Lips, the most prestigious drag club/restaurant in the world, has become an institution in New York City and adding locations in Fort Lauderdale, San Diego and Atlanta. Owner Mark Zschiesche, and his alter ego Yvonne Lame’, is also no stranger to New York nightlife. Often a frequent visitor to Studio 54, sometimes channeling Marilyn Monroe, Zschiesche dreamed of having his own establishment one day. And now he has four!
Although Lips is filled to the brim with famous and colorful queens, it has more of a restaurant vibe than that of a club. It caters to all, especially for birthday parties, bachelorette parties and straight women who want to have a night out on the town and an experience of a lifetime.
Zschiesche currently is content in running Lips and has put his heels in the closet; however, his persona will always belong to Yvonne. Lips (227 East 56th in New York City) is open every day until 11:30 (except Mondays).
What’s new at Lips since we last spoke?
Hi, Darling. Not sure when we spoke last, but Lips Florida just celebrated our 10-year anniversary on November 13, and next year we will be opening our grandest Lips to date in Chicago.
Do you have anything special planned for the holiday season?
Lips has its annual Holiday Spectacular Show, which is every Tuesday in December, hosted by Blackie Onasty. It’s a fun-filled show.
How many locations does Lips have now? Any plans for any more – maybe some internationally?
Lips has locations in NYC, San Diego, Fort Lauderdale, and next fall there will be a Lips in Chicago.
Please remind everyone of the hours of operation.
Lips is open every day except Mondays. Our queens need a break from shaving their backs!
Is there a central message or theme that Lips wishes its patrons to walk away with?
To have fun. Lips is all about having a good time. Most people come to Lips to celebrate something special – a birthday, getting married or just life. Have a cocktail and a few laughs with friends and a queen.
Are there ever any queen disputes that have proved to be funny?
A dispute with a queen is never funny, LOL! Once a queen tried to stab another queen with a butter knife. It was so funny; we all laughed about it later. There was a queen was was just spraying herself head to toe in perfume. It got to be too much, so the rest of the queens stopped getting dressed with her. So Mama Yvonne had to step in and tell her to stop spraying her cheap perfume.
What’s the most “fabulous” thing about Lips?
The most fabulous thing about Lips is that it’s a fun place to work. Lips has given livelihood to queens who can make a good living and have fun. That being said, it’s fun for all the queens, the managers, the kitchen staff and the guests, so with that recipe it’s a recipe for success.