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Photo by Fleur Kaan

Ah, the holidays. The season ahead can make even the most bah-humbug person feel a bit indulgent. Parties, shopping and extra treats or cocktails (like Emma D'Arcy's TikTok famous "negroni sbagliato with prosecco in it") are par for the course for the next few weeks.

Although finding perfect outfits and presents is important, prepping for a holiday-ready complexion – that doesn't take too long and will counteract all those celebratory indulgences – is essential.

Even the most devout skincare enthusiast may want extra help to look photo and celebration ready, so we sat down with local skincare experts who share tips on how to get and keep a glowing complexion throughout the holiday season.

Customized skincare

SkinCeuticals Skin Lab by Dr. Roth offers a completely customized skincare experience with cutting-edge technology by one of the best medical-grade skincare brands. SkinCeuticals Custom D.O.S.E. (Diagnostic Optimization Serum Experience) is a personalized formula that addresses an individual's unique skin concerns, including discoloration, blemishes or aging skin.

The quick and painless process begins with a customized consultation where a unique serum is identified from over 48 possible combinations with ingredients like glycolic acid, retinol and niacinamide.

"D.O.S.E. streamlines a skincare routine. It is quick and easy, and the serum addresses many concerns," says Tori Lane, product and skincare specialist at SkinCeuticals SkinLab by Dr. Roth. "The serum typically lasts for three months, and it is a great way to incorporate medical-grade skincare into your routine. D.O.S.E. also makes a unique gift at a reasonable price point."

Perfect products

Dr. Quynh-Giao Sartor, a board-certified dermatologist at Westlake Dermatology & Cosmetic Surgery - West University, recommends incorporating products that lift and smooth the skin. Aside from a broad-spectrum SPF (which everyone should use daily), she recommends three products for a stress-free holiday skincare routine.

  • A daytime eye cream containing vitamin K, such as the ISDIN Kox Eye cream. This type of cream stimulates lymphatic circulation around the eyes, brightens the appearance of darkness, and decreases eye puffiness.
  • A nighttime treatment with retinol/retinoid such as SkinBetter AlphaRet Overnight Cream or bakuchiol ISDIN Melatonik Recovery night serum to stimulate collagen production and cell turnover, increase skin firmness, improve skin texture and repair photodamage. Bakuchiol is an excellent alternative for those sensitive to retinol/retinoids or for those trying to conceive, pregnant, or breastfeeding (retinol/retinoids are unsafe in pregnancy or breastfeeding).
  • A simple hydrating moisturizer, such as over-the-counter La Roche Posay Double Repair, is suitable for most skin types. It has natural skin healing properties due to its base of prebiotic thermal water.

Non-invasive reatments

During the holiday season, no one has time to recover from elective procedures, so Dr. Edward Lee of Nuveau Plastic Surgery and Medical Aesthetics recommends three treatments to help patients look party-ready with little or no downtime.

  • BBL HERO is the fastest, most potent IPL in the industry. BBL HERO allows us to treat the entire face and body with four times the speed, three times the peak power and two times the cooling capacity. The result is clearer, smoother and younger appearing skin. BBL HERO can quickly correct vascular lesions, pigmented lesions, sun damage and age spots. Patients can reach outstanding results with minimal to non-existent downtime within as little as a single treatment.
  • Morpheus 8 is a radio-frequency microneedling fractional skin treatment that stimulates collagen production from the underlying layers of the dermis to reveal a more radiant, youthful appearance. With Morpheus 8, visible results can be seen in as little as a few days and continue to improve for weeks to come. Topical numbing is used during the procedure, and the downtime is about three to four days.
  • Moxi Non-Ablative Laser gently revitalizes the skin by correcting the initial signs of damage and aging. It is safe for all skin types any time of year and is performed with topical numbing. The downtime can range from zero to two days; makeup is allowed after 24 hours.

Photo by Fleur Kaan

Get a holiday photo and celebration worthy complexion with skincare tips from Houston experts.

Photo courtesy of Lake Austin Spa Resort

Texas' dreamiest destination spa unwraps exclusive $1,000 Swiss facial for 25th anniversary

Palatial pampering

When the Lake Austin Spa Resort went shopping for a 25th-anniversary gift for guests, it aimed higher than traditional silver and picked treatments that incorporated gold, diamonds, and caviar. As a result, the dreamy destination spa now offers some of the most opulent, exclusive, and — at upwards of $1,000 — most expensive facials in the world.

In anticipation of its milestone anniversary in 2022, the Lake Austin Spa Resort’s LakeHouse Spa partnered with Swiss luxury skincare brand Valmont to introduce the new facials, which are as cutting-edge as they are indulgent.

Creme de la creme among them is The Regal by Valmont, which costs a jaw-dropping $1,050. The Regal was designed in Switzerland exclusively for LakeHouse Spa, and Austin is the only place in the world to get it.

“It’s definitely a once-in-a-lifetime experience for a lot of people,” says Becky Bence, Lake Austin Spa Resort lead esthetician. “And it’s definitely worth it.”

The 135-minute facial begins with the high-tech deep cleanse of the HydroFacial and proceeds with seven masks, including four collagen masks, a papaya enzyme, and a medical-grade LED light mask. Every single product from Valmont’s ultra luxe “masterpiece collection” called l’Elixir des Glaciers is used; some products are made with an uber anti-aging essence of gold sturgeon fish. All are applied using a Valmont signature “butterfly” motion that helps to lift and sculpt the face.

What puts the Regal over the top, though, are 35 minutes of choreographed massage, including a 500-year-old technique called “kobido,'' developed for the empress of Japan. Touted as a “surgical facelift as a massage," Bence says, kobido was once reserved only for nobility and the empress, then later handed down from masters to disciples.

So rarified is the Regal facial, that just six of the 21 LakeHouse Spa estheticians are trained to perform it. They learned at a weeklong “bootcamp” conducted by two Valmont experts who flew in to Austin from Switzerland.

“It was kind of like the Navy Seal program of facials,” Bence says. “It was kind of like being handed down something from a true master.”

The $1K price tag hasn’t kept people away. Since the Regal was introduced several months ago, guests have come from all over the world — and from all corners of Texas — to experience what the spa calls “the ultimate in anti-aging perfection and cellular renewal.” (After all $1,000 is still far less than an actual facelift or even regular nick-tuck-plump-ups by a cosmetic surgeon.)

Why reach all the way to Switzerland for the palatial new treatments? After emerging from COVID shutdowns, Bence says, LakeHouse Spa personnel “auditioned” just about every single skincare line out there. The estheticians voted, and Valmont won.

“We wanted to add something really special, something luxurious but yet something out-of-this-world amazing that truly benefited the skin,” Bence says. “Something almost to replace Botox and fillers …that gave you basically a natural face-lift without being invasive but still being relaxing.”

In addition to the Regal, other new Valmont facials introduced in this 25th anniversary year include:

  • The 150-minute Gold & Diamond Trifecta Facial that involves three massages, four masks, infra-red LED, and a hydrogel mask with micronized gold and diamonds, which costs $990.
  • The Golden Aura Rose & Caviar Facial, a 100-minute treatment that incorporates marine products containing caviar extract and Diamond Collagen, costing $790.
  • Energy of the Glaciers, a 90-minute facial that features rare ingredients from Switzerland and deep, structural massage of the face, stimulating muscles to tone and lift; $750.
  • Luminosity of Ice Facial, a 90-minute treatment described as a “toxin-flushing, facial reflexology-inspired facial” that uses a cocktail of seven plants organically cultivated at high altitudes; $650.

The spa also has a complete menu of non-Valmont facials and dozens of other signature treatments.

Luxe but laid back
Lake Austin Spa Resort’s Dallas-based co-owner, Mike McAdams, says the new facials are indicative of how high the spa wanted to aim for its 25th anniversary.

“Our guest demands a luxurious, more refined experience, and Valmont helps us deliver on that objective,” he says.

And yet, Lake Austin Spa Resort remains a place where robed guests can emerge from a $1,000 facial and step over geckos skittering along the sidewalk while a speedboat whizzes by pumping Beyonce through the speakers. It’s upscale but unpretentious, luxurious but laid-back — almost like “spa camp.”

“We never wanted to create the ‘zen’ spa with stark lines and absence of color – we aimed to create just the opposite,” McAdams says. “Your surroundings absolutely have an impact on how your wellness journey can unfold and influence your daily life. The colors and textures that surround you mimic the vibe of the Texas Hill Country and pay homage to nature.”

The top-rated spa and resort is a far cry now from the place McAdams purchased on January 1, 1997. Located along the shores of scenic Lake Austin in the Texas Hill Country, the property had lived previous lives as a fishing camp, nudist enclave, rodeo ranch, and diet camp.

McAdams — at the time a commercial real estate developer for Dallas-based Trammell Crow — experienced a personal work-life-balance crisis that's wholly relatable in today's post-pandemic, "great-resignation" world two-and-a-half decades later.

“I was living on a plane, traveling a lot. It was high stress, and high energy and I loved it,” he says. “In 1984, I found a place that changed my life — the Ashram in Calabasas, California. It was a true bootcamp, with physical activities and dietary restrictions that were very intense… This experience forced me to come down from my hectic lifestyle of traveling, eating, drinking, and not exercising."

After adopting healthier habits in his own life, he and an LSU fraternity brother, Billy Rucks, seized an opportunity to buy and transform the Lake Austin Spa Resort; they still co-own it today. “It was a diamond in the rough," McAdams says.

More 25th anniversary offerings
One of the biggest challenges running the spa the last 25 years (besides navigating a global pandemic), McAdams says, has been continually evolving in an industry dominated by fleeting fads and headline-grabbing gimmicks.

“The changes in the last 25 years in the spa industry have been monumental,” McAdams says. “The global wellness industry is now a $4.5 trillion economy, with ‘spa’ being one small part of the bubble. We are all seekers looking for ways to look and feel our best, and I think the growth is due to a demand in wanting to take our health into our own hands.”

One of the resort’s newest touts (proudly stated on their home page) is that they’re Texas’ only destination spa on a lake. Recently they’ve introduced a full range of water activities, including a water taxi that transports guests to the spa and back.

“When we bought Lake Austin Spa Resort in 1997, our guests would put a toe in the water — but we’ve also evolved and now understand the power of being near a moving body of water and how it affects your health, happiness, and even alleviates depression,” McAdams says.

Along with the new fancy facials and lake programming, the resort has also added new classes and activities and upgraded amenities for its 25th anniversary. Befitting its location in the “live music capital of the world,” Austin-area musicians now entertain guests nightly around s’mores pits. There’s new artwork around the campus, too.

“My favorite part of celebrating our 25th anniversary this year has been to watch a very special piece of commissioned art be installed in the first few months of the year,” McAdams says. “A local Austin artist created a 64-foot long, 400-square foot abstract mural of stone, glass, and tile designed to honor our magnificent natural location on Lake Austin.

"Within the creation, I wanted to honor all of the amazing past and present people who helped get to where we are today. Their names are included in this mural, discreetly placed within this homage to nature. Because of these special people, Lake Austin Spa Resort has enjoyed many wonderful accolades through the years.”

---

To mark its 25th anniversary, Lake Austin Spa Resort is offering 25 percent off stays of at least two nights or more, through January 31, 2023. Reservations must be booked by October 31. Some packages include generous spa credits, but sadly, the $1,050 Regal facial is not 25 percent off. Find more information at www.lakeaustin.com.

Photo courtesy of Lake Austin Spa Resort

A red light mask is part of the $1,050 Regal by Valmont facial.

Galleria's Beauty Week returns with sneak peek of fashion and beauty trends and special events

Get Your Glow on

Mark those calendars! Beauty Week at The Galleria is returning for the first time since 2019, giving shoppers a chance to get ahead of fall trends and shop their favorite beauty brands IRL before they sell out.

As if we needed another reason to enjoy the three-day holiday weekend, Beauty Week officially kicks off Sunday, September 4.

The popular, week-long celebration gives shoppers a sneak peek at the latest beauty products, trends, offers and access to a unique beauty event. For the first time, Beauty Week includes a wellness component this year.

“Among many attitude shifts we’ve seen since the onset of the pandemic is a heightened prioritization of wellness,” said Yahaira Hernandez, a Galleria marketing representative. “This year’s Beauty Week celebrates wellness as an important part of beauty, focusing on beauty from the inside out.”

Shoppers can nab special week-long offers and checkout in-store events at participating brands, including Aesop, Fabletics, Jo Malone London, and Morphe.

The week’s festivities will culminate in a glamorous Beauty & Wellness Celebration Event on Saturday, September 10, from 2 pm to 5 pm. Hosted on Level 1, near Nordstrom, beauty brand fanatics will enjoy makeup, hair and fragrance stations, facials from Therabody and Sephora, giveaways and plenty of gorgeous selfie opportunities.

Courtesy of Christy Lynn

Where to shop in Houston right now: 12 must-hit spots for September

Where to shop now

In Houston, it can be a difficult to get into that fall vibe when temps are hovering in the 90s; luckily, there is so much to look forward to before we have to take out our sweaters and boots. For starters: for fashion traditionalists, it's a chance to finally start wearing white.

Shopping for college football looks, back-to-school fits, event and gala season, and new seasonal pieces makes kissing summer goodbye a little easier. With that in mind, we've curated a list of boutiques, products, and markets. Consider this a handpicked edit of the best in Houston this month.

Christy Lynn Collection
Christy Lynn dropped her Fall '22 collection with a buzzy runway show at Hotel Zaza Memorial City. Ready-to-wear items for this season include her famed hand-painted and restored floral prints, sensuous silks and lace from Italy and France. The brand's color pallet for this season is hues of plum with creams, whites and pops of fun prints. Fans of the brand can get their hands on her newest frocks online or at her Montrose atelier.

Elizabeth Anthony
Beginning September 22 and lasting through the 28th, Uptown Park's luxury women's boutique will host seven trunk shows. Featuring brands including Fabiana Filippi, Christine A. Moore, Akris Punto, Safiyaa and Sydney Evan, shoppers can get an up-close look at this Fall's 2022 Collections and a preview of what is to come for Spring 2023.

In addition, Lourdes Chavez will make a personal appearance at the store's debut of her Spring 2023 Collection on September 23. Chris Davies will also visit the store on September 22 with his fine jewelry collection trunk show.

Gorjana
The weather is cooling down, giving shoppers an excuse to enjoy walking and shopping at the Montrose Collective. Gojana, one of the development's newest jewelry stores, recently launched its Gemstone Studded Ring Collection. The rings, designed to be stacked and worn in multiples, feature aquamarine, morganite, white sapphire and opal.

Have a Nice Day Market and Feel Good Market
The Ion is hosting two markets in September, starting with the Feel Good Market series on Thursday, September 1, from 5 pm to 8 pm. The evening market will feature a selection of Feel Good Group's favorite makers from across the Houston area. Next is the Have a Nice Day Market on Sunday, September 18, from 4 pm to 8 pm. The market is free to attend and will feature BIPOC makers, creators, and causes.

Kendra Scott
Kendra Scott is kicking off her nine-stop U.S. Born to Shine book tour in her CityCentre location with a meet-and-greet and book signing. Tickets to the event include a copy of Born to Shine: Do Good, Find Your Joy, and Build a Life You Love, a meet and greet with Kendra, an exclusive tote bag, and more. Tickets for the select event are available here.

Krigler
Ultra high-end perfume house Krigler wants to whisk clients away to the snow capped peaks of Colorado with their latest fragrance, Good Fir 11. Inspired by the evergreens, the perfume has a fresh cologne-like scent. Krigler, a staple of the elite, has been worn by the likes of Jackie Kennedy, Audrey Hepburn, and Grace Kelly and can be purchased at The Four Seasons Houston.

Lululemon
Lululemon is debuting its first-ever Houston 10K on Saturday, November 13, and the brand is making sure racers feel the lululemon love for participating. Those who lace up and run will get a 25-percent discount to shop in any Houston location during race week and receive exclusive access to a capsule collection of 10K products made to commemorate the inaugural race and a bevy of pre and post-race amenities. Registration is open now through race day.

Saturday Silks x Home Themed Home
College football season is here, and everyone knows that aside from tailgating, getting dressed for it is the only thing better than the actual game. Saturday Silks designs gameday scarves and twillies made from 100-percent silk — the perfect accessory for any football fit. The Houston-based company teamed up this football season with another hometown favorite for the ultimate gameday collab. Home Themed Home x Saturday Silks offers gameday door hangers inspired by your favorite college teams. This limited edition collection is available for purchase online.

Sunday Riley C.E.O. Afterglow
Keep that summer glow on repeat through the fall with Sunday Riley's award-winning C.E.O. Afterglow. Skin care enthusiasts can’t get enough of the Houston-based company’s recently debuted moisturizer. The brightening Vitamin C gel cream promises to provide natural radiance and 24 hours of continuous hydration. C.E.O. Afterglow is available online or in-store at Sephora and Ulta.

Taft
Bespoke men's shoe store Taft just dropped its first-ever penny loafer. The handcrafted Fitz Loafers are great for fall dressing and are available in two colors - Blue Check and Champagne. M-K-T- Heights shoppers can also check out their best-selling Mack Boot, which recently debuted its newest color in time for the fall season.

Teressa Foglia
Add a felt hat from milliner Teressa Foglia to any summer look, and elevate it to the perfect fall ensemble. Known for her custom hats worn by celebrities and featured on the pages of Vogue, Foglia's fall hats come in a creamy palette featuring neutrals and soft blues. In addition to custom designs, the River Oaks District atelier and retail store offers a bespoke, ready-to-wear collection in-store and online. The designers will be on-site September 26-29 for custom orders.

The Golden Thread
TikTok's viral 'Bama Rush proves that sororities are serious business. Now shoppers can purchase everything sorority related at The Golden Thread, which offers customizable sorority jewelry, including bracelets and necklaces. The Memorial area boutique also has a line of college football accessories, including customizable bracelets, necklaces, earrings and accessories.

Get your first look at Christy Lynn's Fall 2022 Collection.

Courtesy of Christy Lynn
Get your first look at Christy Lynn's Fall 2022 Collection.
Rhode Skin

5 Houston spas for hands-on help with the delish Hailey Bieber 'glazed donut' manicure

No Calorie Counting here

This summer, glazed donuts have been elevated from everyone's favorite fried treat to an entire aesthetic, thanks to Instagram star, model — and oh yeah, wife of Justin — Hailey Bieber.

From the newly launched Rhode Skin founder, what started as a dewy skincare trend has migrated to nails. The minimalist, glowy look is having a major moment where it seems we are all trying to replicate the gleaming glaze of a Shipley doughnut. The look is viral on TikTok, with the hashtag #glazeddonutnails garnering a whopping 55.1M views and counting.

(For those keeping score, that number is a little higher than Hailey's nearly 48 million IG followers.)

So what are glazed donut nails? This latest trend is an understated manicure created with a nude base color and embellished with a chrome top coat to give that shimmery glazed effect. Beiber's celebrity nail artist Zola Ganzorigt created the look to match the star's YSL Met Gala dress in May, and since then, everyone has been clamoring to do the same.

Houston beauty maven, philanthropist, and animal activist Kara McCullers recently posted an Instagram story of her glazed donut manicure with the caption "such a glazed donut gal," and she isn't the only one jumping on the trend. Vannessa Hudgens and Sydney Sweeney are fans of the look that can be tinted for a fun flavored donut style — strawberry glazed donut is currently Bieber's favorite.

According to Gloss Nail Bar in Montrose, requests for glazed donut nails have skyrocketed since they took off on social media. "This nail trend has been popular all summer," Andrea Hernandez of Gloss Nails tells CultureMap. "We get requests daily — many people come in specifically for that manicure."

Houstonians ready to try the trend for themselves can channel their inner Hailey Bieber at these local salons.

Gloss Nail Bar
Located in Montrose, Gloss Nail Bar is known for its nail art and trend-forward manicures. The nail bar offers a variety of manicure options, including gel, dipped and acrylic sets.

Isle Pedispa Memorial Green
Luxury and beauty are the hallmarks of this Houston nail salon. Over-the-top decor and attention to detail make them a go-to for the latest nail trends.

Brush Box
Offering manicures and pedicures with "five-free" polishes, customers can expect a more natural nail experience. Brush Box also offers signature treatments utilizing a line of house-made products made from organic fruits and vegetables.

Milano Nail Spa
Milano Nail Spa is a full-service nail salon with dip powder, acrylic, and gel polish options. The manicures are long-lasting and consistently high-quality.

Sweet Moment Nail & Pedi Spa
This Kirby hot spot offers various relaxing manicure options and trendy nail art. This nail salon gets glowing reviews for its dip powder services.

Hailey Bieber's viral glazed doughnut nails are the sweetest summer nail trend.

Rhode Skin
Hailey Bieber's viral glazed doughnut nails are the sweetest summer nail trend.
WarnerBrothers/Facebook

5 Houston hot-pink essentials to rock this summer's viral Barbiecore trend

I'm a Barbie girl, in the Barbie world

Photos of Margot Robbie and Ryan Gosling on the set of the new Barbie movie have been breaking the internet this summer. They are rockin' everything we love about the iconic Barbie and Ken duo; from the costumes to the hairstyles — fans can't get enough.

While audiences will have to wait an entire year until the live-action movie hits theaters (the release date is July 21, 2023), the Barbiecore trend is already here.

What is Barbiecore? It is everything pink, sparkly and fun. On-trend types can make Barbiecore their own with style and sophistication or bust old Barbies out of storage for nostalgic campy inspo. Have fun and go full tilt with head-to-toe pink for the perfect 'fit, or add a pop of color with a perfectly pink bag, nails, or shoes.

Houston's legendary Lizzo is just one of the celebs jumping on the Barbiecore trend igniting her IG feed with lovely pink hair and a hot pink Valentino ensemble for the Los Angeles premiere of Lizzo's Watch Out For the Big Grrrls. Most recently, Jennifer Lopez stepped out in sky-high blush pink platform heels on a trip to the Louvre during her romantic Parisian honeymoon with Ben Affleck.

Locals don't have to be a celebrity to have fun in this Barbie-inspired moment. Here is a sampling of where to stock up on your Barbiecore essentials in Houston.

Jewelry
Pink + Diamonds = Barbie, and there is no better place to snap up pink bling than Post Oak favorite, Zadok Jewelers. Or head to popular local jeweler Brenda Grands for the Texas Druzy Necklace in Rose Gold. At either locale, stack rings, necklaces and bracelets for a maximalist Barbiecore look.

Clothing
So much pink clothing and so little time. Frock Shop consistently carries an array of fun dresses — whether out on a date with your own Ken, to the office or dressing up for an occasion — fans are in capable hands at this ultra-glam boutique. Fnd a more casual Barbie aesthetic at Marine Layer in Heights Mercantile — ultra cool pieces that fit and flatter.

Shoes
Channel your inner Barbie with a pair of pink kicks from River Oaks' finest Italian shoe store Clorinda Antinori. Made by hand in Tuscany, these shoes are elegant and timeless, making it easy to pop on a pair of wedges, flats or shimmery loafers. Go all Houston with a pair of pink cowboy boots and Lucchese in Highland Village delivers with their best-selling Gaby Two-Tone Boot in coral.

Nails
Pink nails are having a moment and clean beauty destination Paloma Beauty, known for its well-curated selection of safe products, is a hot spot for effortless mani-pedis. For those looking for pink nail art like Khloe Kardashian, Fizz Nail Lounge doubles down on big-impact tips.

Handbags
Houstonians Jodi and Jamie of JJ Olivier just dropped their line of luxury leather handbags, and we will be wearing the Carmalite Crossbody and the Minette Wallet with every outfit until further notice, thank you. CityCentre favorite, Brahmin, celebrated for their croc embossed leather handbags, has several styles in an irresistible shade of orchid pink metallic called Potion Melbourne. Snag one for a complete Barbiecore look.

C'mon Barbie, let's go party in pink.

WarnerBrothers/Facebook
C'mon Barbie, let's go party in pink.
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CultureMap Emails are Awesome

Iconic Austin blues club brings the show to fans with new indie livestreaming platform

Live on Live

If legendary Austin blues club Antone’s is your vibe, but the drive to Capital City isn't, you’re in luck. Antone’s Nightclub launched a new service for livestreaming its shows in November.

Kicking off with New Orleans-based funk and jam band Dumpstaphunk, for their special “Phunksgiving” show last month with Michael Hale Trio, the full lineup is delineated on the Antone’s website. Specifics were still loose before the launch, allowing the famous blues club to call the shots. The partner agency that created the streaming service, 3rd + Lamar, created the system to give Antone’s as much freedom as possible.

"Partnering with Antone's to build their livestreaming platform and produce each of their shows is an incredible opportunity for 3rd + Lamar," said the agency’s co-founder Nick Schenck in a press release. "The amazing talent that performs at Antone's – and their fans worldwide – deserve best-in-class live production quality, and we're thrilled to play a part in this operation."

Not that Antone’s needed to stand out more in the music industry (the nearly 50-year-old venue has always been one of the best places to see both local and national talent), but this achievement places it among relatively few venues across the country, especially those that operate their system independently.

The intimate Antone's shows are filmed by four Blackmagic 4K cinema cameras on tracks overhead, which ensure that the whole space is easily visible without having camera operators amid the audience.

“We did over 430 individually ticketed shows in 2019 and we felt like we were bursting at the seams,” said Antone’s owner Will Bridges. “Then when livestreams became more prominent during the pandemic we realized, this is our opportunity to take Antone’s outside of our four walls. … [W]e see people in the comment threads all the time saying ‘If I could only be teleported to Antone’s!’ Well now they can.”

The release emphasizes that the system means Antone’s “fully retain[s] ownership of their content, which can then be utilized at their discretion.” It also calls the service “an add-on option for all artists performing at Antone’s,” positioning the service as not just an audience luxury but a performer’s low-cost marketing tool. Suddenly, artists playing at Antone’s are afforded a choice without needing to be invited to record or pay an independent video team, while reaching even more viewers with no extra time spent advertising.

“Our ultimate goal is to make these amazing musical experiences accessible to everyone. Life is busy, but we want to give everyone the opportunity to participate no matter where they are or what they have going on,” said Bridges. “We want to make livestreams from Antone’s totally commonplace. When we announce our upcoming shows, fans have two options: watch it at the club our watch it at home.”

Livestreams are at antonesnightclub.com, and links also appear with each applicable event across the site. Prices are listed on the website, and livestreams start 10-20 minutes before each show.

Alt-rock legends Red Hot Chili Peppers heading to Houston for 2023 North American tour

one hot minute

One of alternative rock's most pioneering and enduring acts is headed to Houston to close out a highly anticipated North American tour next year. Red Hot Chili Peppers will play Minute Maid Park on Thursday, May 25, 2023 as part of a North American trek that kicks off in Vancouver, British Columbia on March 29.

Houston lands the honor of the closeout city for the North American tour (the band will also play a slew of dates in Europe). Effortlessly hip, celeb-fave modern rock band The Strokes will support the Chili Peppers, along with the talented bassist-vocalist Thundercat.

Tickets go on sale this week at 10 am Friday, December 9 online.

Houston fans who can't get enough can also catch the Chili Peppers when they hit The Alamodome in San Antonio on Wednesday, May 17 — the only other Texas date.

Aside from The Strokes and Thundercat, supporting acts along the way include Iggy Pop, The Roots, The Mars Volta, St. Vincent, City and Colour, and King Princess.

Touring in support of their two No. 1 studio albums released in 2022, Unlimited Love and Return of the Dream Canteen, the Chili Peppers have been played sold-out shows in London, Paris, Los Angeles, and more with major names such as Notable artists such as A$AP Rocky, Anderson.Paak, Beck, and HAIM.

The first rock band in 17 years to score two No. 1 albums in one year, the band has been red hot on the Billboard charts and at the MTV Video Music Awards, where they received the Global Icon Award and brought the house down with a performance of the No. 1 single “Black Summer,'' which also won the award for Best Rock Video.

Fronted by the impossibly chiseled and ageless (he's 60!) Anthony Kiedis, the Chili Peppers formed in 1983. Unabashedly proud of their LA roots, the band burst onto the scene with early singles such as "Higher Ground" and "Give It Away," both showcases of bassist Flea's slappin', funk-fueled basslines.

Throughout the peak of alternative music in the '90s, the band saw tragedy, personnel changes at guitar, and reinventions — Kiedes' rap-singing, Flea's bass grooves, and singalong choruses all constants over the decades.

While many '90s alt-rock acts fizzled, the Chili Peppers stayed relevant; the band boasts two anthemic singles with more than 1 billion streams — "Californication" and "Under the Bridge" — and more than 25 million followers on Spotify.

Expect this show to be packed with Gen Xers and new fans for what promises to be one hot minute.

Red Hot Chili Peppers 2023 tour dates:

  • Wednesday, March 29 – Vancouver – BC Place
  • Saturday, April 1 – Las Vegas – Allegiant Stadium
  • Thursday, April 6 – Fargo, North Dakota – FargoDome
  • Saturday, April 8 – Minneapolis – US Bank Stadium
  • Friday, April 14 – Syracuse, New York – JMA Wireless Dome
  • Friday, May 12 – San Diego – Snap Dragon Stadium
  • Sunday, May 14 – Phoenix – State Farm Stadium
  • Wednesday, May 17 – San Antonio – Alamodome
  • Friday, May 19 – Gulf Shores, Alabama – Hangout Music Festival
  • Thursday, May 25 – Houston – Minute Maid Park

Fan-favorite, wood-fired Houston pizzeria quietly opens in the Heights

enough (pizza) to love

A popular Houston pizzeria has opened its second location in the Heights. The Gypsy Poet has begun a quiet soft opening in the former Fegen’s space at 1050 Studewood St.

Since its 2019 debut in Midtown, the Gypsy Poet has earned a devoted following for its wood-fired pizzas. The restaurant’s personal-sized, 13-inch pizzas exist somewhere on the spectrum between traditional Neapolitan and classic New York — too crispy for the Italians but not quite foldable like an East Coast slice. Options include a classic Margherita and the signature Fancy Backpacker, which is topped with prosciutto, truffle oil, and arugula.

Part of the restaurant’s appeal stems from its friendly service and easy going atmosphere. It regularly hosts informal musical performances and other artistic happenings.

Taken together, Gypsy Poet has earned legions on fans. Yelp users ranked it as Texas’s second best restaurant in 2021. More recently, Barstool Sports founder Dave Portnoy awarded it a high 7.8 rating during a pizza review.

The restaurant opens at a time of transition for pizzerias in the Heights. Dallas-based Neapolitan restaurant Cane Rosso closed last year, and suburban favorite Crust Pizza Co. opened this summer in the former Mellow Mushroom space at N. Shepherd and 20th.

The Heights location of Gypsy Poet will be open Tuesday-Thursday from 5-9 pm; Friday from 12-2 pm and 5-10 pm; Saturday 2-10 pm; and Sunday 2-9 pm.