Montrose, sometimes called the “Heart of Houston,” is known for its Bohemian style and is home to a lot of luxury condos, art museums, wine lounges, and trendy restaurants. It’s known for its demographic diversity and high number of artists and musicians. Conveniently located only 10 minutes from Downtown Houston, Montrose is an ideal location for those who enjoy its unique suburban vibes—Montrose has been called “the strangest neighborhood east of the Pecos”—but still retain easy access to everything Downtown has to offer.
Montrose Office Space | Lease Data & Trends
Montrose and Midtown offer a limited array of options, with just over 4 million square feet of total commercial real estate assets, and a lower than average vacancy rate of 15 percent. Office space seekers can expect to find rental prices averaging $32 per square foot, slightly more expensive than the $30 per square foot Houston office space average.
Many Class A properties in Montrose have asking rents around $33 per square foot, similar to the citywide average for Class A assets. The cost of office space in Montrose is comparable to other popular submarkets such as Buffalo Speedway, West Loop, and the Woodlands.
What Our Brokers Say About Montrose Office Space for Rent
Montrose is four square miles in size and is located in the Neartown area of Houston. Neartown is a mixed-use community that includes the headquarters of Baker Hughes in the American General Center and many of Houston’s oldest neighborhoods. Montrose is bounded by Memorial Drive on the north, the Southwest Freeway on the south, Shepherd drive on the west, and Main Street on the east. Nearby neighborhoods include Midtown, Upper Kirby, River Oaks, and Rice Military. Montrose contains six of Houston’s 19 historic districts: Audubon Place, Avondale East, Avondale West, Courtland Place, Westmoreland, and First Montrose Commons.
Montrose’s excellent location makes it one of the most accessible neighborhoods in the area. Downtown isn’t the only key district that’s close by; Montrose residents can also easily get to Medical Center and Galleria. More than 75% of Montrose locals drive personal vehicles to work, which makes sense because the neighborhood is right next door to Richmond Avenue, Montrose Boulevard, Southwest Freeway, Shepherd Drive, Allen Parkway, and Westheimer Road, to name a few. Those who want to travel by car but prefer to be chauffeured can use Montrose’s hybrid taxi-limo-bus service, which is called The Wave.
Though not many people in this neighborhood take public transportation to work (only around 3% of residents do), Amtrak does have a few train stations in the area. Montrose is a very walkable neighborhood with flat roads that are also ideal for bicycling. The William P. Hobby Airport and the George Bush Intercontinental Airport are both within 14 miles of the suburb for those who need to travel by air. Need a place for visiting business partners or clients to stay? Look up La Colombe d’Or Hotel or Best Western Plus Downtown Inn & Suites.
Montrose is close to many of universities. The University of St. Thomas is actually located within the suburb, but others such as Rice University, the University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston, the University of Houston, and Texas Southern University are nearby. Businesses searching for interns or new hires will find plenty of current students and recent graduates in the area.
Montrose is both a cultural and a historical center in Houston that provides a wide variety of dining and entertainment possibilities. If you’re looking for an excuse to get out of the office for lunch, look up some of these tasty options. For contemporary American food, visit Weights and Measures or Riel Restaurant; for seafood, visit Danton’s Gulf Coast Seafood Kitchen; for Mediterranean food, visit Ibiza Food and Wine Bar.
If you’re planning an office outing in the area, Montrose won’t disappoint. Visit the Menil Collection, a free art institution that features gallery buildings, a bookstore, a restaurant, and a park. For a challenging, team-building activity, schedule a slot at Cipher Escape Rooms and see how well your team can solve puzzles and earn clues to “break out” of the room in less than 60 minutes. Admission is usually $25 per person, but on weekends, admission is $250 for a whole team, even large groups. To get a taste of the great outdoors and maybe have an office picnic, check out Buffalo Bayou Park. It has running and bike trails, beautiful views, and plenty of open space.
In the early 20th century, Montrose was designated to be a planned community and streetcar suburb. The Montrose Line, a streetcar, went through the neighborhood. Developer J.W. Link believed in his vision for Montrose to be a great residential community, so he built his own home, the Link-Lee Mansion, there. Today, the University of St. Thomas uses his home for its administrative offices, and visitors are allowed to venture inside and observe its exciting architecture.
In 1911, Montrose was platted for construction. Link designed the community to include wide boulevards, fancy curbing, and impressive landscaping. Link created a sales brochure for the community in which he wrote: “Houston has to grow. Montrose is going to lead the procession.” Fifteen years later, the million dollar Plaza Apartment Hotel, the city of Houston’s first apartment hotel, was constructed on Montrose Boulevard.
As the suburb grew and changed, so did the counterculture movement. This is when Montrose began earning its reputation as the weirdest part of Houston and became a “haven for Prohibition honky-tonks, antique stores, wealthy socialites, motorcycle gangs, gays, harmless eccentrics and a broad array of exiles, writers, artists, and musicians.” The Bohemian movement eventually gave way to the creation of the Westheimer Colony Art Festival in 1971; that became the Westheimer Street Festival, which ran bi-annually for more than 30 years.
The past 25 years have ushered Montrose through a period of gentrification that manifested itself mostly in the construction of new homes and upscale restaurants. However, Montrose is still known for its eccentric character and diverse demographics.
About the Author
Graham Shorr is the Chief of Staff at SquareFoot. In addition to supporting the executive team on corporate strategy and operations, Graham leads North America Market Research & Analysis. Graham is an alumnus of Carnegie Mellon University.