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A brothel is a place where people may come to engage in sexual activity with a prostitute. Technically, any place where prostitution commonly takes place is a brothel, but in places where prostitution or the operation of brothels is illegal, establishments may attempt to disguise their involvement in prostitution by referring to the business as massage parlors, bars or strip clubs. The operation of a brothel is legal in some jurisdictions and illegal or regulated in others.
Laws regulating brothels vary considerably. These laws vary between countries as well as within countries, and have varied over time. In some jurisdictions, brothels are legal and regulated, while in others they are illegal. However, even in jurisdictions which regulate brothels, there are brothels which operate outside the officially approved system.
From the French bordel, ca. 1200 "bordel" sing. "prostitution place".
Brothels are known under a variety of names, including bordello, cathouse, knocking shop, whorehouse, strumpet house, sporting house, house of ill repute, house of prostitution and bawdy house.
Brothels are sex businesses and vary in size and style, as do the range of sexual services each offers.
A strip club is an adult entertainment venue and a type of nightclub in which stripteases or other erotic or exotic dances are regularly performed. Strip clubs typically adopt a nightclub or bar style, but can also adopt a theatre or cabaret-style.
American-style strip clubs began to appear outside of North America after World War II, arriving in Asia in the late 1940s and Europe in 1950, where they competed against the local English and French styles of striptease and erotic performances. As of 2005, the size of the global strip club industry was estimated to be US$75 billion. In 2002, the size of the U.S. strip club industry was estimated to be US$3.1 billion, generating 19% of the total gross revenue in legal adult entertainment. SEC filings and state liquor control records available at that time indicated that there were at least 2,500 strip clubs in the United States, and since that time, the number of clubs in the U.S. has grown. Profitability of strip clubs, as with other service-oriented businesses, is largely driven by location and customer spending habits. The better appointed a club is, in terms of its quality of facilities, equipment, furniture, and other elements, the
Sex clubs also known as swinger clubs or lifestyle clubs, are formal or informal groups that organize sex-related activities or establishments where patrons can engage in sex acts with other patrons. A sex club or swinger club differs from a brothel in that, while sex club patrons typically pay an annual membership and nightly entrance fee, they only have an opportunity to have consensual sex with other willing patrons, and not with sex workers employed by the establishment.
A similar type of club is a masturbation club in which members, either single-gender or mixed, masturbate together in public or private rooms. Sexual intercourse is generally prohibited in such clubs.
There is also a very large and growing group of private sex clubs across the U.S. and around the world that do not operate in a specified location. These organizations focus on private parties in homes or rented facilities and make use of the Internet to build their membership. There is usually a small door fee and most are invitation-only. In addition to sexual orientation, these smaller groups often stratify on specific criteria, e.g., heavy men with beards or those who are HIV-positive. The first sex club of
A sex shop or erotic shop is a shop that sells products related to adult sexual or erotic entertainment, such as vibrators, lingerie, clothing, pornography, and other related products. The world's first sex shop was opened in 1962 by Beate Uhse AG in Flensburg, West Germany, and sex shops can now be found in many countries. Many sex shops also trade over the internet. Sex shops are part of the sex industry.
In most jurisdictions, sex shops are regulated by law, with access not permitted to minors, the age depending on local law. Some jurisdictions prohibit sex shops and the merchandise they sell. In some jurisdictions that permit it, they may also show pornographic movies in private video booths, or have private striptease or peep shows. Also an adult movie theater may be attached.
Near borders of countries with different laws regarding sex shops, shops on the more liberal side tend to be popular with customers from the other side, especially if importing the purchased materials by customers to their own country, and possessing them, is legal or tolerated.
Almost all licensed adult stores in the UK are forbidden from having their wares in open shop windows, which means often the
An adult movie theater is a movie theater where pornographic films are shown to an adult audience. There are usually continuous showings. The movie posters in front of the theaters normally feature no nudity.
An adult movie theater shows heterosexual pornographic films and/or gay pornographic films. Even if it shows only heterosexual films it often attracts heterosexual, bisexual and homosexual male patrons, some of whom are there for casual and anonymous sex with other patrons. The overwhelming majority of customers are male.
For the patrons, rules are generally less strict regarding partial- or full-nudity and public masturbation or sex, and such behavior may be condoned explicitly or otherwise by the management. Such behavior may or may not be legal, and if not, may or may not be overlooked by local law enforcement. Certain theaters may also include a strip- or sex-show between films, or other sex industry services.
Before the VCR and, later, the Internet, a movie theater or cinema house was often the only location where the average person could see a hardcore adult film. The advent of home video led to a drastic reduction in the number of theaters.
The earliest adult theaters