To Catch a Cheater

First, the bad news: People cheat. But here's the good news: Most cheaters are idiots. After all, what other explanation could there be for sabotaging a relationship using the most cowardly, self-centered and--we dare say--unimaginative break-up strategy in the book? And precisely because cheaters are such idiots, they're also easy to catch--if, of course, you know where to look.

Updated: January 14, 2008

Where Pigs Hide

Bourbon & Branch

501 Jones St, San Francisco, CA 94102

With its unmarked exterior and password-at-the-door entry requirement, this Tenderloin speakeasy is a no-brainer destination for cheating hearts. And while reservations are required for table service, those in the know can arrive anytime for drinks in the hidden library bar. But be forewarned: The caught-and-cornered can easily escape out this secret room's back door and head for the hills.

Holy Cow

1535 Folsom St, San Francisco, CA 94103

No cover charge, cheap drinks and a longstanding reputation for transforming singles into couples (at least for the night) makes this SoMa hangout a prime place to hunt for that dirty, rotten scoundrel on the loose. Don't see that person of interest dancing away in the main room? The outdoor patio is a hotbed of activity on weekend nights.

Barber Lounge

854 Folsom St, San Francisco, CA 94107

Something's rotten in Denmark when a contentedly slovenly mate takes a sudden, inexplicable interest in grooming habits. When this happens, it's likely said mate is headed to this SoMa spot to prep for the next indecent proposal. With hair, nail and body treatments for both men and women, this loft-like space makes gathering evidence to bust the idiot a treat, even for the victims.

Bliss Bar

4026 24th St, San Francisco, CA 94114

With the surrounding neighborhood's near total lack of nightlife, this romantically lit bar and lounge is an obvious choice for cheaters who want to escape to a place where nobody knows their name. Past the bathrooms in back and up a short flight of stairs, the sultry Blue Room creates the ultimate hideout for clandestine couples when it's not rented out for private parties.

S Factor

2159 Filbert St, San Francisco, CA 94123

When little miss prude heads to this Cow Hollow spot best known for incorporating pole-dancing techniques into its fitness classes, one thing's for certain: Somebody, somewhere is reaping the fruits of her hard work. If that person isn't yours truly, then the budding student sure has some s?plaining to do.

Redwood Room

495 Geary St, San Francisco, CA 94102

It's only natural for cheaters to gravitate towards this chic, reservations-only bar in one of downtown's trendiest hotels. Why? Because it was designed by Ian Schrager, the nightlife impresario responsible for the bastion of 1970s philandering that was Studio 54. And should the cheater's mere eye-wandering metastasize into something more, there are plenty of rooms just overhead.

Agent Provacateur

54 Geary St, San Francisco, CA 94108

When a receipt from this Union Square boutique turns up in the pocket of a bedroom buddy putting out more yawns than anything else lately, something strange is afoot. Known for its sexy collection of intimate apparel in naughty silhouettes, the shop is a well-known stop on many a couple's journey towards the bedroom.


2101 Market St, San Francisco, CA 94114

The old axiom, "once a cheater, always a cheater" pretty much always holds true. After catching and discarding the accused, starting over in new digs may be the next best thing any jilted lover can do. This city-wide agency can help replace bad memories with a space worthy of the good ones to come.