Located on the southern tip of Corona about one mile south of Dos Lagos, the venue is a bit hard to find for first timers. When you arrive, you’ll notice that this might be the only venue in the region with a line outside, as you might expect to find in Los Angeles or Orange County. Security was formidable, but friendly, as they checked IDs at checked at the door. Don’t worry if you’re not quite 21 as Marque 15 is an all ages establishment. All ages also means you should be prepared to run into a few knee-highs.
At the grand opening, the venue was a bit too crowded for comfort, but with two full sized bars flanking either side of the stage, they were more than ready to handle the rabble. The interior was sufficiently rock and roll camp, taking a page from House of Blues. The venue is leaps and bounds ahead in class compared to the Sportsman’s Bar right down the street. Security was pretty tight on the inside, which I understand will be a regular thing.
Providing an excellent view of the stage, the elevated dining area includes large booths and tables. The tables in the lower area will likely be cleared out when this venue converts into a dance hall. There was no dance floor on opening night and tables pushed right up to the stage, making this hall certifiably packed.
The crowd was pretty mixed, but had an unfortunately high male to female ratio. It leaned towards an older age bracket, but that may have been because of the nights headliners: Led Zepagain. Before the band came on, owner Aaron Pawlenty came on stage and gave a short, but heartfelt, speech thanking everyone who came and everyone who helped get the place off the ground, saying that their vision was of somewhere created “by musicians, for musicians.” After he wrapped up, the band began rocking the night away.
I grabbed myself a beer at the bar, a bottle of domestic costing me a fiver. With three heads behind the bar, it didn’t take long to get a drink, despite the sizable crowd. Besides the service, another bonus for you smokers out there is the gated outdoor smoking patio, though chairs were noticeably lacking, which is bad news for those types who like to make that zone their camp (you know who you are).
Overall, I’d say that Marquee 15 is a welcome addition to the Inland Empire, Corona especially. Not exactly reproducing the youth energy of the long lost Showcase, Marquee 15 is certainly a classy place to bring a date, see a show, get a bite, and have a beer while staying close to home. If I had to give it a rating, I’d say it’s a 7½ out of 10.
Marquee 15 is located at 9022 Pulsar Ct., Suite H, Corona, CA 92883. 951.200.4465.
Check out the clip below for a sample of what this venue is like