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Greenspoint Mall Memories

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As of the end of February 2011, Brother's Pizza has served its last slice of pizza. They guy at the counter (who i think is part of the family) stated that they had been in GPM for over 30 years. They moved to a location in Cyperss (290 and Barker Cypress i beleive). That was hands down the best pizza in town. The Brother's pizza on cypresswood is not the same. I was really saddened by this. It really was the only reason that I ever went to that mall anymore.

We, Aldine HS band, played at GPM for the grand opening of the new at the time food court, the Ellipse. I think this was Christmas 1996 because I remember playing Christmas songs around the mall.

I remember eating at Picadilly and going to the movies as a kid. I remember watching Back to the Future II and An American Tale: Fievel Goes West at the General Cinema.

My girlfriend, now wife, worked in the mall in high school. She worked at Body Shop, Contempo, and Express.

From driving by, the Fitness Connnection gym always seems to have a lot of cars in the parking lot.

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As of the end of February 2011, Brother's Pizza has served its last slice of pizza. They guy at the counter (who i think is part of the family) stated that they had been in GPM for over 30 years. They moved to a location in Cyperss (290 and Barker Cypress i beleive). That was hands down the best pizza in town. The Brother's pizza on cypresswood is not the same. I was really saddened by this. It really was the only reason that I ever went to that mall anymore.

Wow, that is terrible news. I've eaten there off and on for years, and when I wound up working near the mall in 2007-2008, I would head over to the food court at least once a week for lunch and more often than not get a couple of slices at Brothers. I've known many people who couldn't believe that decent pizza, let alone great pizza, could ever be found at a mall food court, but there it was.

Any idea why they moved? They always seemed to be doing good business at lunch and on the weekends.

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As of the end of February 2011, Brother's Pizza has served its last slice of pizza. They guy at the counter (who i think is part of the family) stated that they had been in GPM for over 30 years. They moved to a location in Cyperss (290 and Barker Cypress i beleive). That was hands down the best pizza in town. The Brother's pizza on cypresswood is not the same. I was really saddened by this. It really was the only reason that I ever went to that mall anymore.

We, Aldine HS band, played at GPM for the grand opening of the new at the time food court, the Ellipse. I think this was Christmas 1996 because I remember playing Christmas songs around the mall.

I remember eating at Picadilly and going to the movies as a kid. I remember watching Back to the Future II and An American Tale: Fievel Goes West at the General Cinema.

My girlfriend, now wife, worked in the mall in high school. She worked at Body Shop, Contempo, and Express.

From driving by, the Fitness Connnection gym always seems to have a lot of cars in the parking lot.

I spoke to the family (I went to high school with Sylvia, Tina and Manny). The Greenspoint location was no longer profitable. They were the only original tenant that was left from the original food court (called The Patio for the first 20 years). Brothers has locations in The Woodlands (Grogans Mill Shopping Center), Magnolia (Westwood Village Shopping Center), Willowbrook and Cypresswood. I have patronized the Woodlands and Magnolia locations and they are just as tasty as the original in the mall.

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Has anyone been to the new movie theater at GPM? What were your thoughts?

I saw in the news that Exxon-Mobil is moving to the 45N/Hardy Toll Road area in the future. Bad news for the Greenspoint area. I know that EM leases signifcant space in the area.

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Palais Royal was located between The Patio/Sears wing and the CenterCourt (where the waterfalls were) and faced Greenspoint Drive. (Friday's, El Torito). Bealls replaced Battelstein's first.

In response to the prior comment about Foley's being green -- Macy's apparently painted it green. You will notice the structures on the roof match what the color once was - white. I was at a training course recently at the greenspoint Marriott and ventured into the mall. Foley's is really sad. Macy's closed the entire first floor and has black curtains hanging to prevent you from seeing up there. The escalators are blocked off. The store smells and several associates told me the upstairs leaks like a sieve and they are getting sick from the mold. You can actually see mold growing on the glass that still fronts the elevator structure.

It used to be a beautiful store. The entire mall is so sad looking. Nothing like its previous life.

I was speaking a commercial realtor regarding our moving our office and she said not to rule out greenspoint. According to her, the current owner is out of California. He has refused to sell several times. One business arrangement involved them totally redoing the mall (heard that one before) and he even signed 6 restaurants that committed to building in the mall parking lot. He never did anything so they sued him. Now he is in finanical trouble and the realtor hopes he finally sells She said the return of greenspoint is not an if, it is a when. There have been plenty of interested parties with the pockets to pay for a redo. The other entities are interested due to the proximaty to the airport and freeways as well as the Class A office buildings.

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Irontiger - the architects were likely out of Cincinnati. The mall was developed by Federated Department stores - Foley's owner since 1945 before they were sold off to May Co in 1988 and then to Macy's. I would love to find pics of the Mall's early days with the anchors, hallways, etc.

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Bob Yari (owner) is a film director. It's also worth noting that he "revitalized" the Forum 303 Mall (in Arlington) by converting it into what was essentially a hybrid flea market/mall. While some 1998 newspaper articles put a real positive spin on it, they basically gutted half of it, put up some cubicle-style fences, gave the mall a coat of paint, and called it a day.

With Greenspoint, he didn't even try.

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If given the choice out of Sharpstown and Gunspoint, I would hands over take Gunspoint. Crappy area, but at least is not nasty like Shaprstown and Gulfton areas. That whole area should be nuked.

I moved here in 90 and Greenspoint was starting to go downhill then. there were still a lot of good stores, but it seems like by 96 over half of them were gone, probably because of the opening of The Woodlands Mall at the end of 1994. Most of the stores left in the mall are not even chain stores. Hell Ross opened a store and then a few years later closed it. Don't know why they opened another movie theater, I can't imagine that people would go see movies there. Now that Exxon is leaving, I have a feeling that there won't be enough business there to even keep it open and since the Foley's/Macy's building is full of mold and the 2nd floor is no longer open, I am surprised that it has not closed yet.

What irritates me is that awesome strip center across from the mall and every damn store in it practically went out of business. Childrens Palace, Phar Mor, Sportstown, Sound Warehouse, Pier 1, Marcos Restaurant, I frequented that Strip center almost as much as the mall when I moved here because I lived at 1960& I 45.

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They do have a new digital movie theater at the mall. Also Greenspoint has access to three major freeways, Sysco Foods just built a major distribution center there, and they have immediate proximity to the airport. Sharpstown doesn't have this.

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They do have a new digital movie theater at the mall. Also Greenspoint has access to three major freeways, Sysco Foods just built a major distribution center there, and they have immediate proximity to the airport. Sharpstown doesn't have this.

No, Sharpstown doesn't. But TWENTY YEARS AGO someone was killed in the Greenspoint Mall parking lot, and for whatever reason, that trumps all. The Soviet Union dissolved... we've had four presidents, three governors, four mayors... grunge rock came and went... the internet went from a pipe dream in then Senator Al Gore's imagination to an essential reality today... a kid born the day the shooting happened would be in college today... in other words, change is all around, yet in all that time, whenever you think of Greenspoint, you think of "Gunspoint," even though it was twenty years ago.

I say that not to condemn the place... I'm a big backer of Greenspoint and the Aldine High School area... I'm just stating a fact. That place will never come back, and that's a shame. You can put all the lipstick you want on a corpse, but at the end of the day, it's still a corpse. Having spent a lot of my youth and having worked at the Greenspoint Mervyn's from 1992 - 1995, I wish i weren't so, but that would be denying the obvious.

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I'm just saying don't count it out. Same as Sharpstown. In the long run, I think it (Sharpstown) will come back if for nothing else than its proximity to the Galleria which is growing like gangbusters.

In 20 years Houston will look very different. Just look at Kirby and Uptown Park areas. Skyscrapers?!? Who whudda thunk.

No, Sharpstown doesn't. But TWENTY YEARS AGO someone was killed in the Greenspoint Mall parking lot, and for whatever reason, that trumps all. The Soviet Union dissolved... we've had four presidents, three governors, four mayors... grunge rock came and went... the internet went from a pipe dream in then Senator Al Gore's imagination to an essential reality today... a kid born the day the shooting happened would be in college today... in other words, change is all around, yet in all that time, whenever you think of Greenspoint, you think of "Gunspoint," even though it was twenty years ago.

I say that not to condemn the place... I'm a big backer of Greenspoint and the Aldine High School area... I'm just stating a fact. That place will never come back, and that's a shame. You can put all the lipstick you want on a corpse, but at the end of the day, it's still a corpse. Having spent a lot of my youth and having worked at the Greenspoint Mervyn's from 1992 - 1995, I wish i weren't so, but that would be denying the obvious.

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On May 6, 2009 at 9:02 AM, hydeaway said:

The Anna's Linens location in the pic was originally an Oshman's sporting goods.

Anyone have any pics of Greenspoint when it was at its zenith? I have been searching for some across the internet with no success. Thanks!

 

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On April 21, 2009 at 8:42 PM, hydeaway said:

Has anyone ever come across any photos of Greenspoint in its heyday? Such as the fountain with the restaurant on top, the "high flyers" sculpture, etc? Remember the children's play area with the rubber floor with the yellow and red cubes we climbed and played in?

1: the "high flyers" sculpture

2: the children's court

3:an artist rendering of the center court.

I found these photos from a Facebook group.

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Edited by victor giron
Add more information.

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On 5/15/2016 at 9:37 PM, victor giron said:

I found these photos from a Facebook group.

 

Victor, funny thing... that's hydeaway's Facebook group you found those on. So in trying to help him, you're only giving him back his own stuff. I know, because I originally provided him those documents to put on Facebook. LOL!

 

Obviously you didn't know that. How could you? But it's pretty funny, nonetheless. Still, I'm sure I speak for him in saying thanks for the effort. That's what really counts.

 

 

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10 hours ago, Firebird65 said:

 

Victor, funny thing... that's hydeaway's Facebook group you found those on. So in trying to help him, you're only giving him back his own stuff. I know, because I originally provided him those documents to put on Facebook. LOL!

 

Obviously you didn't know that. How could you? But it's pretty funny, nonetheless. Still, I'm sure I speak for him in saying thanks for the effort. That's what really counts.

 

 

Oops... Sorry, I obviously didn't notice at all. Next time I will double check before I post something.

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18 minutes ago, victor giron said:

Oops... Sorry, I obviously didn't notice at all. Next time I will double check before I post something.

No way you could have known. No problem. 

 

But as I know him personally and as I'm the one who gave him those, I just found the episode amusing. But there's no way you could have checked. You didn't do anything wrong nor do you have anything to apologize for.

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By the way, where did you got those documents from? I've been scanning througout the entire internet for other high quality photos of the mall with out any success other than the ones posted in here.

ive always wanted to see how the fountain with "chimes" looked like and the entrances but sadly I wasn't born early enough to even see when that mall got renovated... Any help would be appreciated.

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19 hours ago, victor giron said:

By the way, where did you got those documents from? I've been scanning througout the entire internet for other high quality photos of the mall with out any success other than the ones posted in here.

ive always wanted to see how the fountain with "chimes" looked like and the entrances but sadly I wasn't born early enough to even see when that mall got renovated... Any help would be appreciated.

 

Houston Post or Houston Chronicle microfilm, I forget which. August 1976 was when the mall opened and when that special advertising section ran. It might have been in both papers, but one was clearer than the other. As I said, I forget which. 

 

DON'T go to the Houston Public Library... they'll charge you for paper copies, plus you have to fight off the homeless. Go instead to the University of Houston Library. You can save the files onto a flash drive or you can print them for free (you don't have to be a student or an alumni to use the facilities). 

 

If I still had them, I'd attach them here for you, but I didn't bother to scan them. I found them for hydeaway (an old high school friend) while doing another project several years ago. I'm interested in the history of Greenspoint Mall, but only to a degree. So I didn't keep a copy. It's his passion.  

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On May 20, 2016 at 5:30 PM, Firebird65 said:

 

Houston Post or Houston Chronicle microfilm, I forget which. August 1976 was when the mall opened and when that special advertising section ran. It might have been in both papers, but one was clearer than the other. As I said, I forget which. 

 

DON'T go to the Houston Public Library... they'll charge you for paper copies, plus you have to fight off the homeless. Go instead to the University of Houston Library. You can save the files onto a flash drive or you can print them for free (you don't have to be a student or an alumni to use the facilities). 

 

If I still had them, I'd attach them here for you, but I didn't bother to scan them. I found them for hydeaway (an old high school friend) while doing another project several years ago. I'm interested in the history of Greenspoint Mall, but only to a degree. So I didn't keep a copy. It's his passion.  

Thanks!  Also do you know the month the Montgomery wards opened? I am planning on going back to look for photos of that section of the mall.

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I found this in a Texas Monthly ad from 1982 while I was looking for something else: https://books.google.com/books?id=CC4EAAAAMBAJ&pg=PA88&lpg=PA88&dq=magnamart+san+antonio&source=bl&ots=jlX0dLkUwF&sig=zj7TJP5TB_oKHjQE3WqOJEpB2ic&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwiR_bKS7t_XAhVB8IMKHU6eDRIQ6AEIMzAC#v=onepage&q&f=false

 

5a1c9acd9e973_2017-11-2717_06_43-TexasMonthly-GoogleBooks.png.1b4f2b7bef565484257e414bdb34c91c.png

 

(The name and logo of Greenspoint were located under it, so it is Greenspoint). The presence of the stairs is intriguing, I thought Greenspoint was only one level.

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2 hours ago, IronTiger said:

 

The mall itself was only 1 level, Tiger. There once was a second floor in the center court, which was originally a café. Each of the department stores had a second floor, i.e. Lord & Taylor, Montgomery Ward's, J.C. Penney's, Joske's, Foley's, and Sears. Sears & Joske's closed off their second floors off first. As of today, there isn't a second floor open to the public anywhere within the entirety of Greenspoint.

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13 hours ago, Purpledevil said:

 

The mall itself was only 1 level, Tiger. There once was a second floor in the center court, which was originally a café. Each of the department stores had a second floor, i.e. Lord & Taylor, Montgomery Ward's, J.C. Penney's, Joske's, Foley's, and Sears. Sears & Joske's closed off their second floors off first. As of today, there isn't a second floor open to the public anywhere within the entirety of Greenspoint.

I was aware that the department stores all had (originally) upper levels, much like the situation at Memorial City Mall (except for Target). The "upper level café" is new information to me, though, and I don't think I've ever seen a set of stairs in the center courts. I'm going to guess that it was removed in the renovation in the late 1980s or early 1990s, and the space walled up. Without a floorplan or being there it's a little hard to tell, but this walled up area near the skylights sure looks suspicious...

 

EDIT: It is not the same court, but the correct court with the fountains and correct columns still seem to lack a staircase...

Edited by IronTiger
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15 hours ago, IronTiger said:

I was aware that the department stores all had (originally) upper levels, much like the situation at Memorial City Mall (except for Target). The "upper level café" is new information to me, though, and I don't think I've ever seen a set of stairs in the center courts. I'm going to guess that it was removed in the renovation in the late 1980s or early 1990s, and the space walled up. Without a floorplan or being there it's a little hard to tell, but this walled up area near the skylights sure looks suspicious...

 

EDIT: It is not the same court, but the correct court with the fountains and correct columns still seem to lack a staircase...

Given what I remember of the café and waterfalls, I'd be pretty certain it was all demo'ed when management renovated the mall in the late 80's. That's when the ficus and all of the cool sculptures were removed from the corridors, and my favorite water feature in front of Montgomery Ward's met its demise. It used to fill up with water on one end, dump the water when full, and raise up on the other end striking a brass pipe that let out the most beautiful gong. The walled up area near the skylights would be too high to conceal the stairs. The skylights were there from the beginning, and cascaded sunlight down onto the center court and subsequent café area. Ah, yes. The days when Greenspoint was still classy.

 

What predated Target at Memorial City Mall was Montgomery Ward's. It was an old dookie brown colored building that simply screamed 1970. Indeed, it too had a second floor. Sat right across the mall corridor from the recruitment offices for the Armed Forces, and oh yeah, the best Whataburger that Memorial has ever known.

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The Chron archives tell me that the Greenspoint renovation happened in 1988 (April to October). @hydeaway is almost certainly the person who wrote the DeadMalls.com article, and 1988 was when the trees and fountains disappeared and the floors were replaced with "almost glow in the dark multicolored tiles" rather than the dark brick-like tiles it used to have. It was Federated that opened the mall in the 1970s and built the two expansions that would add Joske's and Montgomery Ward to the mall, but it was Prudential Insurance Co. (or rather a pension fund that Prudential ran) that was the one to run Greenspoint into the ground, with the decline happening under their reign and a single 1988 renovation that somehow made the mall worse.

 

In terms of the cafe, at about 4:35 of this video you can see the skylights of the center court with a kiosk (Houston Visitor's Center) protruding into the court, with a white wall above it. However, according to the aerial photograph of said center court, you should be able to see the skylight from any corner, as they go all the way to the end, if you look at the center court from above on Google Earth (it is on the side opposite where they peak outward). Since I have no idea what the café area looked like since I was born after 1988 (1991, thank you) I have come to the rudimentary conclusion that based on the video, the aerial photos, and the old photo, that the café (which I still don't know the name of) was on the side closest to Sears and Joske's, and the 1988 renovation tore down the stairs and walled up what was left, explaining why you can't see the other end of where the two skylight sides meet.

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On 4/4/2011 at 10:13 PM, hydeaway said:

When I was in high school in 1981-1985, our drafting class was shown blueprints for an upscale mall that was to be built in the Greens Crossing portion of Greenspoint just across the freeway. It was to include a Bloomingdales and an ice skating rink. The Paragon building(s) -- one of three that was actually built -- was supposed to be connected via a skywalk. When the energy bust came, the plans were scrapped and they build the now defunct "power center" that had included Phar Mor, Children's Palace Toys, Circuit City, etc on the site. Did anyone else see those blueprints or know about this? What was the name of the planned mall? Any other prospective tenants you were aware of? It shows how upscale Greenspoint was at its zenith. Remember Lord & Taylor, Walter Pyes, Benetton, Jarrod's Polo Shop, Isabell Gerhart and other high end stores Greenspoint Mall had in its quiver?

A bit late on the draw for this one, but @SpaceGhost and I did find mention of it in the Houston Post in 1981, but we didn't find any more information on it other than it really was planned at one time, and that it would be co-developed with the developer of NorthPark Center in Dallas and designed by the same people.

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Visit report. I found myself in the area on Wednesday and thought I would stop by the greenspoint mall for nostalgia (42 years young this week I think). Like others, I was a frequent visitor to this mall in its prime and witnessed its sad decline. I arrived around noon and there was nothing going on. Shady jewelry stores (why would anyone want gold teeth), mom and pop clothing stores (one was called boujee, which made me laugh), a clearance palis royal, champs, foot locker, and a school uniform store that seemed to be getting the most business. There was only a roman delight pizza, Chinese restaurant, and a thirstys for nourishment. The retro video game store was neat but everything was ebay prices if you know what I mean. There was a toy store that sold knock offs and marked up legit items. The visible changes by the food court is now a barber shop. African imports is a cool store. I just glanced over at the movie theatre. Man, how I wish those old school general cinemas were around. Loved them. The interior of the mall is in bad shape. I found myself tripping over broken floor tiles on a few occasions. The stores seemed to not be getting decent air flow. They were warm to say the least.  The landscaping and parking lot are just not maintained. I basically spent an hour walking around and remembering where former stores and restaurants were located. Now for the question portion of the post:

 

1. Someone earlier recalled the chick fil a being two stories as do I. Anyone ever witness this design in a 70s era mall before?

2. I heard the food court was the last to fall once all the businesses in the area left? Is this true?

3. Why will the owner of the mall not offer dirt cheap rent, to say the gap or old navy, so they are at least guaranteed to make a profit and fill vacant space? I think gangsters enjoy khakis. :) The owner would need to fix up the mall of course and provide security.

4. Wasn't there an announcement last year that the mall would be closed and all tenants evicted? I'm guessing this does not happen for legal reasons.

 

 

 

 

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16 hours ago, brunsonpark08 said:

There was only a roman delight pizza, Chinese restaurant, and a thirstys for nourishment. 

 

 

16 hours ago, brunsonpark08 said:

2. I heard the food court was the last to fall once all the businesses in the area left? Is this true?

 

 

Wow, that is pretty grim. I haven't been to the mall in several years, but I worked on a project in the area about ten years ago and consequently used to hit the Brothers' Pizza in the food court semi-regularly for lunch. At that time, although the food court wasn't 100% occupied, there were certainly more than three tenants there. I recall a Cajun place, a Sbarro, a sandwich shop, and a frozen yogurt shop, among others.

 

I think you're correct about the food court hanging on longer than other areas of the mall, as it was still doing decent business after there were already lots of empty storefronts in the mall. Exxon vacating their nearby office space once their new corporate campus opened was probably the death blow for the food court, as when they were still in the area the food court was quite busy with office workers during the lunch hour. 

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