Hate Nightclubs in LA? See These 5 Amazingly Awesome Alternatives
LOS ANGELES LIFESTYLE | NIGHTLIFE
~ By Jane Sussman
Don’t feel like standing in line, shelling out for big bucks for bottle service or just want to wear your flipflops? Well it’s your lucky day. Here are our best picks for five alternatives to clubs in Los Angeles – Good Music. Great Drinks. No Cover.
Here’s our list of the Top 5 Amazingly, Awesome Alternatives to LA Nightclubs:
1.) The Mandrake lies somewhere between West Hollywood and Culver City, its only neighbor an occasional food truck. But go there any night of the week and this place is packed. It also has one of the best layouts of any bar we’ve been to in Los Angeles – depending on what your speed is, you can have any kind of night here. More low-key? Grab your dark and stormy at the bar in the first room and slink back to one of the tables along the side. With your crew and want to dance? Head into the second room where the DJ rotates nightly, the projector is always on and the space is big enough to accommodate your girls, your guys and all the appreciative observers. Hot and in need of a break and a cigarette? Get another drink first then head to the outdoor patio in the back and plop down at one of the picnic tables. The dress is casual (moustache recommended but not required) and street parking is abundant.
Mandrake | 2692 South La Cienega Blvd. | Los Angeles, CA 90034 | Website
2.) If you haven’t been to Townhouse, you probably never venture to Venice. Great drinks, packed on a Saturday, room to play pool on a Monday, and open every night of the week until 2. With the occasional burlesque show or jazz band, sipping our Sazeracs, we feel transported back to the original speakeasy established 1915. Lucky for us, Townhouse re-opened the downstairs basement, and that’s where those dancing shoes come in handy. Whether it’s live music and the twist, or a DJ and some dirty dancing, we can promise you three things: the drinks are strong, the music is great and the temperature is high (literally; move upstairs if you start to feel faint)! Valet is the only reasonable option, as street parking is few and far between.
Townhouse | 52 Windward Ave. | Venice, CA 90291 | Website
3.) Love Hollywood, hate the scene? Head to Sayers Club, the anti-scene club. One minute you’re turning up your nose at the girls in plastic platforms cruising Hollywood Boulevard and the next you’re in a music lovers’ lounge. Forced by higher powers to up the revenues, the venue has sort of become half-club/half live music venue. But Jason Scoppa retains the authenticity of the place that makes it so special. This place is great for groups and we’ve been to more than a handful of birthday celebrations held here – just make sure you’ve got your reservation confirmed ahead of time. There’s no cover, and while they do sell bottle service, you can usually get away with a bottle or two, versus the insane $3-5k minimums at neighboring hot spots. Parking… well, it may feel like New York, but you’re still in Hollywood.
Sayers Club | 1645 Wilcox Ave. | Hollywood, CA 90028 | Website
4.) Central: Social Aid and Pleasure Club in Santa Monica may look a little (how shall we say….?) porn-y on the outside, but it’s seriously sexy within. Two dark rooms, plenty of funky lights and awesome music every day of the week. Each night has a different line-up, and if you go this Saturday, they do awesome things like host the legendary Underground Rebel Bingo. Street parking is abundant, dress is casual.
Central SAPC | 1348 14th St. | Santa Monica, CA | 90404 | Website
5.) La Descarga is one of our favorite places to impress a date or a guest from out of town. Dress code is strict (jackets encouraged for men, no sneakers) and reservations “are encouraged” but the effort is well-worth it. You’ll enter into a dingy stairwell and go through a secret passageway to arrive in Havana, Cuba. The air is filled with cigar smoke, a gorgeous Latin dancer winds around your table and you lean back, sip on a rum classic (we love the punches and house daiquiris) and enjoy the live music. A little rum-drunk here, and if you close your eyes, you can feel the warm air from Havana.
LA Descarga | 1159 N. Western Ave. | Los Angeles, CA 90029 | Website