New York City Nightlife

New Yorkers are fond of the "work hard, play hard" maxim, but the truth is, Gothamites don't need much of an excuse to hit the town. Monday is the new Thursday, which replaced Friday and Saturday, but it doesn't matter: the bottom line is that there's always plenty to do in this 24-hour city. Whether it's raising a glass in a divey 1930's saloon, a gay sports bar, the latest dimly lit cocktail den,

or a swanky rooftop lounge; checking out the latest band, or laughing it up at a comedy show, it isn't hard for visitors to get a piece of the action.

The nightlife scene still resides largely downtown—in the dives of the East Village and Lower East Side, the classic jazz joints of the West Village, and the Meatpacking District's and Chelsea's "seeandbeseen" clubs. Midtown, especially around Hell's Kitchen, has developed a vibrant scene, too, and plenty of preppy hangouts dot the Upper East and Upper West sides. Brooklyn, especially Williamsburg, is the destination for hipsters.

Keep in mind that when you go is just as important as where you go. A club that is packed at 11 pm might empty out by midnight, and a bar that raged last night may be completely empty tonight. Paper magazine has a good list of roving parties. You can check their online nightlife guide, PM, via their website (www.papermag.com). Another streetwise mag, the L Magazine (www.thelmagazine.com), lists what's happening at many of the city's lounges and clubs, as well as dance and comedy performances. Scour industry-centric websites, too, like Eater and Grub Street, which catalog the comings and goings of many a nightlife impresario. The New York Times has listings of cabaret and jazz shows, most comprehensively in their Friday and Sunday Arts sections. Bear in mind that a venue's life span is often measured in months, not years. Phone ahead or check online to make sure your target hasn't closed or turned into a polka hall (although, you never know—that could be fun, too).

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Brooklyn 107

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Bay Ridge 3

Bedford-Stuyvesant and Crown Heights 7

Boerum Hill and Cobble Hill 5

Brighton Beach and Coney Island 1

Brooklyn Heights and Downtown Brooklyn 2

Bushwick and East Williamsburg 8

Carroll Gardens 6

DUMBO 3

Ditmas Park and Midwood 3

Fort Greene and Clinton Hill 4

Gowanus 7

Greenpoint 11

Park Slope and Prospect Park 5

Prospect Heights 5

Red Hook and the Columbia Waterfront District 3

Sunset Park 1

Williamsburg 28

Windsor Terrace, Greenwood Heights, and South Slope 5

Midtown West 23

West Village 16

East Village 16

Greenwich Village 11

Lower East Side 10

Upper East Side 10

SoHo 8

Midtown East 8

Gramercy 6

Chelsea 6

Harlem 5

Flatiron District 4

Meatpacking District 3

Upper West Side 3

Queens 2

Murray Hill 2

NoHo 1

Union Square 1

NoLIta 1

Chinatown 1

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Category

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Bars/ Pubs 163

Brewpubs/ Beer Gardens 8

Cabaret 4

Cafes–Nightlife 1

Comedy Clubs 7

Dance Clubs 7

Music Clubs 37

Piano Bars/ Lounges 11

Tapas Bars 1

Wine Bars–Nightlife 4

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Best For

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Business 4

Family 1

Gay and Lesbian 13

Historical 16

New 4

Romantic 27

Service 1

Trendy 28

Views 7

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New York City Nightlife

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American Trash

  • Bars/Pubs

You might tell from the name that this isn't exactly your granddad's UES drinking establishment. Bicycle tires, golf clubs, and other...

Auction House

  • Bars/Pubs

This Victorian-style lounge brings a touch of downtown chic to the sometimes suburban-feeling Upper East Side with candlelit tables,...

Bar Pleiades

  • Bars/Pubs

The cocktail bar companion to Café Boulud, also in the Surrey Hotel, Bar Pleiades is a livelier alternative to the more staid atmosphere...

Brandy's Piano Bar

  • Piano Bars/Lounges

A singing waitstaff warm up the mixed crowd at this delightful and intimate Upper East Side lounge, getting everyone in the mood to belt...

Dangerfield's

  • Comedy Clubs

Since 1969 this has been an important showcase for prime comic talent like Jay Leno and Jim Carrey. The decor is standard, but prices...

Merchants

  • Bars/Pubs

The epitome of a large Upper East Side lounge—sleek, shiny, low lit, and sophisticated—the ever-popular Merchants packs them in mostly...

Opia

  • Bars/Pubs

The motto for this upscale-yet-unpretentious bar-restaurant—"If you like us, tell your friends, and if you don't, tell your enemies!"—isn't...

Session 73

  • Bars/Pubs

Young patrons and live music (ranging from jazz to blues to funk) set this sizable restaurant and bar apart from others in the neighborhood...

The Carlyle

  • Piano Bars/Lounges

The hotel's discreetly sophisticated Café Carlyle hosts such top cabaret and jazz performers as Christine Ebersole, John Pizzarelli,...

The Comic Strip

  • Comedy Clubs

The atmosphere here is strictly corner bar, belying its storied history: Eddie Murphy is said to have discovered Chris Rock here, for...

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