February 23, 2009
Over the years, I have gotten a large number of questions via email from people who do not want to pose their query in a more public forum.
One of the more common of these private questions pertains to … Las Vegas Massage Parlors.
For the most part, people don’t want to touch this topic in public. (no pun intended)
I don’t think I have ever seen an honest, unbiased article about Vegas Message Parlors. The reason I think this is … is because no “legitimate” journalist will admit to having actually been a customer of one of these places. Most journalists have to be very politically correct and have to tread very lightly lest the public get them confused with actual human beings.
In order to accurately report on a subject, you need first-hand experience, and that is why few mainstream articles have been penned on this topic.
Personally, I do not have any problem admitting that I avail myself of local massage parlors from time to time. This being the case, I do feel qualified to write about them and provide some insight into one of the most taboo topics in Las Vegas.
Massage Parlors seem to be mythical places for the average tourist, and are the subject of much speculation and joking. That’s all well and good. I make jokes about them too.
Nonetheless, many people simply aren’t aware of exactly what goes on in the majority of these places. You see the exterior of the buildings, and they have names such as “Princess Massage”, “Asian Angels”, and the names just seem provocative. The advertising for these places is also somewhat erotic, but this is because the competition for just about every service in Las Vegas is very high.
First, not everyone who goes to a massage parlor is a pervert or deviant. Some are, but some people who go to bars are perverts, and some people who drive automobiles are deviants as well.
Some people who go to these places actually go to them for gasp … a massage.
I fall into this category.
Massages are very relaxing, and are helpful for a variety of conditions. I will not bother to list all of the conditions they treat, but most people feel better after a good massage.
I have very high arches on my feet, and they often cramp in a painful manner. I get leg cramps after taking a 20 mile bike ride. As an aging, larger guy with a variety of activity-related injuries, I feel fortunate to live in Las Vegas where such a large number of massage parlors exist. As a matter of fact, I am within walking distance to about a dozen of them.
Rarely is my problem not taken care of. If I ask my masseuse to work on my feet, she works on my feet. If my calves are sore, she works those. If I have pulled my shoulder, they work on my shoulders. Hell, one time I went in with severe hand cramps. The muscle between my thumb and forefinger once seized up from typing on a laptop, and the local massage parlor with a provocative name had me typing again within an hour.
The overwhelming majority of massage ladies come from countries where alternative medicine is not only accepted, it is preferred … and it is passed down from generation to generation. They know where pressure points are, and they have an uncanny knowledge of musculoskeletal anatomy. This is why I like Asian Massage Parlors. Massage is part of the Asian culture.
I’m sure properly-trained American masseuses are just as good, but in my experience, they tend to be more expensive, more defensive (you don’t need shoulders, you need neck!), and they just aren’t as convenient. I don’t like making appointments for my massages, I like getting them when I want to.
Enter the Asian Massage Parlor. The drive-thru restaurant of the massage industry. Quick and convenient, no appointments needed.
It should be mentioned that the majority of massage parlors are not brothels.
It is actually a shame that they are so misunderstood, because I have had better massages at parlors, for half the price (or less) than a high-end casino spa.
The primary purpose of each place is no different. To ease pain, soothe the muscles of the client, and to induce a state of relaxation.
If you have ever been to a casino spa, you should have no moral objection to going to a stand-alone massage parlor. They are (usually) well run, clean, and friendly. Yes, sometimes they are in rough parts of town, but the reason for that is economic. The rent is lower, and these areas are more likely to be zoned for small commercial businesses.
Also, most of the masseuses are not prostitutes.
Why do the parlors hire somewhat attractive women?
Again … competition.
I’d rather my waitress be an attractive 22 year old woman in a skirt, than a 50 year old woman in a pantsuit. Same goes for my librarian, cashier, hair dresser, and the lady who works at the DMV. For a normal man, an attractive female makes any experience more enjoyable. That’s biology, folks. I didn’t make it so. If you disagree, blame god and not me.
Just like your waitress, the fact that your masseuse is an attractive young female does not mean that you are doing anything wrong. It’s just good marketing.
“Oh come on, Rex. Enough of this “legitimate” nonsense. Don’t pretend like they won’t touch your wee-wee in there!”
I would infer nothing of the sort.
Often, when the massage is coming to an end, you will be asked if you “need anything else”. This is code. If you say “yes”, you will get your weenie waxed. If you say “no”, you will be thanked and be given privacy to change back into your clothes. It’s really just that simple.
Unlike most people, I do not agree that “something else” is an illegitimate form of massage.
In Asia, part of the full relaxation experience is the “happy ending”. This is not seen as dirty or horrible. It is seen as a relaxing, pleasant, and healthy process for the human male. It is widely recognized that frequently frosting the cake is very important to men’s health. Whether you do it yourself, or it’s part of a massage regimen, is really of no discernible consequence.
Just as you don’t take your urologist out to dinner and a movie after a prostate exam, neither do you take the masseuse. It’s viewed as maintaining part of overall health. Certain cultures simply don’t see it as a big deal to satisfy this particular physiologic necessity.
However, like myself, you can still decline it, and get a damn good massage.
Most of the masseuses I have had are very skilled at the art of massage. I’ve had professional sports massages, massages in expensive hotel spas, and massages in “massage parlors”. I actually prefer the non-pretentious parlors.
Of course, there are some “bad eggs” and the media jumps on those places to show how shameful they are. They have been accused of a number of violations from prostitution to forcing women to work in the establishments. Then again, Walmart has been accused of locking their immigrant workers in the store so they have to clean it before getting out. Exceptions are exactly that … exceptions.
Now, are there places that will do more than a “happy ending”?
Certainly. But the same can happen at a strip club or a casino bar. You can negotiate what you want with anyone for a certain amount of money, but such things really aren’t the primary purpose of massage parlors.
In my opinion, people need to get over the concept of “legitimate” and “illegitimate” massage. Any massage that relieves stress, and makes the client feel better when they leave is completely legitimate. If it does not harm the customer or the masseuse, the customer feels refreshed, and the masseuse is compensated … then it doesn’t get any more legitimate than that.
A typical half hour is $40, and Mr. Winkie incurs a bit of an extra “gratuity”, I don’t exactly know how much the “sacred spot” (prostate) massage goes for, but I’ve heard it’s a C note. If you ask me, that’s a bargain for having someone stick their finger up your ass.
Now if you will all excuse me, I feel my left arch starting to cramp again, and I know just the Oriental Princess to cure it.
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