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A Guide to the LGBTQ+ Spaces of Buenos Aires

The Bubble's top picks of queer bars, boliches, bookshops, and bistros.

By | [email protected] | July 4, 2019 12:15pm

fiesta-plop!(Photo via Fiesta Plop! / Facebook).
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Argentina’s November pride celebrations (check out these awesome photos from last year’s march) may still be a long way off, but the LGBTQ+ community of Buenos Aires doesn’t limit celebration and pride to an official month. This June, Buenos Aires was acknowledged as one of four most welcoming cities in South America for queer folks. Gay marriage and same-sex couples’ adoption rights were legally recognized in Argentina in 2010 – five years before #LoveWon in the United States –  and in 2017, the country saw its historic first conviction of a sexual-orientation-based hate crime. Just last week, the Espacio Queer film festival hit Buenos Aires, bringing issues of sexual and gender diversity to the big screen.

To cap off world-wide Pride Month that wrapped up this past weekend, we at The Bubble decided to help our readers keep the party going. This is our definitive guide to LGBTQ-friendly spaces – nightclubs, bookshop-cafés, tango halls, and everything in between – in Buenos Aires.

Boliches

La Plop! at Teatro Vorterix

Photo courtesy of Vos

Every Friday night, this Colegiales club transforms into what regulars call “the happiest place on Earth.” The weekly fiesta has hosted some truly legen – wait for it – dary drag queens, from Sasha Velour of RuPaul’s Drag Race, to Detox, who sang Evita‘s “Don’t Cry For Me Argentina” to an audience of Argentines who couldn’t help but cry their eyes out. If you’re sick of the reggaetón and – let’s face it – machismo of the classic Buenos Aires boliche experience, head over to La Plop for a night of rocking out to 2000s pop hits and a “come as you are” atmosphere. Past theme nights at arguably the most iconic drag show in Buenos Aires have included “Back to the Future” and “The Night of Broken Hearts.

Teatro Vorterix | Av. Federico Lacroze 3455 | Fridays, 12 AM – 6 AM | Facebook

Club 69

Photo courtesy of Club 69 / Instagram

Clear out your Thursday nights for this drag-show-turned-nightclub extravaganza. With all the debauchery of a classic burlesque show and all the costume changes of a ballet at the Bolshoi, we doubt Club 69 will disappoint. Live performances are an eclectic mix of the musically theatrical Compañía Inestable, a queer strip-dancing group, and a b-boy/breakdancing troupe. Don’t miss out on this Palermo Hollywood locale, known first and foremost for its radical inclusivity.

Niceto Club | Av. Cnel. Niceto Vega 5510 | Thursdays, 12 AM – 6 AM | Instagram

Rheo at Human

Photo courtesy of Rheo / Facebook

Rheo at Human is one of the busiest, most you-get-what-you-expect gay nightclubs in town. Every Saturday night is a variation of the same winning recipe: electro-pop bobs, a terrace, go-go boys, and multiple bars throughout the spacious boliche. Located near Parque 3 de Febrero and the Los Arcos foodie mecca, check out Human’s themed nights, like the costume-required “Party Monster” coming up. For gay men in Buenos Aires, this might just be the most reliable option out there.

Human | Av. Cnel. Marcelino Freyre & Av. Infanta Isabel | Saturdays, 1 AM – 7 AM | Facebook

Amerika

Photo courtesy of Wikipedia “Amerika (nightclub)”

Not just any nightclub gets its own Wikipedia page, so the fact that Amerika does should tell you something about just how important it is. The club has earned the title of the biggest gay nightclub in Buenos Aires, and is pretty darn close to being the biggest in Latin America as a whole. With three dance floors and three different genres of music to match (as well as a more relaxed area with comfy seating upstairs), folks of all ages find this space to their liking. One warning (?): straight people do frequent this one. Make of that what you will.

Amerika | Gascón 1040 | Thursdays – Sundays, 12 AM – 6 AM | Facebook

Peuteo

Photo courtesy of Peuteo / Facebook

Do the seven-bar, three-floor clubs scream more overwhelming to you than enjoyable? If so, we recommend you opt for this cozier nightclub in the heart of Palermo Soho. Featuring karaoke nights, video projections, bingo with a twist, free pizza, and drag performances, Peuteo is the perfect destination for a blindingly-fun night out with friends that doesn’t leave you needing to take multiple showers upon returning home.

Peuteo | Gurruchaga 1867 | Wednesdays – Sundays, 7 PM – 3 AM | Facebook

Bars

Feliza Espacio Cultural

Photo courtesy of Ellgeebe

This is the part where our categories get a little fuzzy, because Feliza is really a mix of bar and boliche. Advertising itself particularly toward the transgender and non-binary communities, the Barrio Norte bar has been described as “queer utopia.” Feliza offers queer feminist art for sale, fancy cocktails, delicious fondue (as well as vegan food options), old arcade games, and foosball tables upstairs. Track their website for upcoming artsy events (like ferias featuring artisan crafts by local queer artists) and be sure to stop by for happy hour if you want to beat the crowd.

Feliza | Av. Cordoba 3271 | Thursdays – Saturdays, 7 PM – 3 AM | Instagram

Bach Bar

Photo courtesy of Ellgeebe

Calling all lesbians – this one’s just for you. Some claim Bach Bar is the oldest LGBTQ bar in Buenos Aires, but true or not, this small neighborhood Palermo joint definitely has a mysterious, under-the-radar aura. It’s known for its karaoke night Sundays, “Cupid Bach” Wednesdays (I’ll leave that one to your imaginations), occasional drag shows, and darn-good cocktails. Ladies, check them out this Friday, July 5th, for their Canilla Libre night – and be sure to arrive before 1 AM to get out of the AR $200 cover charge.

Bach Bar | Cabrera 4390 | Thursdays – Fridays, 11 PM – 7 AM; Saturdays, 11 PM – 8 AM | Facebook

Work 

Photo courtesy of GayDatos

Work Bar has a simple slogan: “Beer, Food, and Rhythm.” The gay bar’s vibe is set by the verrrry muscular, tanned men who frequent it most – just check their Insta to see what we mean. We suggest stopping by the Palermo Viejo joint for a few drinks, and then heading right across the street to Peuteo to continue your night (see our Boliche section if you’ve already forgotten what that is).

Work Bar | Gurruchaga 1832 | Thursdays, Sundays, 8 PM; Fridays – Saturdays, 9 PM – 5 AM | Facebook

Glam 

Photo courtesy of Glam / Facebook

Glam has two areas – the main disco dance floor in the front, and the darker, more bar-like scene in the back. The exposed brick, smaller space, and younger crowd give Glam a more intimate, underground feeling than most boliche-bar mashups, so we recommend letting loose here and just dancing the night away to the DJ’s pop hits, from the 90s to the now. Don’t be fooled – entrance is free until 2 AM, though they’re known to charge tourists regardless.

Glam | Cabrera 3046 | Thursdays – Sundays, 12 AM | Facebook

Bookshops & Bistros

Casa Brandon 

Photo courtesy of Travel Notes

Casa Brandon may technically be a bar but it’s so much more; its self-described goals are equality of rights, love, and freedom, among others. The Villa Crespo house brands itself as a cultural center and in addition to its regular bar night parties, it features poetry readings, art exhibits, live music performances, film screenings, and even a queer books library that’s open Mondays – Thursdays, 4 PM – 6 PM. Brandon is a love child of art gallery and restaurant you definitely don’t want to miss.

Casa Brandon | Luis Maria Drago 236 | Facebook

Maricafé

Photo courtesy of Imggra (Nicholas Artusi)

Bookshop meets cafe meets bar at Palermo‘s Maricafé. Our personal favorite on this entire list (well, maybe after La Plop), the cafe opened just over a year ago but has already become a neighborhood darling. Maricafé really does it all: tarot card readings most Monday nights, an amazing queer book collection, RuPaul’s Drag Race watch parties, drag queen-animated nights, co-working afternoons, and postres to die for. Be sure to try their signature rainbow cake – it tastes even better than it looks.

Maricafe | Honduras 4096 | Mondays, 4 PM – 9 PM; Tuesdays – Sundays, 10 AM – 9 PM; Fridays – Saturdays, 9 PM – 2 AM | Instagram

Pride Café

Photo courtesy of Buenos Aires Connect

If bars and nightclubs aren’t your idea of a truly safe LGBTQ-friendly environment, Pride Café definitely will be. Decked out in rainbow flags year-round, the brunch and late-lunch spot offers a delicious menu – we recommend the pork loin sandwich or the vegetarian lasagna (served with a mini rainbow flag sticking out of it, natch). The cafe’s also super close to the San Telmo market, if you’re planning to add a dose of arcoiris joy to your Sunday antiquing agenda.

Pride Cafe | Balcarce 869 | Sundays – Fridays, 9 AM – 8 PM | Facebook

Baile

Tango Queer 

Photo courtesy of Facebook / Tango Queer

Argentina is known for its milongas – dance halls where (traditionally heteronormative) couples steam up with the room with their tango routines. For over a decade now, Buenos Aires’ movement toward embracing queer tango has drawn global attention.  The Argentine tango may once have been emblematic of the passionate battle of the sexes, but now groups like Tango Queer and Tango Entre Muchachos are turning it 180 degrees into a symbol of #LoveIsLoveIsLove. We recommend trying one out – whether to learn to tango with your same-sex partner or just to watch others perform.

Fiesta Turbo

Photo courtesy of Fiesta Turbo / Facebook

In dire need of a death drop? Fiesta Turbo, now celebrating its second anniversary, is a monthly dance night and workshop “for and from” LGBTQ+ folks. In the tradition of Paris is Burning, the fiesta turns ballroom culture on its head, crafting the party as a circle, with immensely talented queer dance “instructors” at the center. What ensues is a mashup of performance and lesson – live music and drinks supplying the background. The freestyle dancing has only one rule: everybody’s invited!

Palermo Club (and other various locations) | Borges 2454 | Check dates | Facebook