Hookers on Henry Street?

Ok, so a couple of weeks ago Mrs. Fink and I were told a tale of a “couple” who were “prostitutes” living “just a few blocks away” from us by a cabbie dropping us off at home.  Mrs. Fink was fixated on this story and wanted to do a post.  “Feh,” I said, “Lies! Rumors!”

Well, if a posting on Curbed today is correct the bad ‘ol days of Brooklyn Heights are back.   A reader wrote this email to publisher Lockhart Steele:

Subject: Questionable Massage Parlor on Henry Street next to Tazza
Posted by: [redacted]
Wed Aug 12, 2009 6:34 am (PDT)This weekend, my in-laws were visiting and after a long day of walking around the city, I suggested that my husband and father-in-law go to the massage place up the street on Henry near the corner of State Street, which they’d been to together once before. (Blue Diamond Health Center at 307 Henry Street near Tazza.) I had also had massages there over a year ago after my daughter was born, and it seemed fine.

Not sure what else I should do?

My husband and father-in-law both acted embarrassed and changed the subject. Later my husband told me that when they had been there a few weeks before (my in-laws visit often), they had both been offered hand jobs. I was horrified. I know things like this happen in Chinatown, but this is Brooklyn Heights, this is MY neighborhood, and Blue Diamond is a new business here.Later, when I asked my husband for more details, he said that after having his back massage, he was asked to roll over, and then the woman giving the massage pulled his towel away, revealing his naked middle and made the gesture of a hand job. My husband said “No thank you,” and replaced the towel, and she removed the towel again and offered again, pretending not to understand his English. So he got up and pointed to his wedding ring sitting on the table and said, “No thank you. Married.” Then, he said, she acted disgruntled, and finished the rest of the massage quickly and not very well. When he and his father were leaving, he told his dad what happened and his dad said, “Yeah, what kind of place are you taking me too?”

I also had to ask my husband if I was naïve – does every massage place we go to offer him hand jobs, etc? And he said no, this was the first time he’d ever had this experience in New York.

It ends up Blue Diamond is listed on several erotic massage sites online; so this is openly the kind of service they plan to offer. In fact, it seems, this is the only kind of massage they want to offer, since after my husband and father-in-law politely refused, they were treated rudely. My husband says he believes the management has recently changed hands, so maybe they changed the way they do business??

I’ve reported the incident to 311, but have little faith that they’ll do anything about it. I’ve also done a little online research to find out if hand jobs are illegal in New York. Here’s what I found:

Section 29.1(b)(5) of the Regents regulations on massage practice in New York state prohibits “immoral conduct,” which is defined as massage of genital areas and massage of a client who is not properly draped for massage, or by a massage therapist who is not properly dressed.

Share this Story:
  • Publius

    This story may have a happy ending.

  • Cranky

    Oh Publius….groan.


  • http://www.flickr.com/photos/theyardie/298366254/ David

    They never offered me this service! Can I get my money back?

  • AEB

    Very encouraging!

    A bit of vice, now and then, is relished by the wisest…humans.

    That the emailer in the story reported the “illicit” doings shows the depravity to which some people will sink.

  • Smarty Smarkowitz

    Complaining about hand jobs at a local massage parlor is like complaining about crying babies in movies. NO matter what you do people are going to insist on their existence.

    And let’s face it, with the dry as the Sahara hausfraus I see here in the Heights I think more men should be seeking out this respite.

  • promenade

    I dunno, call me prude, but that really grosses me out! Then again, you could have a nice latte afterwards at Tazza…

  • bb

    Why dont I believe that husband?

  • T.K. Small

    My favorite part of the original complaining e-mail is “the management has recently changed hands”.

  • GHB

    “Hello 311?…I was just offered a hand job. Can you direct me to the right department?”

  • T.K. Small

    On the one hand this is very disturbing to read about. But on the other hand, things could get a lot worse.

  • No One of Consequence

    “I know things like this happen in Chinatown”
    That’s a pretty offensive generalization to make. And how, pray tell, does the author know this for a fact?
    She might as well add that she knows they also serve dog meat in all of the entrees in Chinatown.

  • Paul

    This $%$@ needs to shut her cakehole. She’s ruining it for the rest of us!

    P.S. I would hardly call someone who gives a hand job at a massage parlor a “hooker.”

  • Jazz

    On a lighter note, human trafficking is no joke:

  • Jenny

    Get a life. U should b thankful that this is the worst offense taking place in our hood. I think u need a happy ending too.

  • Jazz

    Don’t get me wrong, I’m all for this practice. LEGALIZE IT!

  • aaron

    i just went there for the first time last friday. my neck had been sore and messed up for over a week and i had an hour to kill. i’ve been to plenty of chinatown massage parlors and all of them offer 10, 20, 30, 45, 60 minute options. this one only had 30 mins or 60 mins–30 mins was $44, which was outrageous, but i was hurting.

    so i got in the booth, took my shirt off and she started rubbing my neck WAY too hard. i’ve had countless massages before and usually like it hard but my neck was just way too sore. i asked her to go easy on it and she laughed at me saying it wasn’t a massage and was just touching.

    i told her if she wanted me to leave i’d be happy to, but i’m here for a massage and would like her to continue but a bit softer. she laughed at me again and called in the other woman staffer to laugh at me. then she started massaging twice as hard as when she first started and i screamed out. she kept laughing at me, telling me i just want touching, not massage.

    so i got up and left without paying a cent. horrible horrible place. i had some awful customer service throughout SE Asia but nothing as bad as that.

    do not patronize this place!

  • The Where

    Be thankful it was just your neck.

  • haha

    I think “jazz” will now need to correct the avatar’s name to change the “a” to an “I”.


  • Sticky

    Whatever, this is the border of the heights. You have a problem, call the police.

    This is stil a funny story.

  • LD

    My husband and I have speculated that there may be a few “ladies of the night” that work the Clark Street station. Has anyone else seen them? Usually one or two women standing separately against the doorway looking… for business? And no, I’m not talking about the St. George Hotel kids.

  • Jose Uribe

    I don’t see the problem with a few whores plying their trade in the neighborhood.

  • T.K. Small

    This conversation is getting out of hand!

  • my2cents

    This is the best thread in a while. Happy ending massages are hardly equivalent to prostitution, and are frankly harmless fun that can be good relief to some people. Still, if a patron politely declines it, the staff should respect that. Any reputable hand job parlor should know that.

  • S

    They are being busted right now.. Funny