Bars & Pubs

Melbourne’s Essential Gay Bars & Parties

By Clare Acheson
5th Feb 2016

poof doof gay clubs melbourne

Well, Listers, we might be a few days late with this one – Melbourne Pride was last weekend, after all – but we sure as hell aren’t going to let the opportunity to celebrate Melbourne’s best gay bars and parties pass us by!

Whether you’re after some R’n’B-fuelled grinding with a cocktail in hand, an evening of drag trivia in a cosy pub, or a dancefloor that quite literally doesn’t close until dawn, here’s the essential hit-list of hangouts that are making it big on the gay and queer scene.

The Bars

#1: Sircuit, Fitzroy

Sircuit is THE Melbourne gay bar and club to hit up for all your late-night and bleary-eyed morning needs. The infamous male-centric Fitzroy venue hosts drag shows on Fridays and dance music on Saturdays, as well as a couple of weekday events that cater to a crowd who party in the buff (seriously, guys, no clothes. Anywhere.) There’s also a pool table and street-side bar area if chilling with a pint is more your thing. An absolute Melbourne must-visit.

#2: The GH Hotel, St Kilda

Previously The Greyhound, this iconic St Kilda venue recently had a refurb and is looking better than ever! Get lucky at drag bingo on Wednesdays, check out the Boylesque (yes, boys performing their very own twist on burlesque) on Fridays, and grab your glitter eyeshadow for some dazzling drag performances on Saturdays. Keep an eye out for epic guest appearances too – Sophie Ellis Bexter is hitting the GH stage this March!

#3: DT’s Bar, Richmond

DT’s Bar prides itself on being a venue ‘where every colour of the rainbow drinks.’ When it’s not busy being a cosy pub that caters to a gay crowd, the Richmond venue plays host to drag Twisted Trivia, pool comps, karaoke sessions and basically everything else that’s fun and just that little bit alternative. Hella fun, people.

#4: The Peel, Collingwood

It’s in Collingwood. It’s open until 7am. It’s going to get very, very messy… The Peel is the perfect bar and dancefloor to follow a night that’s started at Sircuit, which is conveniently within stumbling distance. Primarily catering to gay dudes, you can expect to queue on weekends so get there early, or be prepared to line up with Melbourne’s finest.

#5: The Laird, Abbotsford

If you’re a guy who’s into beards and bulked-up blokes who love leather, The Laird is your spiritual home in Melbourne’s gay bar scene. The traditional pub is home to an awesome crowd as well as plenty of beer taps and a well-loved pool table – just check the events calendar before you go as they host a variety of alternative nights throughout the week.

The Parties

#1: Poof Doof, Saturday nights at Chasers, South Yarra

Poof Doof’s tagline is ‘a gay club for homos’ and we can confirm that you will find exactly that at this amazing Saturday night party. Held at Chapel Street’s notorious Chasers club – a multi-tiered venue that comes complete with stage and outdoor smoking area – Poof Doof is all about house and electro, with a few guest appearances from local acts if you’re lucky. Expect DJs, dancing and drinks galore.

#2: Closet Party, various dates and venues

The gag’s in the name here, folks. Closet Party is one of Melbourne’s most fun, extravagant gay parties that welcomes guys, girls and anyone who’s keen to dance their socks off. You’ll hear everything from 80’s Madonna, to ‘No Scrubs,’ to the latest floor-fillers in whichever venue the party decides to pop up in. Last time we were here, we won serious Brownie points for rapping every word of a mid-2000’s Dizzee Rascal hit… Check out the Closet Party Facebook page and get practicing for the next one.

#3: DNM, Saturday nights at TRAK Live Lounge, South Yarra

Hosted by some of Melbourne’s hottest drag talent and playing R’n’B and floor-filling classics until 3am every Saturday, DNM is a must for a boogie. The doors are open to anyone and everyone, making for a fantastic crowd who are dedicated to dropping it low, all night long. 

#4: Fannys At Frannie’s, Sunday once a month, Francesca’s Bar, Northcote

Bargain espresso martinis and cracking Sunday session tunes sum up Francesca’s Bar’s monthly party for lesbians, queer-gendered individuals and their mates. Ladies, if you’re looking for one of the hottest evenings of girl action on the northside, this is it.

#5: Mother, Friday nights, Attik, Prahran

Girls who like girls, this one is especially for you. Mother at Attik is an incredible night of dancing, free popcorn and pizza, and tasty drinks specials, that attracts a good-looking crowd who party hard. Plus, Ruby Rose DJ’d here last time she was in the country, so you never know who you’ll find on the decks! Don’t expect an early night if you’re heading to this one, Listers…

Do you know of an epic gay or queer hangout that we don’t? Let us know by dropping us an email.

Want to know about more Melbourne events this February? Check out our Gig Guide: What's On In Melbourne This February.

Image credit: Poof Doof facebook

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