Curious visitors can explore homes full of art collections and views of Galveston Bay during a fundraising tour for the Houston Symphony League Bay Area at the end of next month.

The league will hold its 16th homes tour from noon to 5 p.m. March 31 through April 2. The tour includes a home in the Bay Oaks neighborhood, a home in Seabrook facing the water, one in Kemah and two properties in League City, including the Butler Longhorn Museum.

Tickets are $20 and can be purchased at

A pre-tour party is March 31. Tickets to the party are $75 per person and include a ticket to the homes tour. For information, call 281-488-7614.

14823 Tumbling Fall Court, Bay Oaks

This Georgian-style home in Bay Oaks has a new gray stone walkway that coordinates with the slate gray shutters against white painted brick walls.

This home was built in 1989. Treasured family antiques combine with modern pieces. The master bathroom is done in Hollywood Regency style.

One of the homeowners is an artist, and the home is a showcase for the homeowner’s art collection of 67 works. The many windows light the art, which includes several paintings from Guatemala, original oil paintings by San Antonio artists and a 19th century drawing of the Brooklyn Bridge.

2909 Seargent St., Seabrook

Oleander bushes and tropical landscaping line the driveway of this house. Every floor of this three-story home offers views of Clear Lake. The current owner built the home in 1984. The owner chose art inside the house from travels and in support of local artists. The style of the home was contemporary with redwood siding and a flat roof, but after traveling to Italy, the owner renovated the exterior in 2003 to reflect a Tuscan ambience.

The art collection fits the elegant yet whimsical theme of this house. Besides faux finishes on the walls, several bronze sculptures are the highlights along with a painting of a horse a grandchild painted.

The design has two offices on the ground floor, a family room and poker room; the mezzanine with custom bar overlooking Clear Lake; the main floor with a beautiful master bedroom and dining room ready for large family gatherings; and the third floor with a two-bedroom guest suite.

1225 Kip Ave., Kemah

This 10,000-square-foot home is an example of East Coast style. The builder shipped white cedar shingles from Massachusetts for the exterior of the home and then painted them taupe. The architect and interior designer couple built this home in 2001 as a weekend home. After Hurricane Ike, the couple expanded the home and made it their permanent home and family gathering place. This home was featured in Southern Living in 2006 and 2007 and won two American Society of Interior Designers awards.

The main floor combines an English country home with nautical themes such as buoys and lobster traps. The upstairs is nautical with bright primary colors and anchors, sails and sea shells.

The back porch overlooking Galveston Bay has Adirondack chairs and sturdy rockers. Many of the upstairs bedrooms lead out to balconies that also have views of the bay and the Kemah Boardwalk.

721 Third St., League City

The owners of this 1905 Victorian saved this house from demolition. When the owners learned that the home of the wife’s great grandfather was going to be demolished, they undertook the task of moving it to the current location. Although the move was only a few blocks, League City’s oak trees caused the route to the new location to be long and complicated. The second floor had to be removed and reattached. When reattached, the top floor was redesigned to be a large bath and master bedroom suite.

The owner built the home with wood reclaimed from at least 20 different houses destroyed in the 1900 Galveston hurricane. The wood arrived by water from Galveston all the way up to League City. Thick pine boards make up the floor. The homeowner left one end of the kitchen as it had been with its original aqua whitewash over the boards.

Butler Museum, 1220 Coryell St., League City

Milby Butler of the Butler ranch in League City supposedly taught John Wayne how to ride a horse when Butler longhorns were used as cattle for Wayne’s 1960 movie, “The Alamo.” The Butler Longhorn Museum is the former home of Walter Hall. The Butler ranch was 55,000 acres extending across League City and Friendswood.

The museum is a testament to the efforts of longhorn cattle breeders. It is filled with local history, with a western theater and murals. The museum features different artists and some artwork is for sale in the shop.

2011 Sea Cove Court, Nassau Bay

This home, built in 1965, is where the pre-tour party will be March 31.

The present owners have occupied it since 1988. Thirty-six inches of water destroyed the first floor in Hurricane Ike. Through a partial FEMA grant, this house has been raised 10 feet, as have more than 30 homes in Nassau Bay. Originally brick on the outside, the owners decided to stucco over the brick and paint the house a uniform color. An elevator in the rear of the home helps visitors who can’t negotiate the stairs to the new front door.

The white, cream and chocolate palate throughout the house complements the contemporary style. Nassau Bay is accessible via a canal in the backyard. A seashell motif is a unifying theme for this home.

Valerie Wells is a reporter at The Daily News and can be reached at 409-683-5246 or


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