A dead mall video, visiting West Oaks Mall in 2022

Howdy folks, and welcome back to Houston Historic Retail! Today we’re going on a quick walking tour of West Oaks Mall, so a lazy writing day for me! The entire video is about 15 minutes, but I get from one side of the mall to the other in about 7 minutes before walking back. There’s no useful audio as the mall was playing 95.7 FM, and I did not want to risk YouTube taking the video down. If you’re the type of person who is not a fan of videos, or you just can’t stand the camera wobble, check out this post from earlier this year.


If you’re curious to learn more about the mall, I’d suggest checking out my West Oaks Mall page, which helps to categorize all the information I’ve gathered on the mall over the years I’ve been visiting it.


  1. It is really sad to see how far this mall has fallen. It seems like just a short while ago the mall was doing well. Just a decade ago, the mall was nearly full again. Now it is so bad that Bath and Body Works left. I am sure that redevelopment plans are in the works behind the scenes much like the new proposed Macroplaza Mall redevelopment.

  2. I apologize for the long post but the mall is near and dear to my heart! I grew up in southwest Houston and remember when Foleys built the store at the corner of Highway 6 and Westheimer in the early 1980’s. At that time I remember it looking like a citadel as it was just a freestanding location with just the large Shell Westhollow facility the only major building in the area. A year or to later they began building out the mall. I graduated high school in 1984 and Mervyn’s was the 2nd to last major tenant added to the original mall configuration. I was hired on to help open the Mervyn’s and remained there until 1990 when I moved to help open Dillard’s on the other side of the mall. For me Mervyn’s opening was a great opportunity for this college student to work part time (with benefits!). I had recruited a number of my friends so we all had a relatively easy job that paid decent at a mall that was the go to place in Southwest Houston. There was a Birra Poretti’s restaurant/bar on our wing of the mall that was a popular place to go after work. At that time it was considered a pretty high end mall as there was a Lord & Taylor, Laura Ashley and a few other boutique shops located there. I also recall a 2 Pesos in the food court that would eventually become a Taco Cabana. I’m still friends with some of my former Mervyn’s coworkers (we had some really good times and a few drunken parties) and i met the person who would eventually be my wife there. Thanks for the post about West Oaks!

    1. Hey, do you remember the music store chain, down by the eye doctor, pretzel place, birra poretti’s wing: Hastings? Sam Goody? Camelot? None of those sound right. Was looking for it and came across your post. I’m pretty sure I bought my Franklin planner close by, time for geritol. 🙁 spent many lunch hours shopping for Liz Clairborne dresses for the office in Foley’s and Dillards. At my corp job then, ladies could only wear dresses or skirt suits, no pants first 10 yrs. Now I put on a clean T-shirt and jeans or pajama pants and I think, I can’t believe we all took so much time to get ready with big hair and big make up. No way in heck there’s time to spend an hour to look like I know how to do my job. Ha ha. Thank you!