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The Downtown Aquarium

Map & Directions
(108 Reviews)

410 Bagby St, Houston, TX 77002

(713) 223-3474

CLOSED NOW
Today: 10:00 am - 9:00 pm
Tomorrow: 10:00 am - 9:00 pm
15
YEARS
IN BUSINESS
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General Info
Downtown Aquarium is the product of redeveloping two Downtown Houston Landmarks--Fire Station No. 1 and The Central Waterworks Building. This Magnificent six-acre entertainment and dining complex is a 500,000-gallon aquatic wonderland, home to over 200 species of aquatic life from around the globe. With a full service restaurant, an upscale bar, a fully equipped ballroom, aquatic & geographical exhibits, shopping and a variety of amusements, Downtown Aquarium has it all!
Hours

Regular Hours

Extra Phones

Phone: (713) 315-5000

Payment method
all major credit cards
Price Range
$$
Neighborhoods
Central Houston, Downtown Houston
Amenities
Games Fun Rides Shark Voyage Diving Bell Ferris Wheel Aquatic Carousel Lighthouse Dive Louisiana Swamp Shipwreck Rainforest Sunken Temple Gulf of Mexico Discovery Rig White Tigers of the Maharajahs Temple Inn at the Ballpark: FREE shuttle services (based upon availability) 24-hour In-Room Dining Evening Turndown Service Upon Request Same Day Laundry and Dry Cleaning Service Concierge Staff and Services In-Room Spa Services ADA Guest Rooms Available Atrium Bar and Lounge Guest Signing Privileges at Vic & Anthony's Steakhouse State of the Art Meeting and Banquet Facilities Ballpark Cafe Valet Parking Gift Shop 24-hour Security
Associations
American Zoo and Aquarium Association National Marine Fisheries Services The Nature Conservancy The Ocean Project Texas Parks & Wildlife WildAid Wildlife Alliance The World Parrot Trust
Categories
Public Aquariums, Banquet Halls & Reception Facilities, American Restaurants, Seafood Restaurants, Restaurants, Amusement Places & Arcades
Other Information

Parking: Paid

Wi-Fi: No

Bike Parking: Yes

Attire: Casual

Wheelchair Accessible: Yes

Takes Reservations: Yes

Outdoor Seating: Yes

Price Range : Average

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Reviews

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Peter C.

06/16/2015

Overall

One of the best and exiting place to take your kids with you they will defiantly like it. Huge aquarium full of sharks, stingrays and swordfish.The food was good. The service was fine and the waiters are trained to answer any question you have about the fish in the tank. It has a 150,000 gallon tank in the middle of the resturaunt. A boat ride and a ferris wheel. and a larger aquarium to tour. I visited this place with my family and it is equally enjoyable each time. We always see and learn something new. Its great for people that are touring Houston.

Nancy A.

06/05/2015

Overall

Right place to take your family and children. Last year I took my daughter and a friend of mine to visit the aquarium. The aquarium was nice and The Bengal Tigers were beautiful .The food was great! Over all that was a good experience and the most important thing for me that my daughter had a lot of fun. The funniest part was it took me almost an hour get my daughter agreed for leaving ;)

Blade H.

04/22/2014

Overall
engagement at the aquarium

The surprise was ruined! I proposed at the Downtown aquarium 4/19/14 and was supposed to be a surprise proposal for my now fiancé and was my dream because i watched many online proposal videos at aquariums around the world and thought this one would be the same but the waiter left a receipt on the table at the BEGINNING of the dinner that said "proposal dive" that my fiancé had seen without anyone noticing because i didn't even see him do it and ruined the surprise but not only that, our reservation was for 11:00a.m. but couldn't even get in until 11:30 when they were done cleaning upstairs and the divers were scheduled to come out at 12:10p.m. and when i asked the manager to postpone the divers because we barely ordered, they couldn't do it for but 10 minutes because they were on a busy schedule which i understand but i am PROPOSING? (am i wrong for wanting this to be perfect?) AND, when the divers came out to show her the proposal sign, they didn't even give me time to get out of my seat and get in front of them to propose before they flipped the sign over or for my photographer friend to get any good pictures... it all happened sooooo fast... I paid 460+ dollars for this occasion for 2 people and the diver and i brought 5 other people with me that spend a pretty penny as well. The Aquarium is always a nice place to visit but booking a proposal here is out of the question... They were really great and called to reassure your attendance multiple times but when the event is happening noone gives a flying fadoodle... i even taped my engagement ring box to my hairy legs to make this surprise happen just to be ruined by a silly careless mistake that ruined my big moment...

elsa.garcia.549

08/04/2012

Overall
This place was a joke. The por...

This place was a joke. The por tiger was kept in a place that isint ven sutable form chihuhua! I personally will never no back again. Dont go there.

hernandez32

01/16/2012

Provided by Citysearch - 
Overall
Downtown Aquarium

When I think of the Aquarium, I think of the ambience, the white tigers, the HUGE aquarium in the middle of the restaurant, the appetizers and drinks, NOT the entrees. The food is decent but I wouldn't say the pricey meals is all what you're paying for. You're paying for the scenery and environment, which is completely worth it!

But warning...there is never not a wait to eat dinner at this place! One time, my boyfriend and I waited 2 hours for a table. But luckily they have a downstairs cafe where you can order drinks and appetizers to pass the time or you can enjoy the rides, games and see the aquarium and white tigers while you wait. I would say it's definitely worth the trip.

Kids In Motion Daycare Hm

06/30/2011

Provided by Citysearch - 
Overall
Fun and Entertaining

I have visited the Aquarium with my youngest adult daughter on more than on occassion. I just recently took my Daycare preschoolers to the Aquarium as we were learning about Ocean Life.
The children loved it and requested that we go again, and we did. Wish the place could have been a little bigger, however, considering the space... it is a nice get-away and adventure.
I visited the restaurant with my oldest daughter when she was home on leave from the Army and had no complaints. The food is great.

AlainHarvey

06/18/2011

Provided by Citysearch - 
Overall
Drink and play at Tilman Fertitta's seven-acre, downtown aqu

Drink and play at Tilman Fertitta's seven-acre, downtown aquatic adventure.

The Appeal
Houston's first public aquarium was designed to entertain the masses. The $38-million world-class complex, perched on the redeveloped 400 block of Bagby, boasts 500,000 gallons of visible underwater tanks with more than 200 species of marine life--and that's just skimming the surface.

The restaurant has an extensive menu that specializes in seafood, steaks, salads, pasta, chicken and other main entrees. Appetizers such as shrimp and crab dip, crispy calamari, and Maryland crab cake are a few of the aquarium favorites that bring patrons to the downtown restaurant. Patrons can view various sharks, marine plants, and a large range of other fish while dining. It is a family-friendly environment that attracts people of all ages.

Features
At this classy carnival, expect rides and amusements for the entire family. The Shark Voyage is a highlight: Travel via train into an acrylic tunnel with live sharks swimming overhead. Ride the 100-foot Diving Bell Ferris wheel for an incredible view of the city, or the aquatic carousel if you'd rather be grounded. See educational exhibits of themed underwater environments like the Rainforest. Quell your hunger at the Marina Matinee cafe or Aquarium restaurant; quench your thirst at the Dive Lounge. Thinking big? The Nautilus Ballroom accommodates 450 people.

Although the kids will probably be too distracted by the giant residents of the wall-size aquariums to notice, the food at the simply named Aquarium Restaurant is good -- really good. Sure parent-pleasers include the tortilla crusted shrimp salad (a house specialty) and sautéed gulf snapper. Although the kids' menu is not quite as inspired (pasta, miniature burgers, and chicken tenders), your little ones will devour every bite if they can tear themselves away from looking at the fish.
More upscale than the other Landry family restaurants that include a crab shack and cantina theme, the Aquarium Restaurant of Houston has a menu includes anything from fish and shrimp to burgers and steaks. For an appetizer, enjoy shrimp cocktails, oysters on the half-shell or crab wontons. The menu also includes items like the shrimp tortilla club sandwich, blackened redfish and sautéed red snapper with crab-avocado pico de gallo.

With the museum-like environment and live sharks, this restaurant is very kid-friendly. While the prices are a little higher than most restaurants, you definitely get your money’s worth of ambience. Whether you visit the downtown or Kemah restaurant, you should make time to visit the Aquarium Restaurant at least once.

No admission required. The restaurant has its own entry, so aquarium admission is not required to dine here. It's a great way to see aquatic life without touring the entire aquarium.

Expect the expected. The aquarium's theme park rides are right outside the restaurant door. Expect the inevitable pleas to ride.

Chrissy8655

01/22/2011

Provided by Citysearch - 
Overall
TIGER CRUELTY

The fish are fine.

Parking was expensive and a disaster! No parking! WE drove around for at least 30 min before stalking someone to their car and waiting for their spot.

And, don't get me started on the poor white tigers living in a h hole. Two large tigers live in an extremely tiny cement prison cell. No grass, no light, not even dirt... just cement. And there are thousands of kids and parents banging on the glass that separates the tigers from us... The poor tigers can't get any rest. My cats at home have better life! This is animal cruelty....

moosechomp

01/12/2011

Provided by Citysearch - 
Overall
Mediocre

Definitely dont go here for the food. The atmosphere is fun, but if you are looking for great seafood then this place will disappoint!

mjyum11

12/02/2010

Provided by Citysearch - 
Overall
great place for kids

This is a great place to bring your kids. When we first got there, we thought the place was closed, but it was empty so we pretty much had the aquarium and outdoor venue to ourselves. The attendants were very friendly and let us ride whatever rides we wanted whenever wanted for as long as we wanted.

Granted the food isn't fantastic, but you shouldn't come here is that is what you are mainly after, great food. You come for the aquarium, the rides and other attractions. I think people have unrealistic expectations of what this place is. It is not for adults, its for kids. Our kids are 2 and 4 and they loved it. Its was the first meal we had in a long time where we could eat in relative peace while our kids were completely entertained by the large fish tank inside the restaurant. And our waiter, Jose, was very friendly and nice to our kids. I would definitely recommend this place to anyone with children.

KDog73

06/01/2010

Provided by Citysearch - 
Overall
Great for Kids

Let's face it the reason you come here is for the giant fish tank in the center of the dinning room. My family and I ate at this location and the one at Kemah boardwalk. The food is consistently good. It's a little pricey but you are supplementing the cost of that fish tank. Service is good. We enjoyed taking are kids around to look at all the different fish. It's a fun place to visit and great for the kids.

The rides at the Downtown Houston location are fun but not to the standard of the Kemah Boardwalk. But if you are looking for some place to kill a couple hours it's worth it. The exhibit is short but I enjoyed it. I think the complaints aren't fair. This is a restaurant and not a zoo. If you take the train ride, there is a 200,000 gallon shark tank that is really cool. Our children loved it.

jitterbug123

05/28/2010

Provided by Citysearch - 
Overall
Houston Downtown Aquarium

Terrible place to take children. The fish exhibit is tiny, the food is really expensive and there is no shade to sit in and eat. They conveniently place the gift shop where you have to go throught it to get out! Go to the Discovery park or Children's museum but stay away from the Aquarium.

May007

05/25/2010

Provided by Citysearch - 
Overall
DO NOT GO THERE!!

This place is a joke!! The aquarium is so small you are done with it in 10 minutes, but the most appaling part is the Tiger exhibit - this poor animal lives only INDOORS in a small room with no grass and nothing remotely that mimics the natural habitat. It is pitiful to see this animal in there - I will never return to this place and will advice everyone against visiting this place. If you want to see a nice aquarium I suggest you go to Moody Gardens in Galveston. Do not go there and support this animal cruelty!!

Principalawyer

05/09/2010

Provided by Citysearch - 
Overall
Watch out for hidden special event fees!

We made reservations for Easter Brunch. We were told the cost was $34.95 pp, and that was fine. BUT when we got there, we were told that there was a $6.99 pp ""Easter Service Charge"" added to each person's cost. So it ended up costing us more than we budgeted for. The waitress seemed mad that she had to work on the holiday, we found it strange that our table was a table for 6 that had 4 chairs removed (we were a party of 2, so we had to drag our chairs around to be close to each other). The desserts were GREAT and we thought the kids' buffet (kids choices, buffet lowered so kids could reach it) was a cute idea. We'll look for somewhere else to go next year, but this was OK. Just OK.

kscot

04/22/2010

Provided by Citysearch - 
Overall
You've got to be kidding me. . . .

It is a cool atmosphere - I will give them that. The exhibit is very nicely done. The food and service - that is laughable. The food is horribly overpriced for the quality. Terrible food. The white bengal tiger exhibit - I can't think of anything more cruel. It is terrible what that tiger has to be in - no trees and no grass and very little room to run or roam around. It is animal cruelty in the worst form. I will never go back there again just for that part of it more than anything else.

BRYAN1846

03/17/2010

Provided by Citysearch - 
Overall
BAD SERVICE

WENT THERE THIS WEEKEND, AND THOUGHT IT WOULD BE A NICE IDEA TO TAKE THE WHOLE FAMILY 16 PEAPLE TO THAT RESTAUANT. WAS TOLD IT WOULD BE 30-45MIN TOPS WAIT TIME. THEY GAVE US A PAGER NEVER BUZZED SO WE CAME BACK AN HOUR LATER ASKING WHAT HAD HAPPENED AND THEY SAID THAT THEY TOOK OTHER PEOPLE AHEAD OF US BECAUSE THEY HAD RESERVATIONS. IM SORRY BUT THE RESTAURANT IS TOO NICE TO NOT HAVE ENOUGH ROOM FOR ALL THEIR GUEST. THERE WERE PROBABLY 6-8 FAMILIES WAITING IN LINE, SEVREAL LIKE US LEFT.. THIER LOSS WE ENDED UP LEAVING AND SPENT $300. FOR ANOTHER RESTAURANT...

Flapper

02/09/2010

Provided by Citysearch - 
Overall
overpriced for the quality

They shouldn't serve food just atmosphere! The last time I went, the curb at valet is not clearly marked and I fell. Since I have cancer it would've been very easy for me to have sued them but I'm just not that type of person! However, the valet saw me fall but just stood there as my 78 yr old frail mother helped me up! I wanted to leave but my son (who was in town for my appt at md anderson) really wanted to go!

ttuchris

01/25/2010

Provided by Citysearch - 
Overall
It was worse that expected

The aquariums are really cool, but the rest of the decor is fairly cheesy. The menu was limited. I had a lot of trouble actually finding something I wanted to eat. Considering this is a Landry's restuarant, I was expecting the food to be bad, but it was aweful, especially for $30. The only flavor on my broiled seafood platter was butter. On a side note, the waiter offfered us hot french bread, which I guess to some people means cold sourdough.

conwaycom

01/14/2010

Provided by Citysearch - 
Overall
Not so good..in fact, quite bad actually

We were there for less than 15 minutes, and then were off to the Art Museum so the trip downtown wasn't a total waste. IIf you'd consider the Rainforest Cafe (restaurant) as being similar to a ""Zoo"", then this might be right for you. For us, it was a poor choice and a waste of $.

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