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The Viper Room: The club where River Phoenix died

Death Location in West Hollywood, California

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The Viper Room: River Phoenix death location

This is the club where Hollywood actor River Phoenix died from a drug overdose.

It is called the Viper Room, and it is located at 8852 Sunset Boulevard in West Hollywood, California.

On the night of October 30th, 1993, Phoenix attended the club with his girlfriend, Samantha Mathis, his brother, Joaquin, and his sister, Rain.

Phoenix's friend and fellow actor, Johnny Depp, co-owned the Viper Room. At the time, it was a popular spot for young celebrities who wanted to kick back and enjoy themselves without having to worry about the paparazzi.

Phoenix had struggled with substance abuse issues since the late 1980s. However, in the months leading up to his death, he had stayed sober by focusing his energy on his latest movie, Dark Blood, which was being filmed in Utah.

Unfortunately, he quickly fell off the wagon when he arrived back in Hollywood on October 26th, 1993. Following his return, he reportedly went on a "drug binge" with Red Hot Chili Peppers guitarist John Frusciante.

Although his girlfriend said that she didn't see him taking any drugs at the club that night, she did notice that something was off about him.

Mathis believed that he may have been high. However, she had very little experience with that kind of lifestyle. Consequently, she chose not to say anything.

Unbeknownst to Mathis, her boyfriend had taken a large quantity of heroin and cocaine, as well as a number of other substances.

At one point during the night, Phoenix told punk rock singer Bob Forrest that he thought he was overdosing. When Forrest offered to give him a ride home, the actor declined and claimed that he was starting to feel better.

Shortly afterwards, Phoenix got into an altercation with another man. When a bouncer noticed the incident, he separated the two men and escorted them out of the side door of the nightclub.

After seeing her boyfriend being thrown out, Mathis went outside to find out what had happened. While they were standing on the sidewalk, Phoenix suddenly collapsed on the ground and started convulsing.

Aerial image
This is an aerial image of the Viper Room. The main entrance is on Sunset Boulevard. However, the sidewalk where Phoenix collapsed is situated on Larrabee Street.

Because the bouncer had shut the side door, Mathis had to run around to the main entrance and reenter the club from the front.

Once inside, she pushed her way through the crowds of the Viper Room and located Phoenix's brother, Joaquin.

Joaquin, who was understandably shocked and upset, called 911 and sobbed down the phone, begging them to get there quickly.

When news of the incident reached Phoenix's friends inside the club, they began to pile out onto the sidewalk. By that point, the paramedics had arrived and were attempting to save the actor, who was unresponsive and turning blue.

When CPR failed, the paramedics put him in the ambulance and raced to Cedars-Sinai Medical Center on Beverly Boulevard.

Despite their best efforts, the doctors at Cedars-Sinair were unable to save his life.

At exactly 1.51 a.m. on October 31st, 1993, River Phoenix was pronounced dead at the age of 23.

River Phoenix death location

The address and the GPS coordinates for this location are as follows:


8852 Sunset Blvd, West Hollywood, California, CA 90069, USA


To view directions on how to get there, you can use the Google Maps shortcut below:

Google Maps

GPS coordinates

The latitude and longitude coordinates for the club are:

34.090485, -118.384734


The Viper Room nightclub is situated near the corner of Sunset Boulevard and Larrabee Street in West Hollywood. The area, which is known as the Sunset Strip, lies to the east of Beverly Hills.


Photos of the club and other related images.

The Viper Room

The Viper Room

This Google Street View image of the Viper Room nightclub was taken in March 2018.

The main entrance is on the Sunset Strip, which is a section of Sunset Boulevard that runs through West Hollywood.

During the 1970s and 1980s, the building was home to a jazz club called The Central. However, as time wore on, its popularity wained, and it began experiencing financial difficulties.

When actors Johnny Depp and Sal Jenco learned from a friend that The Central was shutting down, they decided to purchase it and redevelop it into something new.

In 1993, the pair reopened it as the Viper Room.

Due to Depp's fame, it instantly became a trendy spot where the young actors and musicians of Hollywood could hang out together.

The club remained popular, even in the aftermath of Phoenix's death.

In 2001, one of the club's co-owners, Anthony Fox, mysteriously vanished without a trace. Following a lawsuit, Depp agreed to sign over his interests in the club to Fox's daughter.

Side door

River Phoenix death location

This is a Google Street View image of the eastern side of the club, which faces Larrabee Street.

We have circled the side door in red.

Phoenix got into an altercation with another man on the night of October 30, 1993. When a bouncer noticed the fight, he escorted the two men out of this side door.

Phoenix's girlfriend, Samantha Mathis (pictured top right), noticed the incident and followed him outside to find out what was happening. When her boyfriend collapsed and started convulsing on the sidewalk, she raced back inside to raise the alarm.

Because the side door had been shut behind them, she had to run around to the front of the Viper Room and enter the club via the main entrance.

This location belongs to the following categories:

CelebritiesHollywood Death Locations

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