Most of the people don’t know what a gogo bar is. They have been visiting Pattaya gogo bars for long but they don’t know what they are called. For them, it is a strip club. Unfortunately, they are wrong in that too, it’s not a strip club! It’s a club genre which only exists in Thailand. It is a combination of Dance Bar, Club, and a Bar. It is infact called `A GoGo’. You do get to see semi naked and scantily clad girls. For those who still cannot recollect, as soon as you enter the walking street, they are everywhere. The first one you will see is the Alcatraz A GoGo on your left. And then you will see the Airport Club and Skyfall gogos. I hope that refreshed your memories.
In my early trips to Pattaya, gogo’s were my go-to place. I used to like the liveness of the place. The girls were playful and some of them knew how to dance. The drink prices were right even the lady drinks were rightly priced. A bit high from your regular bar but this is no bar then. My recent visits to Pattaya gogo have changed my perspective. The bars now are super expensive. There are no good shows and the worst they now treat you as per your nationality.
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The Pattaya GoGo used to have themes. They were dressed like angles, in bikini’s, leather dresses, nurses, Japanese schoolgirls and so on. The atmosphere was alive and electric. Nowadays, except for a few gogos, there are no themes, simply wear small skirts and a tie-up shirt. The atmosphere is loud music, girls with sleepy eyes and the ever-annoying mamma-san pushing for drinks.
As soon as you enter the menu is put on your face. The attitude is if you don’t order right away you are not welcome. I understand these bars are under pressure as the business model is selling drinks. But let me sit for some time, at least let me see the menu. This practice now irritates me the most. Even if you take time to finish your drink that too is frowned upon. If you come in a group of four or more they will either deny entry or ask for the cover charge. Mind it no gogo no matter how famous it is, have a cover charge. These places used to make you feel welcome, but not anymore.
The focus is so much on selling drinks that they forgot people don’t come for drinks to gogo. You can buy a drink anywhere; people come to gogo for the experience. If you are just giving drinks, Pattaya has a lot of better options. I have seen amazing pole dancing in these gogos. Some girls were super dancers. A place like `Angel Witch’ still does the choreographed show but there is no energy and there is nothing new.
The girls just stand or move once in a while to show she is alive. It’s that bad now. The few Pattaya gogos left for the show are `Sapphire‘ and `What’s Up‘ gogos. The only new gogo which has a good vibe and dancers is the Skyfall. These places are high end, drinks start from 180 THB.
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The ladies drinks were not compulsory in the early day. If you liked some girl dance you used to treat her with a drink. That was a good gogo culture. The girls after that used to sit with you. If you enjoyed her company more drinks followed. Now it’s like you buy a drink for yourself and immediately buy a lady drink too. It doesn’t stop there now, the mamma-san, the serving lady, the cashier, the guy in the toilet all want a drink. The girls earlier used to match your drink with her. If your drink finishes, you used to buy a drink for her as a courtesy.
The girls rarely used to ask for a drink, they used to use their charm to get one though. But that was the game and that was ok. Now their prime focus is squeezing lady drinks from you without the charm. You don’t mind buying the lady drink now and then, well that’s how gogos are! However, the speed in which they ask drink even a drunk can see through that hackling. The aggression to buy lady drinks increases from gogo to gogo. The prices of lady drinks too have gone high which is another nail in the coffin.
This is the worst thing a Gogo’s have started doing. This difference in treatment with different nationalities will further reduce people going to a gogo. Some gogos like Alcatraz, Iron Club, and Baccara will deny entry to Indians, Arabs etc. Some gogo’s only want to cater to the Chinese crowd, this I saw recently at `Panda a gogo’. I was not denied entry but neither was I welcomed.
Then the logic, if you are in a group they will deny entry. Somehow the gogo bar management think people in groups don’t spend. The gogo’s are not realizing that people around the world are coming in large groups to Thailand. Rather than denying them entry why not give them deals. Large groups to the size of 40-50pax are good for business.
The attitude by which the Pattaya gogo’s are going they will lose business to the bars and nightclubs. They should work on giving experience, people will not mind paying. Stop being indifferent to people, money has only one color. Groups are good for the business not the other way round. As far as I am concerned I’m not going to any GoGo Bar in the near future.
Eccentric Blogger, Traveler and Consultant.