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Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Grand Slam Gay Bar in Osaka - The Name Says It All!

グランド・スラム

Just a few minutes’ walk from Osaka's Umeda district, one of the entertainment and shopping beating hearts of Osaka, leads you to the Doyama district. Packed with gay bars, clubs, and other venues galore, there’s something for every letter in the LGBTQ acronym!

Grand Slam LGBTQ bar in Doyama, Osaka, Japan.
Having a good time at Grand Slam, Osaka.
One especially good gay bar for foreign visitors is Grand Slam, or “GS” as the locals call it.

Going strong for seven years, this hot spot is no flash in the pan, and for good reason. This bar, lounge, and karaoke spectacle accommodates 20-30 people comfortably, which is just the right size for a bit of schmoozing. You can find a place at the bar or a comfy seat in back, but you’ll want to head toward the back if you are going to try your hand at karaoke. Not to worry, you sound better than you think when you’re singing – there’s software in the karaoke machine to ensure that!

Masa-san, the master of Grand Slam, Osaka, Japan.
Masa-san, the master of Grand Slam
Master,” in the Japanese sense of the word, simply means “the person in charge of the bar.” Masa-san, your master at Grand Slam, will not be able to grant you every wish your charmed life may be owed, but with the help of his also English-speaking staff, he will do his best to make it a nice stay. This means finding a good place for you to sit when you come in (at the bar, in the lounge area, or off to the side even), getting that drink to you exactly as you like it, and perhaps even doing a little matchmaking, should you have the inclination. It’s also just as easy to simply sit back and enjoy the show.

Mirror ball in Grand Slam gay bar, Doyamacho, Osaka, Japan.
Karaoke screen and mirror ball - fun at Grand Slam, Doyama-cho, Osaka
When it’s time to ramp up the party, it’s got to be karaoke! And while intimate karaoke is nice, add in a light show and a smoke machine and the party gets even better. Mount that small stage, if you like, and even revel in the entertainment grandeur of standing and bellowing high while the smoke machine does its thing. It can be quite a grand experience, and as gay as you want it to be, depending on what kind of diva’s songs you choose to sing!

The bar at LGBT bar, Grand Slam, Doyama, Osaka, Japan.
The well-stocked Grand Slam bar

Ultimately, it’s getting to know people in just the right size venue that makes Grand Slam a winner. For former customers who have not been as of late, do drop by, as they just remodeled in May.

Rainbow flag at Grand Slam bar in Doyama-cho, Osaka, Japan.
A rainbow flag greets visitors to Grand Slam

While it is unabashedly a gay bar, expect to find a mixed crowd, with reasonable prices (figure 1000 yen for that first drink, then around 700 yen for successive ones), a lively, upbeat space, and a way to have a great time in a comfortable (you can actually have a conversation here with just an ever-so-slightly raised voice), pressure-free environment.

Grand Slam also runs special party nights, advertised when they happen on the Grand Slam website.

Welcome to Grand Slam, a gay, lesbian, and mixed bar in Osaka.
Entrance to Grand Slam, Doyama-cho, Osaka.

Grand Slam is located at 6-14 Doyama, Kita-ku, Osaka, on the ground floor. It’s open daily except Mondays, 9pm to 5am.

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