One of the most frequently asked questions by guys who've never been to a gay bath house is, "What can I expect when I get there?" So, I thought I'd try to shed some light on that question by telling about my first visit to a bath house in St. Louis, Missouri. The name of the bath house was Club St. Louis, which is part of The Clubs chain. I was lucky because I went with my best friend who gave me the grand tour and that's really the way to go. If you can go with a friend then you won't have as much anxiety about the whole experience but if you don't have a friend to hold your hand then that's not a problem either ' cause I'll give you the information you need to get you in the door and get you moving in the right direction.
First of all, you need to be at least 18 or older. You'll also need some type of identification. This is only to prove your age. Any information that you provide at the door is NEVER used or revealed to anyone else. Nothing will ever be mailed to your home. You can either purchase a membership for a block of time which is usually from 3 to 6 months and for which you receive a membership card which you can use for future visits without paying for membership all over again or you can purchase a "one-time only" membership which is good for only once visit to the club. Any paperwork that you fill out for a "one-time" membership is destroyed immediately when you leave the club. There are also gym memberships available for purchase but we'll talk about those in a later posting. Once you purchase a membership, you'll be asked if you want a room or a locker. That's a fairly straightforward concept. Rooms allow you more privacy and there are a variety of rooms to choose from. There are regular rooms, video rooms and VIP rooms. Prices and amenities vary depending on the type of room you choose. Basically, regular rooms and video rooms have a single bed and other rooms like the VIP rooms are roomier with larger beds. You can call ahead to find out more by going to The Clubs Website to get a phone number for a club near you. Finally, your locker or room is yours for a set period of hours depending on the day of the week – no sharing please. If you go with a friend, he'll have to have his own room or locker. Busier times of the week mean that you "own" your room or locker for fewer hours but you're free to renew the time limit should you decide to stay longer. Once you're assigned a locker or a room, you'll get a towel and key and you're on your way.
Once you've found your room or locker, you can change into your towel. If you prefer to stay dressed, that's fine too. Almost everyone wears a towel. That's what I did. It's unusual to see guys walking around stark naked. Do what you feel comfortable doing. That's the important thing. Once you've decided on what you want to wear, take a walk around. My friend showed me around and then left me in a darkened room where I couldn't even see my hand in front of me. Find out where everything is. Besides the whirlpool, saunas, swimming pool, TV lounge, etc., there's plenty more to get into. Again, you determine your comfort level. If you only want to pamper yourself by taking advantage of the steam and hot water works, then go for it. It's a great way to relax! Take a swim if you want. Swim suits are optional. If you're looking for more, believe me it's there!
I hope you find your first visit to a gay bath house as enjoyable as I found mine. I've been a steady customer since my first visit. For another perspective here's a little video featuring a straight guy's first visit to a gay bath house that you might also enjoy. I wonder if he ever went back!