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homeBild2-ConorDublin002Hey guys. Conor, the Mr. Geared Ireland, is showing me Dublin. I thought it is really time to visit this country in which homosexuality was forbidden untill 1993. With the extraordenary result of the voting of the Irish people for same sex marriage and the total equality for homosexuals, they have shown us, that gays are really welcome in Ireland. So let’s check out what the kinky places of the capital of the green island are!


sadoSAM: Hi Conor, thanks for showing me around the town where you live. I know you’re into the kinky stuff too. How long have you been living out your desires and how did you come to that?

Conor: Hello Sam, great to finally meet you. So I have been into the fetish scene pretty much ever since I came to Dublin in 1997 as a very young and innocent 17 year old. I came from a country town so being gay and being different were not accepted openly back then. Dublin was my salvation. I kept my kinks to myself throughout most of my college years but started to be much more open about it in my early twenties. It was at that time I began to interact with fellow kinksters online here in Ireland and realized there were actually more of us than I had thought.

Some of my best friends I met at this time and we have formed strong bonds of friendship all the while being comfortable as kinksters. In my mid-twenties I realized that it really does not matter what others think and that to be happy you just have to be yourself. For me that mean’s wearing my skin gear, wearing my leather gear and being visible, not hiding my fetishes away.

In Being a skinhead on the gay scene in Dublin in the early 2000s was to be quite unique and different, so I am pretty sure lots of people recognized me in my skin gear from a young enough age. Now it seems that lots of young gay guys are embracing the skinhead look so it is much more common to see, which I think is great. Consequently the gay skinhead culture is changing and adapting and I like it. Our leather scene is also becoming much more open and established which is fantastic for us, finally the international community has realized that Ireland has a fetish community too.

sadoSAM: How do you live out your fetishes and what does appeal to you in s/m?

Conor: Well luckily for me skingear is actually pretty respectable looking, and my workplace is fairly flexible with my attire, so most days I am in my doc martens, jeans, fred perry polo and ma1, so I get to wear my gear every day. I do love my leather gear as well but don’t get to wear it as often. My partner of 15 years is also into fetish so we have a very strong kink relationship that is supported by our family of fetish friends near and far. Both of us are into our own unique gear, I like skinhead and leather, he likes military and skater gear. Fortunately both of us are into lots of bondage so that’s where we overlap.

We also love to travel so we visit London and Berlin often and have lots of kinky friends dotted around Europe and the US / Canada that we visit and they visit us. We are also both involved in organizing and running GEARED Ireland which is Ireland’s longest running gay men’s fetish club since May 2013. I run an annual bondage workshop as part of that too. I was elected as Mr. GEARED Ireland 2015 so that is also keeping me very busy with all the kinksters in Ireland and across the global fetish community. So as kinksters promoting our community I can honestly say, to quote Pam Ann, we are “busy busy busy”.

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sadoSAM: Alright, enough talking. It’s afternoon already and I want to see something. Let’s do a little bit shopping. Which fetish stores do we absolutely have to see and why?

Conor: Well first of all what you need to know about Dublin is that we are a small city and we can walk everywhere with ease. Also as the kink scene is still quite small in Dublin we have to be creative and inventive when it comes to having our community thrive. So the first fetish store I want to bring you to is Miss Fantasia’s on South William Street. It has a wide range of fetish gear and is a great supporter of the fetish community here in Dublin. This shop has some fantastic rope and sex toys and the proprieters really know their stuff and are very helpful with advice and recommendations. Then we need to go to Basic Instincts in Templebar, this fetish store has a Mister B outlet inside it which is great for buying leather gear.

Now then if you need new boots, and every kinkster should have good boots in my opinion, my only port of call has to be China Blue which is also in Templebar, about five minutes from Basic Instincts opposite the Ha’penny Bridge over the river Liffey. China Blue has the best range of leather boots, especially Doc Martens and Rangers. All my boots come from there.

Finally, if like me you are a lover of military gear and bomber jackets, we have a fantastic military store on Capel Street, just across the river. It’s called Army Bargains. It’s where I tell a lot of newbies to go to that are just starting out buying gear.  Obviously they know their clientele well as they also sell a nice range of handcuffs and good rope.

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Fetish Stores

Miss Fantasia’s

Basic Instincts

China Blue

Army Bargains

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sadoSAM: Whoo, shopping can be quite tiring after all. Are there any coffeehouses or bars that are open in the afternoon and that you can recommend?

Conor: If you want good coffee, Dublin is the place to go. I am very proud of our city for promoting good food and coffee culture. So as we are over on Capel Street right now I have to bring you to Brother Hubbard’s. This place has delicious fresh food and great coffee all day long. I love the brunch here too.

If you fancy some lunch I think we should head to Wuff! This is a casual stroll down along the tramline to Stoneybatter about ten minutes from Capel Street. They serve an absolutely fantastic range of good food, cocktails, wine and great coffees. They are also hugely supportive of the LGBTI and fetish community in Dublin.

If we were still over on South William Street by Miss Fantasia’s I would bring you to Busyfeet and Co Co. This café has been a stalwart of good coffee, nice wines, fresh sandwiches and cake for the best part of twenty years, it has been my favourite café in Dublin since I moved here. It is a great place for people watching too and is open late into the night.

If you fancy a nice afternoon cocktail in a relaxing setting with a great LGBT vibe, then we have to head up to Parliament Street and the Front Lounge. It’s literally just straight across Capel Street Bridge and back on the south side of the city. This bar and coffee house has been a staple of the gay scene in Ireland since the 1990s and is firmly established as one of Dublin’s gay bars. The leather men can usually turn heads in this place when they turn up as it is pretty mainstream or “heteronormative” as my fellow kinksters joke. But it is still a great place to relax and unwind over a cocktail, try the amaretto sour, they are delicious.

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Coffeeshops / Day Bars

Brother Hubbard’s

Wuff

Busyfeet and Co Co

Front Lounge

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sadoSAM: After those hot guys in the bar I’m kinda horny. Where are the good cruising areas or saunas here?

Conor: Dublin is not really a cruisy city, ha ha we have recon and grindr and scruff for that. What you could call the gay district so to speak extends from Capel Street to Parliament Street and then around the corner up to Georges Street. For those that are out on the prowl, they tend to stick to our gay bars and clubs all the while using apps to ensnare a fellow kinkster or three.

We do have a fairly popular sauna though that is very well run. It is just around the corner from the Front Lounge too, it’s called the Boilerhouse. Basic Instincts which is the fetish shop in Templebar is also a good spot to meet like-minded kinksters in their downstairs section.

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Saunas & Crusing Areas

Boilerhouse

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sadoSAM: I think it’s time to kick around town. Can you tell me which good bars are on the program. What kind of people do they attract and when is it going?

Conor: First of all the one thing you need to know about Dublin, is that we have one of the best bar scenes in the world, but that we actually have more gay friendly bars than actual gay bars. The first place we are going to start off our night is probably the mecca for LGBTI people in Ireland – Pantibar on Capel Street, home to the Queen of Ireland herself Miss Panti Bliss our (in)famous drag queen. Pantibar is a great bar but also totally accepting of our very diverse community, so turning up here in fetish gear will get you interested and appreciative looks and genuine interest.

Now then depending on what time of the month it is will direct us where to go for the rest of our night out. If you want to hang out with some of our local bear folk, head straight across the road to Nealons pub, which is very much a traditional Irish pub, but also gay friendly and a second home to our well established community bear group; the Dublin Bears. Nobody will bat an eyelid if you turn up here in your leathers. The bears love the leather men too and regularly come to play with us at GEARED Ireland. The other home of our bears is Oscar’s, which is near Christchurch Cathedral. Oscar’s is also great if you want some food for the evening to keep you going. A long night out in Dublin you really need the stamina!

If you are looking for some fun with all sorts; leathermen, leatherwomen, skinheads, emo’s, goths, drag queens, twinks, baby gays and all the rest we should really head to Dragged Up. It’s a really fun night where anything goes really, but if you want to dance and experience some of Dublin’s well established drag acts and their international brethren (Dragged Up is a must go to if you are a fan of RuPauls Drag Race) then head to this night out which is organized by Victoria Secret. Another club night which is also quite fun that you might stumble into after midnight is Bukkake Dublin.

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Evening Bars

Pantibar

Nealons Pub

Oscar’s

Dublin Bears

Dragged Up

Bukkake Dublin

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sadoSAM: The clubs and parties should be warming up now. What’s on the program and where can we experience something? Are there any returning fetish events running here?

Conor: You can’t come to Dublin and not experience Ireland’s only fetish event for gay men. GEARED Ireland is held every month, on the third Saturday of each month at Fibber Magees, Parnell Street. It has a dress code (leather, rubber, military, skinhead, sports, workwear, biker and skater/scally), though we do relax it somewhat for newbies on their first visit. It was established in 2013 after a few years of attempts at establishing a regular fetish event in Dublin. But it has gone from strength to strength since then and has become affiliated with ECMC (European Confederation of Motorcycle Clubs). We are a volunteer community group so all the profits go back to our community via charitable donations. GEARED Ireland has its annual big birthday celebration in May and takes part in Dublin Pride in June. Our annual titleholder event dubbed “The Three Kings” is held in January and it is at that, that we crown our Mr. Leather Ireland and Mr. Rubber Ireland and our club title Mr. Geared Ireland. I like to call that night our “Epiphany of Fetish”. Throughout the year we also have themed fetish nights, so we could have a sports night, a puppy night, a BLUF night or a skinhead night depending on if we have visiting groups from across Europe. So if you are coming to Dublin always make sure you check our calendar and get here on the third weekend of the month!

As I mentioned earlier, one of GEARED Ireland’s strongest allies is the Dublin Bears. Annually they have a large long weekend event called Bear Feile which is great fun and at that they crown their Mr. Bear Ireland. It is definitely worth planning a trip to Ireland in March to coincide with that.

If you fancy heading to the pansexual fetish and burlesque night to experience a bit of variety then you should definitely visit Nimhneach which is held at the Voodoo Lounge on the North Quays.

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Clubs & Parties

Geared Ireland

Dublin Bear Feile

Nimhneach

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sadoSAM: Either we are going to play in a sauna again or I’m going to sleep. Can you recommend me a good hotel or a special accommodation.

Conor: If you want to stay smack bang in the middle of it all, then I would stay at the Clarence Hotel, it is literally a five minute walk to all of the places I have mentioned. It is a beautiful hotel and it has two lovely cocktail bars and a fine restaurant also. It is a little pricey though, so if you want to stay somewhere cheaper I would recommend heading to the Maldron Hotel Smithfield. It is a fifteen minute walk to the city centre or just hop on the tram for three stops.

Alternatively if you are on a budget Avalon House is a great hostel that is in the city centre that is very welcoming to everyone. Unfortunately, as yet Dublin does not have any kinky accommodation apartments. Give us time though 😉

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Accommodation

The Clarence Hotel

Maldron Hotel Smithfield

Avalon House

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sadoSAM: Hey Conor, thank you for this great day in Dublin. I wish you all the best for the future and hope to see you soon.


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