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New York. Thanks for subscribing! Look out for your first newsletter in your inbox soon! Looking to meet someone? Cramped, hot places with free-flowing alcohol are still your best bet, and lucky for you, New York City is a treasure trove of such locales, as our roundup of the best bars in NYC attests. Metallic, domed hair dryers and original salon-style chairs lined up against a wall make for a hyper-specific retro aesthetic.
Sultry lighting and a robust drink menu, however, take Beauty Bar to the next level, making it an alluring destination for those looking to get it on. Or those looking to laugh it off—there are weekly free stand-up comedy shows with appealing drink specials. Mood Ring defies expectations. There are velvety booths, but also a homemade arcade game called Yo Fight My Mans and erratic art, including red sneakers dangling from the ceiling.
Its magic, like its namesake, is in the way it heightens awareness. You find yourself willing surroundings to change. The universe obliges. Blink and a clique of Snapchatting Beckys becomes a squad of gaymer bros clinking beers. This wild Bushwick spot opened in and quickly established itself as a reliable way for Brooklyn revelers to wear insane costumes and lose their inhibitions just about every weekend. With exhibitionist parties, and a panoply of aerialists, magicians and dancers on retainer, House of Yes is bringing its A-game when it comes to conversation starters.
Get gamey with a pong companion on a weeknight or chat up a stranger at the bar on weekends. Good for picking up: Bros that just want to get down in a beer garden. By night, Kinfolk transforms into a hipper-than-thou hotspot for Williamsburg-dwelling kids in the know. Good for picking up: Girls with Haim-like hair or guys in athleisure wear. The grassy, spacious outdoor area of this bumping Williamsburg hangout is an apt setting for a cold Bud and a house burger, finished with pickled onions, American cheese and special sauce. The East Village can be a fucking pickle jar in terms of the of dudes there on the weekend, but Bar Niagara remains pretty un-bro-y.
Get there early to score a seat and engage in some of the best people-watching in town—and ogle who you fancy doing the nasty with later. Trust us. Good for picking up: Trust-fund kids who have actually heard of the New York Dolls. Daniel Nardicio and Alan Cumming took over the former Eastern Bloc bar in and reimagined it as a cabaret, comedy and party hub evocative of NYC's golden era of downtown nightlife.
Good for picking up: Cultured downtowners over the age of 25—well, " This Greenpoint establishment is a classy spot: not the kind of place you'll want to get royally tanked in. In fact, it's largely discouraged. Half the regulars here are writers, performers and comedians—so bring your A-game and if you can hold your own both liquor-wise and conversationally ; you'll be rewarded by the unforgiving oak bar magically opening up and becoming one of the best singles bars in the city.
Found a friend? Duck into one the old-timey oak booths and shut the little door; a waiter! At this Meatpacking newcomer, you'll be shoulder-to-shoulder with an under crowd dancing to electronic and hip hop under the verdant ceiling and on top the wide-open dance floor. A perennial spot for amorous hipsters, this ever-popular LES bar boasts all the tools necessary for an easy hookup: an upstairs lounge, a downstairs bar, a showroom with live bands and performers, and a 2 to 7pm happy-hour special with cheap frozen margaritas to get your blood pumping.
They probably have. Sci-fi nerds, unite! Sure, it has a silly name and proudly touts a midcentury dystopian sci-fi theme, but the industrial, LED-lit bar is much less a cheap play at Instagram likes than an earnest letter to the science-fiction genre with a rockin' dance floor late-night. It's good for your own modern-day Mos Eisley cantina a framed blueprint of the beloved Star Wars tavern can be found on one wall , where you can find the Luke to your Leia.
A friendly, spacious bar with an intimacy-heightening low ceiling, Nowhere attracts attitude-free crowds—and the place is filled with everyone from dykes to bears, thanks to a fun lineup of theme nights. There's no official dance floor, but don't be surprised to find yourself moving to disco, rock, new wave and whatever else the DJ feels like spinning.
The UWS might not be known to have the most social nightlife, but this gritty pub actually poses two dilemmas: what game to play, and which beer to drink? DJs spin Wednesday through Saturday nights, but those seeking relative peace can retreat to one of two quieter rooms.
Embrace your inner seductress when you enter this s Parisian dream stacked with l eather banquettes, mood lighting and an airy rooftop. Quench your thirst with a pricey cocktail, and then meander on down to the underground dance club to rub up against the single-and-very-ready-to-mingle crowd. First came the gastropub, an import from Britain featuring upmarket pub grub in an ale-drinking setting. Now, welcome the gastrodive, which further blurs the lines between restaurant and bar.
Ye olde hookup classic: Union Pool is a tried-and-true pickup spot. Rustle up some liquid courage, courtesy of the cheapo cans of PBR, and grab your object of lust for a quick make-out session in the photo booth. Hit the dancefloor on a Saturday night and shake it to some raunchy old punk and soul classics. Good for picking up: Musicians, bartenders, artists…you know, all the people your mom warned you about. This lounge from Sean MacPherson and Eric Goode can be home to some of the most raging weekend parties in lower Manhattan. The Ballroom is nearly as stunning as the crowd it attracts, with an offbeat tableau of stuffed beasts and mismatched couches.
Our only complaint about the Jane? How long the line is. Beer wenches and bros, unite! Although the East Village gay-bar scene is no longer a raging perpetual party, the Cock is still the kind of place to get felt up in the dark by someone you might later find attractive. Good for picking up: Horny NYU students, off-duty drag queens, daddies looking for young chickens. One of the most enduring Bowery institutions has been this bar and restaurant on the corner of 4th Street.
And while the atmosphere gets quite grimy past 1am, if you're looking for that high-volume excuse to bump into someone to start drunken banter, this bar rarely disappoints. Across the street from Phebe's is this stylish, less debacherous boite.
But the scene is very NYC—boys with button-downs and girls in high-heels file in post-midnight. Bem vindo a sesta! Good for picking up: Fun-loving, cocktail-quaffing types who like a little bump with their grind. Time Out New York.
Get us in your inbox up to our newsletter for the latest and greatest from your city and beyond. We already have this . Try another? My My Profile out. My . Good for picking up: Well-groomed, hip humans.
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The 25 best hookup bars in NYC