By Lawrence Ferber. Head to the Windy City for some Chicago-style pizza, Chicago-style hot dogs, and Chicago-style gay bars! Marty's Martini Bar.
Chicago is the nation's third largest city and boasts a large gay community. Like New York or Atlanta in their regions, Chicago serves as the Midwest's cosmopolitan hub and attracts young and old alike--all looking to escape to the freedoms and opportunities of the big city. Gay life and gay bars in Chicago is mostly concentrated in two areas: Boystown really "East Lakeview" and Andersonville which is farther up the city's north side.
This extravagant event took place just two decades after the Great Chicago Fire that left a third of the population homeless. Over the years, architect and urban designer, Daniel Burnham, who was also responsible for the famed Flatiron Building in NYC, reimagined this rough and tumbled industrial town to the modern city it is today. Ever since, Chicago has been renowned for world-class architecture, museums, and more recently, a thriving food scene.
Deep-dish pizza, soaring skyscrapers, vibrant music festivals and … the first officially recognized gay village? Yes, Gay Chicago might not be your first thought when considering gay hotspots in the USA where you can just be yourself, but after you have immersed yourself in the frenzied energy of the Boystown gaybourhood you will soon be wondering how the Windy City managed to keep its fabulousness under wraps for so long…. As the heart of the Chicago LGBT community, Boystown boasts everything from boutique shopping and trend-setting dining to alluring spas and irresistible after-hours entertainment in every form imaginable — and no Gay Chicago travel plans would be complete without at least one night out here.
The great windy city of Chicago is truly a place that is a must-visit for any gay traveler. Historical theater marquees and landmark skyscrapers loom over the magnificent downtown skyline, while numerous thriving cafes and boutiques lay directly under it. The populations of Lakeview and Anderson sections of the city invite travelers to ogle their window displays as they pass by sipping on hot and deliciously frothy espressos.
Chicago impressed us on so many levels. It is a beautiful Midwestern city, with super friendly people, lots to keep you busy and an incredibly diverse and thriving gay scene. We felt very safe, at ease, and welcome here as a gay couple.
In fact, more and more LGBTQ collectives and event series have emerged over the years to provide more inclusive spaces for those with intersecting identities, including trans and non-binary people, women, and people of color. With this evolving scene in mind, this list includes some of the best LGBTQ bars in Chicago, along with recurring parties and events from some of our favorite queer collectives who party with intention. Dance, belt out a few show tunes, or sit back and simply bask in the scene.
Six big rooms and a gorgeous rooftop deck are all packed with cute, frisky boys distracting themselves with the same three things: the videos on the wall, the drink in their hand and the ass in your jeans. Enjoy the signature slushie drinks carefully—you don't want brain freeze to impair your flirting. Not a Boystown fan?
Corona Bottles. Progress Bar Carnal Carnival- Enjoy our unique and sexy games set up all over the bar and some of the hottest eye candy around. Baton Show Lounge Shows at pm, pm and am.
By Andrew Collins. Although Chicago has among the greatest selection of gay nightspots in the country, the majority of these hangouts - from bars and discos to LGBT-popular restaurants - are in popular mixed residential-commercial neighborhoods on the north side of the city. Additionally, on the city's South Side, you'll find a pair of gay bars that cater predominantly to African-American patrons, Club Escape and Jeffery Pub. It's also a bit of a distance to reach these bars, but they're both legendary nightspots that are well-worth checking out, especially given that many of the nation's gay African-American hangouts have steadily disappeared over the years.