While San Francisco is known to be the Mecca for all things same sex oriented in California, plenty of gay friendly nightlife can be found in Los Angeles. Whether you're in West Hollywood (called "WeHo" by those in the know), where even local law enforcement proudly sports rainbow flags on their patrol cars, or the more subdued, but no less simpatico Los Feliz area, a good time can surely be found, regardless of one's sexual proclivity.
The Abbey Food and Bar
The Abbey stands as the number one hot spot for gay nightlife in Southern California. Opening in 1991 as a small coffee shop, The Abbey quickly took off, becoming known as the social hub of West Hollywood. In 2009 it was named "Best Gay Bar in the World" by MTV's LOGO (MTV Network's lesbian and gay network), winning 41% of the votes of online polls from around the world. More now than just a coffee shop, The Abbey boasts a large drink menu including affordable domestic and imported beers or signature martinis. Those people looking for a more extravagant way to indulge can break the bank with top of the line bottle service and $500 bottles of champagne. A full food menu is also available until 1:30am, keeping patrons fueled and fed well into the night.
- Location: 692 N. Robertson Blvd., West Hollywood, CA
- Phone: 310-289-8410
- Website: www.abbeyfoodandbar.com
For a more intense experience, visitors to the LA area will surely want to hit up Arena nightclub. With enough lights, blips, and beats to make an air traffic controller's head spin, Arena's huge dance floor draws in even the most deeply rooted wall flowers. Themed nights, such as Delicious Wednesdays and Boys Night Saturdays, and a wide range of music from Hip-Hop to Latin make this an ideal spot for anyone who is feeling footloose. It caters more towards a male clientele, but is open to anyone over 18, giving those people who aren't of the legal drinking age a place to step out for an evening of fun.
- Location: 6655 Santa Monica Blvd. Hollywood, CA
- Phone: 323-462-0714
Another spicy alternative is Fiesta Cantina. A tropical gay bar with half-shirted men delivering tasty morsels, Fiesta Cantina's low prices and high energy makes it one of the premiere gay bars in Los Angeles. A daily happy hour from 4pm through 8pm offers two-for-one drinks, a steal for anyone looking to knock a few back after a hard days work. A full menu of Mexican standards, such as tacos and nachos, are reasonably priced and rather scrumptious. Step up to the spacious rooftop deck for a bird's eye view of the whole place. From there, one can watch the action below as people revel in the glow of chili pepper lights and scantily clad men.
- Location: 8865 Santa Monica Blvd., West Hollywood, CA
- Phone: 310-652-8865
- Website: www.myspace.com/fiestacantina
For a more laid back evening, Trunks offers a more intimate, casual experience. Lacking any significant flare or decoration, Trunks caters to those who want a quiet place to re-charge their batteries over a few cocktails and maybe a game of pool. With a friendly staff and clientele who are always willing to engage in conversation, Trunks is not the place one goes to be seen, rather, it's the place people go to be heard.
- Location: 8809 Santa Monica Blvd., West Hollywood, CA
- Phone: 310-652-1015