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from www.nypost.com- It’s Thursday night at the dimly lit Financial District club Quest, and a 29-year-old male investment banker and a 22-year-old gallery girl in a short, tight sweater dress exchange flirtatious banter.
Her favorite artist is Picasso. He’s always had a fondness for the Midwest, where she grew up.
“You’re a good egg,” the banker says.
“You’re a good egg, too,” she responds with a coy smile.
They get another round while dudes in crew-neck sweaters awkwardly linger by the bar, shelling out $18 a drink, and a group of girls dance by themselves in a circle to Rihanna’s “S&M,” some with plates of baked ziti in hand.
Recent college grads are disrobing at Saint Venus Theater, an amateur strip club catering to young Wall Streeters.
Fifteen minutes later, the young man finally musters the courage to ask her for a dance.
“Sure,” she says. “It’s $20 a song.”
He nods assent, and she grabs his hand and leads him to a back room. There, dozens of guys are seated thigh-to-thigh on three long rows of red banquettes, while nearly nude girls in their early 20s gyrate atop them, the men groping with wild abandon.
Welcome to Saint Venus Theater — a roving amateur strip club that caters mainly to young finance guys looking for a less tacky, more girl-next-door stripping experience.
Launched in 2009 by a man known to his employees as “Rob S.,” a mysterious character who favors a top hat and long ponytail, Saint Venus started off as a members-only, application-based strip den for a small group of Rob’s financier friends. Since then, it has grown, largely by word-of-mouth among its high-spending and attractive clientele, as a much-whispered-about alternative to the typically trashy strip club.
“You go to a regular strip club, and it’s like a f – – king factory,” says Josh, a 24-year-old who works at a digital marketing company and went to Saint Venus for the first time in November. (All patrons and strippers in this story asked to withhold their real names to protect their day jobs.)
“Those girls are there to make money . . . if you try to talk to them and not get a dance, they’ll say, ‘This guy is a waste of my time,’ in some weird foreign accent and walk away.
“The thing at Saint Venus is I could’ve gone to high school or college with any of these chicks,” adds Josh, who’s now been to the club 10 times.
And for all he knows, he did.
Most of the girls at last Thursday’s event — all between the ages of 18 and 26 — have “normal” jobs. Among the dozens who work at Saint Venus, one is a baby sitter, another is an intern at a fashion start-up and a third is an assistant at a Chelsea gallery.
Yet all are willing to titillate customers with a lap dance for $20 a song. (There’s a $50 entry fee, none of which goes to the girls.)