"Orlando's oldest gay entertainment club, the Parliament House, faces foreclosure and is headed into receivership, according to court filings.%0D
Houston-based Southwest Guaranty Ltd. and Compass Bank of Alabama initiated foreclosure actions against the property on North Orange Blossom Trail in July over a $7.5 million mortgage that matured at the end of 2009. Attorneys for the creditors said Monday they expect it will taken over this week by a court-appointed receiver, which would continue the club's operations under court orders.%0D
The hotel, which opened in the 1960s as a stopover along what was then a highly traveled section of U.S. Highway 441, suffered after Interstate 4 opened in the mid-1960s and became the preferred route for travelers through Central Florida. Historians say it became a gay club in the 1970s.%0D
Entrepreneur Donald Granastein and his wife purchased it in 1999 and have operated it since then. The couple have been credited with renovating and reinvigorating the somewhat-faded landmark on the western edge of downtown.%0D
Granastein said Monday he didn't have the money to repay the note when it came due. He added that he holds the liquor license and expects to continue operating it, even under a receiver.%0D
"Am I happy with this? That's a big no," he said. "But I'm stuck with whatever happens, and we will be open 100 percent."%0D
Lenders have taken the initial steps to foreclose on the property, which is owned and controlled by Grantastein, president of Parliament Partners Inc.; Gerald Cadesky; and the Gardens LLC."%0D
I''ve had some great times at the P-House. I hope it makes it through.
First Church Street and now this?
Pumpin'' up the P-house!
"La Casa del Parliamento" is a gay historical landmark. It must be kept alive, like the Stonewall Inn.
The Parliament House in Augusta, Georgia is not related to the Parliament House in Orlando, Florida. In fact, the P-House in Augusta is so raunchy it makes the one in Orlando look like Disney World.
Here's a P.H. history that Jesse Monteagudo wrote for the Bilerico Project:%0D
I first stayed at the Parliament House in Orlando in the summer of 1976, just a year after Bill Miller and Michael Hodges purchased the Abbey, a rundown motel at 410 North Orange Blossom Trail, and turned it into Florida's premier gay resort. If I recall correctly, the rooms were rather seedy, certainly in comparison to the big hotel chains that began%0D
to take over Orlando in the wake of Walt Disney World. %0D
But, if the Parliament House was a dump, it was our dump. It hosted a wild pool party every day, the five bars and a disco catered to every segment of our community, and the Playhouse Theater presented a series of memorable shows, hosted by the immortal "Miss P" (Paul Wegman). Most notorious of all was "balcony bingo": a never-ending parade of men of every age, color and lifestyle who cruised their way around the P-House,%0D
even (especially) after the bars closed. %0D
Those were the days.%0D
The last time I visited the Parliament House was in the summer of 2009. %0D
The rooms were a bit run-down, and "balcony bingo" was not what it used to be. (Neither was I: This time, I went with my partner of over 24 years.) But the pool parties were still hot; the bars and disco still attracted crowds; and the fierce Darcel Stevens hosted fabu drag shows at the Footlight Theater and Cabaret where Miss P once reigned supreme.%0D
A lot has happened to "La Casa del Parliamento" (to quote Miss P) during the 35 years of its gay existence. Both Miller and Hodges died from AIDS-complications - Miller in 1987 and Hodges in 1992 - and the P-House was inherited by Hodges's clueless relatives. The place floundered in increased decay until 1999, when it was purchased by the husband and wife team of Don Granatstein and Susan Unger. %0D
The new owners gave the P-House some much-needed renovations and the place resumed its place as Orlando's de facto community center. %0D
Unfortunately, Granatstein and Unger made some unwise business decisions, like trying to start a time-share resort next door. And while%0D
the Parliament House didn't change much, the community around it did. %0D
Gay tourists no longer had to stay in the P-House in order to be gay; as Orlando's theme parks and world class hotels began to court the lavender dollar. The Granatsteins, a straight couple, frowned upon "balcony bingo," though AIDS and the aging of Orlando's gay population were also responsible for the decline of that time-honored tradition.%0D
The current recession, which struck hard at the disposable incomes of so many of us, was not kind to the Parliament House. This venerable gay landmark is now facing a foreclosure action filed by its creditors. %0D
According to the Orlando Sentinel, the Houston-based Southwest Guaranty Ltd. and Compass Bank of Atlanta initiated foreclosure actions over a $7.5 million mortgage that matured at the end of 2009. The P-House will be taken over by a court-appointed receiver, who will continue regular operations under a court order. %0D
Don Granatstein told the Sentinel that he didn't have the money to repay the note when it came due. However, he continues to hold the liquor license and plans to continue to operate the P-House, even under a receiver. %0D
"Am I happy with this? That's a big no," Granatstein told the Sentinel. "But I'm stuck with whatever happens, and we will be open 100 percent." (more)%0D
As a gay man with an interest in LGBT history, I believe there are certain places that need to be preserved as community landmarks. One of them was New York City's Stonewall Inn, which went through a series of changes over the years before finally resurfacing anew as a gay bar. %0D
For LGBT Floridians, Orlando's Parliament House is a community landmark that served our community well for 35 years, affecting the lives of several generations of lesbians, gay men, bisexuals and transgender people almost as much as the Stonewall Inn did. It would be worse than tragic if the P-House goes under. %0D
For all its faults, the Parliament House was and is Florida's "gay kingdom;" a queer oasis in the middle of the Bible Belt that was always there to serve our ever-changing community. I pray that "La Case del Parliamento" will survive this current crisis, and continue to serve and thrill and please us for many years to come.%0D
I'd like to thank historian James T. Sears and the GLBT History Museum of Central Florida for useful information and long-forgotten facts about the history of the Parliament House.%0D
It would be nice if this place were rescued like the Stonewall Inn.
My family and I stayed there twice in the early 70''s when we went to Disney World. \
My mother liked the place so much she told her boss to stay there and by that time it had turned gay. He has a freak out because of it. \
I hadn''t returned there until the early ''90''s. It was the same place it was in the 70''s, but gay.
R13, what did your Mom''s boss think of "balcony bingo"?
[quote]The Parliament House lives!%0D\
Like Zsa Zsa Gabor - still hanging in there.
Wow, there''s a lot of old queens on this thread.
Give Up The Funk (Tear The Roof Off The Sucker)
Half the cast of RuPaul''s Drag Race is scheduled to play at the P-House next month: Tyra Sanchez, Juju Bee, Nina Flowers, and ONgina.
The Empress Carlota
Three of Colt Studio''s brightest stars will grace the Parliament House stage this weekend, taking off as much of their clothes as the law allows.
Whorelando needs a safe space for pimps and their charges! We''ve seen what happened at Kittinger Park.
"La Casa del Parliamento" has scheduled a "HallowScream" party on October 2. I guess they don''t want to wait til October 31 to start their Halloween celebrations, or perhaps they are not confident that the P-House will be around on October 31.
The Parliament House and Zsa Zsa Gabor are still surviving.
[quote]The Parliament House and Zsa Zsa Gabor are still surviving.\
Too close to call on which one has had the most dick in them.
A gay bar closing? What a shame. Where are all the attitude throwing gameplayers going to hang out at now?
So, what is Balcony Bingo exactly?
Cruising the hotel''s hallways and walkways, stopping by each room''s open door and, if you like what you see, hoping you get invited in. It''s like cruising the baths, back in the day.
Did anyone else click on this expecting a totally different thread?
What were you expecting, r29, another version of dialing a phone with a pencil?
The P-House used to do a fantastic version of "Rocky Horror Picture Show" every October. It was sold out five nights a week for the whole month.
LESLIE JORDAN HEADING FOR P-HOUSE XMAS SHOW%0D
Leslie Jordan will make his third trip to Orlando in as many years for two shows, Dec. 2 and 3, at the Parliament House%E2%80%99s Footlight Theatre.%0D
The impish actor %E2%80%94 best known for his roles in %E2%80%9CSordid Lives%E2%80%9D and as Megan Mullally%E2%80%99s foil, Beverly Leslie, on %E2%80%9CWill & Grace%E2%80%9D %E2%80%94 will star in %E2%80%9CDeck Them Halls, Y%E2%80%99all: An Evening of Southern Holiday Humor.%E2%80%9D%0D
The show is a departure from Jordan%E2%80%99s previous Orlando shows, which were autobiographical reminiscences (and, I can say, very funny).%0D
In %E2%80%9CDeck Them Halls,%E2%80%9D Jordan plays different characters who are lamenting or celebrating the Christmas season.%0D
Among them: A flamboyant ex-stripper trying to win a trip to Las Vegas in a %E2%80%9CWorst Christmas Ever%E2%80%9D contest; and a boy who refuses to take off his Christmas choir robe because he needs to practice.%0D
The Emmy award-winning actor adds costumes and music to the show; he says, %E2%80%9CHoney, it is a dog-and-pony show.%E2%80%9D%0D
%E2%80%9CDeck Them Halls,%E2%80%9D directed by Peter Galligan, is presented by Wanzie Presents. Showtimes are 7:30 p.m. Thursday and Friday, Dec. 2 and 3, at the Parliament House%E2%80%99s Footlight Theatre, 410 N. Orange Blossom Trail, Orlando.%0D
Tickets are $34 in advance; $40 at the door, if available (Jordan%E2%80%99s previous shows have been sell-outs). Purchase online at wanzie.com. Tickets include admission to Parliament House%E2%80%99s clubs after the show for those 18 and older.%0D
This happened a few months ago:
"Orlando police say a man who is HIV-positive raped another man at a popular gay resort in Orlando, the Orlando Sentinel reported.
According to a police report, Kenneth Creuzer, a 48-year-old waiter, told authorities that he walked into an unlocked motel room and assaulted another man. The door to the motel room was left open and Creuzer allegedly walked in and raped the man while he was sleeping face down on his stomach.
The report goes on to state that the man told local police that he was sleeping around 3:05 p.m. and that he heard someone come inside his room but assumed it was his boyfriend. After he realized it was a stranger and not his boyfriend, the man punched Creuzer, who then ran out of the room.
Creuzer was not a guest at the motel, which is part of the Parliament House resort.
Parliament House calls itself "the world’s largest and most famous gay resort and entertainment complex," according to the establishment’s website. It also say it is "the gayest place on earth."
The resort hosts a number of events, including "Boxers and Briefs" night and the "National Miss Large And Lovely Pageant."
In 2010, the resort celebrated its 35th anniversary after it was on the brink of closing down. It was reported that Parliament House was going to go into foreclosure over a $7.5 million mortgage. But a few months later, it was reported the debt was being managed and it would not be closing its doors, HotSpots! magazine reported.
Since the incident, Creuzer has been arrested and suspended from his job as a waiter at Sci-Fi Dine-in Theater at Disney’s Hollywood Studios. He is being held without bail and has been charged with burglary of a dwelling with a battery, sexual battery and having sex without disclosing his HIV-positive status.
The criminalization of HIV-positive individuals for not disclosing their aerostats remains controversial in the United States and many other nations. Despite activists’ concerns that such laws are arbitrary and discriminatory, they widely remain on the books.
Both the federal government and all 50 states have such laws on the books. Even spitting can be considered "assault with a deadly weapon." Back in 2010, the executive director of the Center for HIV Law and Policy, Catherine Hanssens, noted that treating HIV infection as evidence of guilt and a deadly weapon wasn’t appropriate in 1985, and it isn’t appropriate now. To refer to HIV as a deadly weapon in 2010 speaks of just unforgivable ignorance."
Sleeping at the Parliament House face down with the door open is not a good idea.
[quote]the man while he was sleeping face down on his stomach
[quote]his job as a waiter at Sci-Fi Dine-in Theater at Disney’s Hollywood Studios.
Maybe he thought it was a viewing of "The Black Hole."
I've told this story before but it is still fun.
In the early seventies I met someone in the bar and we went to my room. It turned out that I had seen him that afternoon at SeaWorld. He was Batman!
The funniest thing was we tried the magic fingers bed and it would not shut off. We had to get under the bed to unplug it.
Batman was terrific...we had a ball.
What's a gay club?
Any more Parliament House memories?
Omgg! I had some good time there in the 1990s!
I can't believe that 48 year old slept face down on a bed in an unlocked room and didn't expect anyone to take advantage. To try to destroy a man for that, well it's disgusting.
"La Casa de Parliamento" deserves its own reality show.
A 38th Anniversary interview with the owners of the Parliament House, published in HotSpots!