Hotel Review: How meeting a stranger in a pool at Four Seasons Hotel Houston led to a night I'll never forget

Four Seasons Hotel Houston stands right in the middle of the grid-like city and hosted presidents and movie stars alike.

On my first visit, I found out first-hand that pop legends stay there, too.

I enjoyed a decent coffee with soy milk in the atrium café and was very impressed with the hotel's service. The concierge made sure my stay ran smoothly as if their life depended on it, and they appeared to know the name and home country or city of everyone they spoke to.

The restaurant and bar at Hilton Hotel Houston.
The restaurant and bar at Hilton Hotel Houston. Photo credit: Four Seasons Hotel Houston.

Given the heat was pushing the mid 30s, I'd only been in Texas for a few hours before I headed to the hotel pool.

It was quite a small area with a deep pool and a spa, but it was private and there was a shaded cocktail bar in the corner.

The cocktail expert, Daniel Hougland, proved to be just what the place needed - he turned a bar full of strangers into a group of friends, as well as provided great drinks.

He could tell you anything you needed to know about the city or the hotel, and had some great stories about people who had stayed there.

What I love about being in a random hotel in a foreign city is that you always bump into interesting people who live in a completely different world to your own. This stay at the Four Seasons was no exception.

Cocktail expert, Daniel Hougland
Cocktail expert, Daniel Hougland Photo credit: Dan Lake/Newshub

I was joined at the bar by a group of loud, excited Americans - a mix of New Yorkers and Californians, who were all giving off a very show business vibe.

Once I'd got talking to them about the usual bar topics - Trump, Trump and Trump - I noticed they were all talking about the evening's plans for "Georgie and Cindy". I wondered who they were referring to.

As it turned out, 'Cindy' was a singer from The B52s and 'Georgie' was Boy George... two of the most iconic musical acts I grew up listening to!

Both were staying at the hotel and my new pool buddies were members of their entourage. 

I spent the rest of the afternoon captivated by their stories about who they'd worked with and the places they'd visited. One of George's team spent most of their time on Facebook Live talking to their partner, a millionaire radio host in London.

I wasn't in Kansas anymore.

What began as a cocktail by the pool ended in an evening experiencing two musical legends live on stage at a packed venue.

The room also had two 52 inch televisions.
The room also had two 52 inch televisions. Photo credit: Four Seasons Hotel Houston.

On my last night at the hotel, there was time for yet another mixing of two different worlds. The security guards for one of the world's biggest pop stars (who they asked not to be named) were checking the place out and after hearing my accent, stopped for a chat.

"You're a Kiwi? Do you know a guy called Richie Hardcore?" they asked, referring to the Auckland-based drug and alcohol harm reduction commentator.

Of course I know him. I'm from New Zealand.

They told me about how much they had enjoyed touring Aotearoa with the likes of Justin Bieber and One Direction. They told me about all the places in New Zealand they had visited and the bars they'd spent too much time at. It was a small peek into the lives of the rich and famous through two very normal, down-to-earth guys.

When my time at Four Seasons Hotel Houston had come to an end, I checked out and farewelled the amazing concierge team.

As I drove off in a super-sized SUV Uber ride to the airport, I looked in the mirror to see the hordes of adoring fans and cameras as that unnamed pop star arrived at the hotel.

If only I could have stayed for one more night and hear one more story by the pool.