If you’ve ever stepped foot on the delightful grounds of Memorial Creole, you know that the entire landscape exudes a level of history and charm like no other. People often ask about the history of the established Memorial apartments and the background of the Louisiana-style architecture, which was the work of Lucian T. Hood, Jr.
Many of the excerpts from the piece below were originally written for Houston History Magazine, a unique and historical magazine published by the Center for Public History at the University of Houston. Stephen James wrote the original profile we highlight and quote below, and worked with Lucian Hood III and Ben Hill. We encourage you to read (and subscribe to) this publication for more historical information on all things Houston.
In the 1960s Lucian T. Hood, Jr. was hired by real estate icon Marvy Finger to help bring his Memorial apartment vision to life. Mr. Finger has knack for spotting and securing ideal Houston locations, but it was Hood’s skill and unique design talents that really brought this vision to life. What you’ll see today at Memorial Creole is a delightful mixture of architecturally renowned buildings, all evoking exclusive southern charm scattered throughout the Magnolia-lined private drive. The property boasts 23 mixed-style homes, each as unique as the next, all with large windows overlooking the ornate landscaping.
In regards to Hood’s success as an architect, especially here in Houston, Stephen James writes:
"A highlight of this period was the Memorial Creole Apartments (1968) at 10220 Memorial Drive, which featured Louisiana French Creole architecture. An outstanding design, it showed the hallmarks that would define Hood’s later career: traditional-style architecture with authentic, often historically accurate, exterior elevations and great attention to detail. A half century later, the Memorial Creole is still well maintained by the Finger Companies, the original owner, which markets it to those seeking luxury apartments in the wooded Memorial neighborhood. If its amenities and picturesque setting were not persuasive enough, its website announces that it was designed “by renowned architect, Lucian Hood.” (Excerpt taken from “Attention to Detail: The Architecture of Lucian T. Hood, Jr." article written by Stephen James for Houston History Magazine, Volume 15, No. 1)
Though each Memorial Creole home as gone through recent renovations, it’s the sophisticated and original details like wrought-iron staircases and original columns inside the homes that continue to give this community a graceful blend of artistic history along with all the modernizations and comforts you could dream of.
Hood’s work can still be seen throughout some of the most prominent streets of Houston and Memorial. Hood (1916 – 2001) was a graduate from The University of Houston architecture program in 1952.
“He was a favorite architect for several home builders who produced small numbers of high-end custom homes in the city’s most exclusive neighborhoods. His designs fill the blocks of the desirable northern edge of Tanglewood, between Woodway Drive and Buffalo Bayou. Others are found in River Oaks and the Memorial Villages where he created opulent mansions for Houston’s rich and famous,” James writes.
Our boutique and charismatic Memorial community is proud to showcase some of Hood’s best work. Our community offers 154 unique residences with exceptional interiors and zoned to exemplary Spring Branch schools, which is a huge attraction, but equally so are the charming architectural characteristics.
“Architecture should speak of its time and place, but yearn for timelessness.”Frank Gehry
Again, if you’re into architecture or Houston history, you can read the entire profile on Hood’s career Here.
If you’re looking for a new Memorial home, we invite you to tour Memorial Creole today at 10220 Memorial Drive, or call one of our expert leasing agents at 713.464.3643. Visit us to secure your new home inside one of the most desirable Houston zip codes.