On 10/19/12 I got to do what most men only dream of.
I partied at the Playboy Mansion.
It all started one morning earlier that month when my alarm went off, I rolled over, and glanced at my phone to browse my emails. I saw an email from a guy I knew through social media that worked for Pabst Brewing Co., the makers of Colt 45. I opened it up and had to make sure I wasn't still dreaming. I rolled over and told my wife, who was still half-asleep herself, that I was just invited to a party at the Playboy Mansion. Being the super supportive and awesome wife that she is, she said "You gotta go!"
This was going to be a Colt 45 sponsored party with their spokesman Snoop Dogg as the main guest. Pabst paid for the airfare to LA and 2 nights at a hotel for myself and a guest. I invited fellow longtime 40oz Crew member, "The OG", as we went back nearly 10 years together. He hosted the first ever 40oz Crew Meeting of the Minds in Chicago back in 2004, and we partied together across the United States over the years since. As one of the founding members of the 40oz Crew, it was an easy decision to make.
We flew out on the day of the party and checked into our hotel. Did a little pregaming and got ready to rock. We walked to the rendezvous point at an underground parking deck a couple blocks away where you wait in a line filled mostly with half-naked women, show your ID as they sign you in, and board a shuttle bus that transports you to Hugh Hefner's crib.
The bus eventually pulled off onto a winding road that led through some trees and before you know it you're pulling up in front of the Playboy Mansion itself. It went past the front entrance and dropped us off on the other side of the mansion. We got out and walked under an archway covered in vines straight to the pool area, which had a bar near it. "Colt 45" was present everywhere. Projected onto a big screen behind the mansion, empty Colt 45 40oz bottles in Colt 45 brown paper bag style koozies, Colt 45 neon signs, Colt 45 t-shirts & hats on employees, and naked models covered in body paint illustrating Colt 45, Blast, and Pabst Blue Ribbon designs.
The bar was serving whatever you wanted, including Colt 45 and Blast in cans. Glass bottles were not permitted due to the close proximity to the pool, but my connection at Pabst hooked The OG and I up with one full 40oz each, and told us just to keep it low key and not right next to the pool, or the security would give us trouble. It was a surreal experience drinking 40s of Colt 45 at the Playboy Mansion.
Hugh Hefner did not grace us with his presence. We were told he was inside having a private screening of Cloud Atlas, one week prior to its theatrical release. However, other celebrities were in attendance including Corey Feldman, Travis Barker, Luke Wilson, Warren Sapp, Warren G, Jada Pinkett Smith, and 3 guys from Sons of Anarchy. While waiting in line for the bathroom, behind what I at first assumed was a Pabst employee based on his casual attire and cap, I was watching one of the naked body paint girls tell him how she would "totally make out" with him right now, but she didn't want to lose her job. The guy appeared relatively uninterested, and I chimed in saying "I won't tell." She turned to me, asking who I was, which I replied something along the lines of "no one you need to worry about". It was several minutes later, after I finished up in the bathroom, that I was made aware that casual guy was Luke Wilson.
The bathrooms have showers outside of them. So after you relieve yourself you can wash more than your hands. Or it's for the girls. Whichever.
The famous grotto was easily accessible and without restriction. A small waterfall goes over the pool entrance to the grotto, but there's also room to walk around a little bit inside as well via an entrance to the right of the pool. I always assumed the grotto was a sort-of "VIP only" area, but you can walk right in and swim in it. More about that one later.
On the other side of the pool was an even larger party area, set up underneath a gigantic white tent. There was an even bigger bar, a stage, backstage rooms, and girls swinging from a giant ring above. There was food set up everywhere, with friendly servers offering you even more hors d'oeuvres, everything from sushi to sliders.
If you walk through to the other side of the tent, you're able to follow a path that leads you through the grounds outside the Playboy Mansion, where you will see some wild animals in cages, including monkeys, and even come across a guy with a beautiful white parrot whose job is to let you hold it. How someone gets a job like that I have no idea. You can even find your way to the front lawn of the mansion, which was lit up with colorful lights.
Snoop Dogg arrived fashionably late, and rolled in with a huge entourage. They immediately headed to the area behind the stage. A little while later Snoop came out with Warren G, performing Regulators live, while women danced on the stage, only 5 feet away from where I was standing.
I took some amazing photos that night, but most of them were on my camera, which I wound up losing. I know it sounds ridiculous, like an excuse or cover-up to some sort of lie or sordid affair, but it's true. Towards the end of the evening, with dozens of ounces of malt liquor flowing through our veins, The OG and I got split up. He wound up taking the shuttle back in a stupor, and I wound up stripping down to my boxer briefs and going in the grotto. Before hopping in I asked a topless girl if she'd mind taking a photo with me in there, and she obliged, but covered her "top" with her arm since she's normally paid for those sort of photos. I didn't pay attention to what the guy did who took my photo, I just assumed he put my camera on top of my clothes which were piled up near the edge. But by the time I got out, it was nowhere to be found - at least not by my inebriated self. Had I been sober and if it wasn't stolen, I think I could have found it, as the walls of the grotto are rocks with plenty of ledges it may have been placed on. I left my info with security in case it turned up, but of course I never heard back. The bottom of the invite did say "no cameras please" so it's also possible that it was confiscated. Some of the photos that are forever lost to me include that photo in the grotto with the model, another one of myself & Travis Barker, a good shot of Snoop posing for me with 4 women in his arms only a couple feet away, a shot of myself standing in the grotto surrounded by 5 girls, a shot of me with the naked body paint girls, a shot of me posing in front of the mansion, and who knows what else.
Luckily I took a few shots with my phone too, which are included here. I was also able to find some pics online taken by a professional photographer that captured many of the scenes I witnessed, which you can see here.
The next day we toured around LA, checked out the common tourist attractions, met up with my man "BobDawg" from Survivor Panama at a bar where we enjoyed some Jack and beers, and then checked out the Walking Dead attractions at Halloween Horror Night at Universal Studios which were lame and the lines atrocious.
That weeknd in LA was an experience I'll never forget. Thank you Pabst. Colt 45 worked that time for sure.