BillSam

61M. I am an out, proud gay man and gay activist. I am an author by trade.

New York, New York
Joined Mar 2007
21 Followers 2 Following

14 Loved Places

Listings

  • Ty's West Village, New York
  • Barracuda Chelsea, New York
  • GYM SPORTSBAR Chelsea, New York
  • The Eagle NYC Chelsea, New York
  • 9th Avenue Saloon Hell's Kitchen, New York
  • BillSam
    BillSam reviewed Posh Over a year ago
    Loves it

    Wrong name, right bar
    With a name like Posh I expected this place to be full of piss elegant twentysomethings with their noses in the air. Actually the bartender seemed to be the youngest person there and the median age of the customers was around forty. The decor is nice but not in the least bit "posh," which I guess is the joke. Friendly, convivial bar that on my visit on a Tuesday seemed to have no pretentions or attitude. Liked it! Worth another visit to be sure.

  • BillSam
    BillSam reviewed Therapy Over a year ago
    Hates it

    Attractive busy spot
    This attracts a youngish, well-dressed, upscale crowd in an attractive setting. Except upstairs, there doesn't appear to be a bar as such; instead you get your drinks at a service area and sit on couches or along a long, thin table. The drinks were surprisingly strong and before eight PM on weeknights they're 2 for 1. Not for everyone, but a pleasant, popular spot that was busy even on a Tuesday. Your younger friends will love it.

  • BillSam
    BillSam reviewed GYM SPORTSBAR Over a year ago
    Hates it

    A tad snooty but nice
    A nice, attractive bar with mostly men of mixed ages, generally younger. Friendly bartenders. Very packed on weekends and not a bad crowd on weeknights as well. Been here a few times and I have to say that the younger guys here can sometimes be a little snooty. Mature men should probably go with a buddy.

  • BillSam
    BillSam reviewed Boots and Saddle Over a year ago
    Hates it

    Still fun -- with reservations
    You can still have a good time at this bar due to many wonderful customers and friendly staffers -- Jose, Robert, Gus, Roberto, etc. -- most of whom have no idea that this used to be THE great social center for gay men of all ages, and one of the hottest, cruise bars in town. Now you're just as likely to run into clueless straight women who are either the girlfriends of the mostly straight-identified go go boys or have come to ogle them -- not exactly conducive to a friendly homoerotic atmosphere. Worse yet is "Grumpy," the straight bartender who works solo on Thursday nights and haunts the place like a nasty imp at other times. An aspiring actor, he develops a foul disposition when he doesn't get a callback, taking out his frustrations on some of the customers, even trying to 86 anyone with Gay Pride who dares call him on his dumb and borderline homophobic remarks. Why doesn't the management send this jackass packing? Recommendation: go in the wee hours, after 2 or 3 AM when you want to have another drink and Ty's down the block has closed (remember bars in New York can stay open until 4 AM). But it's sad to contemplate how really great and totally gay this bar used to be.

  • BillSam
    BillSam reviewed Stonewall Over a year ago
    Hates it

    Avoid at all costs!
    If you visit New York and think you want to sample a bit of gay history -- think again. There's little to remind anyone of the Stonewall rebellion or Gay Pride in this establishment. Its original intention to be "mixed," serving all factions of the gay community, hasn't worked out and "mixed" merely means gay and straight. This has the same owners as the (supposedly gay-friendly but essentially straight) Duplex on the corner, and somehow drunken straight tourists pass by the two straight bars in-between and wind up in the Stonewall. Last time -- and I mean the last time -- I was there a gay man was assaulted by one of these schmoes, and --incredibly! --the hostess asked the gay man to leave and allowed the gay BASHER to stay! Outrageous! The management has made a big deal out of the bar now being "gay-owned" but they've simply turned it into a blah, unfriendly cocktail lounge. The big irony is that when the bar was straight-owned a few years ago it was packed, cruisy, hot, and a hell of a lot more fun than it is now. Too bad -- some of the employees are nice but they're definitely working in the wrong bar. There's absolutely no reason to go out of your way to visit this miserable joint that seems to favor homophobic customers over gay ones.

  • BillSam
    BillSam reviewed The Eagle NYC Over a year ago
    Loves it

    Pretty Hot -- if a bit pre-Stonewall
    Tried this place on a Wednesday, and then a Saturday. Wednesday only the second level was open, and the place had a more intimate feel, with a very friendly bartender and customers. On Saturday it was packed on two levels, and a few people were trickling up to the roof garden, which has its own bar. On the plus side, there's MEN of all different types and ages, both into and not into the leather scene. On the negative side, the lighting is so low it reminds one of a 70's bar back when you were supposed to be ashamed of what you were doing. Take a potential date up to the roof garden so that you and he can get a better look at each other and avoid surprises -- you could run into your hated ex-lover in this place and not even know it. On weekends the first floor seems to be taken over for special events and has loud, headache-inducing DJs and announcers. Head up to the second floor where the cruising goes on and you can hear yourself think. Some of the guys are very friendly; others are full of attitude or act like they're in a library, afraid to talk too loud. It's those damn low lights of course. Whatever its flaws, this is a pretty hot bar. Be a bit careful of the neighborhood late at night. Unless you're bi, don't wander accidentally into the topless bar down the block. Be advised that on Thursdays a dress code of leather regalia is strictly enforced.

  • BillSam
    BillSam reviewed Ty's Over a year ago
    Loves it

    Absolutely the best!
    Friendly, lively, hot, convivial, this place just seems to get better and better with each passing year. Maybe because it's a bit out of the way (although only 3 or 4 blocks from Sheridan Square) and hasn't been overrun with "hip" straights. Mostly the place is full of gay men who are always friendly and easy to talk to. Very friendly and attractive bartenders. Many of the men may be over forty but they are still VERY active; this is not some quaint, sedate piano bar -- in fact, the place gets very cruisy, especially on weekends. Many bears here, but other kinds of guys also come and are welcome. Absolutely no attitude here! Highly recommended; quickly out-stripping B and S as the place to go!

  • BillSam
    BillSam reviewed Barracuda Over a year ago
    Hates it

    Nice, Attractive lounge
    Don't make a special trip to this place but if you're in the theater district already, it might make a nice stop with friends. This is a small, comfortable, attractive spot with friendly staff and young (20's - 30's), good-looking customers who are probably approachable after a few drinks. Went early during mid-week and encountered no snottiness at all. The name doesn't really suit the place; at least this night it was pleasantly quiet without being dead.

  • BillSam
    BillSam reviewed 9th Avenue Saloon Over a year ago
    Hates it

    Depressing
    Years ago when this first opened I went in and didn't like it. Thought I'd give it another try and wish I hadn't. The few customers looked as if they were about to cry in their beer. The three bartenders all ignored me for nearly ten minutes until I thought I'd have to set myself on fire to get waited on. I finally flagged one down and he told me he was off-duty! Another one made me a drink but never apologized for the long wait. Visited this on a Wednesday night around 8 PM. You might have a different experience at another day and time but I found it just dismal. Unpretentious decor.

  • BillSam
    BillSam reviewed Julius' Over a year ago
    Loves it

    Still has some life to it
    The best time to go to Julius is on Fridays, from the cocktail hour until around midnight, when the bar is very busy and even cruisy, and the bartenders are gay. No, the bartenders are not the most gregarious you'll ever meet -- one guy is rather pleasant, however -- but many of the customers are fun. Younger people come in on Fridays as well. I actually found it to be quite lively although not for every taste.

  • BillSam
    BillSam reviewed Marie's Crisis Over a year ago
    Hates it

    Not so gay -- or great -- anymore
    The bar now has an open door policy [and no doorman] which allows in [often inebriated] straights who are not as gay-friendly as they were in the past. The last time I went several of the straight people I spoke to were not even aware that Marie's was a gay bar! Even on weekends straights now seem to be crowding out the gay customers. At least it's interesting to note that not all gays love show tunes and apparently plenty of straight people do! Cross seventh avenue to the Monster which also has a piano but is much gayer (the straight customers are much gay-friendlier, too).