The cops, as usual, are cracking down on Mumbai’s top nightlife destinations. But our suggestion is not to back down. Instead, go out more often and experience the best and worst of what the city has on offer, before everything shuts down anyway.
Give this to-do list a shot. Head out and take a tour of the best locations to look out in to the horizon at, before heading to a club near you to groove the night away. You can also take a leak in a loo that looks like a spaceship. Find out the best places for cocktails and the most inconveniently located hubs. There are also some places that we believe deserve a mention for having the best of the ‘worsts’. Check ’em out.
Value for money
Janata bar, Bandra: AC seating areas, flat-screen TVs, CCTV cameras, a night of inebriation that comes by the quarter and a tummy-full of great food — all this without shelling out more than Rs 500 in a night. Though getting a table here is almost as tough as finding one at its next-door posh eatery, Pali Village Café.
Gokul, Colaba: The ultimate pocket-friendly place to pre-booze at, in South Mumbai. It’s never short of seating space. Ask for their masala papad, and then step out for a Bade Miya roll before heading out to Busaba, Woodside, Leopold’s and more.
Madira, Parel: Located near what was the MTV office, Madira is the place to go to for a cheap post-work drink. There’s a reason many haven’t heard of it. The clientele likes to keep it secret. Look what happened to Janata!
Wild Orchid, Chembur: It may be in Chembur, but it’s worth a visit. The biggest surprise it’ll throw at you after a night will be the bill. With its plush décor and a friendly DJ, Wild Orchid is a good place when you’re almost outside city limits.
Pop Tate’s, Malad: Most will recall the longest happy hours in town at Pop Tate’s Andheri branch. Its Malad outlet may not be as cheap as a dive, but the pitchers of beer and the food to complement it, makes it worth the trip.
Rang Sharda, Bandra: Stand at the edge of this windy terrace to get a great view of the city’s skyline and the Bandra-Worli sea link. Disclaimer: Don’t look down directly; the slum-dwellers deserve their
Aer, Four Seasons, Worli: City from the 34th floor of a luxury hotel. Well… see for yourself.
Dome, Intercontinental, Marine Drive: This is the best view you’ll get of the Queen’s Necklace. Hanging Gardens doesn’t count for the lack of a bar. Attend their newly started Sundown evenings and bring in the evening with a spectacular sight.
Gadda da Vida, Novotel, Juhu: Located next to the beach, you have the sea breeze, beachy recliners and a dance floor for looking to shake a leg. Average price you pay for the experience (we mean, price of a regular pint of beer): Rs 300.
Bay View Café, Colaba: Formerly called the Starlit Café, this is the ultimate place to hang out at on a Sunday afternoon. The view of the Gateway of India and the Arabian Sea and ships are an addition to the sunset you can catch here on a lazy evening.
Kir, Andheri: The bar takes its name from the Kir Royal, a popular fruity cocktail that’s climbing the charts. Yummy palate pleasers dot the menu. Bartenders are open to customisation if you ask nicely.
TGIF, Lower Parel: Ask them to go slow on the ice in the Ultimate Long Island Iced Tea and you won’t need another drink all evening. They also have extended happy hours!
Olive, Bandra: You may have to wait for the bartender to come to you, but when he does, he’ll make sure you get a good drink. Don’t like it? Be nice and he just may replace it for a custom-made one.
Wink, Cuffe Parade: Initially most people just visited this place for their super chakna — wasabi nuts! But it also offers some peculiar cocktails
Tote, Mahalaxmi: The Mojitos and the Celery Martini are must-haves. With dim lighting, but bursting with energy Tote makes for a great place to spend your Saturday night out.
Aurus, Juhu: After the SRK-Shirish Kunder spat, this loo made headlines. It has only one mirror dividing the men’s section from the women’s. In case you can’t tell the difference, there’s a guy standing there to guide you.
Palladium, Lower Parel: This one wins because of the massage chair. There’s one on each floor, so don’t wait for your turn. Next time you’re shopping at the mall feels like a pain in the.. eerr… derriere, sink in here.
Le Monde, Juhu: Very few loos can come close to the cocoon-like elegance that once was at the erstwhile Bandra lounge, Seijo and Soul Dish, and Le Monde’s new-age orb comes closest in terms of design innovation. This is straight out of a sci-fi movie.
Bungalow 9, Bandra: There’s a tree growing in the middle of the ladies washroom here. Seriously. A good space for the environment-friendly people to relieve themselves!
Hype, Worli: While you’re staring at yourself in the mirror at the loo in this one, be sure to look under the basin. If you find yourself staring at the lower half of a man’s body, you know you’ve walked in to the wrong room.
Café Leopold, Colaba: If chugging beer to the sound of a moving ceiling fan isn’t your thing, take the staircase and head to the party for some dim-lighting, hip-hop music and some dancers who sure know how to break a leg!
Blue Frog, lower parel: With live bands every night, this haunt sees gigs by everyone between Grammy-winning artistes to local acts. Get there before 9pm to enjoy happy hours and free entry!
Hard Rock Café, Worli: As the name suggests, this chain is plastered with memorabilia by international rock and pop stars. They play classic rock every day and on Tuesdays and Thursdays, live bands take to the stage.
Bonobo, Bandra: From electronica to dub-step, this place is known for its underground music events that keep the city’s party animal moving. You can’t imagine how packed the tiny soundproofed room can get!
Cool Chef Café, Worli: So what if this place got raided for being a hotshot party spot? That’s only more reason for you to believe that it plays great music. Attend the Grime Disco Riot here and find out for yourself.