With legendary locations like the Savoy Ballroom, the Renny, the Cotton Club and the Lenox Lounge, Harlem is certain to be a nighttime destination for someone looking to have a nice time. While the names of the places have changed, the energy that defines Harlem has not. You can still find speakeasies, dance halls and ballrooms in Harlem. If you are looking for the top places to hang out in Harlem look no further.
1. Harlem Lanes:
While most of the old ballrooms have been torn down, the Alhambra Ballroom located on the corner of 125th Street and 7th Avenue now houses one of the most sophisticated bowling alleys in New York. Whether you are on a first date or hanging out with a group of friends, Harlem Lanes is worth a visit. It boasts rich wood floors, 2 levels of lanes, an intimate lounge area, glow in the dark bowling for adults only and more. During the week Harlem Lanes offers special events like comedy, sports nights, singles night and professional networking nights. For around $7.50 per person per game you can have a night of laughs bowling then head downstairs for a seafood dinner and live entertainment at Pier 2110. They also occasionally have $20.00 unlimited bowling nights and drink specials. Check their website for their schedule and be sure to sign up for their mailing list.
Harlem Lanes 2116 Adam Clayton Powell, Jr. Blvd., 3rd and 4 floor. 212-678-BOWL www.harlemlanes.com
2. Suite 308
Relatively new on the scene, this chic little lounge is the perfect place to cozy up with a date or meet a group of friends for drinks. Colorful sofas in the lounge area are surrounded by art by local artists making this place a home away from home. In the back are tables were you can order appetizers like catfish strips and buffalo wings. Located on the corner of 125th and Lenox Avenue, Suite 308 features a sophisticated air without being stuffy. Perfect after work or on the weekends when the DJ amps it up with his wheels of steel. Suite 308 is a favorite waterhole for people of all ages. Ask for a Sugar Hill Ale which is brewed right in Harlem.
Suite 308 at 308 Lenox (Malcolm X) www.myspace.com/suite308 or www.suite308.net
3. Billie’s Black
Stop into Billie’s Black for the food but stay for the great line up of entertainment that they offer. From live jazz during Sunday brunch to the vocal styling of indie artists like Dexter Myers, you will be sure to fall in love with Billie’s. Special events include film screenings, theme nights and more.
Billie’s Black 271 West 119th Street 212-280-2248 www.billiesblack.com
Moca is a sophisticated lounge with a live DJ who keeps the energy festive. During the week you can walk in and chill on the luxurious sofas but on the weekend prepare to stand behind the velvet rope and possibly get a quick pat down by the bouncers. Once you are inside make yourself comfortable and order a drink and appetizer. You never know who you might see in Moca’s be sure to dress to impress!
Moca Bar and Lounge 2210 Frederick Douglass Blvd. 212-665-8081 www.mocabar.com
Shrine is the latest hot spot on the scene. They decided to offer something different from the rest of the lounges and clubs in the area – world music! Shrine has been an instant sensation in Harlem attracting independent and world music artists from all over the area. They also offer spoken word, comedy and more.
Shrine 2271 Adam Clayton Powell, Jr. Blvd (133-134 st) 212-690-7807 www.shrinenyc.com.