Pioneering Gay Space

The oldest place of its kind in the Philippines (opening in 1977), Club Bath remains somewhat of a must-visit for the curious about everything that gay Manila has to offer.

Here are the basics.

Yes, Club Bath is a “private club,” and, as such, is not open to the general public.

Yes, it is a gay oriented business, and “if you are offended by association or by behavioral contact with gay persons, we request that you do not patronize this establishment,” stated in the Web site of the venue.

Yes, they demand proof of identity for membership (costing P250, with a renewal fee of P100) that, obviously, allows access to its facitlities, whose amenities include, among others: dark cabins, Jacuzzi in an outdoor terrace, mini-gym, TV lounge, and a cruisy steam room.

Yes, you have to pay extra to use some of the amenities – for the lockers, additional P200 (Monday to Thursday) to P230 (Friday to Sunday); and for the private rooms, additional P350 (Monday to Thursday) to P400 (Friday to Sunday).

And yes, they are quite strict as far as adherence to their policies is concerned, e.g. members must use a towel while inside the club, no alcohol or drugs are allowed inside, chewing gum is not allowed inside, and, under no circumstance should a member use foul, loud, or slanderous language, or harass, molest, or solicit other members. They will kick you out – for good, if/when any of these happens.

No, you may not become a member when you’re under 18.

No, you may not register anonymously – “In order to comply with city ordinances for private clubs, we cannot allow our customers to purchase memberships without identifying themselves,” the club further stated.

No, you may not share expenses – every visitor has to rent either a locker or a room upon entry, no excuses.

No, you may not bring your girlfriend at the club.

For the interested to visit Club Bath (see map for directions), there may just be some surprises waiting there.

And no, you may not bring your dogs at the club.

Having done away with the basics, let’s discuss if the place is worth a visit (the main reason why it exists is, after all, to be visited).

For one, for the oldest place of its kind in the Philippines (opening in 1977), much of Club Bath has been renovated at some point or another, so amenities-wise, it is competitive with the likes of the now-dead Epitome and still-alive Fahrenheit in modernism and, thankfully, cleanliness, too. And, by the way, the steam room doesn’t break down as often…

Secondly, the guys coming here are, well, somewhat better looking – at least especially when compared with the visitors of, say, Mansion, particularly on weekends. This is always a surprise, as if proving that there are oh-so-many more gorgeous guys out there, out of the scene…

Thirdly, as is the seeming norm in such venues, safer sex kits are not available for free – pay up to use some. This continues to be disturbing, considering the ongoing rise of HIV and/or AIDS transmission among men who have sex with men (MSMs), who these venues target as markets.

Fourthly, having been around this long, this place is definitely comparatively safer – i.e. among non-out MSMs, less raids here, since, you’d assume, the owners have already established itself on the locality (and the know-how, if not pockets, of local authorities/law enforcers). Meaning, less the risk, and more the fun as far as this is concerned.

And fifthly, yes, this place is the most expensive among its peers in the Philippines (if they existed at all outside Metro Manila) – of course this is discounting the sexual viability of Fitness First, Slimmers World and Gold’s Gym. So it you are willing to cough up the price, drop by. Who knows what you may just find here…

For information on Club Bath, visit 2456 F. B. Harrison Blvd., Pasay City; call (+632) 8332866; email management@clubbath.com.ph; or visit clubbath.com.ph.
The club is open from Monday to Friday, from 6.ooPM to 2.ooAM, and Saturday and Sunday, from 3.ooPM to 2.ooAM.

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HELP US BY HELPING YOU HIT THE RIGHT SPOT

April 2007 marked the launching of Outrage Magazine, the only Webzine made for, and by members of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community in the Philippines.

The LGBTzine remains loyal to the reasons of its existence (i.e. to be a relevant source of info on everything LGBT-related in the Philippines), and we are proud to say that year-on-year since we were established, Outrage Magazine’s scope has broadened, too (aside from the coverage we provide, we actually have programs effecting changes to better the plight of LGBT Filipinos).

No surprise that our reach continues to grow, too, with our Website alone now getting well over 580,000 per month on average (with 10,000 of them unique hits), while our Facebook page (not counting our other online presence) getting over hundreds of thousands of unique visits per week.

Yes, there is a need for information; and yes, we’re more than willing to provide.

And just in time, too, as pink lifestyle long invading mainstream living – think Queer Eye for the Straight Guy, or IKEA, or gay speak, or disco, or brunch, or... you get the point.

This makes the LGBT market, and those it affects, a goldmine for advertisers.

Consider these:
• 81% of LGBTs are more likely to use the Internet to obtain information about goods and services (Witeck-Combs)
• 72% to 94% of LGBTs prefer to buy brands that market directly to them (Harris/Witeck-Combs &Greenfield Online)
• 89% of LGBTs are brand-affiliated, this means that it is “most likely or highly likely to actively seek out brands that had advertised in gay media” (Simmons)
• LGBTs spend an average of 30 minutes per day, 12 times per month online (Nielsen NetRatings)
• LGBTs are twice as likely to be in management positions, twice as likely to have purchased online using a credit card, 79% are willing to pay a premium of quality products and services, 94% of gays and lesbians go out of their way to purchase products and services marketed directly to them in gay media, and 79% of LGBTs are highly likely to indulge themselves (@Plan, Simmons, Greenfield Online & Witeck-Combs)

It is time to target this market, we say.

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Abuse us, even.

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advertise@outragemag.com