Why Visiting Round Top Outside of Antiques Show Season Is a Blast: Great Restaurants, Shops and Hotels Still Await
Expect maximum charm and minimal traffic when the show hordes are nowhere to be found.
Round Top’s world class shopping, dining and lodging are largely available all year long. Outside of the Round Top Antiques + Design Shows each spring, fall and winter, expect maximum charm and minimal traffic. The slower pace and ample parking are a delight. In fact, the offseason may be the best time to visit the Greater Round Top region.
Here’s what to expect during a Round Top visit outside of the shows:
Availability is generally abundant at Round Top’s many lodging options during the offseason. Save for the odd wedding party or sports tournament that can take over the town, last minute bookings are within the realm of possibility. Per night pricing is often significantly reduced outside of the antiques shows, so it’s the perfect opportunity to stay at the retreat of your dreams at a discount.
From high-end country houses to simple cabins and off-beat stays like a shipping container hotel, Round Top is ready to host year-round. Check out the complete RoundTop.com lodging guide to find your ideal stay. Whether you’re traveling alone or bringing a group of friends or family, there’s certainly a place that fits.
You won’t find any pole tents set up along the roadside housing antiques dealers during the offseason and most of the large venues are closed, but there’s still plenty of shopping fun to be had in Round Top. Many year-round shop owners use the time between the big events to move into new spaces, clear out old stock and redesign and restock. Shopping outside of the shows can mean getting a first look at new merchandise and taking advantage of discounts on clearance items.
Businesses in all three squares (Henkel, Rolland and Minden) are open on the weekends, as are select businesses within the larger venues and independent shops. Most are open beginning on Wednesdays or Thursdays and stay open through Sundays every weekend, year-round.
The suites of shops in Round Top Village and The 303 are also open on the weekends. Paul Michael at Market Hill, Rockabilly Baroness at The 550 Market and The White Barn at The Compound Neighborhood are among the stores that are open within the larger seasonal venues.
Also be on the lookout for pop-ups at venues like Cisco Village, which has several special shopping events planned this summer.
All of Round Top’s beloved restaurants and bars are open on weekends, with the fun beginning as early as Wednesdays, all year long. Many offer seasonal specials and live music you won’t find during the antique show seasons, and getting a seat is a breeze. Round Top Coffee Shop and Casa Blanke open their doors early, offering breakfast dishes and coffee.
Scoring a coveted table at Royers Cafe isn’t a problem in the offseason — and no reservation is necessary. Meanwhile, Duo Modern at Market Hill provides a relaxed seated dinner service, as opposed to the busy buffet style dining offered during the shows. There might still be a line at Royers Pie Haven in Henkel Square as locals pour in to get their afternoon sweet fix, but popular restaurants like The Stone Cellar, The Garden Co. Feed and Firewater, Lulu’s, Mandito’s, Popi Burger, Round Top Brewing and Merritt Meat Company are generally ready to serve without a wait.
And don’t miss JW’s Steakhouse, open five days a week in Carmine serving up country classics.
Most local restaurants also offer beer, wine and cocktails. Everyone knows that Mandito’s is the place for potent margaritas. Il Cuculo’s stunning bar and lounge inside Lulu’s is open, as is the firewater part of the Garden Co. Feed & Firewater. Prost wine bar is also open weekends year-round, offering wood fired pizzas to go along with its outstanding selection of fine wines on select weekends. The Vintage Hideaway Beer and Wine Garden in nearby Carmine recently extended its hours. It’s open five days a week with a food trailer on site Thursdays and Fridays and also offers lodging in the form of a set of newly constructed cabins.
Dinner and a show are a distinct possibility outside of Round Top antique show seasons. Round Top Festival Institute’s calendar is jam packed with performances all year-long. The Summer Festival runs from mid-June through mid-July with daily concerts. Visiting musicians and dance troupes take to the stage the rest of the year. A ticket to Festival Hill’s annual Nutcracker performance in December is always coveted with performances routinely selling out.
Check out Round Top Festival Institute’s full calendar here.
Yes, there’s plenty to see and do in Round Top outside of the antique shows. Book a room for a long weekend with the girls, or plan a wedding or family reunion and paint the town. You won’t regret a leisurely visit to the Texas countryside in the offseason.
Antique & Design Shows
Fall October 14 – 28