Producers of Gene Simmons’ reality TV series Family Jewels now have their cameras trained on the saucy, sassy, sexy antics of a Las Vegas strip joint. The King of Clubs, which is set in the notorious Palomino Club here, has premiered on Playboy TV, and it is no-holds-barred bare television!
Our contributing photographer Eric Kabik was on tough assignment there when my friends from The Playboy Morning Radio Show broadcast from the club to celebrate the launch of the reality TV series. Talk about wild dancers, misfit employees and the colorful club owners the Gentile family!
Imagine having the opportunity to own a legendary men’s club, and then imagine that your partners are your parents. That’s the plotline that plays out as Playboy TV chronicles the nonstop adventures and steamy shenanigans inside the strip club as it tries to reinvent itself. The 12-part King of Clubs is set in the Palomino Club, the only establishment in Las Vegas where full nudity and a full bar come together thanks to reportedly Frank Sinatra.
The stories center around the Gentile father, mother and son -- Dominic, Michelle and Adam -- and their colorful group of sizzling dancers and misfit employees who do all that it takes to turn a storied Rat Pack hangout that has lost its luster into the hottest strip club in all of Las Vegas. (The bouncer admits that he’s hotheaded, and the bathroom host says he’s awkwardly endearing!)
Here’s the cast of characters of a dream Hollywood reality TV show casting because not even a screenwriter would have this fertile an imagination!
Adam Gentile: The new 31-year-old owner is out to prove that he is a smart executive, not just a strip club bouncer and DJ, and the pressure is on to make the Palomino Club profitable.
Dominic Gentile: The father, lawyer and leaseholder. A cutthroat big-league defense lawyer, Dominic acquired the Palomino from a client who couldn’t pay his legal fees after a murder trial. He gives Adam a shot at his dream against his better judgment.
Michelle Gentile: Adam’s mom and Dominic’s ex-wife, divorced 15 years. Michelle, who is the club’s accountant with a watchful eye on the cash, is as wacky as the “I’m not wearing any underwear” sticker on her desk indicates. Never in a million years would she have expected to be working in a strip joint with her son as her boss.
Joey: The VIP host ... of the bathroom (no joke). To say that Joey is a 21-year-old sex-starved misfit with delusions of grandeur is a gross understatement, but he has become the club’s mascot, and his goal is to one day become a real front-of-house VIP host.
Matt: VIP host/bus driver/jack-of-all-trades. He might be the bus driver, but he also works the front door and acts as cashier, bartender, valet -- you name it. Before this life, Matt spent 10 years as a private investigator, which stands him in good stead to deal with all the naughtiness of the Palomino bus.
The bouncy bombshell dancers include 18-year-old newcomer Brooklyn; her best friend Foxx, who is lesbian; Vegas and Miami, two over-the-top, high-maintenance characters; resident wild child and out-of-control cutie Sarah; the mysterious Valentina; the sassy yet serious Cece; golden goddess Rhesa; timid cocktail waitress Elle, who explodes onstage; amateur night winner Sable; stripper pole princess Cydell; plus Cherish, who holds down a day job and happily dances in nothing but bananas. That’s the most delicate way I can write about that fruity dish!
Playboy TV launched in 1982, just celebrated its 25th anniversary and is available in more than 66 million homes nationwide and more than 70 countries throughout Europe, Latin America and Asia. That means thousands of Las Vegas tourists will be making the trek to the Palomino to see the TV series in real life!
Robin Leach has been a journalist for more than 50 years and has spent the past decade giving readers the inside scoop on Las Vegas, the world’s premier platinum playground.
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