Travel + Leisure. The TMC’s central location offers many nearby opportunities to take a break in between appointments and enjoy the city’s art, nature, and cuisine.

JAUME PLENSA

BACK TO SCHOOL

Start your journey at the neighboring art-filled grounds of Rice University, where greenery and inviting oak-lined walkways provide the perfect antidote to the fluorescent lighting of hospital halls. Outdoor sculptures like Jaume Plensa’s “Mirror” and Houston artist Joseph Havel’s bronze spheres reward viewers who take a closer look. Start or end your day with an outdoor experience at James Turrell’s “Twilight Epiphany” Skyspace. The artist’s 40-minute LED light show enhances the sunrise and sunset viewed through what looks like a modern-day Mayan temple. (Free; reservations recommended for “Twilight Epiphany.”)

GREEN SPACE

Nearby Hermann Park is filled with picturesque spots for a moment of zen, free of charge, like the peaceful Japanese Garden accented by a waterfall, koi pond, and flowering trees. However, the stunner of this 445-acre park is the McGovern Centennial Gardens. A grand lawn bordered by two perfectly landscaped pergola pathways leading to a 30-foot garden mount which greets you at the main entrance. Stroll the themed gardens decked out with roses and native plants before making your ascent on the wheelchair-friendly incline. Upon reaching the top, you’ll be treated to views overlooking Miller Outdoor Theatre, the Museum District, and the TMC skyline.

CHERIE FLORES

ART THERAPY

The serene surroundings of the Menil Collection campus in Houston’s Montrose neighborhood immediately elicit a sense of relaxation. Feel like a kid again with a seat on the red wooden swing while people watching. Step inside the main building to view the light-filled galleries where the museum’s minimalist curatorial approach encourages you to spend time with the art.

ON THE BAYOU

Explore the hiking and biking paths at Buffalo Bayou Park. Opt for a serious trek or a leisurely paced walk among the wildflowers and wildlife. For a more urban refuge, the Houston Arboretum & Nature Center maintains five miles of trails winding through 155 acres of forest, wetlands, and meadow habitats. Stop for a moment of meditation at the observation deck overlooking a pond frequented by colorful dragonflies and turtles.

TRELLIS SPA

PAMPER YOURSELF

Spend an entire day unwinding at the Trellis Spa, a Forbes Travel Guide Four-Star spa, nestled in the 18-acre wooded grounds of the Houstonian Hotel. Guests are encouraged to arrive early to appointments to enjoy the included amenities: an indoor float pool, relaxation rooms, and hydrating stations with selections of cucumber water, juice, and the spa’s signature short-bread confetti cookies.

TRELLIS SPA

According to Seliece Womble, the Houstonian’s director of marketing and public relations, the staff places importance on “providing physical comfort and nourishing treatments to guests visiting from out-of-town for medical treatment.” Many guests undergoing cancer treatments book the spa’s NB-Ceutical Facial by Natura Bissé, a paraben and alcohol-free facial that alleviates tightness, irritation, and flaking while soothing delicate skin. “[Guests] often share that visiting Trellis is a lovely indulgence and haven during their challenging time,” Womble says.

Reflexology and acupressure massage can release the knots created through the stress of treatment and sitting all day in waiting-room chairs. Midtown Reflexology’s signature $40 one-hour treatment is delivered while you relax in a cozy recliner. River Oaks Advanced Bodyworks’ larger menu of services includes reflexology as well as acupressure massage to relieve tension and improve circulation.

Book an acupuncture treatment with Dr. Sonya Patel, owner of Mirvana Acupuncture and Chinese Herbs. Patel is recognized for her expertise, research, and experience in working with cancer patients. “Research has proven that acupuncture is effective in alleviating the side effects of standard cancer therapy treatments, like chemotherapy and radiation, and can enhance a patient’s care program,” Patel says. For patients experiencing hair loss, Houston is home to TM Hair which offers a human-hair prosthesis enabling the wearer to recreate their pre-loss look.

COMFORT FOOD

Maintaining a healthy diet while traveling is always a challenge, but Houston’s diverse dining scene makes it easy to find delicious and good-for-you options in restaurants brimming with positive energy. James Beard-nominated chef/owner, Anita Jaisinghani of Pondicheri Café, creates creative and nourishing Indian food from morning to night with dosas, thalis, and curries that can be enjoyed by both vegan and gluten-free diners. Pondicheri’s Bake Lab + Shop offers takeaway snacks and sweets, including purportedly amazing chocolate chili cookies and spiced nuts.

PONDICHERI'S

Vibrant is a contemporary restaurant serving a plant-rich menu that’s gluten-free, dairy-free, and refined-sugar-free. The beautiful, airy space provides a relaxing dining environment where the interior’s clean color palette allows the artfully plated dishes to stand out. The most ardent bread fans will be won over by Vibrant’s chickpea flatbread and walnut cardamom bliss balls.

A short distance from TMC, you’ll find Green Seed Vegan in Houston’s historic Third Ward. This small restaurant with a handful of tables and barstool seating owes its popularity to cold-pressed raw juices, smoothies, and sandwiches and wraps that can all be made gluten-free. Must-order highlights include the BBQ-jackfruit sandwich and tacos filled with sunflower walnut “chorizo.”

Head over to nearby Emancipation Park for a stroll, and then cruise across the street to Crumbville, TX to treat yourself to the best vegan cookies and stuffed cupcakes you will ever eat—samples are offered so you can try before you buy. Don’t leave without a loving hug from baker/owner, Ella Russell, who will quickly become your new best friend.

If you’re not in the mood to dine out, order meals-to-go from Houston chains, Local Foods and bellagreen. Both restaurants have multiple locations around the city and are known for accommodating a range of dietary preferences—from vegan to keto, with an emphasis on freshly prepared food.

Whatever brings you to Houston, stay and play in style with the best food, entertainment, and accommodations in all of Texas.

JAPANESE GARDEN

M.D. Anderson’s Integrative Medicine Center features an array of services, from meditation to onco-massage therapy. Contact the center in advance to schedule services during your visit. Volunteer stylists staff the beauty and barber shop where patients receive complimentary shampoos and haircuts. Music lovers can listen to volunteer pianists, along with the occasional harpist at various locations, including M.D. Anderson’s Hospitality Center. There’s also an observation deck on the 24th floor of the Main Building and gardens for an on-site outdoors fix.

WHERE TO STAY

Many M.D. Anderson patients stay at Rotary House International, a hotel connected conveniently to M.D. Anderson via skybridge and managed by Marriott. However, there are also lodging options nearby beyond the major chains.

Hotel Ylem is a locally owned, family-run boutique hotel which received a major makeover from its past life as a Holiday Inn Express. Local art is displayed inside along with a three-story mural on its exterior, making this hotel a popular spot to snap a picture for Instagram. Sales from their mini-bars and cocktail lounge go to a charity devoted to providing clean drinking water to underserved parts of the world. Medical rates are offered as well as a shuttle service, complimentary breakfast, and a tablet concierge in every room to assist with logistics. Hotel Ylem is also within walking distance of NRG Stadium—home to the Houston Texans football team, concerts, and the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo.

HOTEL YLEM

For those who prefer a residential feel rather than a hotel room, Luxurway specializes in rental properties near the TMC with many one-story homes available, so there’s no need to climb stairs. Discounted extended-stay rates for TMC patients are offered, as well as a generous first right of refusal to medical care guests and their caregivers who might need to book a longer stay after their arrival.

BEYOND THE MEDICAL TOWERS

Although M.D. Anderson has plenty of amenities on its premises, a change of scenery is recommended given Houston’s status as a 2019 must-visit destination according to The New York Times and Travel + Leisure. The TMC’s central location offers many nearby opportunities to take a break in between appointments and enjoy the city’s art, nature, and cuisine.

JAUME PLENSA

BACK TO SCHOOL

Start your journey at the neighboring art-filled grounds of Rice University, where greenery and inviting oak-lined walkways provide the perfect antidote to the fluorescent lighting of hospital halls. Outdoor sculptures like Jaume Plensa’s “Mirror” and Houston artist Joseph Havel’s bronze spheres reward viewers who take a closer look. Start or end your day with an outdoor experience at James Turrell’s “Twilight Epiphany” Skyspace. The artist’s 40-minute LED light show enhances the sunrise and sunset viewed through what looks like a modern-day Mayan temple. (Free; reservations recommended for “Twilight Epiphany.”)

GREEN SPACE

Nearby Hermann Park is filled with picturesque spots for a moment of zen, free of charge, like the peaceful Japanese Garden accented by a waterfall, koi pond, and flowering trees. However, the stunner of this 445-acre park is the McGovern Centennial Gardens. A grand lawn bordered by two perfectly landscaped pergola pathways leading to a 30-foot garden mount which greets you at the main entrance. Stroll the themed gardens decked out with roses and native plants before making your ascent on the wheelchair-friendly incline. Upon reaching the top, you’ll be treated to views overlooking Miller Outdoor Theatre, the Museum District, and the TMC skyline.

CHERIE FLORES

ART THERAPY

The serene surroundings of the Menil Collection campus in Houston’s Montrose neighborhood immediately elicit a sense of relaxation. Feel like a kid again with a seat on the red wooden swing while people watching. Step inside the main building to view the light-filled galleries where the museum’s minimalist curatorial approach encourages you to spend time with the art.

ON THE BAYOU

Explore the hiking and biking paths at Buffalo Bayou Park. Opt for a serious trek or a leisurely paced walk among the wildflowers and wildlife. For a more urban refuge, the Houston Arboretum & Nature Center maintains five miles of trails winding through 155 acres of forest, wetlands, and meadow habitats. Stop for a moment of meditation at the observation deck overlooking a pond frequented by colorful dragonflies and turtles.

TRELLIS SPA

PAMPER YOURSELF

Spend an entire day unwinding at the Trellis Spa, a Forbes Travel Guide Four-Star spa, nestled in the 18-acre wooded grounds of the Houstonian Hotel. Guests are encouraged to arrive early to appointments to enjoy the included amenities: an indoor float pool, relaxation rooms, and hydrating stations with selections of cucumber water, juice, and the spa’s signature short-bread confetti cookies.

TRELLIS SPA

According to Seliece Womble, the Houstonian’s director of marketing and public relations, the staff places importance on “providing physical comfort and nourishing treatments to guests visiting from out-of-town for medical treatment.” Many guests undergoing cancer treatments book the spa’s NB-Ceutical Facial by Natura Bissé, a paraben and alcohol-free facial that alleviates tightness, irritation, and flaking while soothing delicate skin. “[Guests] often share that visiting Trellis is a lovely indulgence and haven during their challenging time,” Womble says.

Reflexology and acupressure massage can release the knots created through the stress of treatment and sitting all day in waiting-room chairs. Midtown Reflexology’s signature $40 one-hour treatment is delivered while you relax in a cozy recliner. River Oaks Advanced Bodyworks’ larger menu of services includes reflexology as well as acupressure massage to relieve tension and improve circulation.

Book an acupuncture treatment with Dr. Sonya Patel, owner of Mirvana Acupuncture and Chinese Herbs. Patel is recognized for her expertise, research, and experience in working with cancer patients. “Research has proven that acupuncture is effective in alleviating the side effects of standard cancer therapy treatments, like chemotherapy and radiation, and can enhance a patient’s care program,” Patel says. For patients experiencing hair loss, Houston is home to TM Hair which offers a human-hair prosthesis enabling the wearer to recreate their pre-loss look.

COMFORT FOOD

Maintaining a healthy diet while traveling is always a challenge, but Houston’s diverse dining scene makes it easy to find delicious and good-for-you options in restaurants brimming with positive energy. James Beard-nominated chef/owner, Anita Jaisinghani of Pondicheri Café, creates creative and nourishing Indian food from morning to night with dosas, thalis, and curries that can be enjoyed by both vegan and gluten-free diners. Pondicheri’s Bake Lab + Shop offers takeaway snacks and sweets, including purportedly amazing chocolate chili cookies and spiced nuts.

PONDICHERI'S

Vibrant is a contemporary restaurant serving a plant-rich menu that’s gluten-free, dairy-free, and refined-sugar-free. The beautiful, airy space provides a relaxing dining environment where the interior’s clean color palette allows the artfully plated dishes to stand out. The most ardent bread fans will be won over by Vibrant’s chickpea flatbread and walnut cardamom bliss balls.

A short distance from TMC, you’ll find Green Seed Vegan in Houston’s historic Third Ward. This small restaurant with a handful of tables and barstool seating owes its popularity to cold-pressed raw juices, smoothies, and sandwiches and wraps that can all be made gluten-free. Must-order highlights include the BBQ-jackfruit sandwich and tacos filled with sunflower walnut “chorizo.”

Head over to nearby Emancipation Park for a stroll, and then cruise across the street to Crumbville, TX to treat yourself to the best vegan cookies and stuffed cupcakes you will ever eat—samples are offered so you can try before you buy. Don’t leave without a loving hug from baker/owner, Ella Russell, who will quickly become your new best friend.

If you’re not in the mood to dine out, order meals-to-go from Houston chains, Local Foods and bellagreen. Both restaurants have multiple locations around the city and are known for accommodating a range of dietary preferences—from vegan to keto, with an emphasis on freshly prepared food.

Whatever brings you to Houston, stay and play in style with the best food, entertainment, and accommodations in all of Texas.

JAPANESE GARDEN

M.D. Anderson’s Patient Travel Services provides discounts for patients and their caregivers’ domestic and international flights, as well as bilingual assistance. Renting a car will allow you and your crew to get around the city with ease, but there are also rideshare options like Lyft and Uber if you prefer the passenger side. The TMC links to the MetroRail system with stops in Hermann Park and Houston’s Midtown and Downtown areas where you’ll find restaurants and entertainment.

MDACC

Houston Medical Center and MD Anderson

HELPFUL RESOURCES AND SUPPORT SERVICES

M.D. Anderson’s Integrative Medicine Center features an array of services, from meditation to onco-massage therapy. Contact the center in advance to schedule services during your visit. Volunteer stylists staff the beauty and barber shop where patients receive complimentary shampoos and haircuts. Music lovers can listen to volunteer pianists, along with the occasional harpist at various locations, including M.D. Anderson’s Hospitality Center. There’s also an observation deck on the 24th floor of the Main Building and gardens for an on-site outdoors fix.

WHERE TO STAY

Many M.D. Anderson patients stay at Rotary House International, a hotel connected conveniently to M.D. Anderson via skybridge and managed by Marriott. However, there are also lodging options nearby beyond the major chains.

Hotel Ylem is a locally owned, family-run boutique hotel which received a major makeover from its past life as a Holiday Inn Express. Local art is displayed inside along with a three-story mural on its exterior, making this hotel a popular spot to snap a picture for Instagram. Sales from their mini-bars and cocktail lounge go to a charity devoted to providing clean drinking water to underserved parts of the world. Medical rates are offered as well as a shuttle service, complimentary breakfast, and a tablet concierge in every room to assist with logistics. Hotel Ylem is also within walking distance of NRG Stadium—home to the Houston Texans football team, concerts, and the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo.

HOTEL YLEM

For those who prefer a residential feel rather than a hotel room, Luxurway specializes in rental properties near the TMC with many one-story homes available, so there’s no need to climb stairs. Discounted extended-stay rates for TMC patients are offered, as well as a generous first right of refusal to medical care guests and their caregivers who might need to book a longer stay after their arrival.

BEYOND THE MEDICAL TOWERS

Although M.D. Anderson has plenty of amenities on its premises, a change of scenery is recommended given Houston’s status as a 2019 must-visit destination according to The New York Times and Travel + Leisure. The TMC’s central location offers many nearby opportunities to take a break in between appointments and enjoy the city’s art, nature, and cuisine.

JAUME PLENSA

BACK TO SCHOOL

Start your journey at the neighboring art-filled grounds of Rice University, where greenery and inviting oak-lined walkways provide the perfect antidote to the fluorescent lighting of hospital halls. Outdoor sculptures like Jaume Plensa’s “Mirror” and Houston artist Joseph Havel’s bronze spheres reward viewers who take a closer look. Start or end your day with an outdoor experience at James Turrell’s “Twilight Epiphany” Skyspace. The artist’s 40-minute LED light show enhances the sunrise and sunset viewed through what looks like a modern-day Mayan temple. (Free; reservations recommended for “Twilight Epiphany.”)

GREEN SPACE

Nearby Hermann Park is filled with picturesque spots for a moment of zen, free of charge, like the peaceful Japanese Garden accented by a waterfall, koi pond, and flowering trees. However, the stunner of this 445-acre park is the McGovern Centennial Gardens. A grand lawn bordered by two perfectly landscaped pergola pathways leading to a 30-foot garden mount which greets you at the main entrance. Stroll the themed gardens decked out with roses and native plants before making your ascent on the wheelchair-friendly incline. Upon reaching the top, you’ll be treated to views overlooking Miller Outdoor Theatre, the Museum District, and the TMC skyline.

CHERIE FLORES

ART THERAPY

The serene surroundings of the Menil Collection campus in Houston’s Montrose neighborhood immediately elicit a sense of relaxation. Feel like a kid again with a seat on the red wooden swing while people watching. Step inside the main building to view the light-filled galleries where the museum’s minimalist curatorial approach encourages you to spend time with the art.

ON THE BAYOU

Explore the hiking and biking paths at Buffalo Bayou Park. Opt for a serious trek or a leisurely paced walk among the wildflowers and wildlife. For a more urban refuge, the Houston Arboretum & Nature Center maintains five miles of trails winding through 155 acres of forest, wetlands, and meadow habitats. Stop for a moment of meditation at the observation deck overlooking a pond frequented by colorful dragonflies and turtles.

TRELLIS SPA

PAMPER YOURSELF

Spend an entire day unwinding at the Trellis Spa, a Forbes Travel Guide Four-Star spa, nestled in the 18-acre wooded grounds of the Houstonian Hotel. Guests are encouraged to arrive early to appointments to enjoy the included amenities: an indoor float pool, relaxation rooms, and hydrating stations with selections of cucumber water, juice, and the spa’s signature short-bread confetti cookies.

TRELLIS SPA

According to Seliece Womble, the Houstonian’s director of marketing and public relations, the staff places importance on “providing physical comfort and nourishing treatments to guests visiting from out-of-town for medical treatment.” Many guests undergoing cancer treatments book the spa’s NB-Ceutical Facial by Natura Bissé, a paraben and alcohol-free facial that alleviates tightness, irritation, and flaking while soothing delicate skin. “[Guests] often share that visiting Trellis is a lovely indulgence and haven during their challenging time,” Womble says.

Reflexology and acupressure massage can release the knots created through the stress of treatment and sitting all day in waiting-room chairs. Midtown Reflexology’s signature $40 one-hour treatment is delivered while you relax in a cozy recliner. River Oaks Advanced Bodyworks’ larger menu of services includes reflexology as well as acupressure massage to relieve tension and improve circulation.

Book an acupuncture treatment with Dr. Sonya Patel, owner of Mirvana Acupuncture and Chinese Herbs. Patel is recognized for her expertise, research, and experience in working with cancer patients. “Research has proven that acupuncture is effective in alleviating the side effects of standard cancer therapy treatments, like chemotherapy and radiation, and can enhance a patient’s care program,” Patel says. For patients experiencing hair loss, Houston is home to TM Hair which offers a human-hair prosthesis enabling the wearer to recreate their pre-loss look.

COMFORT FOOD

Maintaining a healthy diet while traveling is always a challenge, but Houston’s diverse dining scene makes it easy to find delicious and good-for-you options in restaurants brimming with positive energy. James Beard-nominated chef/owner, Anita Jaisinghani of Pondicheri Café, creates creative and nourishing Indian food from morning to night with dosas, thalis, and curries that can be enjoyed by both vegan and gluten-free diners. Pondicheri’s Bake Lab + Shop offers takeaway snacks and sweets, including purportedly amazing chocolate chili cookies and spiced nuts.

PONDICHERI'S

Vibrant is a contemporary restaurant serving a plant-rich menu that’s gluten-free, dairy-free, and refined-sugar-free. The beautiful, airy space provides a relaxing dining environment where the interior’s clean color palette allows the artfully plated dishes to stand out. The most ardent bread fans will be won over by Vibrant’s chickpea flatbread and walnut cardamom bliss balls.

A short distance from TMC, you’ll find Green Seed Vegan in Houston’s historic Third Ward. This small restaurant with a handful of tables and barstool seating owes its popularity to cold-pressed raw juices, smoothies, and sandwiches and wraps that can all be made gluten-free. Must-order highlights include the BBQ-jackfruit sandwich and tacos filled with sunflower walnut “chorizo.”

Head over to nearby Emancipation Park for a stroll, and then cruise across the street to Crumbville, TX to treat yourself to the best vegan cookies and stuffed cupcakes you will ever eat—samples are offered so you can try before you buy. Don’t leave without a loving hug from baker/owner, Ella Russell, who will quickly become your new best friend.

If you’re not in the mood to dine out, order meals-to-go from Houston chains, Local Foods and bellagreen. Both restaurants have multiple locations around the city and are known for accommodating a range of dietary preferences—from vegan to keto, with an emphasis on freshly prepared food.

Whatever brings you to Houston, stay and play in style with the best food, entertainment, and accommodations in all of Texas.

JAPANESE GARDEN

Back in the 1930s, a hefty donation from Monroe Dunaway Anderson, a banker and cotton trader, led to the eventual establishment of the world’s largest cancer hospital which bears the name of its generous benefactor, the University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center. More than 137,000 people visit the facility annually, including many out-of-towners who would be hard-pressed to call their stay a vacation. Instead, it’s more akin to a business trip, where the business is wellness. Nevertheless, patients and their traveling companions still need “me time” away from the hospital setting. After mastering navigating Houston’s medical mini-metropolis, consider exploring the city itself.

DOWNTOWN HOUSTON

KNOW BEFORE YOU GO

M.D. Anderson’s Patient Travel Services provides discounts for patients and their caregivers’ domestic and international flights, as well as bilingual assistance. Renting a car will allow you and your crew to get around the city with ease, but there are also rideshare options like Lyft and Uber if you prefer the passenger side. The TMC links to the MetroRail system with stops in Hermann Park and Houston’s Midtown and Downtown areas where you’ll find restaurants and entertainment.

MDACC

Houston Medical Center and MD Anderson

HELPFUL RESOURCES AND SUPPORT SERVICES

M.D. Anderson’s Integrative Medicine Center features an array of services, from meditation to onco-massage therapy. Contact the center in advance to schedule services during your visit. Volunteer stylists staff the beauty and barber shop where patients receive complimentary shampoos and haircuts. Music lovers can listen to volunteer pianists, along with the occasional harpist at various locations, including M.D. Anderson’s Hospitality Center. There’s also an observation deck on the 24th floor of the Main Building and gardens for an on-site outdoors fix.

WHERE TO STAY

Many M.D. Anderson patients stay at Rotary House International, a hotel connected conveniently to M.D. Anderson via skybridge and managed by Marriott. However, there are also lodging options nearby beyond the major chains.

Hotel Ylem is a locally owned, family-run boutique hotel which received a major makeover from its past life as a Holiday Inn Express. Local art is displayed inside along with a three-story mural on its exterior, making this hotel a popular spot to snap a picture for Instagram. Sales from their mini-bars and cocktail lounge go to a charity devoted to providing clean drinking water to underserved parts of the world. Medical rates are offered as well as a shuttle service, complimentary breakfast, and a tablet concierge in every room to assist with logistics. Hotel Ylem is also within walking distance of NRG Stadium—home to the Houston Texans football team, concerts, and the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo.

HOTEL YLEM

For those who prefer a residential feel rather than a hotel room, Luxurway specializes in rental properties near the TMC with many one-story homes available, so there’s no need to climb stairs. Discounted extended-stay rates for TMC patients are offered, as well as a generous first right of refusal to medical care guests and their caregivers who might need to book a longer stay after their arrival.

BEYOND THE MEDICAL TOWERS

Although M.D. Anderson has plenty of amenities on its premises, a change of scenery is recommended given Houston’s status as a 2019 must-visit destination according to The New York Times and Travel + Leisure. The TMC’s central location offers many nearby opportunities to take a break in between appointments and enjoy the city’s art, nature, and cuisine.

JAUME PLENSA

BACK TO SCHOOL

Start your journey at the neighboring art-filled grounds of Rice University, where greenery and inviting oak-lined walkways provide the perfect antidote to the fluorescent lighting of hospital halls. Outdoor sculptures like Jaume Plensa’s “Mirror” and Houston artist Joseph Havel’s bronze spheres reward viewers who take a closer look. Start or end your day with an outdoor experience at James Turrell’s “Twilight Epiphany” Skyspace. The artist’s 40-minute LED light show enhances the sunrise and sunset viewed through what looks like a modern-day Mayan temple. (Free; reservations recommended for “Twilight Epiphany.”)

GREEN SPACE

Nearby Hermann Park is filled with picturesque spots for a moment of zen, free of charge, like the peaceful Japanese Garden accented by a waterfall, koi pond, and flowering trees. However, the stunner of this 445-acre park is the McGovern Centennial Gardens. A grand lawn bordered by two perfectly landscaped pergola pathways leading to a 30-foot garden mount which greets you at the main entrance. Stroll the themed gardens decked out with roses and native plants before making your ascent on the wheelchair-friendly incline. Upon reaching the top, you’ll be treated to views overlooking Miller Outdoor Theatre, the Museum District, and the TMC skyline.

CHERIE FLORES

ART THERAPY

The serene surroundings of the Menil Collection campus in Houston’s Montrose neighborhood immediately elicit a sense of relaxation. Feel like a kid again with a seat on the red wooden swing while people watching. Step inside the main building to view the light-filled galleries where the museum’s minimalist curatorial approach encourages you to spend time with the art.

ON THE BAYOU

Explore the hiking and biking paths at Buffalo Bayou Park. Opt for a serious trek or a leisurely paced walk among the wildflowers and wildlife. For a more urban refuge, the Houston Arboretum & Nature Center maintains five miles of trails winding through 155 acres of forest, wetlands, and meadow habitats. Stop for a moment of meditation at the observation deck overlooking a pond frequented by colorful dragonflies and turtles.

TRELLIS SPA

PAMPER YOURSELF

Spend an entire day unwinding at the Trellis Spa, a Forbes Travel Guide Four-Star spa, nestled in the 18-acre wooded grounds of the Houstonian Hotel. Guests are encouraged to arrive early to appointments to enjoy the included amenities: an indoor float pool, relaxation rooms, and hydrating stations with selections of cucumber water, juice, and the spa’s signature short-bread confetti cookies.

TRELLIS SPA

According to Seliece Womble, the Houstonian’s director of marketing and public relations, the staff places importance on “providing physical comfort and nourishing treatments to guests visiting from out-of-town for medical treatment.” Many guests undergoing cancer treatments book the spa’s NB-Ceutical Facial by Natura Bissé, a paraben and alcohol-free facial that alleviates tightness, irritation, and flaking while soothing delicate skin. “[Guests] often share that visiting Trellis is a lovely indulgence and haven during their challenging time,” Womble says.

Reflexology and acupressure massage can release the knots created through the stress of treatment and sitting all day in waiting-room chairs. Midtown Reflexology’s signature $40 one-hour treatment is delivered while you relax in a cozy recliner. River Oaks Advanced Bodyworks’ larger menu of services includes reflexology as well as acupressure massage to relieve tension and improve circulation.

Book an acupuncture treatment with Dr. Sonya Patel, owner of Mirvana Acupuncture and Chinese Herbs. Patel is recognized for her expertise, research, and experience in working with cancer patients. “Research has proven that acupuncture is effective in alleviating the side effects of standard cancer therapy treatments, like chemotherapy and radiation, and can enhance a patient’s care program,” Patel says. For patients experiencing hair loss, Houston is home to TM Hair which offers a human-hair prosthesis enabling the wearer to recreate their pre-loss look.

COMFORT FOOD

Maintaining a healthy diet while traveling is always a challenge, but Houston’s diverse dining scene makes it easy to find delicious and good-for-you options in restaurants brimming with positive energy. James Beard-nominated chef/owner, Anita Jaisinghani of Pondicheri Café, creates creative and nourishing Indian food from morning to night with dosas, thalis, and curries that can be enjoyed by both vegan and gluten-free diners. Pondicheri’s Bake Lab + Shop offers takeaway snacks and sweets, including purportedly amazing chocolate chili cookies and spiced nuts.

PONDICHERI'S

Vibrant is a contemporary restaurant serving a plant-rich menu that’s gluten-free, dairy-free, and refined-sugar-free. The beautiful, airy space provides a relaxing dining environment where the interior’s clean color palette allows the artfully plated dishes to stand out. The most ardent bread fans will be won over by Vibrant’s chickpea flatbread and walnut cardamom bliss balls.

A short distance from TMC, you’ll find Green Seed Vegan in Houston’s historic Third Ward. This small restaurant with a handful of tables and barstool seating owes its popularity to cold-pressed raw juices, smoothies, and sandwiches and wraps that can all be made gluten-free. Must-order highlights include the BBQ-jackfruit sandwich and tacos filled with sunflower walnut “chorizo.”

Head over to nearby Emancipation Park for a stroll, and then cruise across the street to Crumbville, TX to treat yourself to the best vegan cookies and stuffed cupcakes you will ever eat—samples are offered so you can try before you buy. Don’t leave without a loving hug from baker/owner, Ella Russell, who will quickly become your new best friend.

If you’re not in the mood to dine out, order meals-to-go from Houston chains, Local Foods and bellagreen. Both restaurants have multiple locations around the city and are known for accommodating a range of dietary preferences—from vegan to keto, with an emphasis on freshly prepared food.

Whatever brings you to Houston, stay and play in style with the best food, entertainment, and accommodations in all of Texas.

JAPANESE GARDEN

Back in the 1930s, a hefty donation from Monroe Dunaway Anderson, a banker and cotton trader, led to the eventual establishment of the world’s largest cancer hospital which bears the name of its generous benefactor, the University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center. More than 137,000 people visit the facility annually, including many out-of-towners who would be hard-pressed to call their stay a vacation. Instead, it’s more akin to a business trip, where the business is wellness. Nevertheless, patients and their traveling companions still need “me time” away from the hospital setting. After mastering navigating Houston’s medical mini-metropolis, consider exploring the city itself.

DOWNTOWN HOUSTON

KNOW BEFORE YOU GO

M.D. Anderson’s Patient Travel Services provides discounts for patients and their caregivers’ domestic and international flights, as well as bilingual assistance. Renting a car will allow you and your crew to get around the city with ease, but there are also rideshare options like Lyft and Uber if you prefer the passenger side. The TMC links to the MetroRail system with stops in Hermann Park and Houston’s Midtown and Downtown areas where you’ll find restaurants and entertainment.

MDACC

Houston Medical Center and MD Anderson

HELPFUL RESOURCES AND SUPPORT SERVICES

M.D. Anderson’s Integrative Medicine Center features an array of services, from meditation to onco-massage therapy. Contact the center in advance to schedule services during your visit. Volunteer stylists staff the beauty and barber shop where patients receive complimentary shampoos and haircuts. Music lovers can listen to volunteer pianists, along with the occasional harpist at various locations, including M.D. Anderson’s Hospitality Center. There’s also an observation deck on the 24th floor of the Main Building and gardens for an on-site outdoors fix.

WHERE TO STAY

Many M.D. Anderson patients stay at Rotary House International, a hotel connected conveniently to M.D. Anderson via skybridge and managed by Marriott. However, there are also lodging options nearby beyond the major chains.

Hotel Ylem is a locally owned, family-run boutique hotel which received a major makeover from its past life as a Holiday Inn Express. Local art is displayed inside along with a three-story mural on its exterior, making this hotel a popular spot to snap a picture for Instagram. Sales from their mini-bars and cocktail lounge go to a charity devoted to providing clean drinking water to underserved parts of the world. Medical rates are offered as well as a shuttle service, complimentary breakfast, and a tablet concierge in every room to assist with logistics. Hotel Ylem is also within walking distance of NRG Stadium—home to the Houston Texans football team, concerts, and the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo.

HOTEL YLEM

For those who prefer a residential feel rather than a hotel room, Luxurway specializes in rental properties near the TMC with many one-story homes available, so there’s no need to climb stairs. Discounted extended-stay rates for TMC patients are offered, as well as a generous first right of refusal to medical care guests and their caregivers who might need to book a longer stay after their arrival.

BEYOND THE MEDICAL TOWERS

Although M.D. Anderson has plenty of amenities on its premises, a change of scenery is recommended given Houston’s status as a 2019 must-visit destination according to The New York Times and Travel + Leisure. The TMC’s central location offers many nearby opportunities to take a break in between appointments and enjoy the city’s art, nature, and cuisine.

JAUME PLENSA

BACK TO SCHOOL

Start your journey at the neighboring art-filled grounds of Rice University, where greenery and inviting oak-lined walkways provide the perfect antidote to the fluorescent lighting of hospital halls. Outdoor sculptures like Jaume Plensa’s “Mirror” and Houston artist Joseph Havel’s bronze spheres reward viewers who take a closer look. Start or end your day with an outdoor experience at James Turrell’s “Twilight Epiphany” Skyspace. The artist’s 40-minute LED light show enhances the sunrise and sunset viewed through what looks like a modern-day Mayan temple. (Free; reservations recommended for “Twilight Epiphany.”)

GREEN SPACE

Nearby Hermann Park is filled with picturesque spots for a moment of zen, free of charge, like the peaceful Japanese Garden accented by a waterfall, koi pond, and flowering trees. However, the stunner of this 445-acre park is the McGovern Centennial Gardens. A grand lawn bordered by two perfectly landscaped pergola pathways leading to a 30-foot garden mount which greets you at the main entrance. Stroll the themed gardens decked out with roses and native plants before making your ascent on the wheelchair-friendly incline. Upon reaching the top, you’ll be treated to views overlooking Miller Outdoor Theatre, the Museum District, and the TMC skyline.

CHERIE FLORES

ART THERAPY

The serene surroundings of the Menil Collection campus in Houston’s Montrose neighborhood immediately elicit a sense of relaxation. Feel like a kid again with a seat on the red wooden swing while people watching. Step inside the main building to view the light-filled galleries where the museum’s minimalist curatorial approach encourages you to spend time with the art.

ON THE BAYOU

Explore the hiking and biking paths at Buffalo Bayou Park. Opt for a serious trek or a leisurely paced walk among the wildflowers and wildlife. For a more urban refuge, the Houston Arboretum & Nature Center maintains five miles of trails winding through 155 acres of forest, wetlands, and meadow habitats. Stop for a moment of meditation at the observation deck overlooking a pond frequented by colorful dragonflies and turtles.

TRELLIS SPA

PAMPER YOURSELF

Spend an entire day unwinding at the Trellis Spa, a Forbes Travel Guide Four-Star spa, nestled in the 18-acre wooded grounds of the Houstonian Hotel. Guests are encouraged to arrive early to appointments to enjoy the included amenities: an indoor float pool, relaxation rooms, and hydrating stations with selections of cucumber water, juice, and the spa’s signature short-bread confetti cookies.

TRELLIS SPA

According to Seliece Womble, the Houstonian’s director of marketing and public relations, the staff places importance on “providing physical comfort and nourishing treatments to guests visiting from out-of-town for medical treatment.” Many guests undergoing cancer treatments book the spa’s NB-Ceutical Facial by Natura Bissé, a paraben and alcohol-free facial that alleviates tightness, irritation, and flaking while soothing delicate skin. “[Guests] often share that visiting Trellis is a lovely indulgence and haven during their challenging time,” Womble says.

Reflexology and acupressure massage can release the knots created through the stress of treatment and sitting all day in waiting-room chairs. Midtown Reflexology’s signature $40 one-hour treatment is delivered while you relax in a cozy recliner. River Oaks Advanced Bodyworks’ larger menu of services includes reflexology as well as acupressure massage to relieve tension and improve circulation.

Book an acupuncture treatment with Dr. Sonya Patel, owner of Mirvana Acupuncture and Chinese Herbs. Patel is recognized for her expertise, research, and experience in working with cancer patients. “Research has proven that acupuncture is effective in alleviating the side effects of standard cancer therapy treatments, like chemotherapy and radiation, and can enhance a patient’s care program,” Patel says. For patients experiencing hair loss, Houston is home to TM Hair which offers a human-hair prosthesis enabling the wearer to recreate their pre-loss look.

COMFORT FOOD

Maintaining a healthy diet while traveling is always a challenge, but Houston’s diverse dining scene makes it easy to find delicious and good-for-you options in restaurants brimming with positive energy. James Beard-nominated chef/owner, Anita Jaisinghani of Pondicheri Café, creates creative and nourishing Indian food from morning to night with dosas, thalis, and curries that can be enjoyed by both vegan and gluten-free diners. Pondicheri’s Bake Lab + Shop offers takeaway snacks and sweets, including purportedly amazing chocolate chili cookies and spiced nuts.

PONDICHERI'S

Vibrant is a contemporary restaurant serving a plant-rich menu that’s gluten-free, dairy-free, and refined-sugar-free. The beautiful, airy space provides a relaxing dining environment where the interior’s clean color palette allows the artfully plated dishes to stand out. The most ardent bread fans will be won over by Vibrant’s chickpea flatbread and walnut cardamom bliss balls.

A short distance from TMC, you’ll find Green Seed Vegan in Houston’s historic Third Ward. This small restaurant with a handful of tables and barstool seating owes its popularity to cold-pressed raw juices, smoothies, and sandwiches and wraps that can all be made gluten-free. Must-order highlights include the BBQ-jackfruit sandwich and tacos filled with sunflower walnut “chorizo.”

Head over to nearby Emancipation Park for a stroll, and then cruise across the street to Crumbville, TX to treat yourself to the best vegan cookies and stuffed cupcakes you will ever eat—samples are offered so you can try before you buy. Don’t leave without a loving hug from baker/owner, Ella Russell, who will quickly become your new best friend.

If you’re not in the mood to dine out, order meals-to-go from Houston chains, Local Foods and bellagreen. Both restaurants have multiple locations around the city and are known for accommodating a range of dietary preferences—from vegan to keto, with an emphasis on freshly prepared food.

Whatever brings you to Houston, stay and play in style with the best food, entertainment, and accommodations in all of Texas.

JAPANESE GARDEN

More
articles

artists of the cancer community
(Y)our Stories

Artists of the Cancer Community

These six artists have all been touched by cancer — as supporters, survivors or thrivers. Here, they share creative works inspired by the cancer experience, each one utterly unique but with a shared message of perseverance and hope.

Read More »
VR CHEMO
Innovations & Research

A Break from Reality

Thanks to virtual-reality technology, many chemotherapy patients are escaping the dreary confines of the hospital for a restorative afternoon at the beach.

Read More »
On the lookout
Complementary Medicine

On the Lookout

Side effects aren’t always minor. Familiarizing yourself with your medications and symptoms can be a lifesaver in serious situations.

Read More »
(Y)our Stories

Blessings of a Third Life

The new documentary “True North” follows adventurer Sean Swarner from the hospital beds of his youth to the top of Mount Everest—and beyond.

Read More »