February 01, 2006

The Geylang Buzz

The police did their spring-cleaning at Geylang on Thursday night. Three raids, I heard.

Around midnight , the Geylang red-light zone was empty of prostitutes. At Lorongs 10, 12 and Talma Road only the pimps and some onlookers were around. The massage joints along Geylang Road were not operating – no neon lights, no sexily-dressed women sitting at the entrance. But about 2 hours later some prostitutes reappeared and the sexily-dressed masseurs also resurfaced and the neon lights on again.

If the prostitutes are caught in Hong Kong, they will be jailed. Even for a few weeks, a jail term is a great deterrent. In Singapore, they will be deported.

The police raids are necessary to prevent the place being flooded with prostitutes particularly those from China. They also keep crime under control and the number of prostitutes at a manageable level. On the other hand, I don’t think the authorities want the place to be deserted either.

Geylang attracts not only locals but also tourists and foreigners. Of course not all come for the pleasure of the flesh. Some come for sightseeing and many come for the food.

The Geylang Buzz has created business opportunities and economic activities. Geylang is a buzzing with activity from early afternoon to late into the night. Groups that have benefited greatly includes budget hotels and eateries.

Look at the eateries, coffee-shops, massage joints, adult shops, mobile phone kiosks that have sprung up in Geylang during the past two or three years.

Furthermore, Geylang is only a short distance from one of the coming Integrated Resorts. Then visitors to the Resort can come to Geylang for food and women.

The Government may even allow the operators of the Resorts to build a Thai-style massage parlour in Geylang where the masseurs would be recruited from China and South-east Asia. To make it look wholesome, it could be called a health resort and would cater to females as well. Licenses for brothels with China and Indonesian women are also possible.