Larry Oliver


Inside Round Top’s White House on the Hill

A Houston couple turned their favorite countryside spot into a retreat for shoppers at the famous antique show.

Rob Rosenbaum and Linda O’Neal have been escaping the hustle and bustle of Houston for their countryside home in Greenvine, just eight miles from Round Top, for the last 7 years. Located on the highest point in Washington County, the hilly topography affords gorgeous views, and the privacy allows Rosenbaum, a chiropractor, and O’Neal, a nurse and skin care expert, to unwind. In 2014, they opened the doors to their first bed-and-breakfast space on the property—The White House on the Hill.

Rob Rosenbaum and Linda O'Neal

The couple had always dreamed of refurbishing an old church and turning it into a guest house. However, coming by a church that was small enough (and on the market) was proving difficult—so they built one. “We used all reclaimed materials such as wood doors, flooring, beams—everything to make it look old,” explains Rosenbaum. O’Neal outfitted the space with luxurious comforts. Her mantra: “It better be better than my home, or at least as good as my home, or why would I want to leave my home?” The bed is bedecked with elegant linens, including Pandora de Balthazár Hungarian down pillows. (See sidebar.) Each morning, guests of the church are greeted with a breakfast basket of homemade muffins, fruit, and specialty coffee.

Rosenbaum and O’Neal have also opened up their 2,800-square-foot rough cedar barn, which used to store Rosenbaum’s antique tool collection. “After a while I thought, we’re not using this barn to the full potential,” he says. The space includes two king beds, two twin beds, a full kitchen, and living area, and they’ve just completed an additional bed and bath. The property also offers multiple outdoor spots, such as a covered dining area and fire pit to enjoy the sunsets, pond, and views of the olive tree orchard. “The sunsets and sunrises are incredible,” O’Neal says.

Barn rates start at $295 for two people; $50 for each additional person. Church rates start at $235. On antique show weekends, there is a two-night minimum. 832-264-3992.