The 24 Hour Day
The 24 Hour Day

People keep asking me when best to go to the baths. The problem is that there is no clear-cut answer; there are different times when different things happen, with different crowds.

So here I take you on a 24-hour day in an average bathhouse.

8 AM – 12 PM

8 AM is usually when a staff change takes place. Because the baths operate 24/7, a crew works around the clock. One team works from 8 AM to 4 PM. Another group works from 4 PM to Midnight. Then there is the overnight shift from Midnight to 8 AM. The staff with the most seniority generally work the day shift. Except for the lunch rush, 8 to 4 is a non-peak period at the baths. It is when most of the bathhouse cleaning occurs. So besides the cashier, three cleaners are working during this time. Mopping the floors, dusting the furniture, cleaning the toilets, etc. You should know what the crowd is like, not what the cleaning staff does.

The majority of customers have already left earlier that morning. But many men are sleeping it off from the night before. They are snoring away a drunken stupor, sleeping off a drug-induced session, or napping away after multiple sex sessions. The cashier repeatedly announces that a customer needs to check out or renew on the PA system. They are on overtime. It is always interesting to see the cast of characters emerge from their rooms to hit the showers and start a brand new day.

But you will also see a handful of guys cruising up and down the hallways looking and needing to get off. They were still looking for it the night before after the bars closed. So they come to the baths hoping to get some action but strike out. They hang on until the early morning, obsessed and hoping to get lucky so they can go home.

Ironically this is the time I like going to the baths the most. It is quiet, not a lot of people, and you get to see some fascinating characters, for the reasons I mentioned above.

12 PM to 4 PM.

I have written about the lunch crowd entitled “The Gay Bathhouse Lunch Special” in a previous chapter, no need to re-hash this. But this rush generally starts around 11:30 AM and usually dies by 1:30 PM. By 2:00 PM, the group is now a mixture of househusbands (gay and straight), guys either having the day off or playing hooky from work. Added to the mix are college and university students in between classes. You will also have guys from the night before just hanging out and seeing what is coming through the door. Couples are also coming together, having pre-arranged a hookup through the web. Either they meet somewhere and come to the baths together. Or they meet up at the baths. You have a mixed bag of men during this time, which can get busy. But it can also be dead as a doornail, so it varies.

4 PM to 8 PM.

The new shift begins as a crew changeover takes place. The PM staff takes over for the AM staff. The PM crew consists of the folks that will be working until Midnight. Some bathhouses prefer to have teams do the same shifts regularly over and over again. But other gay saunas like to alternate staff. AM one week, PM the following week. But let’s return to the 4 PM crowd, also called the after-work crowd. These men (who are gay, married, or closeted) finish work for the day and drop by the baths for a quickie. You also get University students dropping in after class. The goal is to get in and out as soon as possible. Guys, come in, get fucked, shower, and leave. All in 30 minutes! Things wrap up at around 7 PM, with only a handful of guys deciding to stick it out for the long haul, regardless of whether they got off.

8 PM to Midnight

This period can be dead during this time. The reason? Guys are at the bars or online looking for a hookup. The baths are their last resort. The hallways are pretty empty. Bathhouse owners recognize this lull, so many attend special events starting at 7:30 PM. To entice the after-work crowd to stay while getting other guys to drop by. Events could include:

Big-name porn stars making a personal appearance.
College nights, where students get 50% off.
Even a lights-out special.

The baths become a ghost town if special events are not organized. But things start picking up at around 10:30 PM to 11:00 PM. By then, guys have given up at the bars or online. So towards the stroke of Midnight, rooms begin to fill up. It’s also when many homeless men arrive, looking for a place to crash. Management dislikes customers spending the entire night, as they lose money. The more guys check in and out, the more money they make. People staying the entire 8 hours becomes a loss of income for the bathhouse. It is why at around 11 PM, the management puts the music on FULL BLAST. The hope is that no one will be able to fall asleep, as that would waste an 8-hour room from a profit standpoint. The goal is to have that 8-hour room be a revolving door of money. But homeless guys have nowhere else to go. So they put up with it because it is either sleeping with loud music or sleeping outdoors on the streets – what a choice.

Midnight to 4 AM.

So when is the best time to head off to the baths and get some action? Midnight to 4 AM, as this is their busiest time. But only on certain days: Sunday to Wednesday, you get an average number of guys, as the workday is only nine hours away. But it is packed with wall-to-wall men on Thursday, Friday, and especially Saturday. As the song goes, it’s raining, men! Guys have struck out at the clubs and have gotten nowhere online. The baths are their last resort. It can be a double-edged sword with so much sex action taking place.

On the one hand, seeing gorgeous flesh on display is excellent. But it is a buyer’s market for guys to pick and choose. Guys are only judging you on your looks. So if you have hit the genetic lottery, you are in your element. Not only are you desired, but you can also get what you want. However, if you are only average in the looks department, you also stay home. You are invisible, and the rejection hurts. With so many guys there that rate a ten, how do you compete if you only rate a six? You can’t. That is what is so soul-destroying. It is busy now but will get even more active once the bars close. Guys want the party to continue, so once bars close, the baths are the only place to go that is still open. The more guys there are, the more rejection you will face.

Bathhouses get even more packed with twinks fuelled by drugs and liquor. Ready to continue their PnP activities. In between all this sex is a gossip board with this twink telling that twink what so-and-so twink did. The gossip gets passed from twink to twink to twink. Watching all these twinks be so preoccupied with gossiping about who is sleeping with whom is fascinating. But this gossiping only happens between hookups when guys are taking a break.

4 AM to 8 AM.

By this time, things die down as everyone is sleeping off the drugs, the liquor, and the non-stop sex, completely drained out. Then you have those guys still trolling the hallways continuing to look for action as they have struck out. Come at 8 AM; the day starts all over again.

So we talked about Monday to Friday. What about the weekends? Well, Saturday is just like any typical day. But after Midnight, it is jam-packed with men looking to hook up. What about Sunday? Same thing. However, Sunday afternoons are something special. It is the one time the word continuity comes in – regulars arrive at the same time every Sunday. Think of afternoon tea with friends. That is the only way I can describe it. It is not about sex but the interaction and the community of people you meet every weekend. Yes, it is superficial, both the sex and the relationships you form at the baths. But if you keep that in mind, you will also enjoy Sunday afternoon. It is also the time most married men show up. Read my first book, Bathhouse Blues, to find out why.

So, what is the best time to get laid? Thursday, Friday, and especially Saturday after Midnight. But remember, you will be competing against guys who are an 11 on a scale of 1 to 10. What is the best time to experience terrific social interaction? Sunday afternoons.

See you at the baths.

11 thoughts on “The 24 Hour Day”

  1. Hey, I read most of your entries way back in August. Tonight I remembered your site all of a sudden and got a headache from trying to remember where I originally found the link to this site πŸ™‚ I finally found the site again by doing a search. I just wanted to let you know that your entries are fascinating, especially to a new-comer such as myself. Are you going to write new entries any time soon? πŸ™‚ Take care, Tom

  2. You’re right – it’s hard to predict when is best. I personally think Sunday afternoons tend to be busy (but not necessarily good!), while quieter times can be more horny. Frankly… Just go!

  3. Your blog is fascinating. I’m enjoying reading about the many facets of the bathhouse world. I have to admit I am curious and would like to go to a bathhouse at least once in my lifetime. But, I’m stuck in the midwest. I believe the closest city that has one is St. Louis or Denver. I imagine you have been to several bathhouses. Excepting the one you frequent in your city, which bathhouse is your favorite to visit?

    1. I’m not familiar with your area at all. For Denver you can try either the Denver Swim Club or the Midtowne Spa. St. Louis only has one, Club St. Louis. I cannot vouch for any of these bathhouses, as I have not visited them at all. Ask if they are 24 hour, and if so you could probably spend the night there. Don’t forget to play safe and have fun. Thanks for the nice comments about my site. Much appreciated.

  4. Great summary of the Sauna schedule. It’s the same here in London. a real motley crew of characters at different times. In Vauxhall Chariots they like to keep the cabins closed, so people have nowhere to have sex, and end up for a quick wank in the backroom and then go home. Chariots Shoreditch used to have that Sunday tea party feeling, but then they decided to have a huge television blare loud sports programmes and kill the mood. And Pleasuredrome in London, “cleaning” stuff constantly searching the ailes with light and chloride kind of trying to squeeze the customers out of their premises.

    Hard to find saunas that actually want their customers to have the best facilities, and a good time. Gimme the money and bugger off seems their policy. That’s why I can’t be bothered anymore to go, and many with me. Saunas are dying down slowly in london U.K.

  5. Your stories are great and say exactly what I am feeling going to bath houses. There aren’t any good ones in NYC now. I like Paris, Barcelona, Toronto, and other foreign spots. My favorite though is a 16th-century bath house in Budapest. Wow, beautiful spot. The most unusual one was one in the old Jewish Quarter in Aleppo, Syria.

  6. Your stories strike home – they are universal. You could easily be describing the two bathhouses in Dallas! I will get busy and send you one of my stories sometime.

  7. Very interesting stories i read so far this morning. i have not spent time in bathhouses, So it is fun to learn about the culture. I’ll be back…

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