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Round Top Travel Guide

As promised I have all the details from my recent trip to Round Top, Texas with recommendations from four of the best guides I could imagine.  In recap we spent four days in Texas last week, one in Houston and then three actually in Round Top.  It was the best trip, better than I could have imagined, and shopping Round Top is something I will be doing twice a year from now on.  It was magical, something that you must experience to completely understand.  I describe it as a cross between Scott Antique Market (on steroids) + Highpoint Market (the way the town comes alive) + the best shopping, eating and sipping you can imagine.  I am telling you ... it was phenomenal

Round Top is a small town about an hour(ish) from downtown Houston and a true hour from Austin. During the 2010 census it was noted that the town only counted 90 people living in Round Top full time. It is located in Texas Hill country, some of the prettiest land in Texas. What began as a small German town with one barn of antiques for a show has blossomed into a ritual shopping experience three times a year. There are women who have been making the trip with their girlfriends for years and have standing reservations for their preferred place to stay and a list of must eats while they are in town.  The show runs two weeks with the first week being more of a shopping and hunting adventure and the second week when Red Barn and Marburger Farm are open to be a true Round Top "place to be" experience. I understand that Marburger Tuesday is a first come, first serve shopping like you have not seen. The prices may be high but the antiques are authentic and they go fast. Our friends have told us it's an experience to walk in and see nothing but sold signs on beautiful prices with extravagant prices. For me the first week was just what I was looking for and I can not even imagine the excitement of week two. 

Nicole and I met both the darling ladies who own Lady & Tucker Home and both of the owners of The Frenchie and Sissy Light. I would say the meeting was meant to be, because by the time we departed we had plans to meet up at Roundtop just six weeks later. And now home just one week I can tell you that Miriam, Jenny, Katy, and Kristin may be the best and kindest people around. They were so generous to us, full of incredible information, and so giving of their time and their resources. Miriam and Jenny dressed us in true Round Top fashion, Kristin treated us to Sissy Light Hats, and Katy allowed us to stay with her and treated us to full court press of The Frenchie and Bader Ranch. The red carpet was rolled out and we were treated as queens. I can not thank all of them enough. They are truly kind and hardworking and all have a special place in my heart for making my first trip to Round Top something I will treasure forever. 

So, you want to go?  This is how they recommend you do it all!

Where to stay?

First of all, The Frenchie.  It is magical.  From the second you walk onto the property you immediately fall in love.  Once you step inside the main house you are ready to propose marriage. The music, the furnishings, and the special recipe of lavender oil being diffused into each room captivates you from the first moment. Katy Bader and Kristin Light have renovated a house and the surrounding property into a destination. No detail has been overlooked and the honor system for drinks and snacks might be the best little detail in the common space. They offer a chef to create breakfast, dinner, and anything in between. Soon they will be offering spa services on property, but until then you can enjoy the pool and the hot tub or a great cocktail under the twinkle lights at one of the fire pits at sunset and beyond.  As I walked around The Frenchie each day I found something new to discover, whether it was the incredible art, the amazing sofas and nooks, or even the high end coffee makers at every turn. Hands down ... I recommend The Frenchie. 

Second, Round Top Inn.  I did not get to see inside this property but our hosts, Jenny and Miriam have a standing reservation each second week of the show.  They shared it was a list that you have to wait to be on but once you have your reservation you don't let it go. The inn is located within walking distance of most of the spots to eat and grab a drink, though nothing is far since it is a small town catered to this special event each year. With the price of your stay the Inn serves you an amazing homemade breakfast.  The girls love it!

Next I have been told that you can find lodging via Vrbo and Airbnb. Prices vary but expect a good $500 plus per night during Round Top shows.  Lodging is coveted and I would most definitely plan ahead, as in six months ahead. If you want to go to the October show I would research now and make all your reservations. 

What to wear

There is definitely a Round Top look. We relied completely on what the girls of Lady & Tucker Home told us and it was spot on advice. Once they emailed us with their thoughts on what to wear I took it as bible.

Women need to be prepared for all kinds of weather at Round Top since you are basically in open fields most of the day.  So…as far as Round Top fashion with shoes you will see women wearing their favorite sneakers, Golden Goose, Cowgirl boots with a pair of rain boots in the back of the truck for those rainy, muddy instances.  For warmer days flip flops are also in the mix. Loose dresses are everywhere, jeans and cute tops with turquoise accents can be found, hats are huge in Round Top.  Sissy Light is a favorite at Bader Ranch for sure.  Scarves are a great accessory you will see everywhere as well.  Also it is known to be chilly one day and hot the next, so a denim jacket is always a must to bring.

I would recommend checking out their online shop, or visiting if you can, and asking them any question you have.  With their expert advice we were completely prepared.  The weather was nuts.  It was raining when we arrived, tornados were on the watch for the first night, and the second day was sunny and freezing with crazy wind.  The third day was gorgeous, but muddy, and by the afternoon was hot.  I probably didn't believe them when they said it can be all things and I was silly to not believe.  Jenny and Miriam were experts in dressing us and telling us exactly what to bring.  It was the first time I did not over pack and wore every single thing I brought.  Clearly I need them for every single trip. 💙

We used a tote bag, custom from The Preppy Stitch, and crossbody bags, also custom from Barrington Gifts, and the combination was perfection.  You need a tote to carry your goods and the crossbody is perfect to give you two hands for shopping.  Cash is the way to go, so make sure you bring the bulk of your money in cash. 

Eat and Drinks ... 

From recommendations from all four of our hosts this is a comprehensive list. Every single thing I ate and drank was delish.  I dream of breakfast tacos in the morning and really need to make that a daily habit. And don't even get me started on the bliss of a roadie Ranch Water, that was too much fun. 

Coffee + a quick bite at Round Top Coffee Shop (get the breakfast tacos)
Loli Top - coffee and breakfast tacos
Mescalito Coffee (no food)
Royers Round Top Cafe - make a reservation for dinner
Royers Pie Shop - a must do, their pie is all over social media during the show.  This is a darling walk up spot with seats outside to enjoy your pies, both savory and sweet
Manditos - amazing Tex Mex and the large margaritas are delish.
Garden Co. - we had lunch here and I loved it and the to go Ranch Water ... they recommend for both lunch and dinner, make sure you make a reservation
Ellis Motel is a must for a drink at the end of the day.  It is charming and the drinks are yummy!!
Prost Wine Bar is another great drink spot and also serves delicious pizza!
Lulu's - we ate here twice, once for lunch and once for dinner.  It was delish!! Reservations for sure
Bader Ranch - perfect for drinks and sunset watching and amazing for dinner.  We were treated to a four course chef meal that was divine.  You eat outside under the twinkle lights and your drinks come from an airstream.  Need I say more? For dinner you most definitely need reservations and they go fast.
Grab lunch at Libby's Kitchen Studio a darling walk up in Round Top Village (a Katy Bader favorite)
Cheese Shop for yummy cheese + chocolate!

And, the shopping

There is no way to see it all.  I was told that again and again and I think hearing that actually made shopping easier.  I knew I would miss things so using the lists our experts gave us really made shopping so easy.  We hit two spaces twice and it was exactly what we needed.  We shopped til we ate dinner and then we dropped. It was a long but amazing three days. This is the list we were given and I would say we saw about 80 ish percent of this list.  Some of them we just walked through and didn't spend money, it was all beautiful!

Bader Ranch - a must for European antiques!! The space is curated beautifully and has such gorgeous finds straight from Europe.  I am told the first week is the best week to get the best selection as week two whatever is left is snatched up quickly. Plus, you can get a drink while you are there!!

Blue Hills - a fun walk through with so many vendors and sellers you will recognize.  We saw Sarah Bray, Hibiscus Linens and the second week brought Hazen & Co., Bunny Bradley and more. 
Left Overs Antiques
French By Design
French Bleu

The Arbors - great vendors with clothes, boots, art, jewelry, more clothes and the prettiest center area with a Ellis Motel pop up along with great live music. 

Henkel Square - don't miss Sissy Light (she has two locations but this one is her regular spot!!)
Humble Donkey
Round Top Antiques and Design Center

Round Top Village - don't miss Richard Schmidt, Courtney Barton, and Bellas Candles

The Compound
- beautiful vendors, some high end but the rugs were such great deals!!
Hermes Silk Scarf Jackets (these are a work of art)
Brocante Antiques (a must see)
Tom the Jeweler

Excess 1+2 - ask for vendors by name, and walk through everything
Knock on Wood
Ponytail Mark
Susan Wheeler
Jimmy Herron

Bar W - these are another set of fields, which according to Jenny + Miriam are the best ones for digging.  I found so many of the pieces I resold in these fields so I would definitely agree.  The fields can be muddy after a hard rain so definitely wear your rain boots!

Warrenton - these are the fields were you will find vendor after vendor with tents.  This is the best place for digging!!

As I mentioned many times, I absolutely loved every single detail of the trip.  Even the crazy weather which kept us guessing at all times.  I am already preparing to go back in October so stay tuned for more details on that trip closer to the time. 

Round Top, Texas ... you have my 💗.

1 comment:

  1. I was just watching a new show on HGTV and I think she mentioned that she bought some of the items for the house she was redoing from Round Top. What an interesting place to go and look and shop.



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