Median home price: $1,597,000
River Oaks, Houston's most expensive and highly appreciating neighborhood, was established in the 1920s by brothers Michael and William Hogg. Advertised as a "distinguished experiment in fine living," River Oaks became a national model for community planning. During the 1920s, River Oaks was so effectively organized, planned and restricted that it became the most expensive neighborhood in Houston. Today River Oaks is an affluent community located within the Loop between Downtown and Uptown. The neighborhood spans 1,100 acres, and is considered to be one of the wealthiest communities in Texas and has one of the wealthiest zip codes in the United States. Real estate values in the community range from $1 million to over $20 million. The area contains the River Oaks Country Club which includes a golf course designed by architect Donald Ross.
The development plans included parks and esplanades that were planted with oaks, shrubs, azaleas and other flowers. Every detail of the development was planned to establish a well-integrated community. River Oaks Boulevard, a road that runs through the center of the community, is lined on both sides by mansions and estates located away from the street. The two mile (3 km) area of the subdivision comprises approximately 1,400 homes, mostly detached single family homes.
Adjacent to the community is the River Oaks Shopping Center, Houston's first shopping center, constructed in 1927 and designed by architect Hugh Prather. The River Oaks Theatre, an "arthouse" theater, is located in the center. The theater is the last historic movie theater in Houston that is still being used as it was originally designed.