(continued from Part 1: Introduction)
The Macho Dancing Gay Bars at the Pasay-Paranaque-Manila City areas
For those staying in Makati City, the best bars I can recommend due to its proximity to the city are those located in the cities of Pasay (pronounced PAH-sai, not PAH-sei) and Paranaque (pronounced Pah-ran-NYAH-keh, not Pah-rah-nah-cue like bar-be-cue). It takes around 15 to 20 minutes without heavy traffic from Makati to get to these cities.
If you take a look at the map below, you can locate where Makati City is and the areas where the most popular gay bars are.
Let me then get into detail how to get to those bars in the map. Let's start with the closest to Makati.
1. Big Papa Gay Bar - Pasay City
|Big Papa Bar, 2315 Aurora Boulevard (Tramo), Pasay City|
What to expect: typical macho dancer gay bar, average of 20 to 25 macho dancers and a few ATW. Average-looking men, lean to muscular bodies. Interspersed between macho dancing performances are shows by the in-house drag queen dancers. Has a few VIP rooms. Foreigner-friendly (I've seen foreigner customers before; staff can speak basic and conversational English).
What you can tell the taxi for the general location of the bar: Tramo Road going to Airport Road in Pasay (now called Aurora Boulevard, but taxi drivers rarely know this)
|Click to enlarge|
- To get to Tramo Road, you need to take EDSA Southbound from Makati. Then you will encounter two flyovers -- one is the Magallanes flyover (lots of billboards) and the other is the EDSA-Tramo flyover to the extreme left of EDSA (which also goes to Airport Road). You are on Tramo Road after your vehicle goes up this ramp (see below) that makes a wide left turn. The gay bar, housed in a blue building with the sign at the top, is towards the end of the road, a few buildings before the sole traffic light.
You know you're near when: you see a well-lit Pan de Manila store to the right of the road. This bakery is open at night, and it's right beside the Big Papa bar. The store's sign is even more prominent than the Big Papa sign.
To the left of the road, you'll see a KIA warehouse and after it is a Shell gas station, at the road's intersection.
2. Solution Disco and KTV - Pasay City
|You really need to be alert at night to see this sign|
369 Antonio Arnaiz Street, Pasay
What to expect: an OLD typical gay bar (a bit rundown, torn couches, very dirty restrooms), located in a dark dingy street in Pasay. Three floors -- 1st floor is the lobby, 2nd floor is the macho dancer bar, 3rd floor is a bar with live band and hostos. Average of 20 to 25 macho dancers on the 2nd floor with a few ATW. Show starts around 11pm.
There is no stage; just a dance floor in the middle of the room. Average-looking men with a few gems, lean to muscular bodies. A few performances by in-house drag queen dancers. No VIP room (actually there is one, but it's NOT conducive to customers; cringe-worthy). NOT too Foreigner-friendly (only Korean women seen; doubtful if staff can speak conversational English). Only for adventurous locals.
What you can tell the taxi for the general location of the bar: Libertad Street in Pasay (now called A. Arnaiz Avenue on the map but taxi drivers rarely know this; just follow brown lines on the map above).
- Difficult to explain how to get there, as there a lot of possible routes -- one is via EDSA then right on Taft Avenue (taxi driver would know this) or via the side streets of Makati going to Libertad. The bar is too discreet to be seen, as one can easily miss the bar's sign when is not looking properly. The bar's location is walking distance from the intersection of Libertad Avenue and Taft Avenue (where a fruit market is located).
|Click to enlarge|
You know you're near when: you see the following on the left side of the street (coming from Taft Avenue, turning right to Libertad Avenue): the building where the bar is located is in between a BDO bank and a well-lit 7-11. Beyond the traffic light will be a Mercury Drugstore and Jollibee.
3. White Bird Bar - Paranaque City
|White Bird Bar, 715 Roxas Boulevard, Baclaran, Paranaque City|
What you can tell the taxi for the general location of the bar: Roxas Boulevard, Baclaran (just follow the black to red lines on the map above).
- Roxas Boulevard (pronounced RO-has) is a long stretch of road that extends from the City of Manila all the way to Paranaque City. So it is important to mention "Baclaran" (pronounced Bahk-LAH-rahn), the general area of the closest landmark, the Baclaran Church. The bar is very easy to find once you are in this area.
|Click to enlarge|
4. Machette Bars - Manila and Paranaque City
|Machette 1: Lourdes Street corner Roxas Boulevard, |
Machette-Coast Bay: 141 Roxas Boulevard, Baclaran, Paranaque
What to expect: Machette 1's location is very dark and quite scary as the bar is just beside an area full of shanties. Not recommended; only for really adventurous and curious locals. Machette-Coast Bay is small, cozy, very bright (not for the discreet), and modern-looking. Average of 20 to 25 dancers per night, no ATW YET. Average-to-good-looking men, lean to muscular bodies, a bit on the older age. Performances by hiphop dance groups and tranny drag queens. Has private rooms on 2nd floor without doors. Only Korean women foreigners seen.
|Click to enlarge|
- For Machette 1, Roxas Boulevard near Buendia Road (now known as Gil Puyat Avenue). Drive further along Roxas Blvd. to get to Dapitan and Lourdes Streets, where the bar is located. East Asia club is a landmark.
- For Machette-Coast Bay Bar, Roxas Boulevard, Baclaran Church (same as White Bird Bar).
|East Asia Club near Machette 1|
There are other smaller macho dancer or hosto bars in the City of Manila. But as these places are far from Makati or too small to be considered entertaining, the journey along the small dark alleys and traffic jams to reach them may not be worth it. Only for locals. These are:
- Boy Next Door, along Mabini Street in the Malate area (the road behind Aristorcrat Restaurant).
- Cruizin Manila, along Bocobo Street in Malate area, near Mini-Stop
- Ginoong Modelo, at Dimasalang Street in Sampaloc, Manila
- Apollo 14th KTV Bar, at Crown Center Mall, along Quezon Boulevard in Quiapo, Manila
*Hope you find this useful. Even if you may not email me anymore for gay bar recommendations and directions on how to get to your target MD bar, I will appreciate it very much if you email me a simple thank you note or post a comment below if you found use for these information.
(To be continued...)
Learn more: Lessons from Gay Bars in Manila
Photo credits: http://maps.google.com