When the lights/go out/in the city…well, honestly, the lights never really do go out in New York City, but late night is where half the fun is when you’re out and about in the city that never sleeps! Enter the intricate world of the New York City nightclub. No easy feat for even the seasoned New Yorker to navigate, the nightclub/lounge scene is a myriad of intricate social connections, lines, and most of all, a lot of money to be spent or saved, depending on who you know, where you know them from, and why you want to go to specific locales. So, what to do once you’ve coiffed your hair, slipped on some designer or designer look alike shoes and hit the ATM? Some handy tips and tricks should facilitate the time between reading this post and shaking your groove thang.
The easiest, albeit trickiest, methodology is to meet and befriend a promoter. Not a friend of a friend who knows a guy who knows a promoter, not your neighbor’s cousin’s former college roommate, a real live promoter. This is, of course, easiest to do once you’re already in a club, but if you have a connection, get thee to an industry night, and get thee into someone’s phone book. If you can’t achieve this feat, which is hard to initially accomplish, get yourself on a list. This is easily accomplished via Facebook, MeetUp, or any other number of social networking sites, and at least ensures a discounted entry to any number of hot spots. My personal favorite promoters happen to be those of the Bloc Group, which hosts some fantastic parties such as Saturdays at Hiro and the Annex, Fridays at One, and for those of us that are trust fund babies who need no sleep during the week, Greenhouse Tuesdays, among other fashionable events. They’re the friendliest and easiest to approach once you’re inside, but usually, getting in that first time is definitely the tricky part!
If you are new to the nightlife scene of the big city, here are some quick and easy rules to facilitate your initiation into the nightlife cult(ure). First, pick a place you want to go to, but have a back up in the same area. There’s nothing quite like getting turned away at the door or deciding not to pay the cover and then wondering where the heck you should go next.Second, show up early. It’s a fact that there will be a long line wherever you go after 1am, even though that is the fashionable time to show up. It’s cool, no one will know you came early, just get there a bit before midnight so you can work your magic at the door. As far as the door goes, it never helps to be rude or argue with a doorman or woman. They have the power, and you do not, end of story. To help your cause, don’t show up wearing clothes you’d wear to your local dive bar. There’s a reason there is a velvet rope, and that they are being selective, and if you want to join that crowd, then dress the part. If not, go on down to your local watering hole and forget you ever read this, it won’t affect your life in any manner anyway!
Be aware that these establishments cater to a specific clientele and seek to maintain a certain atmosphere. If you show up with ten of your boys and wonder why every hot girl is getting in before you, well, it’s the girls that bring in the boys that spend the money. Whether or not you agree with the way it works, it’s a fact of life, so you lovely group of ten boys may as well get a table with bottle service or you’ll be standing outside all night, ogling those girls as they walk on in. If you have a big group, it may make economic sense to get table service anyway! Drinks at these spots run around $12-18 a piece, a cheap bottle runs around $400…do the math and you may find a quick in as well as a nicer way to burn your plastic. Plus, if you get a table you can generally avoid a cover, which can be up to $35 at some spots, especially if it is late and/or you’re not on a list.
Now, my darling newbie nightlifers, you are equipped with some handy insider tips for the scene. If you’re not yet fully intimidated by the costs or the insider culture, go forth and embrace the club world for what it is. Who knows, you may even see me slinking around on the dance floor, if it’s really your lucky night.