Howdy folks, and welcome back to HHR. Today we’re taking a look at a town South of Houston that retail history has mostly forgotten, Santa Fe. The grocery history of Santa Fe, Texas, is quite an interesting one. No major chains managed to take hold of the market until HEB showed up in 1993. Prior to that, the locals made do with independents. The area itself has an interesting history; Santa Fe is a relatively recent town, only popping up in 1978. Prior to that, the area was known as Alta Loma. The location was settled in the 1800s to …Keep reading
Halloween Costume Conversions 2022: Featuring Randall’s, Sears, and More!
Boo! And welcome to Houston Historic Retail! Today, we’re celebrating Halloween by checking out four costume conversions in what is HHR’s longest-running theme post dating back to 2018. Man, I was really playing to an empty room back then, but thankfully my fan base has grown substantially there are dozens of you now! Ever since the 2019 debut of Costume Conversions, the series has always been a favorite of mine. It’s always fun to get back into a dead retailer and see what got left behind. This year, we have the privilege of visiting a chain never seen as a …Keep reading
A Tour of Tomball Retail in 1998
Editor’s Note: Today’s post is a guest submission from HHR’s good friend Anonymous in Houston Tomball might seem like just another Houston suburb today, but nearly a quarter of a century ago in 1998, Tomball was a bit of a distant place to visit even for those of us like myself who lived in the Northwest Houston suburbs in the Willowbrook Mall area. That said, I did visit Tomball quite frequently in the 1990s and through the turn of the Millennium period. Given that, what a surprise it was recently when I came across a video on YouTube posted by …Keep reading
HEBway a Rare Example in 2021
Howdy folks, welcome back to another edition of Houston Historic Retail. Today we’re taking a look at an HEB at 200 W Hopkins St, San Marcos, TX 78666 that, while not in Houston, was once part of the Houston division of Safeway and AppleTree stores. Located in San Marcos, it lost its Houston affiliation with the 1994 purchase by H-E-B. The store was built in 1984, to replace an older location on the same property. The first Safeway in San Marcos originally opened in 1972, built on most of a city block that was purchased from various homeowners and other …Keep reading
Clear Lake’s HEB in the old Albertsons finally meets it end!
Clear Lake as a city has an interesting history, the 30,000 acres were pieced together by a wealthy businessman to build a ranch on. However, by 1938 the ranch would be sold to Humble Oil company after crude oil fields were found. While Humble began to pump oil from some areas, most of the land sat vacant until 1962, a year after NASA announced plans for the Manned Spacecraft Center. Humble Oil, announced their plans to use the Clear Lake land to build a planned community. They would do so under their Friendswood Development Company, who had already been working …Keep reading
HEB’s Failed Concept store in Northwest Houston
Houston has been a stable market for H-E-B for many years now. While the early years were a bit touch and go at certain times overall HEB could be considered one of the more stable grocers in the Houston area. Even towards the end of the Pantry Foods era, HEB’s success in Houston was measurable. It came to the point where the company felt brave enough to open a “concept store” here in town. Located at 6960 Barker Cypress Rd, Houston, TX 77084, this Pantry Foods was a “late bloomer” not opening until 1998. However, it seems HEB hoped that …Keep reading
Retail News: Closures and Openings
Welcome back loyal reader to another edition of Random Retail. This one comprises some photos from the past month as today we take a look at openings and closures in the Houston area. Let’s start with the new Meyerland H-E-B. It had its grand opening January 29th, and I was there about three days prior. When Meyerland Plaza opened in 1957, it included a Henke & Pillot grocery store as one of the major tenants. Located in the Southeast corner of the shopping center, near where Cafe Express sits today. This store would eventually be converted to a Kroger, and …Keep reading
A Haunted H-E-B
I recently had the chance to stop by an H-E-B that I had heard from a friend might be, haunted. I’m not the biggest believer in ghost, ghouls, or goblins. However, I thought it would be fun to stop and take a look. This is the Royal Oaks location 11815 Westheimer Rd, Houston, TX 77077. I wasn’t really expecting to find anything, but boy was I wrong. I stopped by on a chilly night in late October. From the outside the store seemed pretty normal, if a bit dark. The store had obviously been there a while, you could by the …Keep reading