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Black & Blue Festival
The biggest gay dance party in North America includes plenty of other events from art shows to one of the hottest leather-themed parties you'll ever experience. More than 80,000 people attend parties that culminate in the huge main party, with international DJs, non-stop entertainment, and performance art right on the dance floor. It's one of the most spectacular nights of dancing on the planet, a don't-miss event.
This is the nightclub that put Montreal on the map, the house that House built. It is known for its gay events, which are plentiful. Check the night before you arrive, but any night it's worth it to sample the sound and lights.
This gay favorite offers two rooms with a rooftop terrace for a mostly (but not exclusively) younger dance crowd.
Stud Bar Montréal
The many street-level entrances to Le Stud give the bears, the dads and the lads easy access to the decadence that awaits them inside. Billiard tables and video-game poker machines line the interior of Le Stud and provide opportunities (or at least a cover) for what goes on further inside. Start on the cruisey dancefloor. Then position yourself in a dark corner and let the fun begin. Musical styles range from dance and disco to new wave and rock, but after a while, you’ll be too busy to pay attention.
Sky Pub Club
This mixed venue in the Gay Village has three floors for dancing, each one offering a distinctly different sound for distinctly different crowds, but it is definitely our territory. The food is worth trying.
That's French for “Black Eagle,” and that should give you a hint that this place takes the leather scene very seriously, indeed. Head for the back bar for live fetish shows that make San Francisco or New York (or, for that matter, pre-Castro Havana) look like Peoria. During the summer, the outdoor street-level terrace is filled to the rafters. Theme nights of leather and rubber gear draw in those the hard-core — or at least those who dress that way.
This is the place any of the locals where to catch the best drag show in a city where drag performance is not an entertainment, it's an art form. This internationally renowned campy cabaret offers nightly themes like “La Guerre des Bitches” (“The War of the Bitches”), Edith Piaf cover acts and ABBA tributes.
Montreal is justly famous for its gay strip clubs. They're all pretty fabulous, but this is the one to see hot studs dancing in your lap (for a generous tip, of course).
Bar Le Cocktail
In the heart of the Gay Village, the crowd may like the sophisticated drink offerings, but it's les spectacles that are the big draw: drag and karaoke, with a French twist (or is that twisted French)?
Saloon Bistro Bar
Club-like décor and modern styling have made this a Gay Village staple for pre-party dinners and cocktails. The Quebecois-influenced menu features local specialties like French Onion Soup, Duck Conflit, Sheppard’s Pie, and, of course, Poutine. This is the way Montreal does a supper club: all the style you could want, but without any “us and them” segregation. The DJ rotation provides the perfect complement to the ever-changing menu items.
Le Steak Frites St-Paul
Quebecers love their “frites” (the dish that Americans, in their infinite perversity, insist on calling “french fries”) so order the premium steak, but drool over the unlimited crispy fries. Bringing your own wine helps keep the price down at all six Montreal locations.