It’s nearly 2015. There's an upside-down Christmas tree at the top of the stairs, which are lined with extravagant oil paintings of naked men and women — well, naked except for leather restraints, that is. In the parlor, the crowd by the bar seems almost oblivious of the gagged woman being flogged and suspended from the ceiling.
This was the scene almost one year ago at New Bohemia, the riotous New Year’s Eve party at the Armory, infamous headquarters of Kink.com.
Downstairs, in a massive main room that stretches nearly a full city block, circus freaks and DJ beats entertain thousands of party-goers. The colossal space has been partitioned into three areas by large black curtains. On one side, upbeat dance music churns out of a laser-laced DJ booth of glimmering geometric shapes. On the opposite side of the room, aerial circus acts and electronic gypsy jazz swirl together before a crowd of top hats and corsets. Between the two areas, couples lounge about, perusing psychedelic art and swaying to ambient, down-tempo dub-step.
Upstairs, in the VIP area, a lucky few watch as a petite blonde is hogtied and zapped with an electric wand. Other guests lean against thrones and pummel horses, taking turns spanking and flogging each other. Some giggle, others moan.
Back downstairs, the dance floors and bar lines are growing thick as people scramble for beverages and search out that special someone. With mere moments until midnight, a marching band winds through the crowd and the dividing curtains are hoisted to the ceiling. Three party areas spill into one-another, connected for the countdown in all their glittering glory.
“Ten!! Nine!! Eight!!…”
NYE 2015 will mark the third year of New Bohemia, and its two producers (Vau de Vire and Opel) are orchestrating similar shenanigans. “It’s a more immersive event experience where art, performance and spectacle are just as important as the music,” says Syd Gris from Opel productions. “It's a one-of-a-kind convergence of the musical, artistic, and Burner-infused underground communities of the Bay Area, with a hefty dose of kink thrown in the mix.”
Tickets are available here. The well-heeled and adventerous will want to shell out for VIP upstairs access while supplies last.