Although I had heard about Thailand when I was stationed in Japan with the US Air Force (1966-1968), it was mostly about the girlie bars - coming from fellow GIs. Later, after being discharged, finishing college, and working, I started vacationing in Mexico - mostly Acapulco. One year, my neighbor at the gay hotel where I was staying (we shared the same large balcony area) had traveled to Thailand and was mentioning his experiences. Not too long after that, Thai Airways started flying from Dallas via Seattle and Tokyo to Bangkok. So, I decided to visit.
My first trip was in 1986 - I spent time in Bangkok to start (a different boy each night) and then finished in Pattaya - Not many Gay bars here at the time (my Spartacus Guide only listed a few) - I stayed at the Royal Garden (not the one here today, back then it was 2 or 3 floors and occupied the space where the Royal Garden Shopping mall is today) for US$50 per night (booked through USA travel agent) - no problem with joiners, they just had to leave their ID at the front desk. The following year, yep, kept coming back every year after the first trip, I stayed next door at the PK Villa for US$20 per night - back then the baht was pegged to the dollar (25 baht per dollar) - an excellent meal in a good western food restaurant was about US$5 - the off fee was less than 100 baht and the boys were quite happy with 300 baht (for all night).
The gay bars listed in Spartacus was the 69 Club - south of the end of walking street (space now occupied by Siam Bayshore Hotel), which was a gogo bar and the Paris Cafe (name may have been slightly different) also south of Walking street before you got to 69 Club - it was a small bar with freelancers and drag show on the weekends. It also mentioned Adam & Eve in North Pattaya (the boys were in their street clothes sitting in front of the stage when they were not dancing).
At the 69 Club I met a beautiful Thai boy (he was a customer and was accompanying an English guy & his boyfriend) - they were sitting at the next table and I struck up a conversation - joined them at their table and the Thai boy offered to be my "guide" - we spent my entire time in Pattaya together. He introduced me to the Gay beach (Dongtan) and the other Gay bars in Pattaya - Adam & Eve previously mentioned - also in North Pattaya was the Homex Inn (gay hotel with bar & pool). There were only two bars in the Boystown area - My Way and Gentleman's Club.
I have to say, my first trip, I felt like a kid in a candy store
- ahh, the memories!