The Culture

How to Make Your Own Shangri-la

Hairdresser and local celebrity Karlos Anzoategui, known as Karlos With a K, on throwing the most memorable parties in town.

As told to Emily McCullar.

We moved [to San Antonio] when I was a child. Without giving you my age, just know I’m not twenty, but I’m not ninety. We grew up in King William [neighborhood], so I was exposed to a lot of beautiful homes. We had a humble house, but we were around the grand mansions. I would look at beautiful houses and villas in magazines and I would brag to my friends and say, “That’s the house I’m going to have one day.” I think that helped me direct my life to where it’s at now.

As you very well know, there’s a lot of sadness and horror in the world, and I made a Shangri-la here. It transports you to a different realm. I’ve been in this house for over twenty years, and for the last fifteen I’ve been doing the White Party, which signals [the start of] summer. I just started gathering interesting people: lawyers, doctors, art patrons, politicians, from country club [members] to average workers.

Guests are usually greeted by acroyoga performers. It’s a big crowd-pleaser. That’s during the day. We usually follow it with a fashion show poolside at some point, then, as it starts getting dark, we have a group of aerialists who work with fire. They’re very talented, and we’ve never had an accident.

My house has two wings, and I have what I call a crowd-control surveyor, a friend of mine who moves people around, and he’ll usually let divorcées know when [their exes] arrive. And then they usually stay to separate wings. They can come and go and never see each other. 

My house doesn’t have cedar posts and a couple of cows in the front yard, but you can live like this and socialize like this and still call yourself a San Antonian and a Texan, because it comes from the heart. 

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Tags: Society, Karlos with a K, san antonio, white party

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