Brisbane’s longest-standing gay men’s sauna will close its doors for good next Wednesday.
Bodyline, located in South Brisbane, was established in the early nineties after gay sex was decriminalised in Queensland, QNews has reported.
Manager David Kemp confirmed the sex on premises venue will not be moving elsewhere when it closes.
“It’s really sad,” he said.
“It’s been a part of the Brisbane gay scene for so long. It’s going to feel funny when it’s really gone.”
Kemp said a printing company has bought the building and will take over the premises after Bodyline closes down.
The venue’s regulars have been shocked and saddened by the news of its impending closure.
“We’ve been getting cards,” said Kemp.
“There was one from a guy who lost his virginity here, said it was the most memorable day of his life. Someone else sent us chocolates.
“I feel sorry for a lot of the guys who don’t go to any other places, especially older guys. It’s a social outing, they come to cruise, but they also meet their friends in the lounge for coffee and cake.”
Kemp said there has been talk of another venue potentially opening to fill the gap in the market, although inner-city rent and new zoning regulations may present challenges.
Bodyline’s final night of operation will be next January 24, when the sauna will hold its regular popular Towel-Free Wednesday.