VIDEO: Kelowna welcomes first LQBTQ+ cocktail lounge

Friends of Dorothy lounge is located in downtown Kelowna

Kelowna’s business community continues to break down barriers with the launch of the city’s first LGBT2Q+ cocktail lounge.

Friends of Dorothy Lounge, which opened in late January, provides an accepting place for everyone to enjoy a selection of cocktails, food and entertainment.

Rudy Tomazic, owner of Friends of Dorthy, said the establishment was created simply because there was a need in the Okanagan for a place for the LGBT2Q+ community and its allies to hang out where they could be themselves.

“It’s not just about the LGBT2Q+ community, it’s about community as a whole,” said Tomazic.

“We have people that are coming in that are a part of the straight community, the queer community. So, it’s not just for the LGBT2Q+, but for everyone.”

READ MORE: Okanagan youth drink, smoke and have sex more than anywhere else in B.C.

Tomazic said the establishment has been received better than he could’ve ever imagined, often operating at capacity.

“The thing I hear the most is thank you,” said Tomazic, adding people from as far as Kamloops, Osoyoos and Revelstoke have come to see the new lounge.

“It’s been better received than I thought it would be. Not that I didn’t think it would be well received, I just thought it would be a slower build. It’s already at the point where we’re turning people away on the weekends, I don’t have enough seats for people.”

Friends of Dorothy Lounge is located on the corner of Water Street and Lawrence Avenue in downtown Kelowna. The name “Friends of Dorthy” was created with Tomazic’s aunt Dorothy in mind, an inspiring woman who was a member of the LGBT2Q+ community. The term ‘Friends of Dorothy’ was also used as a code to identify yourself as gay in times that were much less accepting.

In terms of the aesthetic, Sticks and Stones design group created the space, which the establishment describes as the “Louis the XIV meets punk chic.”

“It was important to create a space that feels like a VIP experience while not taking ourselves too seriously,” said Tomazic.

“We also wanted to create a lounge experience that offers marvelous taste in a modernly royal setting. The vision was warm, comfortable and inviting.”

READ MORE:Johnny Cash and Waylon Jennings take spotlight in Vernon

The lounge serves affordable signature cocktails such as the Rusty Tin Man, Ruby Slipper and Rainbow Twister. In addition, delicacies like No Brainer and Lion’s Share paired with Friend of Dorothy’s house special cocktails are crafted to take the culinary experience to the next level.

Starting in March, the lounge will also be hosting Karaoke Wednesdays, held by local drag queens, as well as a drag brunch to be launched in March.

For more information on the Friends of Dorthy Lounge, visit its website.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Summerland beverage producers feel effects of COVID-19

Tasting rooms closed as pandemic continues

COLUMN: Summerland council taking stock of its finances in wake of COVID-19

Municipality must examine effect of pandemic on budget items

COVID-19: 2020 Peach Classic Triathlon cancelled

Athletes’ inability to properly train main reason for cancelling the long-running event

Childcare service in South Okanagan to serve just essential service workers

On April 1, OneSky childcare centres will only be available to essential service workers

COLUMN: Plenty of online reading options

Libraries are closed due to COVID-19 but downloads are available through Okanagan Regional Library

‘The Office’ star John Krasinski offers Some Good News in trying times

‘The human spirit still found a way to break through and blow us all away’

No laws in B.C. to force businesses to offer refunds, even during a pandemic

Black Press Media talks to Consumer Protection BC on how to navigate during COVID-19

COVID-19 essential workers can apply for B.C. pre-school child care

Parent referral opens, providers offered emergency funding

Most abiding by COVID-19 rules, back fines, arrests of those who aren’t: poll

But 64 per cent said they’ve personally witnessed people not respecting the measures

Walkers, grocery store customers courteous with physical distancing in B.C.

Some cyclists also acknowledge each other and walkers as well on a wide trail

COVID-19: Vernon restaurant group forecasts 90% revenue loss for eateries

Pretium Restaurant Group stays positive as coronavirus pandemic affects businesses big and small

Valleydrive 2020 moves online due to COVID-19

The fundraiser supports the Central Okanagan Food Bank

Kelowna cafe offers free drinks to hospital workers, first responders

Third Space Cafe is offering free drinks to people on the frontlines battling COVID-19

Most Read