548 5th Ave • Closed Wed; reservations through website only • Adm
A small, intimate jazz bar with perfect martinis and a laid-back crowd that comes for the great music and exceptional service. The bar has the feel of a private members club but it welcomes all.
852 5th Ave • 619 235 6699 • Closed Mon, Wed & Sun • Adm Thu–Sat
At this chic basement club, order the cocktail of the month and settle back in a vibrant lounge atmosphere. Upstairs is the Onyx’s sister bar Thin, where the unique “engineered” drinks and atmosphere are the epitome of urban cool.
500 4th Ave • 619 232 8100 • Open 9pm–2am Thu–Sat • Adm • Dress code applies
More of an experience than a club, Fluxx showcases top music events, custom sound and lighting, a huge dance floor, a VIP section, and bottle service. DJs mix up hip-hop, top 40, rock, and electronic sounds.
1030 Broadway • 619 237 0550 • Adm
This classy boutique martini lounge with Wild West bordello-themed decor offers an amazing variety of entertainment, such as dance parties, DJs, live music, and art shows. The nightly events, top-notch service, and exceptional variety of drinks, including specialty cocktails, draw in the crowds.
600 F St • 619 814 2055 • Adm
Located inside the Andaz Hotel, this nightclub is a glittering nightspot with sexy dancers from Thursday to Saturday. An open-air rooftop lounge combines DJ sets with private cabanas and panoramic views of the downtown skyline.
353 5th Ave • 619 233 5979 • Adm
This restaurant-nightclub offers everything Latin. Tango and flamenco dinner shows are held in the Spanish restaurant, while instructors teach salsa and samba downstairs. You can practice your moves to the live bands that perform afterward. The basement becomes a Latin/Euro dance club on Friday and Saturday nights.
2501 Kettner Blvd • 619 232 4355 • Adm
Underground alternative rock rules at this grungy club. Famous and future bands turn up the decibels every night. Past headliners have included The Dillinger Escape Plan, The Kills, Futuristic, and Monsieur Periné.
770 5th Ave • 619 338 9300 • Adm after 9:30pm Thu & after 8:30pm Fri & Sat
Set in a historic building, the Tipsy Crow occupies three floors. Upstairs are marble fireplaces, tapestries, and a library; on the ground level, a long mahogany bar serves drinks of choice; while the downstairs hosts live music and the Gaslamp Comedy Show.
2241 Shelter Island Dr • 619 224 3577 • Adm for most bands
Enjoy a variety of live music nightly at this waterfront lounge with an unbeatable view of the bay. Come early for a terrific happy hour.
3717 India St • 619 295 4999 • Adm
Held on Fridays and Saturdays, the National Comedy Theatre’s improvisational shows are family-friendly and popular. The audience chooses a game for each show, and decides the winner.
2028 Hancock St • 619 294 9590
Three floors of bars and a dance club.
1839 Adams Ave • 619 298 3269
This dependably divey beer and wine bar has been in business since 1982.
3796 5th Ave • 619 298 2233
San Diego’s oldest gay bar.
308 University Ave • 619 491 0400
Rowdy, hetero-friendly drag club.
2046 University Ave • 619 296 0889
Gay Harley-Davidson enthusiasts frequent this popular bar.
1440 University Ave • 619 260 8023
A lesbian restaurant and bar with a sensual atmosphere and great food.
3845 5th Ave • 619 299 1911
Video bar, pool table, and patio.
3811 Park Blvd • 619 294 7583
Pool tables and two dance floors.
1051 University Ave • 619 295 2195
Dancing go-go boys and girls.
3036 El Cajon Blvd • 619 295 7900
Drag shows and crowded Sunday brunches, with a cover charge.