Estimates vary, but there are approximately 300,000 ladyboys in Thailand. Born genetically male, they take on female personae at ages as low as 10 or 11. They are everywhere, and are renowned for being talented actresses and make-up artists. Ladyboy shows feature lip-synch pantomime, choreography, and comedy, and you don’t have to understand Thai to enjoy it. The following listings cover Ladyboy shows in Bangkok, Pattaya, and Chiang Mai.
Ladyboy Shows in Bangkok
Calypso Cabaret, 296 Thanon Phayathai, Bangkok. Located in the Asia Hotel adjacent to the Ratchathewi BTS skytrain station, Calypso offers nightly shows at 8:15 and 9:45.
Mambo Cabaret, Washington Square, situated on Thanon Sukhumvit between Soi 22 and Soi 24, Bangkok.
Washington Square is located between the BTS Asok and Phrom Phong stations, and there are two shows nightly, at 8:30 and 10 pm.
Admission is 800 baht.
The more talented of Mambo’s performers eventually travel with Mambo’s international road show (a staple of the Edinburgh Fringe Festival, incidently).
GPS Coordinates: : N13° 44.038’ E100° 34.122’
Ladyboy Shows in Pattaya
There are two famous ladyboy show venues in this seaside resort, two hours southeast of Bangkok, easily accessible by taxi or bus.
Alcazar Show, 78/14 Moo 9, Thanon Pattaya 2, Pattaya 20260. Tel: (038) 410-224. The best of the two, Alcazar, has been around for twenty years, and boasts a magnificent show with dozens of beautiful entertainers. Admission is 400-600 baht, and shows are at 6, 7:30, and 9 pm.
Tiffany’s Show, 464 Moo 9, Thanon Pattaya 2, Pattaya 20260. Tel: (038) 421-700. Tiffany’s, another good ladyboy venue, was founded in 1974, and is right down the street from Alcazar. It hosts as many as four shows each evening. http://www.tiffany-show.co.th/en/AboutUs.asp
Ladyboy Show in Chiang Mai
Simon Chiang Mai, 177 G. Building, First Floor, Chang Phuak Road, Chiang Mai 50200. Tel: . (053) 410-321.
Chiang Mai has a strong ladyboy tradition, and this top-notch club hosts shows at 7:30 and 9:30 pm nightly, held in an open-air theatre seating 500. The theatre itself is stunning, with an exotic jungle set permanently occupying the left side of the stage, and an elaborate Chinese palace to the right.
Of particular note is the intricate choreography by Jarvey Delapaz, and the extraordinary costumes by Supat “Deaw” Kuntatun.
Simon is located next to Novotel at the corner of Vhang Phuak and Chotana Roads, approximately 1 km north of the Chang Phuak Gate to the old city.