Thailand Tonight – 10/03/2010

BRAND NEW NIGHTCLUB OPENS ON SOI NANA

This week I have some exciting nightlife news for you.  The disco formerly known as Angels inside Nana Hotel in Soi Nana, has reopened with the new name Nana Liquid.  The new owner has certainly pumped loads of cash into the project.

 Although it did serve a purpose, the ageing Angels was far from angelic, compared to Bangkok’s modern nightclubs.  The old Nana Disco was a popular ‘boy meets girl’ venue back in the days when there was little choice.  A decade or so ago, the late night choice was either Nana Disco, or Thermae Coffee Shop.  I know this very well, because I was in Nana Disco and Thermae almost every night.  Nowadays, there is a wider selection of late night venues in Bangkok.  Some of the most popular are Climax Club, Bossy, Spicy, The Tunnel, Bangkok Beat and now the newcomer Nana Liquid joins the list. 

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As I discussed in a recent edition of Thailand Tonight a city the size of Bangkok needs more late night options.  Furthermore, Bangkok needs to offer more than just pavement pubs, where you are sidewalk slumming in the concrete jungle.  Well, our party prayers have been answered, albeit at least to some degree.  For a long period of time, following the closure of Angels Disco (aka Nana Disco), the Nana area has lacked an after hours venue.  Further down Soi Nana, Sin Club had a brief spell at the top spot, but succumbed to a similar fate as Nana Disco.  But it does look like Nana Liquid might fill this void, if it proves to be successful.  And, it is about time too you may well add. 

With the state the world is in these days, people need to go out and party.  Furthermore, the party animals are not coming out until later in the evening.  Therefore, I believe it is essential to have a late night venue on Soi Nana.  I wish Nana Liquid the best of luck, because Soi Nana does need a late night revival.   

I decided to pay Soi Nana’s newest venue a visit on Saturday, March 6th.  At first I wondered where I was.  Had I entered some kind of time warp?  Nana Liquid is a very modern club, with laser lights and neon creating a kaleidoscopic explosion.  Nana Liquid is a dance club, so don’t expect classic rock music.  It has undergone such a serious remodel that you won’t recognize the place.  I was pleasantly surprised that it was FREE ENTRY at the door and a Tiger Beer cost me 130 baht.  This is very reasonable considering that some bars in Soi Cowboy now charge 155 baht for a standard drink.  Nightclubs are not cheap to operate and the MIB or Men In Brown are demanding a huge chunk of change to open late.  Let’s hope that Nana Liquid can meet these demands.  Check it out!     

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SOI COWBOY – LITTLE LAS VEGAS

I visited Soi Cowboy on March 9th and it was surprisingly busy for a Monday.  My mate Peter suggested that we meet in Dollhouse and so, I set off on a motorbike taxi for another nightseeing tour.  On this occasion, I wanted to see what was happening earlier in the evening.  Some go-go bars in Soi Cowboy were already buzzing by 9:00 PM, which is early by any go-go bar standards these days.  I walked into Dollhouse and then, I suddenly remembered that ‘Crazy Hour’ runs until 9:30 PM.  This is a terrific drinks deal with all standard drinks at only 60 baht. This definitely qualifies, as one of the cheapest Happy Hours in Bangkok.

There was not much happening downstairs in Dollhouse, but then I spotted number 12 dancing on stage.  Wow!  She is pretty, slim build, lovely long legs, firm figure, long hair and great boobs.  I was in lust again!  However, number 12 was a busy girl and I didn’t even have chance to talk to her.  Peter was keen to go upstairs and I soon found out why.  Dollhouse fairly recently opened up the top level and there are go-go girls doing the tabletop bop.  On each table there is a go-go pole, so the action is right next to you.  The girls are farang friendly and there is plenty to see upstairs.    

THE STRIP CLUB, PATPONG 2, BANGKOK   

I was making the most of the 60 baht beers, but Crazy Hour suddenly came to an end.  As a suggestion, I would get the service girls to let the customers know that Crazy Hour is finishing soon.  A five minute reminder would be cool guys!  With the US dollar and the UK pound taking a dive against the Thai baht, these Crazy Hour prices are a lifeline to those on a budget.  Cheers for the cheap beers!

I must say that Shark Bar had a very impressive lineup of dancing dolls.  Most of them were very pretty and had firm figures.  The dance style music was allowing the go-go girls to move seductively.  A number of resident farangs say that Shark has the most attractive lineup of go-go dancers in Bangkok.  Although there is no accounting for individual taste, I definitely think Shark is a top contender.  The drink prices remain very reasonable and Shark was buzzing on Monday night.  A few of the local guys fear that Soi Cowboy is getting too popular, but it has not reached a critical level yet.

Word on the go-go street is that Joe’s and Tony’s Bars were due to open as a new go-go bar.  However, work frantically still continues, but I don’t think they are too far off finishing the job.  I will take a guess that it will open this month.   

NEW GO-GO BAR IN SOI COWBOY- FORMERLY JOE'S & TONY'S BARS

NEW GO-GO BAR IN SOI COWBOY- FORMERLY JOE'S & TONY'S BARS

 EAST VS WEST – GO-GO OR NO-GO? 

It didn’t seem that long ago that I thought the UK pound might reach 70 to the Thai baht.  Then it fell like a plane in a nose dive.  The last time I checked, the UK pound has taken a steep fall to 48 baht to one UK pound.  Yikes!  For those paid in US dollars, or UK pounds, it is a difficult period right now.  However, I don’t want to dwell on the currency exchange situation, because let’s not kill the dream.  Would you sooner be in Farangland or Thailand?  I was chatting to an Englishman in a go-go bar the other night and he was saying that it is now cheaper to drink in Britain.  How wrong could he be?  As he watched the pole performers dancing on stage, I had to remind him that there are no go-go bars in Britain.  Instead, there are lap dance clubs, but these are completely different to Thai style go-go bars.  British lap dance clubs like Stringfellows in London, charge an entrance fee of 20 UK pounds (almost 1,000 baht).  So, before you even walk in the door, lap dance clubs such as Stringfellows are immediately more expensive. Putting on my business hat, I think Thailand really missed an opportunity to open Western style lap dance clubs, especially in Bangkok.  Thinking hypothetically, these Thai lap dance clubs would have a compulsory cover charge for entrance and an extra cover charge for lap dances.  Also, the drinks and food would be at a premium price. 

If you want to envisage what Thailand’s go-go bars might have been like, then go to Stringfellows in Covent Garden, London.  Pay your 20 UK pounds cover charge, get yourself and the girls loaded with booze, experience some lap dances and then, look at the bill.  If you have not fainted yet, pray that you have your credit cards on you!  Rather than keep complaining about drink prices in Thai go-go bars, we should all be grateful that this was never introduced to Thailand.  I wanted to talk about this issue, because some people constantly ignore the facts of the matter.  Apart from a few bars in Patpong, Thai go-go bars have ‘NO COVER CHARGE’ and therefore, you only pay for your drinks.  All the go-go entertainment is completely FREE of charge. 

One of the most important differences is that you are forbidden to touch the girls in the vast majority of Western lap dance clubs.  A friend told me that he was in a lap dance club in England and he gave a lap dancer a gentle pat on her bum.  OK, he was a bit drunk and not thinking straight.  She swung around in a rage and demanded 20 pounds, or the bouncers would kick his head in.  Hey, what a charmer!   

THAI GIRLS GETTING A SNACK IN SOI COWBOY

THAI GIRLS GETTING A SNACK IN SOI COWBOY

Finally, I conclude with the most important difference between Thai and Western girly clubs.  Contrary to Thai go-go girls, the Western lap dancers are ‘no-go’ girls, because you cannot ‘cash and carry’ a farang lap dancer.  Being blunt, it is a very frustrating cock tease!  Where is the fun in that?  If you think the Thai go-go bars are overpriced, then you are welcome to go to the strip clubs in America, or the lap dance clubs in Europe.  Don’t forget to take your credit cards and you will be going home alone.  I rest my case in this East VS West debate.

HOLLYWOOD INN HOTEL, NANA PLAZA, BANGKOK

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