Nightlife Guide – Sydney


The Central Business District (CBD) is abound with an abundance of watering holes catering mainly to the after 5 office crowd all eager to release the tensions of a hard week over a few brews with work colleagues & friends alike. Friday night is the night & definitely not for the faint-hearted!! Let?s just say that Sydney-siders know how to party hard.

Verandah Bar ? Stylish/minimalist/now/ground level of a tall office blg. so crowded with the suits from upstairs

Hotel Chambers ? Loud/Brash & overflowing with Friday after 5 suits

Wine Banc ? Pretentious grand piano bar with a smooth serving of jazz/fully stacked wine cellar & the most expensive drinks in Sydney/wear your good shoes! $15 entry fee

The Civic Hotel ? Mixed gay/straight cool crowd/live bands/busy dance-floor/recently refurbished

The Establishment ? Suits/suits/suits/older crowd/beautifully decked out/columns/balustrades/huge crystal chandeliers/bamboo chill-out garden at rear & more dance-floors & action upstairs

Tank Bar ? Younger/hipper/darker/sexier/drug element/$20 door entry 

The Arthouse Hotel ? Now/popular pub lunches/nice bar for after work drinks/offers night life-drawing classes

Bar Broadway ? Shiny/chrome street level bar/darker, sleazier downstairs with live bands & an illuminated bar/popular with uni students

CBD ? 4 level blg/an up-market vibe with huge floral arrangements & classy party/function rooms upstairs

The Forbes ? Laid back English pub environs/popular after work drinks spot with the non-pretentious types

The Shelbourne ? Happening dance-floor/nightclub priced drinks/& a young crowd

Industrie Hotel ? Mixed gay/straights bar/city centre

The Basement ? Quaint/underground sandstone near the Quay/tucked away/premier live music venue for both local & international artists/intimate/mixed crowd/pub & cocktails

Slip Inn ? Cool/understated elegant street level & downstairs bar/trendy/up-market/open outdoors chill-out area/lounges/& the Chinese Laundry nightclub downstairs again

Bristol Arms Retro Hotel ? 5 floors of non-stop drinks & dancing/from 80?s to modern music/popular with large groups of females


Here you find the esplanade or Cockle Bay Wharf as it is known overflowing with after 5 crowd, tourists & families alike. Lots of over-priced seafood (& other) restaurants & similar choice of bars that are popular with visitors.

Cargo Bar ? Larger/noisier/drunker/meat-market/the new establishment

Cave Nightclub ? $20 entry/popular with the dressed up R&B crowd/music changes depending on the night/3 dance-floors

Home Nightclub ? 3 stories of high-energy dance/trance music/younger/$20 entry/& expensive drinks


Caters mainly for tourists & those that prefer the Irish/English themed pub-style. Multiple pubs every small block so makes it excellent for the quintessential aussie pub crawl.

Bayswater Brasserie ? Good live music venue but mostly jazzy/blues

The Orient ? Meat-market/casual/all types & all ages 


My home.. so of course I am biased!! The most broadminded suburb in Sydney with King Street recently voted Sydney?s best gay street. Grungy, urban, cool. A gastronomic explosion of culinary delights with some of the best food in Sydney ? everything?s on offer here from Turkish to Thai or Indian to Indonesian.

ZanziBar ? Morroccan mystique meets urban chic/open fireplace/chill out pillow play-pen come cruisey lounge area upstairs

The Imperial – Predominantly gay, but all welcome/underground drag shows start at 10pm & are on the hour until 2am/grungy & non-pretentious laid back pub with cheap drinks & an underground disco that goes off until dawn/beginning & end of ?Priscilla? were filmed here

The Newtown Pub ? One of Sydneys premier gay pubs/meat-markets

@ Newtown ? Recent million dollar refurbishment hatches a new breed of RSL never before witnessed in Sydney/3 floors or free entertainment every night of the week/caters to all crowds/but nightclub drink prices to match the new look

The Marlborough Hotel (aka. Marly Bar) ? Middle of the road aussie bar/street level bar has live entertainment every night/back bar with restaurant & lounges

Kuletos ? Quaint chic cocktail bar with plenty of old world character & charm/a Newtown institution/great for catch up drink with some great old friends

The Bank Hotel ? Middle of the road aussie pub/cheap pub priced drinks in the front bar/back bar catering to the cocktail set/great Thai restaurant downstairs

The Sandringham (aka.The Sando) ? One of Sydney?s last surviving live music venues/lounge-room atmosphere upstairs where musicians get acoustic & up close & personal within an intimate environment


Sex(y) Sluts & Sleaze!

Hugo?s Lounge ? Models & wanna-be?s frequent this up-market nightclub

Peppermint Lounge ? Comfortable/pretty nightclub/lots of lounges/cocktails & gorgeous people abound

Soho Bar ?Refurbished but not required to ensure this one remains popular with the in crowd/oldie but goodie/edgy/modern

Kings Cross Hotel ? Full of locals & tourists alike /multiple dance-floors ranging from modern/top 40/Indie/R&B etc

Club 77 ? Gothic club offering Indie/Brit-pop/Hardcore Trance/Nu-Metal themed nights in a very dark almost feral underground environs


Posh, posh, posh! Where Sydney`s pretty rich people get out to play.

Centennial Hotel ? Showy/shiny/very up-market monied crowd

Good Bar ? Funky nightclub with 2 levels/2 dance-floors/lots of chill-out areas/lounges/cocktail bar etc 

Stonewall Hotel ? Predominantly gay wine-bar/pub open until dawn

Gilligans ? Dark/more reserved/up-market/loungy/bi-curious/bi-sexual/gay/lesbian filled cocktail bar on the second floor above the Oxford & overlooking one of the busiest intersections in Oxford St

ARQ ? dance music until dawn/gays/straights/drugs galore

Paddington Green Hotel ? Laid back drinks in an up-market aussie pub with canap?s on the bar

London Tavern ? Traditional English pub theme/good mixed laid back crowd


Always a good time to be had in the Bondi night scene. Lots of English tourists & locals alike

Beach Road Hotel ? Excellent pub food with HUGE servings/pool tables/3-4 bars on different levels/laid back vibes/cocktail lounge/something for all

Bondi Icebergs ? Great food/& drinks overlooking the Pacific Ocean

North Bondi RSL ? Live music/laid back vibe/good food/cheaper drinks


Villagy atmosphere Balmain can be both non-pretentious & pretentious.. but more the later. Won?t be a late one here as all places close early due to noise restrictions.

Monkey Bar ? Laid back yet up-market cocktail bar/smooth sounds & surrounds

The Exchange ? 3 floors of Funk music/Live bands/laid back lounges/& a safari/jungle atmosphere upstairs

The Commercial ? Popular pub with the younger crowd

The London ? Boutique bar/quite up-market with a locals only slant/down the quiet end of Darling St

The Town Hall ? Loud & young

The Cat and Fiddle ? Live music venue/pub priced drinks & good aussie pub menu


Cosmopolitan, funky, urban cool. Lots of bars/pubs/live music & restaurants. Wander down Crown Street for good food at any hour.

Dolphin On Crown Bar ? More than just a bar/up-market restaurant out the back/intimate function rooms upstairs

The The Hopetoun ? Grungy live-music venue/pub from way back

The Clock – Grungy live-music venue/pub

send in by local Liisa Lum

Nightlife Guide Liisa

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