Captivating ladyboy performers attract throngs of people every night at the hugely popular Phuket Simon Cabaret. Not as well known but well worth seeing is the new ‘Aphrodite’ in Phuket Town, which runs three cabaret shows every evening. Many more of the same can be seen at some of the Soi Paradise bars and at the Moulin Rose at the end of the famous Soi Katoey. (Katoey literally translated means Ladyboy). See also where to party if you are into Ladyboy shows and more at the Paradise Complex.
Phuket’s long been a popular destination for those seeking sun, sand, sea and… companionship but not all men coming here seek female company. Many male visitors look for male companionship, sometimes for the duration of their holidays, sometimes for much longer.
At the Royal Paradise Complex in Patong an estimated half of the businesses there are run by, or are catering to gay people. Many are small bars with a selection of young men who sit, talk and share drinks with their guests. There is no obligation to spend more than the price of a drink.
The atmosphere in the Complex during the day is sleepy as most of the 1,000 young men working in the almost 40 entertainment venues are fast asleep but at night the atmosphere is, to say the least, friendly with the occasional invitation to join a cabaret show, a massage or some private company.
Palazzo, located close to Phuket Water Ski in Kathu, revives the old-fashioned concept of dining while watching a show. Vividly coloured and bold in design, concept and execution, Palazzo attempts the impossible; to combine goofy light entertainment with serious dining.
The idea of a dinner show is hardly a new one but Palazzo puts a turn of the last century spin on it with a ‘mirror palace’ or ‘spiegeltent’ – a wood and stained glass pyramid-shaped show building, originally from Belgium that dates back over 100 years.
The entertainment is great for family and group outings and the international cast from countries such as China, Russia and Thailand is truly talented. The multi-act show includes juggling, African acrobatics, contortionists and live music as well as a spot of eastern magic and illusion thrown in for spice. At around three hours long, the show isn’t necessarily the best for smaller children and toddlers but it is still hugely entertaining with lots of audience participation.