Man Who Identifies as Transgender Files Legal Complaint Against Korean Sauna After Being Denied Access To Nude Women’s Space

A man who identifies as transgender has filed a legal complaint against a New Jersey sauna over “discrimination” on the basis of gender identity.

Alexandra “Allie” Goebert was denied access to the women’s section of King Spa & Sauna in Palisades Park on the basis of his sex, a move he claims was a violation of the New Jersey Law Against Discrimination (LAD).

Goebert, who is a US Army Veteran and law school graduate, filed the complaint to the state’s Department of Law and Public Safety on October 7, 2022 over the incident, which he states occurred last year on August 14. Goebert also is the owner of White Crow Martial Arts, located in Watertown, New York, where he teaches the Korean combat sport of taekwondo.

King Spa & Sauna is a facility inspired by the Korean jimjilbang, a sex-segregated public bathhouse intended for rejuvenation and health benefits. Bathing areas are sex-segregated as they are intended to be used nude. The spa’s website makes specific note of this custom.

“If you are K-spa newbie and uncomfortable being nude, you could skip the bath house. Change to the Spa uniform in the locker room and go straight to the saunas. For bath house users, you must be fully nude,” it advises.

According to the complaint, Goebert was issued a “male token” when he arrived at King Spa & Sauna, “which did not align with [his] gender identity.” Additionally, Goebert alleges that he was asked whether he had undergone genital surgery by a staff member who stated, “Have you changed your front?” to which he replied, “No.”

In accordance with the facility’s policy, Goebert was told he was prohibited from entering the women’s section, where female patrons made use of the hot tubs and wet saunas, because “those areas required nudity.”

Instead, the complaint states, Goebert was told to use the co-ed areas, which required that guests be clothed. Dissatisfied with being denied entry to the area where women were undressed, Goebert complained. The General Manager then issued him a refund and asked him to leave the premises.

According to the legal claim documents, the general manager of King Spa & Sauna is alleged to have failed “to accommodate Complainant so she could use the facilities in accordance with her gender identity.” As compensation, Goebert “requests whatever relief is provided by the law, including, but not limited to, affirmative relief, and compensatory damages for economic loss, humiliation, mental pain and suffering.”

Goebert took to social media to complain about being denied access to areas where women and girls were undressed. In a Facebook post, Goebert suggested he would instead frequent a different facility, Island Spa & Sauna, as an alternative to King Spa. Goebert claims to have reached out directly to Island Spa in one comment, saying, “I have spoken with them personally and they’re trans-welcoming.”

According to admission policies posted on Island Spa’s website, “All guests, including transgender guests, have the right to access the spa in a manner consistent with their gender identity and gender expression.”

The company further implies that any patrons who object to the presence of a man in a women’s section of the spa may be removed from the premises. “We expect all members, regardless of gender identity, to show respect for others so that all members may have a peaceful and pleasant experience.”

“We have a body-positive and accepting environment; respect your fellow bather and help us to create a safe and welcoming environment for guests of all gender, race and body types. Island Spa & Sauna has the right to remove any guest found to be in violation of these policies,” the website states.

The entrance to the women’s bathhouses at Island Spa.

Additionally, rules regarding the bathing area explicitly stipulate that nudity is a requirement: “Bathing suits and clothing are not allowed in the bathing area. Traditional Korean Spas require all guests to be fully nude in our gender separated bathhouses.”

A woman who was a regular patron of Island Spa told Reduxx that she, and several of her acquaintances, would no longer visit the sauna out of fear for their privacy and safety. The woman, who has requested to remain anonymous, pointed out that Asian women in particular were “horrified” to learn of the self-identification policy.

“It fills me with dread knowing this fetishist is going to be there and we wouldn’t know when. I am never going there again. I am absolutely concerned about other women and girls. My circle is mainly Asian women and everyone was horrified to hear about it. We won’t be going there now,” she said.

“Why should a naked man be in there with the women at all? We don’t care about his gender identity. He can always use the co-ed section. Why does he want to be where women and girls are naked? The spa is used by teen girls, too.”

Island Spa’s admission policy allows access to children over the age of 10 on a regular basis, and hosts “family days” once per month which permit entry to children under the age of 10 years old.

Goebert’s Instagram profile reveals that he follows a range of fetish-related accounts.

Among them are women’s lingerie company Honey Birdette and sex toy retailer Wet For Her. Hashtags followed by Goebert include “lesbian”, “boyinadress”, “menindresses”, and the misspelled “nuedisnormal”, which features photos of naked or nearly-naked women, often in sexualized poses.

On Twitter, Goebert has stated that he has not had any genital surgery, and clarified that he has no intention to do so in the future.

Goebert’s legal claim comes as “gender identity” policies allowing adult men into areas of undress designated for women and children are coming under national scrutiny. This week, news reports circulated revealing that a trans-identified male is facing multiple indecent exposure charges after repeatedly stripping down in the women’s locker room at a YMCA in Xenia, Ohio, including when minors were present.

In January, a young woman became the target of trans activist vitriol after she took to a city council meeting in Santee, California, to report that she had seen a male in the YMCA locker rooms. 17-year-old Rebecca Phillips teared up as she recounted her experience at the January 11 meeting, stating she had seen “a naked male in the women’s locker room.”

Christynne Lili Wrene Wood, 66, announced publicly that he was the man that Phillips had been referring to in her testimony. Reduxx would later find that Wood had a disturbing social media history that included posting photos of little girls he compared himself to.

In 2021, another Korean spa in the United States became a flashpoint for debates on gender ideology after a trans-identified sex offender had been granted access to the women’s facilities.

Wi Spa, a jimjilbang-style establishment in Los Angeles, California, was the subject of international attention after a video recorded by a female patron went viral on social media. In the video, the woman confronts spa staff because of a nude male who was exposing himself in front of women and girls in the women’s changing room.

The incident was initially dismissed as a “transphobic” hoax by progressive commentators, but would later be verified by police who issued a warrant for the arrest of Darren Agee Merager, a registered sex offender. Merager was arrested in December of 2022.

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Genevieve Gluck

Genevieve is the Co-Founder of Reduxx, and the outlet's Chief Investigative Journalist with a focused interest in pornography, sexual predators, and fetish subcultures. She is the creator of the podcast Women's Voices, which features news commentary and interviews regarding women's rights.

Genevieve Gluck
Genevieve Gluck
Genevieve is the Co-Founder of Reduxx, and the outlet's Chief Investigative Journalist with a focused interest in pornography, sexual predators, and fetish subcultures. She is the creator of the podcast Women's Voices, which features news commentary and interviews regarding women's rights.