Category: News

Retail News: Burlington moving into two former Best Buy locations

Your best buys are always at Burlington, may not be the new slogan painted above the door, but it would be apt. Off-price retailer Burlington (Coat Factory) has recently made moves on two former Best Buy properties in the Houston area. The stores at 13238 Northwest Fwy, Houston, TX 77040 and 24230 Commercial Dr. Rosenberg, TX 77470 closed in 2021 and 2022, respectively, both part of a larger restructuring Best Buy has undertaken over the past two years. The 290 location is likely meant to make up for the closure of a longstanding location at 12005 Northwest Fwy, Houston, TX …

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Sears Willowbrook Mall Experiment is Closing

The Sears Hometown located inside of Willowbrook Mall has started the closing process for their store a short six months after opening. The scheme was a way to put former Sears Mall buildings and a few former Kmarts to use as prospective tenants for this former mainline store, which closed in 2020, failed to step up. The closure was first reported to HHR by regular contributor Anonymous in Houston, who noticed a Google Review stating the store was closing. This rumor was confirmed by visiting the store and finding the yellow closing/clearance tags attached to all products. The closing does …

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Retail News: Biglari is back! – The return of Steak N Shake to Houston

The great fast food hamburger debate has so many sides: loyal Texans stumping for local Whataburger, west coast transplants singing the virtues of interloping In-N-Out, those squares who like Wendy’s.  These sides have their merits, but I found my favorite fast food burger to be the midwestern-style steakburger, smashed flat with crispy edges, the cheese melted into the thin patty so completely that the two are practically an alloy.  Specifically (and with apologies to Kansas-based Freddy’s and their many Houston-area locations), I came to love the steakburgers from Illinois-founded Steak N Shake. While it has long been an institution in …

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Retail News: Best Buy Outlet plans move across 249, towards Willowbrook Mall

Huh, how'd this get in the gallery...

  Best Buy Outlet, currently located at 17713 Tomball Pkwy, Houston, TX 77064, has filed permits to remodel a former Toys ‘R Us building across Texas 249. This new space would allow the currently cramped store to expand. The Outlet store’s former space is a former Golf Galaxy location, which was once a larger part of the Venture Department store which once inhabited that block. Best Buy Outlet’s proposed move would not only net new space, but it would also put the store on the Willowbrook Mall side of the highway.   Have a retail tip you want to share? …

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Retail News: The gas station in an ex-Walgreens near West Oaks Mall, finally opens! Welcome Now & Forever Plus

The gas prices here were pretty cheap compared to other stations on 6

Well, folks, the day has finally come. The former Walgreens at Westheimer and Highway 6 has reopened. This will mark the building’s first permanent retail tenant since closing as a pharmacy around 2017. Now and Forever also marks the return of a gas station to this intersection. Before the most recent expansion of Highway 6, every corner of the intersection, except the mall, hosted a gas station. This gas station, however, aims to be a bit different. The space is huge, and while some area was built out around the checkout, I would wager that 3/4 of the former Walgreens …

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Sears Willowbrook fills out their space, and how did it end up a Hometown any way?

Howdy, folks, and welcome to Houston Historic Retail! Today we’re back at everyone’s least favorite stomping grounds… Zombie Sears! With the recent closure of failed Pasadena Hometown Sears Conversion still looming over its head, things look somewhat bleak for a company that continues to close stores only months after opening. Despite all the tears shed for other locations of a retailer, which probably could have survived had they not “merged” with Kmart back in 2005. Let’s take a look back at one of the last real good ideas from before the merger, the Sears Grand concept. While Sears had started …

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Retail News: James Coney closes final inner-loop location, and provides some thoughts on the future

James Coney Island’s final inner-loop store shut down earlier this week. The news of the closure was quiet but shouldn’t come as a huge surprise for anyone who has been following the slow death of the chain. While JCI managed to hang on past the Millennium, it seems very little has been invested in the hot dog seller over the past 20 years. With locations stagnant and sales slipping, a 2018 initiative to push the chain away from Hot Dogs began. Local chef, Matt Marcus, was brought on board to help reimagine non-hot dog menu items, and a new name …

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Retail News: Ollie’s Bargain Outlet starts to emerge in Friendswood

Deep Discounter, Ollie’s Bargain Outlet first laid its eyes on the Texas market in 2018 with the opening of a distribution center. The next few years saw Ollie’s popping up mostly in former Toys ‘R Us locations throughout the country, a few in Texas. By early 2021, the retailer had already opened a branch in Clute and was starting work on their first location in Houston. The Jones Road Ollie’s would open in November of last year to a warm, somewhat quiet reception. The new store is receiving a bit more attention thanks to its prominent location in a former …

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Now & Taking Forever, who’s behind the new Walgreen’s Gas Station on Highway 6?

A gas pump in front of a Walgreens.. huh

Update 7/17/22: Over 2 weeks later, I realized that a draft version of this was published, well the full thing is here now! Anyone whose driven near West Oaks Mall recently has probably seen the work being done to a former Walgreens building at the corner of Westheimer and Highway 6. If you’ve been following this blog for a while you may have seen the building before. We checked it out in 2019 as a Spirit Halloween, and more recently when the pumps were installed last year. If you don’t know Now & Forever they about 10 stores throughout the …

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Tennis Express to move from old Westheimer Handy Dan to Combo Office-Warehosue

Tennis Express, Houston’s largest Tennis Specialty Store is soon to be on the move, although it won’t be relocating far from its current Westchase digs. The new facility is located a former C&J Energy Services Building. The new salesfloor will take over the former offices on the first floor, with second-story office space going untouched. The sales floor will likely be slightly smaller than their Westheimer location, with the biggest upgrade going to Tennis Express’ warehouse. In the past few years, the company has secured itself as a leading online retailer of Tennis supplies and gear. In 2021 Tennis Express …

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