The top brothels in Melbourne under siege: How one classic brothel in Melbourne is meeting the challenge.

The conventional wisdom is that owning a brothel is a ‘licence to print money’. I know licence holders today who are sobbing all the way to the pub, rather than laughingly to the bank. The “oldest profession in the world” or at least the legal, safe one, is going through a period of enormous change, assailed on all sides by illegal massage parlours, online dating, internet porn, karaoke bars, fly-by-nighters in rented hotel rooms and so on. All of them operating openly, despite the sex & drug trafficking and health risks, endemic to them. You would think that the risks are well known to the patrons, but like smoking, even when confronted with facts, people can happily turn a blind-eye.

Rather than simply throwing up their hands in despair, one of the top brothels in Melbourne has set about creating a classic brothel to give a different experience to its guests. The Cherry Tree Garden’s Lily Yang started a year ago with a belief that her guests would want to visit The Cherry Tree Garden for sex but also wanted to be transported, at least temporarily, to a place that is far beyond their everyday life experience, both aesthetically and erotically.

She also recognised that her girls were her real customers and by creating a friendly environment to work in, good people-centred management and having genuine policies for the workplace, she would attract beautiful young women eager and happy to remain loyal to her, who in turn would facilitate the same from her guests. After a year, her business has quadrupled its customers, while others seem to be struggling.

This classic brothel echoes an era of Bogart and Bacall with a big splash of the world of Suzie Wong. Its patrons enjoy the privacy of intimate meeting rooms, secluded parking and managers almost paranoid about protecting their guests’ personal privacy. Its rooms are furnished in a grand style and all six are themed ranging from French romantic to colourful, exotic Thai.

The Williamstown area has become gentrified as more affluent people are moving into the area supplementing its “working class” origins. It is, in itself, a tourist destination, seaport and fine dining region as well as being en route to the Great Ocean Road and Goldfields and is within easy reach of the CBD. Properly presented, a classic brothel in Melbourne, like The Cherry Tree Garden, can secure its place as a top brothel in Melbourne despite any challenges from illegal and other competitors.

THE CLASSIC MELBOURNE BROTHEL