A brothel in Austria has begun operating as a COVID-19 vaccination center – with the added incentive of a free 30-minute session in the "sauna club" with a "lady of their choice" for anyone who takes them up on the offer.
Fun Palast in Vienna began the service as a way of enticing customers back in, following a drop-off in customers during the pandemic. Austria has recently introduced a policy that proof of vaccinations will be needed to enter bars, restaurants, and other entertainment venues amongst rising cases and relatively low uptake of the vaccine compared to the rest of Western Europe. So far, around 64 percent of the population has been vaccinated, though there has been a recent surge following the vaccine mandate.
The brothel believes that they can reach a different demographic that might have been slower on the uptake with vaccines.
“Many men, very many men with a migration background, virtually refuse vaccination or don’t even know that you can be vaccinated,” Fun Palast manager Peter Laskaris told Reuters, reported by Sky News. “And since we are actually reaching this target group, we decided to set up a vaccination [clinic] here.”
According to the brothel, the scheme has been popular. The added bonus for Fun Palast is that once the customers have been vaccinated, they will be legally allowed to visit the "sauna club" once more.
"I think it's a very good idea to have a vaccination street in the Fun Palast, because the name fun palace suggest to have a bit of fun here and return back to normality a bit more," Mina, who works in Funpalast, told Reuters. "And I also think it's a great idea that this is being offered for women, children and of course men."
Children over 14 are reportedly allowed to get vaccinated at the clinic with a supervising adult. The brothel began the initiative at the start of November, and offers the jabs every Monday from 4-11 pm.