For those of us who dwell in tiny, overpriced city apartments that could barely accommodate a party of three, finding a great place to throw a birthday bash can be a daunting task. So we’ll save you the trouble and present you our list of the best bars, clubs, lounges, and places in between that provide the perfect backdrop for any milestone birthday bonanza.
218 Bowery St (Betw. Prince Street and Spring Street)
Tough bouncers who stick to their lists? Check. Large (enough) dance floor with party music everyone loves? Check. Large (enough) bar with speedy bartenders? Check. Sexy (enough) atmosphere to keep all partygoers feeling groovy? Check. Stripper poles and raised dance floor? You got it. R Bar has it all when it comes to hosting a great birthday bash. Our biggest knock on the joint are the skeevy bathrooms that keep you waiting and are often found to be without paper towels or well-functioning hand dryers.
16 First Avenue (Betw. 1st & 2nd Streets)
It oozes sexy, sultry, and Saturday night fever. Sutra doesn’t disappoint when it comes to providing its patrons with spacious, exquisitely decorated rooms, comfy velvet couches, lively dance music, and fantastic original drinks. Its staff prides itself on its service, and it stands up to the quality establishment it appears to be from the inside out. The line at the door and at the bathroom can be daunting, but that shouldn’t stop you from booking your next party here.
14 E. 58th St. (Near Fifth Ave.)
It’s possible what we love most about Pop Burger is the actual burger we always find ourselves feasting on after a night of partying away at either of its two locations. Greasy late night food aside, Pop Burger isn’t as functionally spacious as some of our other picks, though its multiple floors make it easy to get a drink in a jiff. Its specialty cocktails and popping music make it a sweet spot for a birthday throwdown. Add in the after hours food, and you’ve got yourself the ingredients for a memorable night out.
So it’s not a bar or a club or a lounge, but don’t tell anyone that works there, including the DJ, that. Sammy’s Roumanian is like a Bar Mitzvah in your bubby’s basement, except there are no kids and just about everyone is hopped up on ice cold vodka from the bottles of Ketel One or Grey Goose frozen in bricks of ice. You don’t have to be Jewish to party here, the kibbitzy DJ will make fun of you one way or another. And in between munching on chopped liver or the ginormous tenderloins that drip off your plate, you’ll be up and at ‘em, dancing with strangers and partying the night away. We promise you, it’ll be a steak dinner you’ll never forget.
409 W 13th St. (Betw. Ninth Ave. & Washington St.)
Upon first glance, Bagatelle looks like a quaint French bistro somehow misplaced in the trendy Meatpacking District. This hot spot is hardly quaint. Plan a brunch party and you’ll get more than just a spicy Bloody Mary. Once the music starts and the lights dim, get ready to jump on the booths, tables, whatever you can find, grab a bottle of Champagne, and you’ll forget about the Eggs Benedict bouncing about your feet. Bagatelle draws the bold and the beautiful, so put on your Sunday best if you plan on having a party here and get ready for a wild birthday bash worthy of being featured on E!
110 University Place (Betw. 12th Street and 13th Street)
Of course we couldn’t complete this list without a bowling alley birthday spot. Bowlmor Lanes makes bowling a little sexier, though you might find yourself waiting some time for a lane to free up for you and your pals. We say it’s worth the wait though. Plan your party for Friday or Saturday night and you’ll get more than just bowling. Bowlmor turns into its own nightclub, complete with cosmic lighting, a thorough cocktail menu, drink and food service at your lane, and loud, lively dance music. Throw in the giant TV screens at the end of your lane and it may take you a few hours just to get a couple of games completed.
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