Enjoy cocktails, craft beer and tour in the penthouse home of Frank and Blanche Ortiz. This incredibly preserved residence was last renovated in 1979 and has been immaculately maintained with the Las Vegas style of the owners and numerous personal exhibits from their fashion history. Held on Saturday, May 6 and 13 at 3 p.m. at 4504 Fort Crocket Boulevard, tickets are $40 and limited to 50 guests per tour.


About Frank and Blanche Ortiz

The home of two of the island’s most colorful residents in the late 20th century holds everything from mid-century furnishings to the record albums of popular entertainers of the day. Frank Ortiz operated Ortiz Tailors for 55 years and came to Galveston in 1945. A noted tailor for Vegas celebrities, Frank was well known for his work with Liberace, Tom Jones, Wayne Newton, Pete Fountain and many others. For many years, the business operated on the second floor of the commercial building on the northwest corner of Market and 23rd but later took over the entire building as the business grew.

In the 1970s, the Ortiz’s contracted with Houston architect Charles S. Chan (1911-1993) to redesign the redundant Fort Crockett building they purchased in the 1960s from the federal government. Houston’s first Chinese architect, Chan focused on making the top floor into a modern living space for the couple. His architectural eye and the couple’s special flair are evident today in the private realm of Galveston’s late 20th century entertainment world.

“It’s easy to feel and sense the active social life of the owners as they welcomed the famous to their island home,” states GHF Executive Director, Dwayne Jones. “Celebrities like Liberace and Tom Jones donned the tailored garments of Ortiz.”

Craft Beer Tastings

Guests to this tour will also enjoy special craft beer tastings courtesy of SpindleTap Brewing, on May 6, and Southern Star Brewing Company, May 13.

SpindleTap Brewery: Named after one of Texas’ major oil discoveries in 1901, Houston’s SpindleTap Brewery has hit paydirt on the new revolution of craft brewing. SpindleTap Brewery embraces the booming growth of the industry and welcomes each and every new tap handle they see in the restaurants, bars and retailers. Their name is a celebration of the rapid expansion of the industry – one that was long overdue.

Southern Star Brewing Company: Located in Conroe, Texas, Southern Star Brewing Company was founded in July 2007 and are the first craft brewery in the state of Texas to offer canned beer. One of the regions favorite breweries, Southern Star is home to Pine Belt Pale Ale, Bombshell Blonde and Buried Hatchet among numerous others.


Galveston Historical Foundation opens the doors to Galveston’s incredible architectural history through public tours of privately owned homes during its annual Galveston Historic Homes Tour. Tours will be held on May 6, 7, 13 and 14 from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Tickets are $30 for non-members before May 1 and $35 after and are available online at www.galvestonhistory.org. Members of Galveston Historical Foundation can purchase specially priced $25 tickets by calling 409-765-3405 or by visiting any of GHF’s retail locations.

“The annual homes tour highlights the island’s architecture crossing decades of construction and design as well as houses both large and small. Galveston offers a unique collection of late 19th and early 20th century houses that will intrigue visitors and captivate historic house buffs,” says Jones. “Come join GHF and these homeowners as we welcome visitors from across the country to experience historic Galveston of the past.”

2 Responses

  1. alma duran

    My whole family worked for Mr. Ortiz, from 1966 till the 1980s. My mom and dad, were tailors and made Liberce and many other stars clothes. The Oritz’s were wonderful people.


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