Could you find any number of excellent spas, nail salons, or blow-dry bars right inside the Loop? Yes, but where’s the fun in that? We say, escape your routine by putting some distance between you and your office or your kids or your laundry or whatever else needs tending to. All of that can wait.
Now, you may exclusively shop local and eat organic in your day-to-day life, and bully for you, but today is not about that. This is a day of unabashed indulgence and relaxing fun.
10 a.m. | Massage and facial at Hand & Stone
There’s something delicious about starting your day face-down under cozy blankets on a heated table. An hourlong massage ($60 for first-timers) will melt away the aches and pains of daily life; add a peppermint scalp massage ($15) to end on an invigorating note before capping the morning with a classic facial ($60)—spring cleaning for your pores. You’ll leave relaxed, radiant, and ready to drop some dough.
12:30 p.m. | Shopping and lunch at First Colony Mall
Anchored by trusty standbys like Dillard’s, Barnes & Noble, and the Cheesecake Factory, this indoor-outdoor shopping destination offers enough parking to make you say, “Galleria who?” Strolling the sales here is an exercise in nostalgia for the American mall’s glory days: Wander past Forever 21, catch a whiff of the perpetually baking pretzels at Auntie Anne’s, and pretend, for a moment, that it’s 1996, the year the mall first opened. Enter with no intentions; rather, let the mall show you what you need.
3 p.m. | Blowout at Drybar
Satiated by Cinnabon or Chick-fil-A, pink-striped Victoria’s Secret bags in tow, it’s time to sit back and relax again. Still inside First Colony, adjacent to Sephora, you’ll find an outpost of Drybar, the blowout-only business that, for the past decade, has reliably churned out Kardashian curls in its trademark sunny-yellow salons. Sip a mimosa (gratis) and watch You’ve Got Mail, the Selena biopic, or whatever universally loved rom-com is playing as a stylist beautifies your locks ($45 and up).
4 p.m. | Manicure at Venetian Nail Spa
Drake’s Grammy-nominated 2010 track “Fancy”—nails done, hair done, everything did—is today’s manifesto, which means a shellac manicure ($31) is on tap. Hunker down in this super-clean, spacious spot in Sugar Land Town Square, which offers a wide selection of gel colors, TMZ on gilded-framed TV screens, and a ceiling painted to look like a cloudy sky.
5 p.m. | Drinks at Vino & Vinyl
Sufficiently primped and preened, you should be feeling like a whole new woman now. Cross the street to catch happy hour at this wine bar and records lounge and count how many heads you turn.
What to Instagram:
- After everything: A 🔥 selfie.
- An (almost) too-cute-to-eat macaron from The Sweet Boutique—this is Sugar Land, after all.
If You Spend the Night
- You can’t beat the convenience of Sugar Land Marriott Town Square, a comfortable hotel a stone’s throw away from all the action.
Where to Eat
- Soak up history and a craft cocktail or two at The Sugar Refinery Grub and Grogs, a Prohibition-inspired speakeasy with a comfort food–heavy menu and decor that pays homage to the suburb’s origins as a company town built around sugar cane.