New York City is renowned for its vibrant nightlife. Bars and clubs can be found in virtually every neighborhood of the city, however in recent years the city’s nightlife has been largely concentrated in a area known as the Meatpacking district (http://www.meatpacking-district.com/) which stretches over 20 blocks on the extreme west side of Manhattan.This district actually functioned as a meat packing district in the early 1900s when it was populated by slaughter houses and meat packing plants. It then became quite shabby and run down as it became a haven for drug dealers and prostitutes. Towards the late 1990’s, several trendy boutiques, bars and restaurants came to be established here as the neighborhood began to enjoy a revival. It soon took off as it attracted celebrities and the beautiful people of New York and came to be known as the premier ‘party district’ of New York City.
The Meatpacking district which roughly stretches from West 16th street to Gansevoort Street is home to several trendy boutiques, galleries, hotels, bars and restaurants. Some of the most popular bars that are located here are Cielo, the Budha Bar, Bijoux and Hogs and Heifers (which was immortalized forever in the Hollywood movie Coyote Ugly.) However many of nightclubs located here (http://www.zagat.com/Nightlife/NewYorkCity/MeatpackingDistrict) follow strict door policies and only let in select clientele who fit in with their image. Additionally, you have to be over 21 and have a photo ID with you in order to get in at one of these bars and clubs.
Bottle service is another feature of most New York clubs. If you show an inclination to shell out mega bucks for a bottle of liquor then you are almost ensured entry into a trendy club. Once at the club you are then guaranteed a table and the services of a dedicated server all night. A night on the town in the Meatpacking district in New York City is often an expensive proposition as drinks on an average tend to cost around $10 a pop at most of bars and clubs that are located here. Other popular nightlife epicenters in New York are the neighborhoods of the East Village, the Lower East Side, and Williamsburg in Brooklyn though these neighborhoods tend to attract a slightly younger clientele.
Unlike other cities the world New York City doesn’t have a designated area where expats usually gather, everybody in New York tends ‘to party’ anywhere they can, however there are certain clubs and cafes like Tao (http://www.taorestaurant.com/) which is a popular resto-bar that is located in Midtown East and Café Felix (http://www.yelp.com/biz/felix-new-york) which is located in Soho that seem to attract a largely international clientele.
Sources for information on New York Nightlife
- Time Out New York Magazine:- http://newyork.timeout.com
- L Magazine which is a free magazine that is available at roadside boxes all over New York City- http://www.thelmagazine.com/newyork/Home
- New York Magazine- http://nymag.com/nightlife/
- Metromix.com- http://newyork.metromix.com/
- Village Voice which is another free newspaper which is available weekly and is quite a comprehensive guide to NYC: http://www.villagevoice.com/
See the Networking section for information on MeetUp groups that arrange social outings for expats at varying venues throughout the city.