Cities such as San Francisco and Amsterdam are renowned worldwide for their large array of panoramas for the gay public. Santiago, like any other modern cosmopolitan city, is also active in this context and is constantly renewing its nightlife attractions to provide the greatest variety of alternatives to go out partying.
For more than a decade now, the Chilean capital has had locales that are patronized by the gay public, and today the city has an entire circuit directed at that niche. From bars to cafés and shows with cross-dressers and hot discos, Santiago by night promises pleasure and enjoyment and almost always delivers. Here we share with you the alternatives that are a “must”.
With no neon signs to advertise it, there is nothing to make you think that behind some shrubs is one of the hottest spots in the whole city. An elegant marble staircase leads to two dance-floors, one of them lined with mirrors. The nightclub has three bars if you just want to have a drink, and also features a “dark room”.
The stage at Fausto is famous for its shows and events, such as the beauty queen contest, where the best known cross-dressers of the city participate. The entrance fee costs no more than three thousand Chilean pesos (around US$ 6) and if you get there early, entrance is free.
Av. Santa Maria 0832
This café, which means “friend” in Japanese, is known for its good service, ambiance, music and delicious offerings such as its variety of teas, hot chocolate, exquisite cakes and pastries. All this immersed in the characteristic Bellas Artes and Lastarria district in the center of Santiago, which is considered an urban oasis because it combines green areas with architecture, history, culture, as well as busy cafés, restaurants, bars, bookstores, design stores, art galleries and cultural centers.
Another plus of the café is its Subterráneo (Underground) Lounge, an exclusive area that offers itinerant art exhibitions under the auspices and good vibes of the Feng Shui. In brief, the Tomodachi provides a harmonious and warm atmosphere to converse and drink a good cup of coffee.
José Miguel de la Barra 432
Barrio Bellas Artes
The Bokhara is located at the foot of the San Cristóbal hill. To get there, you have to walk along Pío Nono until you reach the end of the street, and the red-carpeted entrance of the locale is there to greet you.
This is the preferred option for people looking for good shows, which are generally quite long, such as a Broadway musical, star presentations such as Cher and Kylie Minogue, or choreographies offering the best Reggaeton (a mix of reggae in Spanish with rap and hip-hop) music and dancing.
After about a half hour of spectacle, glitter and lights, there is music to enjoy the two dance-floors animated by go-go dancers and in the midst of a varied, mostly young, public.
Pío Nono 430
Blondie, located in the municipality of Estación Central, is a disco where different trends converge, from fans of gothic metal to Brit pop followers. Although it certainly lacks glamour and decorative details, its strong point is its tribute shows to artists such as Madonna and Cindy Lauper, as well as live bands.
To rhythms as diverse as Bjork, The Cure, David Bowie, to Cristina Aguilera or Paulina Rubio, this four-storey basement locale receives a large number of people on its three dance floors. The main one has a stage and three giant screens, another has a snack bar, and the third has a small stage, in addition to the typical bar.
Nobody is discriminated against at Blondie’s. Heterosexual people are also present and the dance floors are full of a veritable kaleidoscope of shapes, colors and urban tribes. All you need is a few dollars to get in.
Av. Bernardo O’Higgins 2879, locale 104
This was the first gay bar in the bohemian Bellavista district, and later developed into an interactive café-concert, where the public not only guffaws with laughter but also participates, feeling that they are part of the show. Today the Dionisio is considered to be the prime nightclub in Santiago in the category of stand-up comedy routines.
Without any exterior identification, the music you hear from outside helps you find this U.S.-style club, reminiscent of the Seinfeld series. Everything is set out for you to enjoy the cross-dresser show that takes place on a small stage.
Bombero Nuñez 111
Another option to enjoy the Santiago night life is the Farinelli pub, a very popular place to enjoy a coffee, but served by lightly-clad attendants. It is a “queer” version of the classic “café con piernas” (“leggy” cafés) that are plentiful in the center of Santiago.
The idea is to have a coffee at a table served by good-looking young men. The public is mostly always the same, because it has a loyal clientele. To add to the relaxing atmosphere, cross-dress shows are put on. A good tip: the doors open at 2:00 in the afternoon.
Bombero Nuñez 68