When Brad Kohlmeyer, owner of Kohlmeyer Remodeling, put his three-story, five-bedroom, three-and-a-half bathroom Geist home up for sale last May, the listing got a huge amount of national and international attention. Unfortunately, it wasn’t about the house per se, but about its most unusual feature: a fully equipped basement strip club setup, complete with brass poles, a stage, and a full-service bar.
“I have done large basement projects at Geist for customers with bars, but none have asked for a ‘dance room,’” Kohlmeyer says. “This was my own idea, with my wife’s blessing, as a novelty addition to our bar makeover project.”
The arrangement includes a narrow wooden stage fitted with two stripper poles, backed by full-length mirrors and fronted by a VIP lounge–worthy leather couch. Other basement touches include the aforementioned wet bar, LED strip lighting, a pool table, and a dining area. A couple of leather-fitted restaurant booths were obtained for the basement at auction, and the bar’s glass liquor display shelves came from a defunct L.S. Ayres department store.
Given that there are entire YouTube videos devoted to amateurs either falling off of or accidentally ripping down their home-installed dance poles, Kohlmeyer is careful to note that his are very firmly mounted. It would take, he estimates, either an extremely energetic or overweight dancer to tear them free. Not that an actual stripper has ever used them, he says.
“The dance room was just a fun, quirky little project that I put together for controversy, really,” Kohlmeyer says. “I thought it would be funny to add black lights and a mirrorball with tacky velvet curtains and gold tassels.”
Unfortunately for him, ever since he posted interior shots of the house (including the basement) online, a whole bunch of other folks have found the setup funny as well. The Instagram site Zillow Gone Wild (which showcases oddball or over-the-top house listings from around the world) featured pictures of the place, along with reams of less-than-savory reader comments about the Kohlmeyer residence. It caused such a stir that both The New York Post and England’s The Daily Mail also ran stories.
For what it’s worth, Kohlmeyer states that the poles and stage are easily removable, which would essentially turn the subterranean space into a vanilla furnished basement just like any other.
“You could take the disco mirrorball down, and with a slight amount of additional remodeling, it could be turned into a conventional game room or whatever you wanted it to be,” he says.
Though the house has gotten lots of media attention, that hasn’t translated into a ton of buyer interest. Kohlmeyer says he’s done maybe a half dozen showings so far. Mostly because he’s not in a big hurry to sell, but also because he’s selling it himself, so real estate agents aren’t exactly lining up to show off his listing. It’s marked at $799,900.
Perhaps not surprisingly, potential buyers’ opinions about the basement are split.
“It depends on who’s looking,” Kohlmeyer says. “I let potential buyers know that the stage and poles are easily removable. I left the original carpet and baseboards intact below. But several have said ‘No, I wouldn’t be removing anything.’”