ROUND TOP ANTIQUE SHOW GUIDE
It’s time to start preparing for the biggest and best antique show in the world: The Round Top Antique Show! Whether you have been before, or you are considering for the first time making a trip to this amazing show, we want to give you an all inclusive guide to navigating this show. Here are some of the things we’ll cover: all of the best places to visit and where they’re located, places to stay and eat, the things to do and not do, and some great tips and tricks for making your time there as successful as possible.
WHAT IS THE ROUND TOP ANTIQUE SHOW?
Round Top, Texas, for most of the year, is a small quaint town with cute old country homes and a seemingly misplaced collection of insanely large buildings. But pass through Round Top, Texas during its Spring or Fall antique show, and you’ll be baffled by the miles of cars all looking for a fun weekend, amazing shopping, and even better food and drinks. The Round Top Antique show is the largest antique show in the country and has been taking place for over 50 years. The shows span across miles of Texas countryside between the towns of Round Top, Carmine, Warrenton, Fayetteville, La Grange, and several more. If you are looking for a shopping adventure, this show is the show for you! There are thousands of vendors that range from you small pop-up flea market vendors, to high-end luxury brands, to permanent businesses that are open year-round. In addition to the limitless shopping in Round Top, there are also nightly events, amazing food, and beautiful Texas scenery. Even if you were to stay in Round Top for the full three weeks it is open, you would only be able to put a small dent in the amount of shop-able areas, and activities that take place here twice a year. With that being said, you want to have a game plan for all aspects of the trip, particularly a shopping game plan and goal in mind for what you want to leave with. Not only are we going to provide you with information to make your trip enjoyable and comfortable, but also successful and worth your time!
2023 SHOW DATES:
Spring | March 16th - April 2nd
Fall | October 12th - October 29th *We will not be selling during the Fall show
LOCATION OF THE ROUND TOP ANTIQUE SHOW
As mentioned above, the antique show is widespread and spans across multiple counties and miles upon miles of Texas countryside which includes Round Top, Carmine, Warrenton, Fayetteville, and La Grange. It’s pretty difficult to attribute a single point as the central location of the show, but if you find yourself in the downtown of Round Top, Texas, you’re pretty centrally located. Because the show is so large, there isn’t a single set of dates for businesses and locations to open, so knowing what’s open and shoppable can be tricky. Chances are you’ll be heading through Houston or Austin on your way to Round Top, so we’ve given you a snapshot of the best way to travel from each of those locations.
From Houston, Texas to Round Top, Texas:
Round Top, Texas is about an hour and a half north west of Houston, Texas. When coming from Houston, Texas, you can either drive down Highway 290 or I-10 West until you take the exit in Sealy, Texas. We find that 290 typically lends itself to less traffic and more options for traveling back roads when traffic is present.
From Austin, Texas to Round Top, Texas:
Round Top, Texas is also about an hour and a half East of of Austin, Texas and is a relatively straight shot. Sadly there are not many other alternatives to the one below so be sure to plan around traffic.
THE TOP 5 FIELDS AND BUSINESSES TO VISIT WHILE SHOPPING IN ROUND TOP TEXAS
With the Round Top Antique Show covering such a vast area, it comes in handy knowing what your goals are for the trip and what types of things you are looking for. If it is your first time attending the show, it may be very overwhelming and difficult to know where you should start. So in an attempt to make your trip enjoyable and easy, here are our top 5 fields and places to visit while in town.
Excess fields One and Two
Excess I and Excess II consist of some of the coolest and most unique pieces of architectural salvage, antiques, interiors, and handcrafted products. You can most certainly spend some time here looking through some amazing items and find plenty to fill up your vehicle or trailer depending on how ready you are to spend money. You won’t find mass produced items here, only beautiful one of a kind items.
Bader Ranch is amazing in so many ways. It is laid back but consists of some beautiful French antiques, women’s fashion, and some delicious food and drinks provided by Lady Elaine. This location is perfect for your first or last stop of the day because not only will you find some great items, but you can also grab an amazing breakfast, coffee, or crafted cocktail.
North Gate is another great stop for your journey through the Round Top market. North Gate is known for its antiques but also hidden gems of stained glass, rugs, and other miscellaneous antique items.
The Arbors in Round Top, Texas offers amazing clothing, fine art, handmade goods, and a splash of hand picked antiques. While it does not fit into the mold of an “antique show”, it offers a great shopping experience and gives you a different set of items to look through.
If you’re looking for a place to take a step back from the antiques and get your eyes on more new handcrafted type items, then the Compound is your place to go. The Compound consists of some really great mid-century modern furniture and interiors, handmade goods, and other great items to fill your vehicle and home with!
Go ahead and download the Round Top Antique Show map! It will definitely come in handy!
THE TOP 5 PLACES TO STAY IN ROUND TOP TEXAS
While Round Top, Texas may not be impressive in size, there are so many great places to stay that include well designed farm houses to modern shipping container homes. We are here to give you the best places to stay and enjoy your time while prousing through antique goodies and designer furniture!
The Frenchie is by far one of our favorite places to stay in Round Top, Texas. The Frenchie is comprised of three buildings including an old farm house that was renovated into the perfect mix of a boutique hotel and warm traditional B&B.
Flophouze Shipping Container Hotel
If you’re looking for not only a clean, amenity filled, and charming place to stay, but also a place that is unique, different, and fun, then the Flophouse Shipping Container Hotel is for you! With 8 different choices, you can enjoy time in the beautiful rolling hills of Texas from the view of your one of a kind container house.
Hotel Lulu is the place to go if you find yourself wanting to take a step away from the shopping madness at the end of the day. Hotel Lulu offers wonderful amenities and is the counterpart to one of our favorite restaurants in town.
Round Top Inn
Not only is it ideally located within the heart of Round Top shopping, but it also carries its charming history alongside fresh and comfy bedding. The Round Top inn is an amazing place to stay during your trip to Round Top and gives you amazing access to the heart of the Round Top antique show and its amazing restaurants.
The Rancho Pillow is located on a beautiful 20 acre Texas plot of land that gives you the ability to choose where to stay with several great options on the property including a glamp level Teepee. Not only does it give you a place to sit back and relax by yourself, but also a great place to gather with your friends after a long day of walking and shopping.
Click the links below to check out these amazing accommodations and book your stay!
THE TOP 5 BEST RESTAURANTS IN ROUND TOP TEXAS
With so many great restaurants and pop-up vendors, it’s a difficult task creating a top 5 places to eat, but thankfully there are a few that really stick out!
It’d be pretty difficult to place a different restaurant at the top of our must eat places in Round Top. Royer’s in a multigenerational family owned Restaurant that will leave anyone full and happy after a meal there. They specialize in their steak, other meats, and of course, their amazing pies. The restaurant in so many ways feels like home from the relaxed atmosphere, the kind and amazing waitresses, and the rows of pies sitting on the counter waiting to be devoured. We certainly recommend visiting Royer’s during you trip to Round Top, but be sure to call and reserve a table because they book far in advance.
If you are looking for the true Round Top experience, then Y Comida comes in at a close second for places you should eat while in Round Top. Y Comida is actually located at Bader Ranch just outside of the Round Top town square and offers the best transition from hard shopping to cocktails, fine dining, and a Texas sunset. Everything Chef Nick touches turns into a delicious masterpiece from seared scallops to perfectly medium rare steaks, they certainly deserve their spot in the top 5 places to eat in Round Top, Texas
The Garden Co. - Feed & Water restaurant is amazing little restaurant in the downtown of Round Top, Texas that features beautifully cooked and prepared dishes and drinks. It not only looks good but goodness it sure does taste good as well!
If you’re looking to enjoy some fresh Italian dishes accompanied with an amazing, award winning wine selection, Lulu’s is your place! Many people know of the owner Armando Palacios because of his other restaurant in Houston, “Armandos”, but he is well on his way to being know for the amazing atmosphere and delicious food and drinks offered at Lulu’s.
It’s hard going a week without eating any Mexican food, but thankfully Mandito’s is there to fill the void in your heart and stomach with their delicious Mexican cuisine and of course hard hitting margaritas. Also owned by the Armando family, you can expect the same level of deliciousness and serve here as you do any of the other Armando restaurants.
Click the links below to check out some of these amazing restaurants and to make your reservations today (pssst… they fill up fast)
EVENTS DURING THE ROUND TOP TEXAS ANTIQUE SHOW
While the shopping may take place for the most part throughout the day, that doesn’t mean there aren’t plenty of things to do once the sun sets. Many of the events aren’t announced until the week before the start of each show, but there are a handful of things that are available at any point during the show.
Spring Show Note-able Events:
Show events coming soon!
TOP 10 TIPS FOR THE ROUND TOP ANTIQUE SHOW
The Round Top Antique Show is such an awesome event that can leave your vehicle full and your pockets empty, but with so much going on, so many fields and vendor locations, types of products, and price points, it can get a little hazy figuring out your game plan. It’s definitely in your best interest to create a game plan for your time in Round Top, and for you procrastinators, it can be done in the car on the way to the show. So as you go through your checklist and plan for your trip to the best antique show in the country, use these 10 tips as your guide to make sure nothing goes overlooked or missed.
Book your Hotel or BnB Ahead of Time…Way Ahead of Time
There are so many amazing places to stay during your time in and around Round Top, Texas, but due to the size of the town, and the large quantity of people that come, accommodations book far in advance. With that being said, once you’ve decided to make a trip to Round Top, book your place to stay immediately. If you find that all of the options for a place to stay in or in the immediate vicinity of Round Top are booked, Austin is within a reasonable driving distance to and from Round Top, which consists of hundreds of great options for a place to rest your head and feet at night.
Book Dinner Reservations Ahead of Time
Dinner locations, in much the same way as places to stay, book up very quickly. With that being said, it is also a good idea to get your dinner locations reserved for your trip as soon as you decide to go. They don’t book as far in advance as the accommodations, but the last thing you want is to settle for Mcdonald’s after a long day of shopping because you never booked dinner reservations.
Know Your Trip Goals
Many people come to the Round Top Antique Show for a variety of different reasons. Many are building houses and want to fill their house with all of the different goodies Round Top has to offer, others may be taking a girl’s weekend to get away from the kids and to drink a few too many glasses of wine. Whatever your reason is for coming to Round Top, your trip will be much more successful if you set some trip goals. Know what piece of furniture you are looking for, what color antique turkish rug, or handcrafted piece of jewelry you want around your neck before starting out on your journey to buy. The reason you will be more successful if you know these things ahead of time is because where in the sea of vendors you go is dependent on what you want or need.
Set Your Budget and Buying Expectations
Depending on what you are looking to buy during your time in Round Top, you may be able to find what you’re looking for in several different locations. Now as the saying goes, you pay for what you get, this still remains true in Round Top Texas, but know what quality of product you are looking for and know what budget you have for that product. Knowing these things will allow you to navigate the different locations that may carry the goods you are interested in buying and will give you the ability to make the appropriate decisions.
Set A Daily Itinerary
Once you’ve done some thinking on what it is your goals are for your trip, and after you’ve looked into where you can find those things, it is time for you to come up with a loose itinerary. For you non planners, I know that doesn’t sound fun, but creating somewhat of an itinerary will allow you to keep from turning around a thousand times and it will allow for you to schedule your in car time around the traffic. Keep in mind when creating your itinerary the locations you are wanting to shop, the places you want to eat, and any other stops you want to make.
Schedule Your Driving Around Traffic
For those of you who have never visited Round Top, Texas during the middle of the show, you would not believe the amount of traffic that accumulates on the main highway (HWY 237) during times like lunch and opening times for fields and vendors. For those of you who have been before, you understand the importance of being where you want to be before the traffic hits. For instance, if you want to first shop in the Excess fields and then make your way to the Arbors, it may be in your best interest to make that drive either before lunch or after.
Come Prepared to Transport Your Purchases Back Home
If you’re someone who is thinking to themselves, “I’m about to stock up on all kinds of good stuff in Round Top,” don’t forget about the logistics of getting all that “good stuff” back home. You may be able to fit most of your purchases in your vehicle depending on how many people you have stuffed in there, but it may be a good idea to look into renting a Uhaul trailer or bringing your own. There are also several shipping companies that you can hire to transport your purchases back to your home or place of business. Most businesses in Round Top carry the cards of those transport companies in their booth, so if you find yourself in need of a transporter, just ask a worker within that booth.
The weather during either of the main shows tends to be enjoyable, especially since the Fall show dates changed to a later date in the year; however, we would strongly advise checking the forecast for the days you intend on being there. But regardless of the changes in temperature and the changes in rain/sun, some things remain consistent: you should dress for comfort during the day. You may find yourself walking several miles throughout each day and the last thing you want is blistered and sore feet after the first day. So, make sure you wear both comfortable clothes and comfortable shoes.
Bring Plenty of Water and Sunscreen
One of the great things about attending the Round Top Antique Show is enjoying plenty of sun and beautiful Texas countryside. Because most of the days are sunny, it is so important to bring a lot of water and sunscreen. On your way into town, just grab a case of water and some 30 spf and you should be good to go!
Bring Some Form of Tote
The last tip we have is to bring some form of tote, bag, or even pull behind wagon. With the amount of walking ahead of you in Round Top, have something to carry your personal items plus the small purchases you’re sure to make throughout the day can be essential. It is much easier carrying a bag around than trying to juggle the water, gifts, and other things you find yourself buying throughout the day.