Zanzibar Tavern

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Zanzibar Tavern

The Zanzibar Tavern in Toronto, Ontario is an adult entertainment nightclub and local landmark found on Toronto's Yonge Street strip. It is one of Toronto's oldest nightclubs, which celebrated its 50th anniversary in 2010. The bar originally opened as a live music venue, one of several on Yonge Street between Gerrard and King in the 1950s and 1960s. The Zanzibar featured jazz and blues in the early 1960s. In the second half of the decade, it became the multi-media "Zanzibar A-Go-Go" dance club featuring rock and roll, go-go dancers and then topless female dancers. In the 1970s the tavern became a strip club, reflecting the transformation of the Yonge Street strip from a live music centre in the 1960s to a centre for the sex industry in the 1970s.[1]

Zanzibar has featured such diverse acts as rock musicians The Guess Who in the 1970s and burlesque goddess Annie Ample in the 1980s.

The establishment suffered serious damage to its facade in June 2010, during the G20 summit when Black Bloc anarchists vandalized Yonge Street during the 2010 G-20 Toronto summit protests.

In December 2010, the club garnered attention again when a librarian from nearby Ryerson University took clandestine photographs of dancers and wait staff on breaks on the bar's rooftop.[2]

The Zanzibar has appeared in numerous Hollywood films such as The Incredible Hulk and Exit Wounds.

It has also featured in unusual lawsuits including a man who sued his wife, a former Zanzibar stripper for knowingly infecting him with HIV.[3]


  1. ^ Brown, Edward (November 24, 2010). "Meanwhipe, Up On Zanzibar's Roof". Torontoist. Retrieved January 5, 2012.
  2. ^ Yuen, Jenny (November 24, 2010). "Librarian's peeler peep show". Toronto Sun. Retrieved September 24, 2017.
  3. ^ Small, Peter (January 5, 2010). "Husband's HIV case attacked by lawyers". The Star. Toronto.

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Coordinates: 43°39′29″N 79°22′53″W / 43.65814°N 79.3815°W / 43.65814; -79.3815