Marvida’s excellent Cypress location is a boon for gourmands. Every type of cuisine is available, including Mexican, Asian, Indian and more. But, what about good old-fashioned American food? No problem. Cypress abounds with grills, pubs and cafés serving up burgers, steaks, seafood and more. Many are locally owned. Here are a few of our resident’s favorites:

BB’s Tex-Orleans

NOLA-style cuisine with a Texas twist? Yes, please! Dig into mouthwatering crawfish, po’boys, boudin balls, bread pudding and more.

Dario’s American Cuisine

Celebrate your next special event at this upscale restaurant. Try the three-course prix-fix meal featuring soup or salad, an entrée and dessert or order from the expansive menu. Pair your meal with a selection from their extensive wine list.

Frio Hill Country Grill

Housed in a renovated 1907 farmhouse, this is where you go to dine on delicious comfort food. We love the pecan-bourbon chicken, brisket enchiladas and chess pie.

LT’s Sports Bar and Grill

You get more than a great meal here. You get an experience. Come out for karaoke night, live music and your favorite sporting event broadcast on 16 flat-screen televisions.

Mac’s Sports Bar-N-Grill

Looking to put a little happy in your hour? This sports bar offers a lite bite menu that includes street tacos, burgers and nachos as well as plenty of beer and liquor.

Masones Bar and Grill

Hang out on the patio or watch the game inside. Sip a cold beer and dine on the weekly special.

Mo’s Irish Pub

You don’t have to be Irish to enjoy the scratch cooking and amazing beer menu. The pub specializes in pouring Guinness’ 3 Step Perfect Pint. Sports fans will appreciate the 30 large-screen televisions.

Murdoch’s Backyard Pub

Fresh handmade sandwiches and salads are on the menu at this kitschy bistro. Everything — including the pickles — are made in house.

Season’s Harvest Cafe

This hidden gem focuses on organic, seasonal produce grown in their backyard. Serving breakfast and lunch only, this is a great place to relax and watch the world go by.

Texas Mesquite Grill

If it can be grilled, it is here. Chow down on flat iron, NY strip, ribeye and more as well as wood-grilled seafood, street tacos and homemade sides.

Carl’s BBQ

Pick up delicious smokey brisket, pulled pork sandwiches, burgers and more on your way home to Marvida. Trust us, it’s good.

With homeownership comes great responsibility. That means getting up-to-speed on landscaping basics. Your Marvida home comes with some landscaping elements but that doesn’t mean you can’t kick it up a notch. Here are some tips for adding curb appeal and creating a beautiful, functional outdoor space for your family.

What is Landscaping Anyway?

Landscaping involves more than mowing your lawn. It’s the process of making your yard more attractive by planting things, as well as installing features like paths, walls, fences and patios. Landscaping is part science and part art. A properly landscaped home adds value to your home and your community.

Start With the Rules

If you live in a master-planned community like Marvida, you probably have an HOA. That means there are going to be a few guidelines as to what you can and can’t plant, how high your fence and structures can be and even how many trees you can have. Before you start your landscaping project, check in with your HOA office.

Set Up a Budget

Before you plan, decide how much you can afford to spend. Experts suggest spending 10 percent of your new home’s price on landscaping. Remember, you don’t have to do it all at once. If your budget only allows for border plants now, that’s okay. Plant them and add the fire pit when you can afford it. Having a budget keeps you from purchasing high-priced items you don’t really need.

How Much Time Do You Have?

Flower beds need weeding, lawns need mowing and trees must be trimmed. Decide in advance how much time you want to spend on landscape maintenance. That will keep you from picking high-maintenance plants. If you don’t like watering, have an irrigation system installed. If you hate mowing and weeding, consider engaging a landscaping service.

Make a Plan

Envision how you will use your outdoor space. Do you have pets and children? Open spaces where they can play should be included. If you enjoy gardening, figure out where the best spot to plant your garden will be. Landscaping software can be a big help. Many programs allow you to import pictures of your yard and then add design elements so you can see what it might look like before you hit the home improvement store.

Do Your Homework

Not every tree, shrub or flower grows well in every climate. Know the difference between perennials and annuals. Map your yard into zones based on when and where they get the most shade and sunlight. Take your map to an expert and ask for help choosing plants.

Design Around a Focal Point

Focal points draw the eye to specific points in your yard. Points that you might be proud of or that offer a view of something truly beautiful. Focal points could be an unusual tree, a pergola or a fire pit. Once you’ve installed yours, concentrate on smaller elements that complement your centerpiece.

Don’t Forget the Hardscape

Hardscape refers to the non-living parts of your yard. The fence, patio, walkways and driveway. These are usually already in place. Think about how you can use plants to improve their appearance or make the space more functional. A footpath could become more welcoming with brightly colored flowers. Add a bench underneath a shady tree for a private book nook. If you enjoy sunsets, build a deck.

Visit Marvida for Landscape Inspiration

If you need a little inspiration for your landscaping project, visit Marvida. Our model homes, amenity areas and neighborhoods are all beautifully landscaped. Stop in to talk to our builders’ representatives. They can tell you all about the landscape design packages they offer.

There is so much to do in and around Marvida, we wouldn’t blame you if you planned to spend all summer enjoying the Marvida lifestyle. However, if you’re looking for a change of scenery or want to explore more of the surrounding areas, there are plenty of great day trips you can take from our community. Here are some ideas to get you started:


If you’re going to day trip, you’ve got to see Austin. It’s easy to pop over if you live on Marvida’s side of Houston. See the state capitol, swim in Barton Springs Pool and enjoy everything Zilker Park has to offer. Hungry? Franklin Barbecue claims to be the best barbecue in the known universe (get there early because it is). Don’t forget about the music scene.


If you’re thinking “it’s island time,” you want to head to Galveston. It’s just an hour away and packed with things to do. Spend the day soaking up the sun on one of Galveston’s many beaches, ride the rides at the Historic Pleasure Pier or step back in time as you explore the historic district.

Moody Gardens

We can’t even begin to describe all the things you can do when you spend a day here. Explore the oceans’ depths at the Aquarium Pyramid, roam with the cotton-top tamarins and sloths in the Rainforest Pyramid, catch a 3D movie at the theater and more.

Kemah Boardwalk

The fun never stops at Kemah Boardwalk. Enjoy thrilling rides, live music, special events, fine dining, shopping and more.

Space Center Houston

Just a 45-minute drive from Cypress, Space Center Houston is the official visitor center of NASA’s Johnson Space Center. You can take a tram tour of the facility, see real spacesuits and other artifacts and learn about the history of space exploration.

Brazos Bend State Park

Get your nature fix without driving for hours. The beautiful state park is a great place to hike, bike and see wildlife. Reserve a camping spot and get ready to make some s’mores.

Sam Houston National Forest

Located in Conroe, the forest is a vast wilderness area where you can camp, hike and fish to your heart’s content. Don’t forget to explore at least part of the 129-mile Lone Star Hiking Trail.

Lake Conroe

Hitch up your boat and head to Lake Conroe to see if the fish are biting. The 22,000-acre lake is a mecca for outdoor enthusiasts. Picnic on the shore, hire a fishing guide or dine lakeside.

Margaritaville Lake Resort

You don’t need to be a hotel guest to take advantage of the amenities offered at this spectacular Lake Conroe resort. Book a day pass and swim in the infinity pool, explore the activities at Jolly Mon water park, get in a round at Parrot Island Mini Golf and more.


Brenham is a charming town located about an hour from Cypress. It is known for its beautiful countryside, antique shops and, of course, Blue Bell Ice Cream.

Houston Museum District

It isn’t possible to see all 19 museums that make up the district in one day, but you will have fun trying. Be sure to stop by Children’s Museum Houston and the Houston Museum of Natural Science. Art lovers can get their fix at the Museum of Fine Arts.

Houston Zoo

Talk with the animals — all 6,000 of them. See how your favorite mammals, reptiles and amphibians are doing, then take a ride on the carousel before lunch. Make the day more special by booking an animal encounter.

Hermann Park

The 455-acre park offers beautiful gardens, train rides, pedal boats and live entertainment.

Port Arthur

Port Arthur offers fun activities for the entire family. Some of the best fishing around is here, as is some of the best beer. Follow the Faith Trail to see the Buu Mon Buddhist Temple, the Queen of Peace Shrine & Gardens and St. Anthony Basilica. Visit the Museum of the Gulf Coast to see Janis Joplin memorabilia.

If your Marvida home is the first you’ve ever owned, congratulations! Owning your own home is the American Dream — a dream that comes with a few responsibilities, including caring for those shiny new appliances. Not sure what to do? Here are some tips for keeping your appliances in shape.

Read the Manual

We know, appliance manuals are not light reading. It’s worth your pocketbook to plough through them, however. User manuals detail the use, care and maintenance of your appliances. They tell you how to clean, when to clean and which parts should get an annual lookover. Most manuals also include a troubleshooting section that can help you fix something before you need to call a repair person.

Keep Them Clean

We can’t stress enough how much regular cleaning can keep your appliances working longer. For refrigerators and ovens, that means cleaning the gaskets around the doors. Gaskets seal in the heat in ovens and the cold in refrigerators. Letting either escape can affect the performance of your appliances. Clean out your refrigerator regularly and don’t forget to vacuum the coils. Dust can cause overheating which in turn means opening your wallet wide.

Change Filters Regularly

You know that you must change the filters on your HVAC unit. You may even know you have to clean the filter on your dryer. Did you know that refrigerators, washers and dishwashers also have filters? Dishwashers, for example, have filters that trap food particles. If you don’t clean them, they can get clogged, and your dishes won’t get clean.

Don’t Overload Them

Appliances work better if they don’t have to work harder. Avoid overloading dishwashers, washers and dryers. Follow the manufacturer’s recommendations for the maximum load capacity to keep them working longer.

Use Them Properly

Make sure you are using the proper tools for the job. If you have an energy-efficient washer, you should be using HE laundry detergent. Failing to do so may leave soap residue in your machine. Make sure you are using the right cookware for the heat source on your stove. Your user manual will tell you what you should and should not be doing.

Check for Wear and Tear

Inspect your appliances regularly for frayed wires, loose connections and signs of damage. If you notice any issues, address them immediately. Small problems can turn into significant issues if left unattended.

Schedule Regular Maintenance

HVAC systems and hot water heaters are also appliances. Schedule annual checkups to ensure they are in good working order. If you don’t feel confident about caring for your other appliances, there are companies that will come out once a year to look at them.

Marvida homebuilders fully sod the front and backyards of their homes. That means first-time homeowners like you will start out with a beautiful green lawn. How do you keep it that way? Here’s our quick guide to lawn care:

Do You Have a Rake?

When it comes to lawn care, a rake is as important as a lawnmower. In the early spring, you will want to rake your lawn before you do anything else. Raking loosens clumps of soil and alleviates the layers of leaves, roots and dead grass that builds up between live grass and the soil. That build-up, called thatch, can keep moisture and air from reaching the grass. Use a spring tine rake and don’t rake when the soil is soft or muddy. Doing so can tear up your lawn.

Buy A Core Aerator

Another way to deal with thatch is to use a core aerator. These devices really dig into the soil to help air, water and nutrients reach the roots. Plan to aerate your lawn every two or three years in the spring or summer. If your backyard sees a lot of action, you might want to aerate more often.

Bring Out the Fertilizer

Yes, lawns need to be fertilized, too. In the spring, fertilizer should be applied about three weeks after the grass starts turning green. You can also wait until after the first two or three times you mow. Talk to the people at your local gardening center to find out what fertilizer will work best for your lawn. Crabgrass can be a problem in the spring, so choose a fertilizer with a crabgrass preventer. Make sure you spread the fertilizer evenly across the lawn.

Plant Grass Seeds

In the spring, check your lawn for bare spots. If there are any, you should buy grass seed. Remember that grass planted in the spring may need extra care in the summer, including more water and time spent weeding.

Check Your Yard’s pH

Most grasses grow best when the soil pH is between 5.8 and 7.2. If there is too much acid, there will be more weeds, insect pests and diseases. You don’t need a degree in chemistry to check if the soil is acidic. You can purchase pH soil test kits at your local gardening center.

How Much Water?

How much water does your lawn need? That depends on where you live, what the weather has been like and what type of grass you have. In general, you should provide an inch of water per week. Water early in the day in the spring and summer to avoid having it evaporate before it can get to the roots. If you aren’t sure if your lawn is moist enough, step on and off the grass to see how quickly the blades bounce back. If it’s pretty slow, it may be time to get out the garden hose.

Mow, Mow, Mow Your Lawn

You don’t need to set a mowing schedule. Mow your lawn when it looks like it needs it. You will probably be mowing more often in the spring. Check your lawnmower’s settings to see if there is one recommended for your specific type of grass. If you can, mow in the early evening when temperatures are cooler to prevent the newly cut lawn from drying out. Never mow if it is wet. Remember that longer grass blades encourage deeper roots so don’t cut the grass too short. Use your rake to gather lawn clippings into a bag or your compost bin.

Single-story, two-story, three bedrooms or four — not everyone’s dream home looks the same. Long Lake understands which is why they offer numerous floor plans in a range of prices. That way, you get the home you want at a price you can afford.

The largest, privately owned builder in Houston has a reputation for quality, customer service and value. New home construction is their only focus. Over the years, they have developed partnerships with leading industry players. Those partnerships mean Long Lake can access volume discounts on quality home-building materials, as well as leverage affordable upgrade features for their customers.

The sheer number of floor plans they offer allows homebuyers to choose an option that best suits their family’s needs. Things like whether or not the primary suite is upstairs or downstairs and whether the flex room should be a dining room or a study.

The choices don’t stop with floor plans. Numerous options and upgrades are available to help tailor your home to meet your aesthetic. Financing is another area you have choices in. Many builders have their own lending companies. Some have a single preferred lender. Long Lake gives you a choice of four preferred lenders who can help you purchase the home of your dreams.

Long Lake offers 21 plans in Marvida, priced from the $320s. Standard features include gourmet kitchens, game rooms, formal dining rooms and primary suites with large bedrooms and well-appointed baths. Homebuyers can choose to add covered patios, fireplaces, studies and extra bedrooms.

Visit the Long Lake model home in Marvida today to see just how many choices you can make.

When it comes to home décor, homeowners are stepping away from all-white kitchens, neutral gray walls and pastel-colored rugs to embrace bold, vibrant colors. Read on to discover what’s trending, then speak to your builder representative to see how you can get the look for your new Marvida home.

Yes, It’s Pink

Pink isn’t just for nurseries anymore. Pantone’s Color of the Year 2023 was the surprising Viva Magenta. Benjamin Moore’s Color of the Year 2023 turned out to be Raspberry Blush. Why pink? It’s unexpected and unconventional. It’s also an exuberant color guaranteed to lift your mood. Use it on accent walls, couch cushions and any other place you want a pop of color.

It’s Still Easy Being Green

This year, soft, pastel greens are giving way to bolder shades like jade, emerald and forest. Paint a large room with jewel tones to make it seem cozier. Pair it with wood wainscoting for a natural look. Balance bold greens with white or cream accents for a softer look.

Yellow is a Bold Choice

Reminiscent of sunshine, summer and happy days, yellow shades can uplift the mood in any room. Traditionally confined to kitchens and breakfast nooks, yellow has been migrating to bedrooms and dining areas. Vintage yellow creates an upscale atmosphere while a pastel shade works wonders in a child’s room.

What Goes with Orange?

Orange is trending as an accent color. Paired with soft pinks it adds a shabby chic vibe to any room. If you are a risk taker, try pairing it with soft greens. Remember that orange includes softer colors such as melon that work great on sun porches and in game rooms.

Beautiful Browns

When it comes to brown, we aren’t talking taupe. Warm brown shades are popping up everywhere — walls, carpets and even cabinets. Brown often works well as an undertone. Mix it with purple for a soft, sophisticated look. If you must have taupe use a bolder shade of brown to accent it.

We Didn’t Forget Blue

Blue remains one of the most popular colors for everything, from exterior paint to primary suites. Light shades of blue can be calming, while bolder blues invigorate the soul. Pair it with white for a coastal feel. Use cobalt blue to accent terracotta walls.

If the kitchen is the heart of the home, your primary bath is the soul. Your bath has the potential to help you relax, unwind and rejuvenate. How to go about creating the perfect spa-worthy bath? Follow these steps:

Take Stock

Before doing anything, take stock of your bathroom and budget. While you don’t need to remodel to create a spa bath, you might be able to add small items such as towel warmers, new fixtures or a comfy chair. If you purchase a new home in Marvida, your builder may offer options such as oversized showers, jetted tubs, rainfall showerheads and more.

Streamline Your Space 

Cluttered counters are not conducive to relaxation. They just remind you of all the chores you have yet to do. Clean out drawers and cabinets. If you haven’t used a product in at least a year, dump it. Invest in an organization system. If you don’t use it daily, tuck it away.

Create Calm

Let nature inspire your paint choice. Pair calming light blues and greens with warm neutrals. Avoid reds and oranges. Natural elements such as stone tile, as well as teak or bamboo accessories and plants are found in every spa. Add what you can afford to bring the outdoors indoors.

Choose Your Lighting

A dimmer switch allows you to lower bathroom lighting to create the perfect ambiance. Many can be activated via an app or voice command. GE LED+ Color bulbs are remote-control operated. They have 10 color settings including daylight and eight RGB vivid color settings.

Don’t Forget Music

Music is as much a part of the spa experience as scented candles. Create a spa playlist that includes soothing instrumental music and natural sounds. Install shower speakers, so you can play music without worrying about your phone getting wet.

Steam Up the Shower

High-end spas don’t do tubs. They do steam showers. Steam showers work by using a steam generator to create a tropical, humid environment that is great for relaxing tense muscles. Many allow you to stream music and can be programmed to release your favorite relaxing scent. As a bonus, they use less water, so you’ll save money.

Up Your Fixture Game

Replace your showerhead with something more luxurious. A rainfall shower mimics being out in a gentle rain. You won’t get hit full in the face with hot water. Instead, the water flows gently over your head and down your shoulders. Other options include handheld, ceiling and dual showerheads.

Fluffy Towels and Robes

Fluffy towels are a spa mainstay. Choose middleweight towels for the best combination of comfort and absorbency. Choose cotton over other materials for softness. Your robe should be made from similar material. Bath sheets are the best size for when you step out of the tub or shower.


Surround yourself with soothing scents. You can light candles or invest in a diffuser. Lavender, citrus and eucalyptus are all great scents that improve your mood. If you don’t like essential oils, hang a bundle of lavender in your shower for a burst of fragrance when the hot water hits it.

Bring Out the Bath Products

A spa day isn’t a spa day without signature bath products. In addition to soaps, lotions and bath bombs in your favorite scent, invest in at-home spa treatments. Many companies now sell full body masks in addition to those you put on your face. Hair masks provide deep conditioning. Be sure to have manicure or pedicure products ready to go for after your soak.

Building a new home is a partnership between you and your builder. You choose your floor plan and design elements. Your builder crafts a high-quality, beautiful home. When it comes to partners, M/I Homes is a smart decision.

M/I Homes has been building homes for more than 40 years. Each home is built based on three core pillars: Smart Process, Smart Design and Smart Decision.

The process begins when you tour an M/I model home. There you meet with a New Home Consultant ready to help you find the best floor plan and homesite for your family. They’ll discuss financing, options and upgrades available for your floor plan and a construction timeline.

Once you’ve decided, it’s time to choose your design finishes. That can be an overwhelming task but not with M/I Homes. The builder’s Smart Series homes allows you to choose from pre-selected design packages that have a set cost. Your design consultant will meet with you to discuss your budget, then show you the packages available in your price range.

There are three different levels. Each level includes three color schemes to choose from and specific design elements. For example, the Platinum Package offers granite countertops, vinyl or ceramic tile flooring, your choice of cabinet color and a kitchen backsplash. Go up a level to the Diamond Package and get everything in the Platinum Package plus wood-grain tile flooring, a third cabinet color option and pendant lights above the kitchen island (per plan).

All décor choices are designed to work together so your home is beautiful. Every floor plan offered in Marvida comes with the same design package options. If you want to tailor your home further, you’ll discover a wealth of structural options and upgrades you can add.

Once your decisions are made it’s time to watch your home being constructed. You will meet with your personal Construction Manager who can answer any questions you have. Better yet, you can follow your home’s progress via the MyMIHome app. The builder ensures quality through its own Whole Homes building standards which go above and beyond current building practices.

Currently, M/I Homes offers more than two dozen floor plans ranging from 1,295 to 3,674 square feet. Floor plans are priced from the $270,000s. Features include open-concept family rooms, spacious kitchens, game rooms, sloped ceilings in the primary suite and family room, and convenient utility rooms.

Visit the M/I model home today and see why building with them is one of the smartest decisions you’ll make.

What upgrades should you add to your new Marvida home? That depends on your family’s lifestyle. What’s best for you might not be worthwhile to someone else. However, there are a few upgrades everyone agrees are worth spending a little extra cash on. These will improve your life and add value to your home for years to come.

The Heart of Your Home

The most used common area of your home is the kitchen. It is the heart of the home and deserving of your upgrade dollars. Opt for alternate kitchens with islands and built-in appliances. Upgrading your cabinets ensures they last longer. Taller cabinets that reach to the ceiling give you more storage space and a finished look. Under cabinet lighting is always useful. If your home doesn’t have a walk-in pantry, see if you can add one. If possible, skylights will add more natural light.

What’s Beneath Your Feet

When it comes to what’s beneath your feet, the standard answer is tile in kitchens and baths, and carpet in bedrooms and family rooms. If you have it in the budget, hardwood floors are worth the investment. Wood floors are prized for their look. Laminate floors that look like wood are less expensive. They also reduce allergens and are easy to clean. If you are planning to sell, wood floors will increase the value of your home.

Upgrade the Primary Bath

If you plan to turn your bath into an oasis for relaxation, standard options won’t do. Many builders are making tubs optional, so if you love a good soak, make sure you have one. Tubs are difficult to tear out so if you want a jacuzzi tub, invest in one from the start. If you don’t need a tub, see if you can extend your shower for spa-like luxury. Radiant floor heating is a must-have for chilly mornings.

Home Automation is a Plus

For comfort and convenience, nothing beats a smart home. Many Marvida builders offer home automation packages that include smart thermostats, door locks, lights and garage door openers. These packages can usually be upgraded. You can and should add more smart lights and outlets, smart shades, sprinkler systems and home security.

Electricity Now

It’s easier to add outlets or do any other electrical work while your home is being built. Add outlets to the patio for your television or to plug in speakers. Outlets that exist directly behind your wall-mounted television hide unsightly cords. USB outlets cut out the need for charging stations. If you have an electric vehicle, see about adding a charger to the garage.

Patio Upgrades You’ll Love

Go beyond the extended patio. Add an outdoor kitchen if you plan to host a lot of al fresco gatherings. An outdoor fireplace can make outdoor living a little cozier. Some builders can add fire pits, pergolas, second patios and decking if you prefer. Check to see if you can have a brick floor instead of concrete or tile everything over.

Build It In

Built-in cabinets and shelves solve storage solutions and look great. Add cabinets to your media room to hide game consoles and speakers. Cabinets are also great for game rooms and garages. Built-in shelves give your study a professional look.

Don’t Forget the Garage

Take advantage of opportunities to extend the garage. Some builders will let you add a garage bay so when junior gets his license, he has a place to park the car. Others offer extensions that can be used for additional storage, workshops and hobby areas.