Given China’s draconian cultural regulation, it would be easy to assume that this censorship extends to the LGBT scene, but Beijing’s Destination Club proves that this is simply not the case.
This major LGBT club is much more than a simple dance hall. While the main room and its warren of smaller alcoves and private spaces house the central night club, one of the most popular in Beijing, the building also houses a dance studio, a lounge, an art gallery, a café and an HIV-testing center all under one roof. The owner and operator of the complex says that while Destination is not officially listed as an LGBT dance club, they do not need to hide the focus of their business as the Chinese government is not much interested in them so long as they are not political dissidents or a haven for drug use, which the owners of Destination keep a close eye on. With China’s one-party political system the issue of homosexuality is simply much less politicized than it is in the West.
During the weekends and prime party hours, Destination is one of the busiest clubs in Beijing, attracting locals, tourists and people of every sexual orientation to hang out in the inviting space. However the progressive complex as a whole is a beacon of unity and acceptance in one of the most culturally controlled countries on Earth.
Know Before You Go
Opposite workers stadium west gate