Women served bottles of Champagne out of open caskets at Penthouse Day Club in Los Angeles on Sunday during its reopening. Videos of the event were posted on social media and shocked many. One commenter called it a “slap in the face” during the pandemic. A clubgoer who was at the reopening told Insider that Penthouse has offered the $10,000 coffin bottle presentation for years and was “not mocking deaths due to COVID-19.” He also said that he estimated “99% of the people” inside the club — save for the staff — were not wearing masks. Visit Insider’s homepage for more stories.
Confetti flutters over the crowd. Lights flash and music blasts. Then, a woman floats by in an open casket, a mask covering half her face as she waves a gold bottle of Champagne. This was the scene at Penthouse Day Club, an outdoor rooftop bar in Los Angeles, during its reopening on Sunday. Videos of the ‘soft opening,’ which were posted on Instagram by clubgoers and club promoters, shocked many on social mediaFootage showed that few people at the club were wearing masks — save for the staff — and there appeared to be little social distancing, despite the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.
Another clip showed a server popping out of a casket to deliver a bottle of Champagne while the theme song for WWE wrestler The Undertaker played.
One commenter called the clip “horrific” in the midst of COVID-19. At the time of writing, more than 117,000 Americans have died from the coronavirus, including nearly 3,000 in Los Angeles, according to John Hopkins University and Medicine. “People are actually dying,” the commenter wrote. “This is a huge slap in the face, can’t believe it.” Another commenter called the scene “tasteless” and “classless.” A clubgoer who attended the event and goes by the name ‘Young Selfie’ told Insider that Penthouse has offered the coffin bottle presentation since they opened about ‘five or six years ago'”It’s a $10,000 minimum bottle presentation that people want, which in no form is mocking deaths due to COVID-19,” he said. “They are not making fun of people that have died due to the virus.”
Penthouse Day Club has been offering the coffin bottle presentation for years, a clubgoer told Insider.
Young Selfie, who is based in Los Angeles and Miami and works as a third-party brand consultant and social-media talent developer, said the outrage surrounding the coffins at Penthouse was “1,000% unfair.”
“It might be ethically incorrect but, for someone who has seen this display numerous times pre-COVID, I’m not offended or bothered by it,” he added. “I love seeing the bottle girls come out of the coffin, especially at my table. It’s a statement, an expensive one.”
It costs a minimum $10,000 to order the coffin bottle presentation.
“PH is the best party in LA and they have the best bottle presentations in the city,” he said. “People who were outraged probably would never get the chance to step foot into the club. PH is not a typical bar that the average American goes to.” Wavy, another clubgoer who attended the event, told Insider that he wasn’t offended by the coffins and that he enjoyed himself at the opening. “I don’t believe in the coronavirus, honestly,” he added.
Both clubgoers told Insider that all staff members at Penthouse Day Club were wearing masks and gloves
A clubgoer told Insider that “99% of the people” inside the club — save for the staff — weren’t wearing masks.
“They took everyone’s temperature at the door,” Young Selfie said. “The staff was offering everyone in the club gloves and masks if we needed.” “People had to wear masks to get into the club but, once every was in, 99% of the people did not have a mask on,” he added. “All the staff had theirs on for the entire run time though.”The Centers for Disease Control currently recommends that members of the public wear a mask or face covering wherever maintaining a distance of 6 feet from others is not possible.
High off life. ? A post shared by ANT (@youngselfie) on Jun 16, 2020 at 3:09pm PDTJun 16, 2020 at 3:09pm PDTCOVID-19 cases in California are rising, but Young Selfie said he didn’t hesitate to book a table when he heard that Penthouse was reopening.
“I honestly feel like I beat COVID at least three times,” he said. “I’ve been practicing social distancing but, due to work, I’ve been on multiple flights during this pandemic. There wasn’t a single doubt of me not attending PH.” Penthouse Day Club promoted its soft opening with a number of Instagram posts in the days leading up to the eventIt said the soft reopening would have “limited capacity” and that table reservations — which start at $3,000 — would be required for entry. Tables were capped to 10 guests each and there was no general admission or guest list. Penthouse said in another Instagram post that the event sold out in a day.
“Clearly everyone that was at the party wanted to be there,” Young Selfie said. “People are mad at others for having fun, and that’s crazy.”
California Gov. Gavin Newsom announced last week that bars in the state would be allowed to reopen with restrictions on June 12, along with gyms, day camps, and professional sportsBut reports showed that of the 2,000 Los Angeles County restaurants that were inspected over the weekend, half were not in compliance with the county’s COVID-19 safety requirements, according to the Los Angeles Times. And cases are continuing to rise in the state. The Los Angeles Times reports that California has seen 3,385 new cases in the last week and 61.1 new deaths per day. Los Angeles County has reported 43% of the new cases in the last two weeks. In nearby San Diego, the city is taking action after the first weekend of re-opening was filled with maskless partygoers. San Diego County Supervisor Greg Cox called the scene “pretty bad,” and said that the San Diego Police Department would be blocking off certain streets to allow for more social distancing. Officers will also be asking for “voluntary compliance” from anyone who isn’t wearing a mask.
Newsom has defended reopening the state as cases continue to rise, saying it’s important for the mental health of Californians”We have to recognize you can’t be in a permanent state where people are locked away — for months and months and months and months on end — to see lives and livelihoods completely destroyed, without considering the health impact of those decisions as well,” he said during a press conference on Monday. Penthouse has been advertising for another weekend of clubbing on its Instagram, noting that each table section has “see-through dividers” and sharing photos of its servers in masks and swimsuits.
Representatives for Penthouse Day Club did not immediately respond to Insider’s requests for comment.