BEST HOOKAH BAR 2005 | Red Sea Hookah Lounge | People & Places | Phoenix
If you regard pitas, shish kebabs and belly dancers as a distraction to your hookah pipe smoking, then the Red Sea Hookah Lounge is the place for you. The Red Sea isn't a restaurant; it's a straight smoking joint. Sprawl on the velvet love seats and order up a water pipe of tobacco in flavors like mango, blueberry and peach. If you want food, they'll go to the bar next door and get you something. Otherwise, this place is about smoking, and nothing else.
Her Web site doesn't provide hook-ups for the lovelorn, because Madame Matchmaker says the best way to meet your one true love is by exploiting her peculiar talent for tying people's knots. And if Bonnie Wills should maybe disdain online dating services, who are we to judge? She is, after all, responsible for hundreds of local marriages, and, if she happens to (God forbid) hook you up with the wrong person -- which she almost never does -- she'll go back and start over again, on her dime. This is matchmaking the old-fashioned way, with Bonnie interviewing prospective lover boys and gals, then arranging dinner dates that, she swears, more often than not result in true love. Losers and schlemiels? Not to worry when it's Bonnie doing the matchmaking -- she does criminal background checks on each client.

Mazel tov!

L.A. has Hustler. Chicago has Playboy. New York has Penthouse. So what does P-town have in response? Playtime, fool. If you haven't seen it, Playtime is glossier than 944, with content we're a hell of a lot more interested in perusing. Its purview is the PHX's extensive strip-club scene, one of the largest in the nation, as well as all things adult in the Valley of the Sun. Not only does Playtime do features on local strippeterias, it also publishes Penthouse-style pictorials of local dancers in their birthday suits, and informs you of where they usually dance. A stalker's delight! Fortunately, like Chauncey the Gardener in Being There, we just like to watch, officer. And the price is right for our pockets: free if you stop by one of the many strip clubs in town that have a rack of 'em waiting for you at the door.
A veritable seraglio of heterosexual sin that could turn one of those altar-boy-caressin' Father Feelgoods in the Catholic Church into a red-meat-eatin' lover of the female form, this palatial chichi emporium boasts 160 of the finest dames in the Valley, each of them getting half-nekkid just for you. Penthouse also offers up 10,000 square feet of flashing lights, plush chairs, plasma TV sets, long-ass bars with a strip of ice down the middle so you can set your glass down and keep your drink frosty, three stripper stages, and a high catwalk leading from the gals' dressing room to the main stage. Still want more? Penthouse also features an old-school, four-star menu with everything from surf-and-turf to stuffed pork chops. And if you've got the moola, there's an exclusive, members-only VIP section where you can survey the action on the floor from behind tinted windows. Overall, the classiest strip joint in town, bar none.
Tits, bazooms, chi-chis, ta-tas, melons, jugs. No matter what you call them, if you want to be the queen bee of Coyote Hill, you have to be willing to show them off a time or two. At this popular nightspot just three miles north of Glendale Arena, DJ Mikey Mike hosts "Bead Night" every Friday and Saturday, during which he calls for ladies to get wild and win some cash. Guys pay a $5 cover and are handed two fistfuls of beads, while the gals trot around doing whatever they can to scam the most beads for the $50 grand prize. Ladies have been known to go as far as to flash some nipple to beat out the competition. But guys, be creative! You have hundreds of women at your beck and call. Just whippin' out her rack is way too easy. Make her work for it!



The "Women Seeking Women" and "Casual Encounters" personal ads on the Phoenix Craigslist Web site overflow with headlines like "Woman seeking woman for first lesbian encounter"; "Yet another bi-curious twenty year-old"; "dying to have my first experience with a woman"; "looking to learn"; "Bi Curious/Can't get it out of my mind"; and "would like to try something new." The faceless meat markets of the Internet tend to invite misrepresentation and even predators, but luckily Craigslist keeps everything anonymous -- there are no names or e-mail addresses in site posts -- so unless you respond to a post, the poster won't have your e-mail addy. And if you post a personal ad, anybody who responds does so through a generic Craigslist e-mail address, which forwards the message to your real e-mail. So what are a straight girl's chances of dining at the Y with an experienced cook? Judging by posts like "Lesbians seek women," "Looking for cute wild child," and "Looking for HOT femme blondes," chances are pretty good.
A big, swank Spanish restaurant by evening, by night Barcelona becomes a meat market pulsing with dance tunes and beautiful people on the prowl. Most nights, count on a DJ who knows how to keep the place hopping or a band that does a decent job covering good dance tunes. But unlike lesser clubs, Barcelona never feels ridiculously crowded or too smoky to breathe. The bouncers are great at keeping traffic off the dance floor, so you're not going to get knocked in the ribs when you bust a move.
Geeky guys of the Valley, take note. Ever seen those licentious late-night commercials for local interactive date lines? Usually they're squeezed between the oh-so-mockable Goldberg & Osborne advertisements, starring hot-to-trot hotties who probably wouldn't let your unphotogenic ass buy them an overpriced martini at Myst. While these intimidating adverts have kept you from calling, the truth is that these beauties are in the minority on Livelinks, the most popular of the local chat services. Populated by plenty of dog-faced desperate housewives and other less-than-lovely ladies, the line's a veritable sexual smorgasbord of females looking for phone fun or an overnight rendezvous. Stay alert for ladies on the lookout for "generous gentlemen" (read: prostitutes) or trannies out to play the crying game (not that there's anything wrong with that). So if you can somehow sweet-talk some honey into slipping you her location, give it a shot, Ace, 'cause he who hesitates, masturb . . . well, you know the rest.
If you're a lad on the lookout for some no-cost titillation, break out your rabbit ears and tune to KGF Channel 53, the UHF Spanish station, which runs amazing infomercials for Prieto's Auto Sales that air at varying times Thursdays through Sundays. We're talkin' some real skin on a real skinflint's budget. Broadcast from each of the used car dealership's three lots in south Phoenix, the 30-minute adverts show off a bevy of barely dressed buxom barrio babes, usually wearing nothing but a skimpy bikini top, micro-minis, and high heels, who fondle various auto interiors and exteriors while pimping Chevy SUVs and Mitsubishi Eclipses. It's like an issue of Lowrider magazine come to life, and brings new meaning to the word "autoerotica." What really sets this stuff apart from the carnal content on Univision is how the cameraman, God bless his soul, will occasionally linger on the ladies a little longer than necessary. Better than watching scrambled porno, we say.
All these new ballroom-dance-related reality shows and feature films have us craving a smooth spot to glide across a dance floor. The place that comes to mind is a jazz club tucked quaintly into a corner of Uptown Plaza at Central Avenue and Camelback Road. Johnny's Uptown caters to those with aspiring twinkle toes. Its modest-size dance floor is set against a stage that's always bubbling with live music, one that allows just enough room to swivel and pivot yourself into a stupor. Dance soirees happen nightly and tend to run late, with such entertainment as Doc and Nayo or the Xcite Band playing until 2 a.m. Ella had it right when she sang, "It don't mean a thing if it ain't got that swing," and Johnny's is the place to swing it 'til it won't swing no more.

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