Sex industry premises

Sex industry premises

Sex and the City

The City of Sydney regulates businesses in the sex and adult-entertainment industries, including brothels, swingers' clubs, strip venues, adult bookshops and adult cinemas.

Brothels and massage premises

All premises that provide a sexual service are defined in City policy as brothels. This includes premises that provide 'full service' sexual intercourse and premises that may not provide sexual intercourse but provide other sexual services including 'relief' and erotic massage.

Adult entertainment and sex industry premises are only permissible in some areas, depending on land zoning. Information about the zoning can be obtained by contacting our Duty Planner on 02 9265 9333.

The building owner's written consent for the venue to be used as sex service or adult entertainment premises use must be obtained for a development application.

Adult entertainment and sex industry premises must not be:

  • located in areas zoned residential
  • within buildings that are also used as residences
  • immediately adjacent to or directly opposite land developed for residential purposes
  • next to or directly opposite sensitive land uses such as churches, daycare or child-minding centres, primary and secondary schools, parks, playgrounds or other places children frequent.

New sex industry and adult entertainment premises must not be located within a radius of 75 metres from an existing, approved adult entertainment or sex industry premises.

Lodging a development application

Applications can be collected from and lodged at any City location. Development application forms are also available online.

Home occupation sex service premises

City policy for Home Occupation Sex Service Premises varies according to premises. For information concerning policy contact the Duty Planner.


Complaints concerning unauthorised or non-complying adult entertainment and sex industry premises can be made to the City.

Health information

Additional information and resources for the operators of sex industry premises are available from the following sexual health centres:

Royal Prince Alfred Sexual Health Clinic
Tel: 02 9515 1200

Sydney Sexual Health Centre
Tel: 02 9382 7440

Kirketon Road Centre
Tel: 02 9360 2766

Related agencies

Tel: 02 9206 2000

Department of Immigration and Citizenship
Tel: 131 881

NSW Health
Tel: 02 9391 9000

NSW Sexual Health Infoline
1800 451 624

NSW WorkCover
Health and Safety Guidelines for Brothels
Tel: 1300 799 003

Sex Workers Outreach Project (SWOP)
Tel: 02 9206 2166


Duty Planner
City of Sydney
02 9265 9333

Last updated: Friday, 7 September 2012