Roger Martin and Life in the Loop


Aug. 19, 2011

Tiny Boxwoods in West U – Now for Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Tiny Boxwoods in West University PlaceOur newest West U restaurant, Tiny Boxwoods, is now in operation for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Yay!  I have sampled the breakfast – our menu items were creative and delicious, especially the breakfast pizza.  The setting is serene and lovely, as one would expect from ace landscapers like Thompson + Hanson.  I look forward to trying Tiny Boxwoods new lunch menu.

Roger Martin

Posted in Where West U Eats
Aug. 19, 2011

3330 Las Palmas - SOLD in Highland Village

3330 Las Palmas #6 is a fabulous 1 bedroom, 1.5 bath upgraded condominium in Highland Village.  The home has two outdoor spaces - a rear courtyard with BBQ and bar, and a side yard.

Property Information

  • Sold For: $206,000
  • House Size: 1,046 sq ft
  • Bedrooms: 1
  • Bathrooms: 1.5
  • Listed by Roger Martin
  • MLS #88795015
  • Garage: 2


  • Brazilian mahogany floors
  • bay window, crown moldings
  • Marble counters, cherry cabinets and stainless appliances in kitchen
  • Private courtyard and side yard

>More Great Highland Village Homes for Sale


Aug. 18, 2011

Neighborhood Watch - Burglary in Sunset Terrace

Neighborhood BurglaryOur inner city communities are well-policed and secure... Most of the time.  But it is important for us all to maintain a neighborhood watch on the homes in our communities.This photo, taken from TV Channel 13 on Saturday, shows a police officer at the scene of a local burglary. A friend of ours (another real estate agent) was leaving her home in Sunset Terrace to come to our office.  She never got here, because she stopped to report this burglary in progress at her neighbor’s house.

This is the second time that that particular home has been burgled this year, and there have been other similar incidents in the neighborhoods fringing West U.  The officers told our friend that an organized gang is responsible for these crimes.  The gang members ring the front doorbell – if no one answers, they jump the fence and kick in the back door.  So far, no one has been injured, but one gang member was caught on camera carrying a gun.

The customary safety of our neighborhoods can lull us all into a false sense of security.  Complacency is dangerous, so please be vigilant.  Call the police if you notice anything at all out of the ordinary.  They can piece together small clues (the color of a car, a partial license plate, a general make and model, etc) from multiple sources to make a coherent picture.

In addition to keeping a neighborhood watch, it is also a great idea to register on the City of West U’s website for their Code Red emergency notification program.  The City will notify you by email, phone or text if there is something dangerous happening in West U.  This security service is HANDS DOWN one of the best benefits of living in West U.

Stay safe!

Roger Martin

Aug. 18, 2011

Houston Neighborhoods in the News

Great Places to Live per CNNThree Houston neighborhoods have just landed on’s lists of great places to live.  On August 15, 2011, Deer Park placed tenth on the list of the 100 most affordable communities.  Reference was made to the good jobs available at the Shell refinery and to the “low crime rate, well-funded schools and slow pace.  ‘It’s Mayberry R.F.D,’” said Debbie Westbeld, the city’s Economic Development Administrator.

That same day, West U and Bellaire ranked 12th and 24th respectively among the 25 top-earning towns.  Mention was made of the great schools, parks and recreation facilities in the two cities.  It is worth noting that these two communities have both worked hard to update and approve their aging infrastructure.  It’s nice to see that somebody noticed!

To see the full articles on these Houston neighborhoods, click here:  Deerpark, West U, Bellaire.

Roger Martin

July 11, 2011

Roger Martin - HAR Top Producer 2nd Qtr 2011

Roger Martin, of Roger Martin PropertiesMany thanks to the Houston Association of Realtors, who has named me one of their 2nd Qtr 2011 Top Producers for my work with real estate buyers.  And additional thanks to all my great clients who made this award possible.

Roger Martin


June 6, 2011

Organic Produce from Wylderose Farm

Margaret's tomatoesMargaret Billingsley, the former speech therapist at West U Elementary, has retired to Wylderose Farm in New Ulm, Texas with her husband and their beloved Shelties.  They are now growing organic fruits and vegetables.  As a matter of fact, Margaret purchased the shade structures from Teas Nursery when that landmark local garden shop closed its doors.  Check out her gorgeous home-grown tomatoes!

This is the first year of production from Wylderose Farm. Their orchard includes peach, crabapple, plum, and fig trees. The fruit garden is planted with blackberries, raspberries, and strawberries.  The vegetable garden contains tomatoes, squash, onions, corn, potatoes, English peas, sugarsnap peas, beans, carrots, radishes, Brussels sprouts, broccoli, eggplant, peppers, and many herbs.

Click here to join the “first pick” email list for advance notice of Wylderose crops.  And, as Margaret says, “Happy munching!”

Roger Martin

May 27, 2011

West University Place Fire Department - Kudos!

A practise dummy is "rescued" by The West University Place Fire Department

No, West U’s beloved Scout House is not burning down. This is a fire drill performed by the West University Place Fire Department. A practice dummy is being rescued from inside the smoke-filled building.

The City of West University is an independent municipality, separate from the City of Houston which surrounds it. Here in West U, we have our very own mayor, city council, police department, fire department, ambulance service, recreation facilities and water works.  And they are excellent!  In the West University Place Fire Department, for example, everyone is double-certified to serve on both fire trucks and ambulances.

A minor grease fire in a local restaurant is extinguished by the West University Place Fire DepartmentNow this is the real deal a week later—a minor grease fire at a local restaurant.

We West U residents are justly proud of our policemen and firemen, as I can personally attest. How can I ever forget the out-of-control gas grill, the frantic 911 call, the big red trucks, the screaming sirens, the guys in bright yellow rubber suits, the drawn axes – and the delighted crowd of second grade boys. Best birthday party I ever threw!

One reason for West U’s excellent response time is that all our alarms and emergency calls are handled onsite in the city’s central command center – not by a long distance call center located out-of-state or overseas.  For information about the city’s monitored alarm program (DirectLink) click here.

And kudos to our all conscientious police, fire and EMS people!

Roger Martin

May 19, 2011

Arne's Warehouse - Houston's Best Kept Secrets

Arne's Warehouse - party suppliesCalling itself the largest party store in Texas, Arne's Warehouse is a party store on steroids. This two-story warehouse is located just west of downtown, along the old railroad tracks. Arne's Warehouse was selling from a warehouse to the public ten years before Sam Walton dreamed up the concept.

If you need floral supplies, paper goods, ribbons, balloons, platters, trays, glassware, or (oddly) pet supplies, Arne’s can supply it cheap. Classroom materials? – no problem.  Baby showers? – they’ve got it. Piñatas? – take your pick. Mardi Gras celebration? – get it year-round. Graduation party? – Arne's Warehouse has you covered.

Yes, Arne's Warehouse has a website. But trust me on this one -- forget the website. You want to go in person, and you want to go when you have plenty of time to browse. You never know what you will find, or where you will find it.

Arne's Warehouseis located at 2830 Hicks, just six miles from downtown West U. Enjoy!

Roger Martin

Posted in Best Kept Secrets
May 12, 2011

Cody Ide - Congratulations!

Cody IdeCongratulations to Jo Anna Ide’s son, Cody Ide! I have known Cody since he was a toddler, so I consider him a member of the Roger Martin Properties extended family.

Cody Alan Ide is graduating as a Texas Scholar from Mirabeau B. Lamar High School. Texas Scholars complete all their high school requirements, plus at lease two courses for college credit.  After graduation, Cody will spend the summer working at Abercrombie and Fitch in the Galleria -- that is, when he isn’t traveling!  Cody plans two trips this summer – first to visit friends in Seattle, Washington and then to see Puerto Vallarta, Mexico with his family.

In the fall, Cody will be majoring in Hotel Management at the University of Houston.

Well done, Cody and Jo Anna Ide!

Roger Martin

May 10, 2011

Cost of Living - Houston

Houston's Low cost of livingWhen it comes to cost of living, Houston ranks among world's 'Cities of Opportunity'

From the Houston Business Journal, May 3, 2011

"Houston ranks No. 1 in the world in terms of cost of living competitive advantage and purchasing power, putting it among the top 11 cities overall of 26 included in a new global study.

"The ''Cities of Opportunity'' study released Tuesday by PricewaterhouseCoopers LLC shows that Houston offers the strongest purchasing power in all cities studied in relation to the combined cost of business occupancy.

"Cities were scored in 10 categories, each with multiple measured components: Intellectual capital and innovation; technology readiness; transportation and infrastructure; health, safety and security; sustainability; economic clout; ease of doing business; cost; demographics and livability; and lifestyle assets.

"What's more, Houston scored well for its relatively low crime rate and number of hospitals per 100,000 of population.

"Overall, Houston ranked No. 11 among the 26 cities studied with a total score of 1,050. New York topped the overall study at No. 1 with a score of 1,226, with the highest scores in the technology readiness and lifestyle assets categories. Toronto ranked No. 2 on the list, followed by San Francisco at No. 3. Rounding out the top five were Stockholm, Sweden, and Sydney, Australia.

"The other two U.S. cities on the list included Chicago, at No. 7, and Los Angeles, which finished right behind Houston at No. 12 with a score of 1,043.

"Houston's lowest scores were in the areas of environmental sustainability (24th of 26 cities), and transportation and infrastructure (22nd of 26)."

To read more: Houston ranks among world's 'Cities of Opportunity' | Houston Business Journal.

As we here in Houston know, when it comes to lifestyle and cost of living, Houston is a great place to be!