Sainte-Sophie neighbours in a twist over swingers' house
Published Tuesday, November 27, 2012 10:41PM EST
Swingers in Sainte-Sophie are causing a stir.
The sleepy Laurentians municipality is taking the owner of a nearby swingers' home to court over weekend parties because, they say, the noise is too loud. They hope to put a stop to the late-night activities.
“I hear the music and mostly the bass and even with the windows closed, I still hear it,” said one man, who wished to remain anonymous. He said he is fed up with rowdy nights at a house across the street, where a swingers’ club called Chez Catherine throws parties until 3 a.m. every weekend.
The music can also be heard in the bedroom of Emilie Boisvert's seven-month-old daughter.
“It's definitely not ideal,” she said. “When we moved here we thought it would be a quiet neighbourhood.”
Benoit Mallette, co-owner of the swingers' club, said he'll lower the music, but believes he's done nothing wrong.
“It’s social encounters, and people are allowed to have sex at our place,” he said.
Swinging is legal -- it has been since a 2005 Supreme Court ruling. That's forcing the city to resort to creative ways to eradicate the club.
Officials at Sainte-Sophie city hall issued this statement saying the club is illegal due to zoning laws that say a residential house shouldn't be used for commercial purposes.
“It’s a residential area so we would rather keep it that way,” said the anonymous neighbour.
Mallette, however, said Chez Catherine is not really a business.
“It's not a swingers' club, it's a swingers' house. We do private parties. We don’t sell alcohol. The cover charge is just for the fees for the spa, the towels, washing, cleaning up the place,” he said.
He plans to keep the parties going.