A tent on Fort Myers Beach is housing an adult entertainment nightclub, according to WINK News, a local news source. The tent takes the place of Fantasy’s at the Beach, an adult nightclub which was destroyed by Hurricane Ian in late September of 2022.

Fantasy’s on the Beach was completely decimated by the Category 4 storm, a story covered by ED’s Eugenio Torrens just after the hurricane hit less than a year ago. A week after the damage, ED Publications had the opportunity to speak with Fort Myers Entertainment’s Regional Manager Emrah Sevinch (the group that owns the club) about his experience with Hurricane Ian, and how the owners were planning to rebuild Fantasy’s.

“It’s kind of rubble right now, but we fully intend to rebuild bigger and better,” said Sevinch back in early October, 2022. “It’s unbelievable destruction. [The seven-foot storm surge] completely washed through our club,” he said. “The destruction inside…I can’t even describe it. There are couches from the champagne room that are behind the bar, and the cooler is all the way across the club. It looks like somebody took the club, filled it up with water, and then shook it violently for four hours.

The destruction of Fantasy’s was so severe that the building had to be demolished, according to Sevinch, because it was no longer structurally-sound. Although a full re-construction has not yet been possible, the temporary tent club was set to open last Friday.

John Gallagher, president of Vixens Fort Myers Beach LLC, says the preliminary effort is meant to provide some relief for people devastated by the storm. Before the announcement of the establishment came, beachgoers had been wondering what the tent was for, reports WINK.

“A strip club in a tent…That’s not something I’ve ever heard of,” says a beach bystander, Demetrius Brown.

As promised in their initial plans for return, the club was renamed “Vixens Fort Myers Beach,” to match the chain. “Our clubs are known as, Vixens, the sexy circus,” says Gallagher. And so, the owners, who are very much in favor of this circus kind of thing, said, ‘Let’s put up a tent. Let’s have a circus’. And, you know, ‘Let’s do what we do best.'”

At the end of hurricane season last year, Gallagher explained to ED that part of the rush to get the club back in business had to do with its adult entertainment license, which would expire if no club was in operation for a certain period of time. Fantasy’s — now Vixens — also explained that they had 50 people out of work they were desperate to keep afloat.

Inside the tent, a stage is set, but the rest of the details of the interior are known only to those who visited this weekend.

“I’m just kind of shocked that [Lee County is] letting them do it…Hurricane season is coming,” Jim Hail, a Fort Myers resident, says.

Said Sevinch in last year’s interview with ED, “We’re hoping that this will be a story of rejuvenation because we fully intend to make that club the best club in Lee County. We look forward to a grand re-opening.”

The temporary permit allows Vixens Fort Myers to operate out of its tent facade noon to midnight on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays through March 24, according to News-Press, a part of the USA TODAY Network, owned and operated by Gannett Co., Inc.

A brand new building is intended to replace the tent, which could erect before this year’s end.

“We are part of a group that has over 25 years of experience in the adult entertainment nightclub industry,” says Sevinch, “(and) prides itself in running upper-class, fully insured, professionally managed high-end establishments,” according to News-Press.

Read the WINK coverage here, New-Press coverage here and ED’s past story, which appeared in the November 2022 issue of ED Magazine here.

Featured image of Fort Meyers beach after Hurricane Ian hit in 2022 from Flickr.

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