My fellow Americans, our long national nightmare is over: lap dances are back.
With Cuomo’s announcement Tuesday that he was lifting COVID restrictions on commercial and social settings, gentlemen packed into all three locations of jiggle joint Sapphire for the return of some skin-on-skin contact.
“We were busy!,” chief operating operator Michael Wright tells Page Six, explaining that the pandemic was “extremely challenging.”
The spot’s restaurant portions were open in January. More recently, dancers have been performing on stage at a 12-foot-distance from patrons, but “tableside dancing” was still a no-no.
But with mandates dropped, “It means it’s business back to normal,” Wright tells us. “People want contact and to be out of isolation and enjoy and smile and have human contact. I think people are ready to party. The city is ready to party.”
While many of the entertainers were laid off during the pandemic or fled town, Wright is looking forward to giving people work.
“If I get 1,500 performers back to NYC that would be phenomenal,” he tells us. “It’s an aggressive audition and hiring process right now … I am super excited. We will be able to provide people an opportunity to make money again because everybody hurt.”
The strip club — which has locations on the Upper East Side, Midtown and in Times Square — will be keeping some COVID rules in place.
“We will still be taking temperatures,” Wright tells us, adding, “We have to have some layer of safety for guests and staff. We will of course keep antibacterials and face masks available. Some of that is best practices, not just about COVID.”
In March, four NYC strip clubs— NYC Gentlemen’s Club, Starlet’s, Sugar Daddy’s Gentlemen’s Club, and Gallagher’s 2000 — filed a joint suit against Gov. Andrew Cuomo and the state’s liquor licensing authority for ordering them to stay closed while bars and restaurants were allowed to open.
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