Society / Featured Parties

Pitbull, Houston’s Most Famous Billionaire and a Record $2.2 Million Make This the Wildest Hotel Party Ever

Flying Confetti, Laser Light Tricks and Rap Star Confessions

BY // 03.26.18
photography Alexander's Fine Portrait Design, Michelle Watson/CatchlightGroup.com

Only billionaire Tilman Fertitta could pull off a night like Friday that set his spanking new Post Oak Hotel afire. With the blazing Pitbull on stage, Laura Ward at the controls and supporters of Houston Children’s Charity emptying their pockets, it was an unprecedented $2.2 million success that had more layers of excitement than Fertitta’s storied Mardi Gras balls.

In fact, with a grand finale of flying confetti, laser light tricks throughout the night, bursts of CO2 steam from the stage and Pitbull’s sensational performance, one’s inner rocker couldn’t help but shout laissez les bon temp rouler!

(Fertitta and Pitbull are texting buddies and the rapper performed at the San Luis Salute to Mardi Gras in 2016. That relationship helped secure him for this night.)

Imagine all of that excitement coming after the cocktail hour spent perusing the trés fabulous $350 million hotel with its lobby boasting a million dollar chandelier sparkling with Swarovski crystals and millions in artwork from the likes of Frank Stella, Donald Sultan and Robert Motherwell. Add the duo of Rolls Royces on display (on loan from Fertitta’s neighboring dealership) and you have a hotel like no other in the city.

Just as it was a night like no other. Applause, applause for chairs Leticia and Steve Trauber (a masterful emcee along side Dave Ward). Congratulations to honorees Penny and Paul Loyd Jr. And hubbah, hubbah to HCC president and CEO Laura Ward, who orchestrated the remarkable success.

Once again, BMW of West Houston and Momentum BMW Southwest donated a car outright, this year a 2018 BMW M5, to be selected on a trip to Munich. The big winner — noted attorney Tony Buzbee, who ponied up $210,000 for the privilege.

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  • Christopher Martin Gallery 1 - Houston (ROOMS)
  • Christopher Martin Gallery 1 - Houston (ROOMS)
  • Christopher Martin Gallery 1 - Houston (ROOMS)
  • Christopher Martin Gallery 1 - Houston (ROOMS)
  • Christopher Martin Gallery 1 - Houston (ROOMS)
  • Christopher Martin Gallery 1 - Houston (ROOMS)
  • Christopher Martin Gallery 1 - Houston (ROOMS)
  • Christopher Martin Gallery 1 - Houston (ROOMS)
  • Christopher Martin Gallery 1 - Houston (ROOMS)
  • Christopher Martin Gallery 1 - Houston (ROOMS)
  • Christopher Martin Gallery 1 - Houston (ROOMS)
  • Christopher Martin Gallery 1 - Houston (ROOMS)
  • Christopher Martin Gallery 1 - Houston (ROOMS)
  • Christopher Martin Gallery 1 - Houston (ROOMS)

In what was a surprise to many among the crowd of 750 was the heartfelt words that Pitbull mixed throughout his performance. Coming from a poor childhood, he told the standing crowd, “So I take it real serious when I’m on a stage talking about kids.” He has helped finance 10 charter schools under his Sports Leadership And Management Academy banner including in Miami where he grew up in the impoverished Little Havana neighborhood.

His words stirred the crowd. “Music is the universal language. We like songs that get rid of all the negativity. . . . Always be happy. Always have a cause. It’s a short ride folks. I want you here to have the time of your lives. We have to celebrate this great day. Let’s have the time of our lives.”

And, indeed, they did.

Rockers: Basketball greats Dikembe Mutombo and Clyde Drexler, plus Rachel and Jeff Bagwell, Sue and Lester Smith, Pam Morse and Dan Pastorini, Gary Becker, Sheridan and John Eddie Williams, Wayne Smith, Carol and Mike Linn, Edna Meyer-Nelson, Dancie and Jim Ware, Laura Murillo, Rick Noriega, Melissa Juneau, Kristina and Paul Somerville, Dr. David Poplack, and Dee Dee and Wallis Marsh.

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