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Last night, the newly refurbished Las Palmas had its soft opening for a wild dual celebration of Cinco De Mayo and Markus Molinari's birthday. The club is located in an area of Hollywood where nightspots pop up, close, reopen under a new name, and so on with great frequency. If you haven't been to that pocket off of Hollywood Blvd. just east of Highland in some time, you might be surprised at how much has changed on the surface, while the matter and energy remain the same. And If you experience a wave of déjà vu upon entering the venue, you're not crazy, you have actually been there before because it used to be LAX. In an effort to bring the venue back to its roots with its original name, Las Palmas, the h.wood group has replaced the once streamlined, minimalist and modern finish of the former club with a country-style, rugged, rancho decor, but it retains the same skeleton and layout. It almost feels like if you could peel back the layers of the new design, you would actually uncover the cement walls and beaded metal curtains of the Banana Split Sundaes venue. Today, in dressed up walls and rechristened with its old name, you'll likely see the same people you used to then on those Sunday nights that you will now at the new Las Palmas.
Among the many, many, who came out to party it up and wish Markus a happy birthday were Lindsay Lohan, Taryn Manning, Lisa D'Amato, and the now legendary Tyler Shields. There was no mistaking that some intense partying was going down as soon as you walked in the club. Not the usual kind, this was clearly a special occasion. L.A. takes Cinco De Mayo very seriously, and any self-respecting Angeleno was out last night, if not getting hammered themselves, then hanging out with people who were. If you weren't drinking, the constant shoving and drunken bump-ins might have gotten to you. But it was all in good fun.
Guests danced up a storm to the music by DJ Devin Lucien, even outside on the patio for a cigarette break dancing in place. Some unabashed fist pumping was spotted, too. The crowd was definitely feeling the holiday spirit, donning sombreros and fake 'staches, because that's exactly how all Mexicans dress, right? But not Markus; he rocked a spiked bow tie for his special night.