Long Beach & Orange County
Take the freeway south from downtown LA for the coastal community of Long Beach. With their own distinct gay scenes of mostly small neighborhood bars, restaurants and shops, Long Beach and Orange County towns to the southeast offer visitors a more laid-back Southern Californian experience from that of trendy West Hollywood and Downtown LA.
Long Beach Pride takes place each year in May, with a Sunday parade along Ocean Blvd, concerts/performances, drag shows, and more. See their website for recent photos and videos, and for updates.
From both Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) and the John Wayne Airport (SNA), you can grab a shuttle. Orange County Transportation Authority (OCTA) bus numbers 76 and 212 serve the John Wayne from the lower arrival level outside Terminal B.
Because the everything is so spread out, getting around in Southern California almost requires a car. Within Long Beach LBT buses service Long Beach, Lakewood and Signal Hill with 38 routes. They also have connections with Metro light rail service to Los Angeles, and to other regional bus companies connecting to cities in Orange County.
Media & Resources
Frontiers Magazine, a free Los Angeles area gay publication and website, has features, news and listings for arts events.
The OC Weekly is a good source for coverage of social issues, politics, arts, culture, lifestyle and entertainment listings in Long Beach and Orange County towns; gay as well as general.
For map locations and website links to the businesses below, and more, see our gay Long Beach and Orange County listings pages.
Long Beach Accomodations
Beachrunners' Inn (231 Kennebec Ave; 866-221-0001) is the premier bed and breakfast in Bluff Heights at the heart of the Broadway Corridor of boutiques, galleries and fine restaurants. Just three blocks from the shore they have comfortable amenities from a living room fireplace and computer access, to a garden hot tub.
Varden Hotel (335 Pacific Ave; 877-382-7336) stylish and affordable downtown 35 room boutique hotel. Close to beaches, Aquarium and Convention Center and other attractions; just a block from Pine Avenue restaurants.
Long Beach Bars
The Brit (1744 E Broadway), a neighborhood bar and grill with patio, attracts bears among their general mix.
Broadway Bar (1100 E Broadway), lively, casual, gay neighborhood bar with karaoke, cheap drinks, games.
Club Ripples (5101 E Ocean Blvd), "bar with the motion that rocks the ocean," two levels, dance floor, smoker's patio, monthly bears' events, karaoke nights, College Nights, women's Friday events, HipHop nights with go-gos, Sunday beer busts.
The Crest (5935 Cherry Ave) men's bar, open daily, internet jukebox, covered patio; Sunday barbecues, daily drinks specials.
Falcon (1435 E Broadway), small but busy neighborhood gay party bar, especially on weekends; jukebox, patio bar.
Flux (17817 Lakewood Blvd), neigborhood gay bar just off 91 Freeway in Bellflower, north of Long Beach; easy parking, inexpensive drinks, friendly staff, no cover charge.
Hamburger Mary's (330 Pine Ave), full-service restaurant, dance and show club. Divas, karaoke, Friday Soaked go-go boys and drag shows, Saturday and Sunday Drag Queen Brunch. Club Papi 18+ parties every Thursday with Latin go-go boys, porn stars, recording artists.
Mineshaft (1720 E Broadway), "The Shaft" longtime men's cruise bar, noon-2am daily with DJ, pool tables, games, jukebox and patio.
Paradise On Broadway (1800 E Broadway), bar and restaurant, karaoke, Drag Bingo, live entertainment/ piano bar, women/men mix; lunch, nightly special menus, Monday 2 for 1 drinks, Taco Tuesdays; 10am to 2pm weekend brunch.
Pistons (2020 E Artesia Blvd), leather/bear men's cruise/ "wild-life refuge;" full events calendar for "hot daddies and willing boys." Sunday beers busts + BBQs, leather/ rubber/ uniform/ underwear nights, bears and otter events, Hump Day cinema nights, cigar and pipe smokers' socials, pool games, bootblacks.
Silver Fox (411 Redondo Ave), easygoing video bar of many years, sociable locals of all ages. Sunday and Wednesday araoke, music and comedy videos, DJs, outdoor paio, smokers' area, buffets, shows, holiday theme parties and special events.
The Suite (3428 E Pacific Coast Hwy), popular video bar and dance club; drag shows, pool tables, karaoke; Saturday women's nights, Latin events and Guy's Nights with go-go dancers. Formerly Executive Suite.
Sweetwater Saloon (1201 East Broadway), open-early neighborhood drinking establishment for local gay men, more mixed than most; patio, pool table, jukebox, sports on TV.
The 1350 Club (510 W Anaheim St, Wilmington/ Long Beach), open 24/7, only men's steam and sauna in South Bay. Garden patio and sun deck, multi-channel videos, maze, excercise machines, private rooms, TV lounge, free WiFi, Safe Sex Party live performers, blackout nights, 24-hour secure parking, free HIV/STD testing and counseling.
Long Beach Restaurants
Asian Umbrella Cafe (1538 E Broadway), Chinese and Thai family restaurant, eat-in or take-out with local delivery; meat or veg/vegan options. Former Two Umbrellas location.
Hamburger Mary's (740 E Broadway), full-service restaurant/dance bar, burgers, salads, sandwiches, appetizers, deserts, lunch specials. Saturday and Sunday buffet brunch drag entertainment by the Brunchettes. Club Papi Thursday Latino go-go dancers.
Open Sesame (5215 E 2nd St), Middle-East Lebanese/ Mediterranean grill to wake up the taste buds; wines and good beer selection, pita sandwiches, lunch specials, dinner and take-out.
Restauration (2708 E 4th St), lunch/dinner seasonal menus, Saturday/Sunday brunch; craft draft and bottle beers of the world, wines, 50-seat fire-lit garden patio. Old 212 Degrees Bistro location.
Utopia (445 E First St), good food in East Village arts district, California eclectic cuisine, fine wines, art shows. Reserve online for special evening four course wine tasting dinners.
Club Bravo (1490 S Anaheim Blvd, Anaheim), gay Latin Saturday night with hot go-go dancers and Mexican buffet at Bravo Grill.
Frat House (8112 Garden Grove Blvd, Garden Grove), nightly LGBT neighborhood bar in the County; Wednesday/Friday/Saturday/Sunday go-go dancers, Sunday drag shows, free WiFi, TouchTunes Jukebox, pool table, video games.
Shark Club (841 Baker St, Costa Mesa) - CLOSED - gay 18+ young dance crowd, go-go dancers, theme nights. WTF Fridays moved to Ten, in Newport.
The Tin Lizzie (752 St. Clair, Costa Mesa), swanky Victorian lounge, gay bar dating back to the '50s; lively atmosphere, satellite jukebox, pool games, classic cocktails and fine wine selections.
VLVT/ Velvet Lounge (416 W 4th St, Santa Ana), Saturday and Sunday brunch with drag entertainment, Club Lucky Sunday CRUSH 18+ boys night; also Flex Friday 21+ men's night, Thursday Latin nights, Wednesday women's night, Tuesday karaoke and Taco buffet.