Lance Bass Gives Nightlife a Taste of Heart WeHo Dance Club

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Singer Lance Bass gave West Hollywood nightlife a taste of the new Heart WeHo dance club last night, officially taking over the historical Rage Nightclub space. Heart WeHo had a very soft opening for friends and family by invite only. WEHO TIMES made the cut and we’re here to report that 8911 Santa Monica Boulevard is back, and the dance floor was packed.

Unlike last weekend when Heart WeHo opened its doors to the public for the very first time for a “Happily Ever After” Disney stage show production by Team Cyclepaths to benefit their fundraising efforts for AIDS/LifeCycle 2022, this weekend was all about the dance floor. There were no chairs parked on the dance floor. It was wall to wall people looking at their phones and taking selfies to a dance beat.

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The night promised a surprise DJ. In came DJ Jarec who played circuit music the entire night, but keep in mind that this night was a practice run.

At one point in the night, Lance Bass paid tribute to the history of the space by presenting Sia Amiri, the founder of Rage with a Rage Restaurant & Bar plaque that will hang at the new Heart WeHo dance club.

“One of my proudest moments ever,” Amiri’s son, Kian Amiri (aka Morningstar DJ), posted on his Facebook page. “My dad, who till now got zero recognition for literally building WeHo, for starting WeHo nightlife when he created Rage in 1983, for providing a safe space for generations of LGBTQ beauties (then later creating Krave- first and only LGBTQ club on the LV strip), for LOBBYING WEST HOLLYWOOD TO BECOME ITS OWN INDEPENDENT CITY (that was my pops), who every bar owes gratitude to, gets his moment. Thank you to Paul [Nichols], Lance, and my whole Rocco’s family for honoring him. Him being immortalized on the walls of this venue means more than I can describe. Full circle. Go Heart!”

So what’s our assessment of Heart WeHo?

As we reported here earlier, the makers of Heart kept the integrity of the former rage space, so not much was done in terms of redevelopment. We still have the downstairs, upstairs area with a front and back bar. The upstairs lounge area has a more exclusive feeling than the former space (you needed a wrist band to hang from the balconies on either side). The back upstairs bar area comes equipped with selfie stands (a sign of the times). Also keep an eye out for the lighting system hanging overhead. They have hydraulics that move up and down in waves, giving you a sense of vertigo if you’re not ready for the ceiling to come down on you.

 

There are many improvements to Heart WeHo dance club, and it is clear cost was not spared with a state-of-the-art sound system and a light show that can only compete with Rocco’s WeHo across the street (same owners). A new ticket booth was built with an attention to detail on the glass tiling. The wall divider that separated the dance floor from the main bar at Rage is now gone, so the dance section pours onto the bar. There are also large leather booths for bottles services by the dance floor, by the main bar, and the upstairs areas.

Lighting aside, we’ve gotten a lot of odd inquiries about the restrooms. How do they look? Are they unisex? Are the urinals open or do they have dividers? Is it one big restroom now, instead of two? Will it still be cruisy?

The integrity of the restrooms are also kept the same, but elevated with black shiny tiles. They are now gender neutral per a new City of West Hollywood ordinance passed last year, which more or less states that all new businesses must have gender inclusive toilets and not be gender normative. There are seven urinals, and one handicap toilet like before in the former men’s restroom. And yes, there are stalls at each urinal, so you can’t look over at your neighbor anymore, and you can’t bird watch from the reflection of the mirrors. Those urinal stalls are a tight squeeze, so if you want more room, maybe use the neighboring restroom which is also the same footprint of its former self, but much classier (the former women’s restroom had an attendant, and it was crowded, so we didn’t really go inside).

The new Heart WeHo dance club will have a grand opening next weekend on Friday, February 11, 2022. There is bound to be a line that curls around the corner.

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Paulo Murillo is Editor in Chief and Publisher of WEHO TIMES. He brings over 20 years of experience as a columnist, reporter, and photo journalist. Murillo began his professional writing career as the author of “Love Ya, Mean It,” an irreverent and sometimes controversial West Hollywood lifestyle column for FAB! newspaper. His work has appeared in numerous print and online publications, which include the “Hot Topic” column in Frontiers magazine, where he covered breaking news and local events in West Hollywood. He can be reached at editor@wehotimes.com
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