Sunsets, Salsa, and Ceramics: 6 Artsy Dates in Houston

It's cuffing season and we're making it easy to keep the love alive.

By Amarie Gipson

James Turrell Twilight Epiphany Skyspace installation on Rice University's campus. 

Cuffing season has officially begun. Sometimes the perfect romantic dinner and movie aren’t enough to keep the spark alive. Busy schedules don’t typically leave much time for ideating special ways to spend time with your partner or court your crush, so we’re here to help. The time has come to enjoy the slight breeze in the air, get outside, and enjoy quality time together. Whether you’re with your special someone or looking for an inspiring way to love on yourself, here are a few of our favorite artsy date ideas around Houston. 

1. Hear some live music Downtown.   

What better way to bond than over music? Downtown is brimming with large live music venues like House of Blues and 713 Music Hall. But if you’re looking for something lowkey, you can also catch an intimate art and music show at Sanman Studios or enjoy Mexican food at Last Concert Cafe while watching one of its (almost) daily concerts.

2. Watch the sunset at James Turrell’s Twilight Epiphany Skyspace and get dinner in Rice Village. 

If you’re looking for a relaxing way to decompress after a long day of work or a cute couples photo op, make your way to this public art installation by James Turrell on Rice University’s campus. You may recognize his luminous work from the underground tunnel in the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, or as the inspiration to Drake’s “Hotline Bling” music video. Visiting is entirely free and the perfect preamble to dinner and wine at Sixty Vines, just five minutes away.  

3. Take a stroll with ice cream through an art market in The Heights.

Usher in the weekend with a visit to the First Saturday Arts Market in the Heights. It’s filled with paintings, sculptures, jewelry, and other craft mediums. Take turns choosing artworks for each other and grab a bite from one (or more) food trucks on site. Once you’ve seen (and hopefully purchased) all the art you can handle, stop at Jeni’s for the best craft ice cream you’ll ever have. 

4. Have lunch in the Cullen Sculpture Garden in the Museum District.

Open 24 hours and always accessible to the public, the MFAH’s sculpture garden is a tranquil getaway in the center of the Museum’s massive campus. After you've perused the galleries in each (yes, see them all) building, bring over your snack of choice from Cafe Leonelli and enjoy some peace and quiet. 

5. Take a salsa dancing lesson at Taiga in Midtown. 

Wednesday nights just got way hotter. Pop into Taiga for a dance break with pop-up salsa lessons from the Latin Dance Factory. The lounge has a full bar and food menu. If you can’t make it to Taiga, you can also catch salsa lessons at Sable Gate Winery, Social Beer Garden, and elsewhere. 

6. Make something that’ll last at the 3rd Coast Clay Studio in Independence Heights. 

If you need a recurring date-night idea, sign up for an 8-weeks of ceramics at 3rd Coast Clay Studio. Use your hands to make memories, enhance your patience and exercise your creativity. If you have an appetite, pick up a plate of pasta from Bellisimo on your way home.

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