Wednesday, July 17, 2002

...Sitges, continued

XXL (C/ Joan Tarrida, 7)
My only previous visit here, a couple of years ago, had been spent prowling the dimly-lit upstairs labyrinth on an underwear night. This time round, we stuck to the downstairs bar. Not quite the leather and jeans bar it would have you believe, thankfully. Friendly service, good music. Key song: Angie Stone's "Wish I didn't miss you" (Hex Hector/Mac Quayle Mixshow mix).

El Candil (C/ de Carreta, 9)
Tacky gay disco. Nay, tacky gay Spanish disco, which is far, far tackier. The DJ has a sign up, announcing that she has tapes for sale. She seems to be playing them herself, as the running order is the same every night. If it's "Europe's Living A Celebration", it must be 1:30am. Oh, and there's porn in the toilets, plus a backroom.

Mediterraneo (C/ San Bonaventura, 6)
Oh, I do wish we had a bar like this in London. Imagine a smaller Fabric or Fiction. The place looks expensive: bare brick walls, subdued lighting, a palm-filled atrium, tanned good-looking men bare-armed in designer labels. There's a dancefloor, with a couple of podiums littered dangerously about the place (ask Guy, who took his traditional tumble over one).

Trailer (C/ Angel Vidal 14)
There are just two gay clubs in the centre of Sitges - Organic [which we didn't try on this trip] and the long-established Trailer. The foam parties at Trailer are an absolute must. As the walled dancefloor fills up with foam, inhibitions are flung skyward, and the place descends into an orgy [quite literally, for some]. The foam in parts rises shoulder-deep, and the fact that no-one can see what your lower-half is doing, combined with the silky-smooth feel of warm, soapy bodies, is quite a turn-on. Marcus and I spent much of the night running around the dancefloor like hyperactive children, emerging covered in soap suds, two abominable snowmen. Such fun! A word of warning, however: the chemicals in the foam don't half wreak havoc with the skin on your privates - most of our party suffered from painful, dry, papery scrotums a few days after the party.

L'Atlantida has been going for 25 years, but it has only recently been added to the gay circuit. The Sitges scene has such a set routine, that it will be interesting to see if this place works, situated a couple of kilometres out of town. But what a setting! Jutting out into the sea, this is a walled fortress, open to the elements, all tiles and canvas sails and decking and floodlights and stars and moonlight and crashing waves, looking like a set from Kevin Costner's Waterworld, or a level in Jak And Daxter. Key moment, and the defining moment of our trip:

The five of us were dancing, lined up on a narrow wall overlooking the dancefloor. "It's Raining Men" played. The lights dimmed then flared brightly. The foam machine whoomped into action, and huge suds of foam came drifting down from the skies, becoming a blizzard. We whooped and hollered and let ourselves get absolutely soaking wet. Hallelujah!

I told you it was a very gay holiday!

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