This is true if you consider Houston to encompass much more than it really is. Stay inside the loop, particular the northwestern portion of the loop and it's a beautiful city with ridiculous amounts of restaurants and entertainment options. If you feel the need to go out into the hinterlands, it's bland, annoying, and in many places, dirty. That's true of any city, however. The problem is that the people in those places still identify themselves as "from Houston." Whereas, in other cities they don't tend to keep an identification with the city in the same way. In short, what you may consider Houston isn't really Houston.