Guide to Boston’s best gay nightclubs

9 Nov

The Boston, Massachusetts gay nightclub scene is alive and well with a large assortment of venues catering to the entire LGBT community which makes this an excellent city for anyone on the prowl or just looking for a good time. Boston offers everything from the larger high energy pulsing beats clubs, to the smaller low intensity neighborhood variety. The key to getting the most out of your time however is knowing which club is right for you which can vary depending on your mood.

The Alley Bar located at 14 Pi Alley has been a hub of activity for over a quarter century holding the reputation of Boston’s best gay male cruise bar without so much as a strong challenge. Activities are planned throughout the week as well as for all major holidays and occasions. They host a relaxed cocktail hour where you can shoot a rack of 8-ball, play a little pinball, or just catch up with fellow patrons while unwinding. If anything is going on in the city worth participating in someone here will know about, especially the things that don’t always get mention in the news. With a 2,000 person capacity in this multipurpose venue the odds of meeting someone you mesh with are the best the city has to offer for gay men. The prices are reasonable, the patrons are a mix of all ages and persuasions, and the staff will go out of their way to make sure you enjoy yourself in a non-hostile environment. If you’re new to the city or just the scene, The Alley bar is not only the place to start your night, but the place to end it as well! Most evenings you will find you’re having such a good time here you won’t bother leaving.

For a more refined crowd 209 has taken home awards as Boston’s best Gay nightclub multiple times for being a great cruise spot for both gays and lesbians in an upscale environment. Awards aside 209 has been taking many hits lately as the food and service reviews are coming back poor, not from the professional reviewers mind you, but from the patrons. Don’t expect high energy or sweaty bodies on a dance floor, it’s not going to happen. If you are averse to the young crowd or are solely interested in sitting at a bar flirting this is your spot. For anything else save your time and money and go elsewhere.

Deep at Aria on 246 Tremont St., gets mention for it’s Saturday night lesbian evening run by Shuttavac Productions. The atmosphere here is phenomenal with the grand staircase the focal point. Deep is drawing decent sized crowds thanks to a strong promotional push which brings

in a primarily lesbian crowd with a mix of transgender persons and straight women as well. There are some men scattered about but they do not pose any problems. The music is primarily hip hop and the floor generally doesn’t fill up until about 11:30 pm so you have plenty of time to visit other places earlier in the evening. The prices are fair and the staff is capable, however this club hasn’t quite caught up to it’s competition south of the border in Providence, R.I. like the Gallery club. Without many strong options in the city for lesbians this is the best choice for those who do not wish to drive or take the train to Providence.

Jacques Cabaret at 79 Broadway is a bit of a departure from the norm as the premiere club featuring female impersonators. While this isn’t technically a gay club as Modern Bride featured it as Boston’s best bachelorette party location, it does draw a heavy LGBT crowd. The cover charge varies from $5 on Monday to $10 on the weekend. Positive ID (21 and over only) is required and credit cards are not accepted, nor was there an ATM machine on premises at last visit so bring plenty of cash! Prices run a bit high but the entertainment value is superior to any club of the nature north of New York City. The good thing is that when the show is over you can go downstairs to Jacques Underground where admission is free as one cover charge pays for both clubs. Here you will find a far richer LGBT crowd than upstairs. It is a nice to sample a bit of both however to make the most of your money and wait for the Underground to really pick up.

Finally Melange at District offers a Tuesday lesbian night which is slowly growing. This is a more sophisticated and relaxing an atmosphere than the weekend club scene as you may expect. It is ideal for stopping out after work for a few drinks, a sampling from the food menu, or just a little fun with friends. This is again another night courtesy of Shattavac Productions and there is never a cover charge. For the most part this draws a white collar over thirty crowd which is rather diverse. Although it may not be completely accurate to label Melange as a cruise bar it is very close to that.

For a city the size and population of Boston you would expect more which is why so many locals go south to Rhode Island for their weekend entertainment. If you really want to stay in the area however Cambridge is a good option, just beware that where you are going is actually a gay club, it is not uncommon for many to bill them self as “alternative lifestyle” to try to draw in the gay crowd. Sometimes you will find theses clubs mean “alternative” in the goth style sense or something along those lines. While gay friendly, they aren’t likely to give you what you are looking for. In short the Boston LGBT scene can be summed up in three clubs: The Alley, Deep, and Jacques, everything else is little more than window dressing.

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