Can you imagine 4 consecutive days of fetish parties, BDSM play, and naughty adventures in a tropical paradise? Now, imagine more than 1000 kinksters taking over an entire 5-star hotel to join such festivities. This dream exists and it happens every year in sunny Ft. Lauderdale, Florida. It's the Fetish Factory Anniversary weekend! I was lucky to be a part of this year's 20th installment and I'm still recovering from one of the best extended parties of my life!
Fetish Factory store owner and creator of the event, Glenn Catapano, was pleased to announce that this year they had so many kinksters attending that they needed to book a second hotel for the extra guests! As one of the very first fetish festivals in the United States, in 1995, FF started out of a need from the kink community. Glenn recounts how their “customers wanted to bring their intimate fetish pleasures out in the open. While there were kink events at the time, most of them were private play parties. Fetish Factory combined the love for BDSM play with the passion for fetish fashion and glamour.” Now, the event is one of the top fetish & kink events worldwide.
We arrived at the Renaissance Marriott on Thursday, May 20th, checked into our elegantly decorated room and immediately started getting ready for the first event of the weekend: Chill Lounge Cocktail poolside party. The tropical Florida weather makes it ideal for skimpy outfits, although many guests ventured into full latex catsuits and most ended up in the hotel pool for refreshing midnight swims. As a kink party veteran, the opportunity to enjoy a lounging poolside environment in fetish was a welcome novelty. The pool became a meeting point throughout the weekend, day and night.
For those still searching for the perfect outfit for the weekend's many festivities, a courtesy limo shuttle service to the Fetish Factory megastore was provided Thursday to Saturday from 1pm until 6pm. With a massive 6000+ square feet showroom (500m2), one could easily lose 3-4 hours in the blink of an eye. They stock a wide variety of styles for men, women and androgynous folk, with latex, leather, PCV, neoprene, corsets, collars, BDSM equipment and of course an amazing selection of fetish shoes and boots. This really is the one stop shop for all your kinky needs. Aside from the shopping delights, visiting the store was also a fun opportunity to meet other guests and socialize while playing dress ups. It’s always nice to get a second opinion when there are so many fabulous outfits to choose from! And with the special event discounts of up to 30% off, it was hard to resist the rare fetish bargains. They even gave us complimentary flip-flops with every purchase; which turned out to be very practical after days of sky-high stilettos!
If you were done shopping and the hot sunshine was not your cup of tea, there was also a fully equipped dungeon in one of the large conference rooms. So guests could play to their hearts content in the comfort of a refreshing air conditioned environment.
The three big evening events (Friday, Saturday and Sunday) were a whirlwind of latex beauties, leather beasts, and crafty creatures in sparkly fashions, oiled muscle gods, and a smorgasbord of fetish. My favorite party was the Saturday event, The FF Anniversary Ball, as the DJs were phenomenal and the spacious open air venue hosted a variety of play spaces, thus pleasing dancers and players alike. All nights were graced with dazzling entertainers such as the sexy tribal fire acrobat Holy Scar and the original Rubberella: Jean Bardot.
And for the cherry on top, each evening ended at the poolside after parties, where guests could bring their fetish to a more casual level, often showing a lot more skin and with more impromptu play scenes in the little cabanas. And as one may expect, some players were even found doing some extreme play by the pool and were asked to take it to a more private space. Naughty, naughty... It's hard to know where to draw the line at play events, but the organizers were great at keeping the guests informed of rules and "no-no's" via email and the dedicated Twitter page, so after the few faux-pas, people became very well behaved, still maintaining a healthy level of perversion.
Sunday afternoon was the official Pervy Pool party, an event like no other in the world. Latex swimwear and a variety of tropical fetish fashions come out to play and splash around the pool and spa. Mind you, although Sunday was the official pool party, there was much latex frolicking by the pool every single day of the festival. So if you're a fetish fashion victim, be sure to prepare a different poolside attire for each day. And remember your oil-free sunscreen, parasols, and handheld fans as the sun is seriously HOT in Florida!
By Monday morning, I was exhausted but satisfied. We took a late check out on Monday, but I recommend checking out of the hotel on Tuesday. That way, you’ll be able to recover unrushed and say goodbyes to the inevitable new fetish family you'll create if you attend Fetish Factory in the future. Parting ways is such sweet sorrow, but the "fet-lag" can be cured by knowing that we can always reconnect next year in the same fet-time and fet-location to do it all again!
Fetish Factory hosts monthly kink parties throughout the year and the anniversary event is usually held during Memorial Day Weekend, in the end of May.
Be sure to plan early for next year! Tickets usually go on sale in January, and you can only stay at the hotel if you get the VIP all access pass. Hotels get booked out as early as March, so plan ahead to avoid disappointment. For all the info and to sign up to their newsletter, check:
And join the Fetish Factory Facebook group to connect with friends past and future:
Article originally published on iFet.com, July 2015.