Another famed gay strip club has closed its doors. After 50 years in business, the Nob Hill Theatre is another iconic gay club closing. “This is another nail in the coffin of gay San Francisco,” Shelly Steward who ran Nob Hill Theatre’s front desk for 13 years told the San Francisco Chronicle. “It’s the end of an era.”
The theatre that has inspired dozens of Instragrammed photos read “Touch Our Junk!” offered semi-private rooms and hundreds of adult videos for a $15 entry fee. At $20 patrons were privy to strippers who would take off their clothes and stroll through the audience, according to the Chronicle.
The theater has a long and varied history in San Francisco and considered the “Smut Capital of America” and was a place for exploring sexuality.
Shan Sayles purchased the Nob Hill Theatre in 1968 and showed European art films for a time, but eventually started showing gay porn, current co-owner Larry Hoover said. “They stopped showing the B movies and started showing gay porn,” Hoover told the Chronicle. “According to Shan, the line was around the corner overnight.”
Hoover and co-owner Gary Luce admit that the theatre still draws a decent crowd, but are ready to sell it. The owners are planning an estate sale over Labor Day weekend and will sell chairs, signed posters, and a disco ball. Some artifact will be set aside to be donated to the LGBT Historical Society.
Have you visited the Nob Hill Theatre, if so, what was your experience like?