Host to Presidents Bush and Clinton, the Windsor’s and other royalty, The Colony Hotel has been the center of Palm Beach society for more than 60 years, An intimate, friendly boutique hotel with British Colonial flair, it is steps away from world famous Worth Avenue and the beautiful Atlantic Ocean.
This landmark hotel recently completed an extensive $15-million renovation and offers guests the choice of charming hotel rooms, luxurious suites, spectacular penthouses and spacious two bedroom villas.
One of its most impressive features is Polo, a sophisticated bar and restaurant, and hotspot for gay Palm Beachers for the past five years. Every Thursday evening around 7:30pm, the bar begins to fill up with the who’s who of gay Palm Beach society. Business owners, attorneys and doctors crowd the bar to enjoy fruitful conversation while sipping champagne and martini’s.
Although Palm Beach has a reputation for being pretentious, I found that not to be the case. Being new to the scene, I was greeted with friendly smiles, handshakes and the occasional kiss. A couple visiting from Oklahoma was impressed by the large turnout. David states, “This would never happen where we live, that’s why we come to the Colony every time we visit.” His partner Brian, a little bit more reserved, spent most of his time gazing through the crowd.
Local resident Alfred Fiandaca, owner of several high-end boutiques bearing his name, says that the evening gives Palm Beach, “a sense of neighborhood.” Fiandaca has been attending for five years and describes the atmosphere as “very friendly and welcoming.”
Peter Emmerich, proprietor of Grandview Gardens, a Bed & Breakfast in West Palm Beach tells SFGN that he and his partner Rick are also long time regulars. “Rick and I have been going ever since we moved to West Palm Beach. We go there because it is the only venue for a gay event which happens at an upscale location with lots of space and light, an educated crowd and no blaring music.”
Emmerich adds, “You can actually talk to people, not yell at them like in most places. We like to take friends there who are visiting from Europe, because it is very “Palm Beach” on the one hand and truly gay on the other. They always meet a lot of people and have a good time chatting.”
The Polo bar isn’t the only option for a wonderful Thursday evening at the Colony. The hotel has played host to world-famous talent for decades. Coming to the Royal Room Supper Club in March include Hollywood Squares host, John Davidson and Marilyn Maye March, a singer who holds the record for most appearances on The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson.
The Colony Hotel
155 Hammon Avenue, Palm Beach