Business News

Business News: July 2008

Restauranteur Jon Paul goes to Galveston, Mitchell Gold + Bob Williams retail store opens, Kimpton Hotel & Restaurant chain’s Summer of Pride, plus media news.

By Tim Brookover


Jon Paul

Well-known Houston restaurant pro Jon Paul (right) has joined the Steakhouse at the San Luis Resort, Spa & Conference Center in Galveston as general manager. Paul was most recently general manager at Polo’s in Houston and he previously worked for 16 years with the Vallone Restaurant Group. He was the general manager of Tony’s, the white-tablecloth society restaurant owned by the Vallone firm, from 1989 to 2005. More recently, Paul owned and opened 1308 Cantina on Montrose Boulevard, before selling the restaurant to the Laurenzo family, owners of the El Tiempo Cantina restaurants. The San Luis is located at 5222 Seawall Blvd. (409/744-1500 or 800/445-0090). The website is

WELL FURNISHED U.S. Representative Sheila Jackson Lee and Tipper Gore, wife of former vice president, 2000 presidential candidate, and Nobel Prize winner Al Gore, were special guests at the May 29 grand opening of the Mitchell Gold + Bob Williams retail store in Houston. Bob Williams (left, second photo from top) accepted a Congressional certificate from Lee (second from lleft), joined by Gold and Gore. Lady Bunny, the renowned New York drag performer (photo), also made an appearance at the opening. The 11,500-square-foot store is located at 3303 Kirby Dr. (832/242-9470). The website is

THE OTHER RAINBOW ROOM With its recently opened fifth location, Carmen’s 24 Hour Boutique has introduced the Rainbow Room, which will offer “the largest GLBT selection of adult products in the Houston area,” according to a Carmen’s spokesperson. Merchandise includes adult DVDs, novelty items, and clothing. The newest Carmen’s and its Rainbow Room is located at 9924 Interstate 45 North (281/598-4980). The website is

Hotel Palomar


Among the American businesses capitalizing on the recent California Supreme Court decision legalizing same-sex marriage in that state is the Kimpton Hotel & Restaurant chain with its Summer of Pride promotion. Through Labor Day, Kimpton hotels in 15 North American cities, including Dallas, offer 10 to 20 percent off the current best available rate. California, Massachusetts, and British Columbia also offers same-sex wedding ceremonies.

The San Francisco-based Kimpton chain was the first hospitality company to receive a 100-percent score on the Human Rights Campaign Corporate Equality Index. All properties are members of the International Gay & Lesbian Travel Association.

The Kimpton hotels in Dallas are the Hotel Lumen ( and the Hotel Palomar ( Details: 1-800-KIMPTON,

MEDIA NEWS The Washington, D.C.-based National Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce has launched an on-line magazine, Biz ( The new e-zine focuses on the GLBT business community and its corporate allies. The chamber and its co-publisher, the communications firm OmniSt udio, are seeking contributors and advertisers. The Greater Houston GLBT Chamber of Commerce ( is an affiliate business organization of the national chamber.

Red, the Phoenix-based monthly gay magazine that also covered Houston and Dallas, ceased publication with its May issue. Co-publisher Chris L. Smith made the announcement in a June 9 e-mail.


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