China is definitely not opening the floodgates to equal rights any time soon. Sodomy was only decriminalized in 1997 and it wasn’t until 2001 that homosexuality was taken off the list of mental illnesses. As of time of writing, no homophobic-related attacks had been reported in recent years. This is probably due in part to the exceptionally low amount of violent crime that occurs in China in general. In fact, Beijing - like Shanghai - is one of the world’s safest large cities.
While the gay scene is not as open or thumping as Shanghai, the increasingly affluent, well-educated, and forward-thinking younger generation has carved out a scene that is both accessible and interesting. Indeed, while Shanghai attempts to claim the top spot in China, Beijing refuses to go down without a fight. Some things never change. There is no dedicated gayborhood, per se. Most nightlife, however, is western-focused, meaning that venues tend to be mixed and accepting. Club Destination is, however, the epicenter of Beijing’s gay scene.