L.A. has the hottest dance clubs — and also a blizzard warning

The sign of Club Bahia, illustrated
(Ardneks for The Times)

Good morning, and welcome to the Essential California newsletter. It’s Thursday, Feb. 23. I’m Vanessa Franko, an assistant editor on the audience engagement team with a focus on arts and entertainment.

Beyoncé’s “Renaissance” album was supposed to be a sonic beacon for dance floors around the world last summer.

And though the album was full of house bangers with more sparkle than a disco ball, there was a problem in getting people to the club: The Southland was in the middle of another COVID surge as well as a MPX outbreak.


“Last year we were all supposed to be back hitting dance floors,” Times music writer August Brown said. “Nobody got the chance to hit the town and go out in grand style like we had hoped for.”

That missed opportunity was the start of an idea. Brown and fellow music writers Kenan Draughorne and Suzy Exposito teamed up to compile a list of the best dance clubs in and around Los Angeles.

Together, they found 57 places to get out and get down — and to way more than just Beyoncé.

The list, an exclusive for Times subscribers that published this morning, spans ages, demographics and geography.

“There’s bottle service EDM in Orange County down to super horny gay raves to traditional regional Mexican dance hall music where you can put on your best line-dancing boots,” Brown said.

The team also wanted to highlight LGBTQ and Latin nightlife, including some new lesbian-themed club nights as well as drag clubs.


“If you can conceivably move your body to it, we found it and it’s in there,” Brown said.

Note that to make the list, the clubs and special nights needed to include a set location and nothing illegal, so you won’t find traveling warehouse raves here.

The list of boogie wonderlands also focuses on clubs with DJs rather than live bands. If you’re looking for the best live music venues in the region, check out our 2022 list of the best live music venues in and around L.A.

Of course, COVID and MPX, also known as monkeypox, are still out there, so consider your comfort level and take precautions if you’re planning to go out and boogie oogie oogie until you just can’t boogie no more.

And now, here’s what’s happening across California:

Note: Some of the sites we link to may limit the number of stories you can access without subscribing.


Let it snow, let it snow, let it wait, what? Southern California has received a blizzard warning, in effect Friday and Saturday for the region’s mountains. Snow could fall as low as 1,500 feet in a storm that is expected to also bring rain and sleet to the state from the Oregon border down to the deserts near Mexico. Meteorologists say this storm is unusual even for the weird winter we’ve had. Los Angeles Times


Do you want to build a snowman? We may not get enough snow for the kids to start reenacting “Frozen,” but if you have snow at your house, we want to see your pictures. Los Angeles Times

Check out "The Times" podcast for essential news and more

These days, waking up to current events can be, well, daunting. If you’re seeking a more balanced news diet, “The Times” podcast is for you. Gustavo Arellano, along with a diverse set of reporters from the award-winning L.A. Times newsroom, delivers the most interesting stories from the Los Angeles Times every Monday, Wednesday and Friday. Listen and subscribe wherever you get your podcasts.


State lawmakers are considering a cap on oil profits. Last year, Gov. Gavin Newsom called for a penalty on oil companies. Government officials, consumer advocates and market experts gathered Wednesday for the first legislative hearing on Newsom’s proposal. Los Angeles Times

The balloon ban is on in Laguna Beach. The city adopted an ordinance Tuesday that prohibits balloons at city events, on public property and from being released into the air. It takes effect in 2024. Los Angeles Times


Nipsey Hussle’s killer has been sentenced to 60 years in prison. Eric Holder Jr., a Crips gang member, was convicted of first-degree murder in July for killing Hussle outside the beloved rapper’s Crenshaw clothing store in 2019. Los Angeles Times

Handyman is charged in the killing of L.A. Auxiliary Bishop David G. OConnell. Carlos Medina, a 61-year-old handyman whose wife worked as O’Connell’s housekeeper, was charged with one count of murder in the religious leader’s death. At a news conference Wednesday, Los Angeles County Dist. Atty. George Gascón said Medina admitted to the killing to investigators. Los Angeles Times


Support our journalism

Subscribe to the Los Angeles Times.


With a possible strike on the horizon, writers, studios, networks and producers are making contingency plans. The contract for members of the Writers Guild of America expires in May and negotiations are expected to be fraught. Los Angeles Times

There’s now a “crisis team” for the Oscars. In the wake of Will Smith slapping Chris Rock at last year’s ceremony, Bill Kramer, chief executive of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, said the academy will have a team in place to handle any future surprises. Time


A man in a leather jacket stands and holds an electric guitar in a grocery aisle
Tommy Bina inside the Canyon Country Store, which he’s owned since 1985.
(Mel Melcon / Los Angeles Times)

This grocery store is a shrine to L.A.s musical history. Tommy Bina, owner of the Canyon Country Store, is determined “to bring back the spirit of Laurel Canyon.” Los Angeles Times

The clock tower on San Francisco’s Ferry Building is covered in scaffolding. The city landmark is undergoing a paint job expected to last until the fall. When it’s done, the building won’t be as blue, either. The current look is a result of poor aging of the previous paint job, which happened before the building was reborn in 2003. San Francisco Chronicle


If you’ve ever wanted to have a vanity plate to show off your wealth, your time is now. Claude Arthur Stuart Hamrick, a former patent lawyer in Silicon Valley, has had the license plate “CASH” for more than 50 years. Now he’s selling it, for $2 million. Mercury News

Free online games

Get our free daily crossword puzzle, sudoku, word search and arcade games in our new game center at


Today’s California landmark is the Cypress Tree Tunnel at Point Reyes National Seashore from David Hayashida:

The Cypress Tree Tunnel at Point Reyes National Seashore
(David Hayashida)

The natural diversity of the Point Reyes National Seashore is remarkable. During a visit last spring, I saw elephant seals and their pups, migrating whales and carpets of wildflowers while hiking Chimney Rock; marveled at nesting federally threatened Western snowy plovers at North Beach; and took in the quiet beauty of the Cypress Tree Tunnel before heading home, recharged.

What are California’s essential landmarks? Fill out this form to send us your photos of a special spot in California — natural or human-made. Tell us why it’s interesting and what makes it a symbol of life in the Golden State. Please be sure to include only photos taken directly by you. Your submission could be featured in a future edition of the newsletter.

Please let us know what we can do to make this newsletter more useful to you. Send comments to