Shine On

Playboy club to open in India, but without the nudity

Sherlyn Chopra was the first Indian woman to pose nude for Playboy earlier this year. (Getty)When the Playboy Club opens in Goa, India this winter, its bunnies will be fully clothed.

Sanjay Gupta, the Indian businessman bringing the Playboy brand to India, claims his Mumbai-based PB Lifestyle company is working closely with Playboy executives to redesign the traditionally scandalous costumes to make them more appropriate for a country with strict modesty standards, the New York Times reports.

"Think of a modern Indian woman," he vaguely describes the confidential redesign, saying that the new look will be "close to the traditional" one.

"Bunnies are an integral part of Playboy culture. We will have bunnies but keeping in mind Indian sensibilities, we are toning down the costume," he tells the Associated Press.

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Yes, those iconic ears will remain.

The bunnies will be "rigorously trained" and imported from the United States, Australia, Britain and other countries.

The club may eventually hire local Indian bunnies, the Wall Street Journal reports, yet it's hard to believe that in a country where cheerleaders are ordered to cover up, kissing in public is taboo, and there are no specific laws against sexual assault, that recruiting for bunnies will be a breeze.

Playboy magazine is currently banned in India.

While Gupta hopes his Goa Playboy Club will be the first of many — he plans to eventually open 120 of them across the country. But first he must appease Manohar Parrikar, Goa's chief minister, who has vowed to keep a close watch on the club.

"We will not allow it (to operate) if there is anything wrong," Parrikar tells The Press Trust of India.

"Assuming there is going to be vulgarity and activities that are not in tune with the Goan culture, their proposal will not be granted permission," Nikhil Desai, Goa's director of tourism, tells the Associated Press. "However, they could be setting up a perfectly decent club."

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Gupta insists indecency won't be a problem, as he hopes to rebrand Playboy as an aspirational lifestyle brand.

"We will dissociate from nudity completely," he claims. "We are positioning it around lifestyle, aspiration and glamour."

Gupta is also careful to distance himself from Sherlyn Chopra -- the first Indian woman to pose nude for Playboy earlier this year.

"I have nothing against her, but as an Indian lady she is associated with Playboy magazine," Gupta says. "PB Lifestyle has nothing to do with that."

In fact, Gupta's version of the Playboy Club isn't even a boys-only club.

"Women are welcome, too. We would make the environment, the ambience, extremely comfortable for women," Mr. Gupta claims.   

Watch the video below about how Jenny McCarthy posed for Playboy at age 39 earlier this year .

 

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