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Macau (Modern Portuguese), or Macao (archaic Portuguese spelling) is an integral part of People’s Republic of China. It lies at the mouth of the Pearl River Delta and neighbouring on Guangdong Province. It has grown in land area from 11.6 km2 to 30.5 km2 due to land reclamation.
Globally recognised as the “Vegas of China”, Macau is definitely a mecca of gambling and glamour. But the city offers more than that. It is composed of a mix of different cultures – Cantonese, Macanese, and Portuguese.
Macau’s former RLD is in Rua da Felicidade, a location nearby the St. Paul’s ruins. The street can be recognised by 2-story buildings in red. Ground floors used to serve as adult shops and brothel patrons. It was then the adult entertainment district until the Macau government outlawed prostitution in the late 1940s.
Today, there is no official red light district but try to get in touch with some locals and they might suggest a few underground red zones around the city. Most prostitutes now do their business through agencies or independently. They can be spotted in low-rent buildings, massage parlours, casinos, and nightclubs.
History of the RLD
Records of cases of prostitution in Macau started in the 19th and 20th century. There were reports that Chinese syndicates arranged marriages for their convenience with Portuguese prostitutes to obtain citizenship. Reports of Japanese sex workers coming to Macau for work were also revealed. Since then, underground brothels have been closed down and several culprits associated with the syndicate have been arrested.
Stay Safe in the RLD
Unlike many other cities, Macau is a fairly safe city to travel to. Although, there are still cases of pickpockets, harassment, scamming, gangs. But, you shouldn’t get into trouble when you consider touring around maintaining safety and precaution.
Prostitution and gambling somehow go hand-in-hand in Macau. The sex business intimately associated with the gambling sector is an ongoing phenomenon in this part of the world. Wealthy gentlemen who risk losing their money in casinos are usually those who have enough to offer money to an escort in exchange for her company. There are quite a lot of high class courtesans available. They frequent in casinos, malls, and disco bars. There are also those in the lower spectrum. Remember that rates vary according to the type of services.
Various available adult locations include nightclubs, bars, brothels, erotic massage parlours, and strip clubs.
Unlike mainland China, prostitution in Macau is legal. But, certain aspects are not. For example, operating a brothel and buying sex are not legal. The punishment can reach up to a maximum of 8 years of imprisonment. If sex workers and clients have mutual consent while in a non-public place, police are said to have no right to charge any of them. The authorities are also not free to search sex-related private places unless they can present sufficient evidence.
As for the LGBT community, they still remain ineligible for some legal rights that are given to opposite-sex couples like on marriage or civil unions, step-adoption, joint adoption, and access to IVF treatments. But, same-sex sexual activity has long been decriminalised in this city.
Macau’s nightlife is thought to be still in its infancy. Regardless, there are a few you can check out for some night of fun:
You might be told that you’d have better chances of the LGBT nightlife in Hong Kong as the gay scene in Macau is barely visible. But you can check out:
General Attitude Towards Gays
Gay culture is not that visible in Macau but a number of activists are trying to change the situation in the city. Although, gay and lesbian travellers should not be too worried because they are unlikely to be bothered by locals. Just one key thing to remember is to minimise any displays of affection as these may cause unnecessary attention from locals.
A group called the Macau LGBT Rights Concern Group was created in 2012 to fight for gay rights such as the inclusion in the domestic violence bill, same-sex marriage. A year later, the Rainbow of Macau was started which is the city’s first officially registered gay right group.
Gay and Transsexual Prostitution in Macau
It can be quite tricky finding someone for transsexual dating. But, you have greater chances when you search online.