What is Your Favorite Club or Bar?
by Mimi Dinh
Whether you‘re looking for an adrenaline-charged club so you can dance with total abandon or the next “it” place to hang with the beautiful people or just a cool bar where everybody (or maybe nobody) knows your name, Houston is a mecca for clubbers and bar junkies of all repute. Our downtown has hosted some of the most debauched parties on the planet. Even some restaurants have joined in the act, mixing together their very own type of bar scene so partiers can have scrumptious late-night eats and fabulous drinks while shaking their bodies at the same time. Of course, there are times when the pulsating beats may grow tiresome at even the sleekest of joints. For such occasions, there are hole-in-the-wall lounges with a truly cruddy ambience that borders on the poetic and inspires conversation.
We were on a quest to smoke out the hottest club/bar on the see-and-be-seen circuit. Not luke warm or above average but fiercely, boldly and unabashedly h-o-t — this very instant (as we all know how fleeting this honor can be in the world of “it” locales). Read on, and join us as we raise a glass of “Mojito” (drink of the moment) to the power.
In Houston, I like the Alabama Ice House— unpretentious, real, kick ass. But my favorite is Crowd Nine in Tokyo, Japan, an erotic nightclub, sensual aquatic environment in a skyscraper penthouse.
— Doug Michels, head of creativity, Doug Michels Studio
With the vast array of clubs and bars in Houston, it would be impossible to nail it down to one. When I go out, I like to bounce between several favorites. I start at Saba for the great food and atmosphere, then to The Hub for its wonderful bar staff, then next door to Tonic/Tryst (I really dig the upstairs). I then bounce to Prague and finish the night to the awesome music at 410. When traveling, I have always loved Manray in Paris, which can’t be described. In Miami, I‘m always drawn to Pearl & Rio downtown.
— Guy Mahaffey, president, Sudden Impact Collision Center
Zimm’s Wine Bar — the quintessential neighborhood bar where you will see a friendly face, and the wine list is great. Also, in Galveston, there is The Poop Deck. Their motto “Where the elite meet in bare feet” says it all.
— Lisa Benitez, senior event coordinator, Foley’s Fashion & Special Events
I like them all for various reasons — no true favorites. But presently, I favor Hyperia for its amazing line-up of DJs of the finest caliber playing there each week. Plus it has the best sound and lights in the city, if not the nation. As far as bars go, I have traditional faves, but at the moment, I favor the Davenport. I can’t get over the fact that they have actual Knoll furniture everywhere in the place and that the bartenders are so in tune with being bar-TENDERS who look after your drink and head. Outside of Houston, I like Club Ampersand in New Orleans; Pearl, Level and Space in Miami; Opera House in UK; and Pure in Chicago.
— Sean Carnahan, nightlife infobot Child of the beat, SCTC Houston
My favorite is Favelachic in Paris, an insane Brazilian club that’s rustic, wild and filled with people literally dancing on the tables.
— Shannon Hall, co-owner, Sloan/Hall
Dean’s Credit Clothing. It is a great, funky bar downtown, and while you sip your favorite cocktail, you can shop for that must-have faux fur coat from the 70s.
— Elizabeth Satel Young, publicist, Elizabeth Satel Young Public Relations