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Nightlife in Paris
With an overall reputation for chic digs and expensive, designer clothes, many people assume that a night out in Paris will drain them dry. But as in most European cities, there are bars and clubs that cater to all demographics.
The Marais is well known as the gay-friendly neighborhood of Paris, making it home to some of the most outlandish and upscale venues with the best dancing in the city. But hop over to the left bank of the River Seine, and you’ll be in the heart of the Latin Quarter, home to the Sorbonne and the stony-faced, chain smoking, Parisian students looking for a cheap drink. Up Northin Pigalle, the colorful red light district, you’ll find some of the most diverse selection of concerts in the city.
But despite the range in prices, it’s worth noting that Parisian nightlife is markedly more chic than the scenes in other European cities. The drinks may be dirt cheap and the bar the size of a cereal box, but most bouncers in Paris expect that patrons put at least a bit of effort into their appearance before entering the establishment. Dig the nicest shirt you have out of your suitcase or slip into a pair of heels and line up outside with the beautiful people in the City of Light.
Bars in Paris
The bar scene in Paris tends to be dominated by small spots that operate dually as café/bars and bistro/bars. These are the places where Parisian couples and groups of friends gather at tables right on the street to share glasses of cheap wine and beer.
If you’re a backpacker or you’re on a budget, the Latin Quarter will be the most attractive area for your late night escapades in the City of Light. Rue Mouffetard is where the crowds gather. Try 5th Bar, a popular spot with students, expats, and backpackers for great deals during happy hour or Le Vieux Chene where the students gather for cheap beer and local musicians take requests from the crowd every Tuesday night.
If you’re looking for a more authentically Parisian drinking experience, check out one of the many wine bars throughout the city. One popular spot is Melac a vins in the 11th Arrondissment near Pere-Lachaise Cemetary. Another is Le Baron Rouge in the 12th Arrondissment near the Opera District and Bois de Vincennes[Bois de Vincennes].
But if you’re really hoping to splurge, you can always stop by the Hemingway Bar to sample the world’s most expensive cocktail, priced at 900 Euro. It’s located in the Ritz Hotel and just a few blocks from the Louvre and Tuilerie Gardens.
Clubs in Paris
The club scene in Paris is just as diverse as the bar scene, with something to offer every style and budget. If you’re looking for music and young, hip crowd, take the Paris metro up north to the colorful Pigalle neighborhood for the latest concert or club night at Le Divan du Monde. If jazz is your thing, Caveau de la Huchette is impossible to miss for that big band feeling and a swingin’ dance floor. It’s located in the Latin Quarter, right around the corner from the Shakespeare and Company Bookstore.
For the club experience to rival all club experiences, standing in line and trying your luck with the bouncers of Les Bains in the Marais may prove to be an unforgettable night. Notoriously tough to get into and frequented by celebrities, this club run by famous house music producer David Guetta is the place to see and be seen.