New York Night Life

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New York Night Life

New York Nightlife

New York ( ) is known as the city that never sleeps. Whether it’s live jazz, rock, comedy, or cabaret; or if it’s sweating on a dance floor, or just people-watching in a neighborhood pub, New York has plenty of choices for your evening’s entertainment. From fine dining to theatre, from poetry readings to all-night raves, NYC is the place to be.

The nightlife scene is still largely downtown. Home to Broadway, the Times Square is enjoying a renaissance, with American theme restaurants, bars and cinemas attracting a huge tourist crowd. The East Village, from 14th Street to Houston east of Broadway, is famous for its local bars that stay open late and its small live music clubs frequented by a young rock-and-roll set. Midtown, especially around Hell’s Kitchen, is developing a reputation. The Lower East Side, an up-and-coming neighbourhood that borders the East Village at Houston and stretches south to Chinatown at Canal, offers a similar nightlife scene and vibe. Classic jazz joints in the West Village and the Meatpacking District’s and Chelsea’s see-and-be-seen clubs are also alive at night. And across the East River, Brooklyn’s Williamsburg neighborhood has become the place for artists, hipsters, and rock-and-roll fans.

Night clubs, Bars & Lounges

There are clubs for almost every idiosyncratic taste. However, keep in mind that when you go is just as important as where you go because a club that was packed at 11 pm might empty out by midnight, and a bar that raged last night may be completely empty tonight.

Manhattan buzzes with nocturnal activity, from bustling neighbourhood bars to cocktail lounges and ultra hip nightclubs. SoHo with its chic nightclubs attracts artists, models and media types. The gay scene is centered around the bars of the West Village, which also offers a lively mix of jazz clubs. Gramercy, in the 20s on the east side, is the ‘new SoHo’ with velvet-rope cocktail lounges. Upmarket tastes are also catered for in the sophisticated lounges, clubs and cocktail bars in Midtown and the Upper East and Upper West Sides.

Hip bars include Max Fish, in Lower East Side, which fills with a young, T-shirt-and-jeans crowd and the newly remodelled Serena, in Chelsea, a subterranean lounge in the cool and legendary Chelsea Hotel. Double Happiness in Chinatown, draws a funky 20-something clientele. A more sophisticated lounge, the Campbell Apartment, Grand Central Station, Midtown, is hidden away in this busy rail terminal, serving top-class cocktails and first-rate Martinis. The refined, clubby bar in the Oak Room at the Algonquin Hotel, Midtown West, is known for its literary origins. For classic New York, there is Chumley’s, or the White Horse Tavern in West Village.

Entrance fees to some of the smarter nightclubs can be pricey and is cash only. Most clubs charge a cover, which can range from Dollar 5 to Dollar 25 or more, depending on the venue and the night. Remember to dress properly, something that is easily accomplished like dressed in black. Smoking is prohibited in all enclosed public places in New York City, including restaurants and bars. Some bars have gardens or fully enclosed smoking rooms for those who wish to light up, but in most places you’ll have to step outside. The normal club closing time is 0400, although many venues are open all night and most of them do serve dinner. An ever-changing crop of ‘after-hours’ places offer entertainment until sunrise. The minimum drinking age is 21 and checking of photo ID is mandatory. The average price of a beer is US Dollar 5–7, while the average price of a cocktail is US Dollar 10. A tip of US Dollar 1–2 is expected per drink.

Jazz Clubs

The city is also home to numerous jazz clubs featuring performances of both the best American and international jazz musicians. All the greats made their names here, and young up-and-comers flock to the city for the chance to prove themselves. The Vanguard opened its doors in 1935 and is the archetypal Greenwich Village jazz club which has the right vibes and an excellent booking policy. Catch pianist Tommy Flanagan here for a perfect jazz night out. At Iridium top internationally known artists play six day runs. Minimum cover charge: Dollar 20.00.


Cabaret comes in many forms–great vocalists, impersonators, skits, stand-up comedy, reviews, parodies, one-act shows. New York’s leading comedy venues feature top-line professionals. Some of these comedy clubs include Caroline’s on Broadway, The Comedy Cellar, and Gotham Comedy Club, – dubbed the ‘best comedy club in Manhattan.’ Dangerfield’s which is owned by comedian Rodney Dangerfield has received rave reviews for 35 years.

Free Cultural Events

Amazingly there are also free cultural events such as Shakespeare in the Park performed by stars, under the stars, in Central Park. It has become a New York institution over time. For the entertainment of children there is a Children’s Theater: Paper Bag Players. For children ages 4 to 9, this group performs in the winter only and offers tales told in imaginative and original ways.


Watching a movie or a show on Broadway in NYC is one of the most popular night time entertainments. See the likes of popular Broadway shows such as The Lion King, Wicked, Spamalot, Phantom of the Opera and Hairspray. But be sure to buy your Broadway show tickets early as like anything else in life, the good ones sell out quickly.


From the astronomically expensive to the inexpensive, from the enormous to the pocket-sized, from the snooty to the happy-to-serve, from haute cuisine to take-out food, restaurants in NYC are in abundance. Almost every cuisine in the world is well represented — from Afghan to Ethiopian to Vietnamese to Polish — as is almost every cooking style. Most of their kitchens are open till 2 am. Times Square, Ninth Avenue, SoHo, the East Village, Greenwich Village, and the Upper West Side are especially known for their restaurants. The better known, more expensive and more popular restaurants require reservations, especially on the weekends

It doesn’t necessarily have to be a weekend. Night life is active every night of the week as nobody in New York waits for the weekend. You can be assured most of the night clubs and other places of the like will be packed like the Saturday nights.

For more information about New York night life visit:

Maria hosts and expresses her passion for events through writing and discussion. She works for Less Corporation at Copyright Heidi Grumm

Article from

Fr. Edmund Sylvia

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