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Jumpin' House Party at Platinum

This family-owned club in Diamond Bar offers a great mix of people, music and dancing.

February 08, 2001|HEIDI SIEGMUND CUDA | SPECIAL TO THE TIMES

No matter what barrio you hail from, there was always some cat who threw the coolest parties. His wasn't always the biggest house or the most moneyed, but it attracted the grooviest mix of characters and you could count on having fun. That's Platinum, in a nutshell.

Spend 10 minutes cruising from room to room in Platinum, a family-owned Diamond Bar nightclub, and you'll find your feet feel a little bit lighter and you can't wipe the grin off your face. A recent Saturday, when Platinum's three main rooms were dedicated to hip-hop, felt like crashing the ultimate house party. There were hoochies in Gucci and naughty hotties, all dressed to impress, united by the funky sounds pouring out of Platinum's speakers.

That's why Warren G and Snoop Dogg host parties there, and why the club is packed to the rafters on weekends.

It's not a gorgeous nightclub. In fact, its stuccoed exterior blurs right into the Best Western next door. The interior decor channels up memories of a '70s-era Ramada Inn, "Disco Inferno" and all.

Its owners, who searched for this location for years, were banking on convenience. It's located right off the 60 Freeway, and those who don't want to drive home after dancing the night away can sleep it off at the Best Western.

Late-night revelers can load up on about six different fast-food options as well, all within a few steps of the club. (I recommend the Diamond Palace Chinese restaurant, which offers service with a late-night smile. Kung pao!)

The Making of Hollywood East

The point is, Platinum's so old school it's new school. It's attracting people from Hollywood who are tired of paying inflated entertainment prices and seeing the same old faces. And it's attracting folks from nearby Orange, Riverside and San Bernardino counties who want a taste of Hollywood honey without the drive and money.

Platinum offers its own dining area, a private party room, a VIP lounge, a main bar with dance floor and a larger dancing area called the Club Room, which is where Platinum really rages.

The 700-capacity nightclub flows easily from floor to floor, with each nook and cranny offering something for everyone. In the basement VIP lounge, Dale Pierce, the patriarch of the Platinum family, works the bar and checks coats while his wife, Jill, oversees operations. Their son, Chris, manages the nightclub, while daughter-in-law Katie works as head bartender.

A key to the club's success is its security team. Rather than hiring an outside security force, each member is a Platinum employee.

Instead of getting the shakedown at the door from a stone-cold Staff Pro, a common occurrence in Hollywood clubs, people are treated politely and professionally. This, everyone knows, goes a long way when the objective is to have fun.

Open Tuesday through Saturday, Platinum caters to different scenes on different nights. The club spins hip-hop on Wednesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays, with Thursdays a predominantly Asian crowd. Friday offers a mix of disco, rock en espanol and hip-hop, and ladies get in free. Tuesdays draw a KROQ crowd, and Sundays celebrate Latin music and salsa.

If you're in the neighborhood, Platinum is probably a fun spot to check out on any night, but if you're like me and you love hip-hop, house parties, and people who are genuine, try Platinum on a Saturday. It's worth its weight in gold.

* Platinum, 245 Gentle Springs Lane, Diamond Bar, (909) 396-8810. 21 and older. Cover varies. Upscale dress code all nights.

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