When advertising professionals Josephine Wai Lin and Dala Khajak decided to start a business of their own, they knew it had to be something quirky and original. Their new startup is called ‘ManServants’, and no, it’s not a gimmick. The business is basically a man rental service, giving any woman that can afford it the chance to have a good-looking man attend to her every need.
“A Man, But Better,” declares the tagline for the startup, and this pretty much sums up what ManServants is all about. “We believe personal assistants and pool boys are luxuries every woman, or gay guy, deserves – even if it’s just for a day,” the founders write on the official ManServants website.
Their promo video is really something; it claims that for decades women have had to put up with male strippers that they secretly hated. “Ladies, if you hate your friend, and yourself, get her a stripper,” the video advises. “But if you love your friend, get her a ManServant.” You can’t help wondering if the whole thing is a spoof, but the founders insist that it’s a real service. “It’s not a stripper who gets naked and rubs his greasy body all over you,” the website declares. “It’s a ManServant: a gentleman who treats you like a queen.”
With ManServants, the founders claim, a woman can now make use of a man exactly the way she wants. When she hires one of their escorts, she can name him whatever she likes and he will respond to his new name – ‘whether it’s Garçon, Bartholomew, or Ryan Gosling’. And she could have someone who’s exactly her type: ‘Blond to brunette, James Bond to Middle-Earth, if your type lives to serve, we’ve got him.”
She can also choose the attire her ManServant will dress in, and expect him to do things like serve drinks, light cigarettes, take Instagram photos, feed her grapes, and pretty much anything else she fancies. That sounds quite unbelievable, but it’s all true, and it can all be had at just $80 an hour or $300 a day.
According to the website, the escorts are trained on the ManServants Code of Chivalry to ensure they treat women like a queen. Their basic duties include – waiting on you hand and foot, serving drinks, acting as a bodyguard, taking photos, giving round-the-clock compliments and cleaning up your hot mess. For an additional fee, ManServants could be made musical, have an accent, or act as a personal chauffeur.
The website also points out that ManServants isn’t an adult entertainment service. “No nudity or illegal activities will be permitted,” they warn. “A ManServant keeps his penis in his pants and out of the lady’s face.” “It’s completely PG,” co-founder Dalal Khajah said. “We have a very strict code of conduct and a very rigorous training process.”
The idea for ManServants was born when one of the founders’ co-worker insisted that she did not want a male stripper at her bachelorette party. Khajah and Wai Lin completely agreed; they’d always found the tradition bizarre and awkward. So they got together and envisioned a service that would have sophisticated men willing to do a woman’s bidding at any kind of event. And because every woman’s fantasy is different, ManServants are trained to perform in a variety of situations.
“It’s kind of our dream to annihilate the male stripper industry.” said Khajah. “But really we just want to flip the script and provide another option.” The service has been in beta test for months, and will launch in San Francisco this September.
ManServants doesn’t mean to compete with the multitude of handymen-for-hire services already available on the market. Instead, it aims to provide women in need of some male pampering with a different option.