Top 5 places to go out in NYC

I have a great fondness for New York City. Not only do I have friends who live there, but it’s also one of the most vibrant and immensely fun cities in the world to visit. I was recently there for a short break, and I was tasked by Partnership International to provide some information on the coolest things to do and where go out in NYC, so that those lucky people who apply for one of our U.S. Programmes will know how best to spend their time there.

I thought that what might well be of interest to our participants would be where to spend their precious nights out, so here are my Top 5 places to see!

1. Baby Grand (161 Lafayette St)

Words can’t really describe my joy at visiting the Baby Grand, NYC’s smallest karaoke bar! If you’re looking for a fun and unusual way to spend an evening, and don’t mind singing (or at least watching others sing), then there’s nowhere better than the Baby Grand. Open from 6 pm to 1 am, this tiny bar can fit in around 20-30 people and serves a basic selection of bottled beer (local and delicious), spirits, and a few snacks. People don’t come for the drinks though; they come for the performances.

The bar has an exhaustive song book covering karaoke classics like Bat out of Hell or any ABBA song, to contemporary rap and hip-hop. The clientele are an eclectic mixture of hip young people, members of the LGBT community and older neighborhood residents. The atmosphere is fun, and extremely inclusive. Everyone is encouraged to sing, and every performance, no matter how bad, gets a huge round of applause. So, if you fancy something different and want an opportunity to make new friends and experience a unique bit of NYC nightlife, then the Baby Grand is for you!


2. Barcade (148 West 24th St)

I like gaming. I also like beer. Barcade combines these two passions into an amazingly fun experience, and a great place to hang out with friends, or make some new ones! Inside the bar is a huge selection of old-school arcade machines, with everything from Asteroids and Pacman, to Tekken and Street Fighter. There is a fantastic selection of local craft beer on tap, and the food is excellent and very affordable. I came to Barcade alone to meet a friend. They ended up being late, and so I struck up a conversation with two guys from Long Island at the bar. We ended up eating, sampling the beer selection and challenging each other to games of Mike Tyson’s Punch Out! Definitely, the second place to go out in NYC!

It was one of the most fun afternoons I’d spent on my trip, and I didn’t even notice when my friend arrived, I was having such a great time! If you enjoy computer games, or beer, or both, then a trip to Barcade is an absolute must!

Mike Tyson’s Punch Out

3. The Uncommons (230 Thompson St)

Nestled in a quiet street near NYU is Manhattan’s only board game café. It’s a fantastic concept. Get some friends, reserve a table and then gain access to the walls of board and card games the café has to offer. The café serves food, teas and coffees, and even has a fridge filled with beer. If the weather outside is bad, then there’s nothing better than to huddle over a game of Monopoly, or Settlers of Catan and while away the afternoon. We spent hours in the café playing through games recommended by the ever-helpful staff members.

It was a fun and relaxed atmosphere, and everyone there was having an amazing time. The best thing is that if you find a game that you love, chances are you can buy it and take it home with you! The café is very popular, so I would recommend reserving a table (the cost is €10 per person weekdays, and €15 per person weekends), but if you can visit, The Uncommons is an amazing experience!


4. Bareburger Organic (535 Laguardia Place)

Just around the corner from The Uncommons is a stunningly good burger restaurant. Established in 2009 Bareburger is a fully organic and welfare concerned enterprise, which also happens to produce incredibly tasty food. The menu is extensive, and whilst you could opt for one of the many salads, sides or sandwiches, the stars of the show are the burgers. There is a dizzying array to choose from including the more unusual choices of bison, boar and elk, though the best thing to do is create your own.

Bareburger lets you choose every single aspect of your burger experience, from the type of bun, to sauce, toppings and meat. The choices are so varied, and the quality is so good, that you might want to make a few trips just to experience everything on offer! Staff are friendly and polite, and there’s an outdoor area for warm days and nights. If you decide to go out in NYC and have one burger, make it an Organic Bareburger!


5. PDT (113 St Marks Pl)

Last place in our list of the best places to go out in NYC: If you think about the history of NYC in terms of food and drink, then two things might well jump out at you – Hotdogs and Cocktails. Well it just so happens that you can combine both in the coolest way at PTD or ‘Please don’t tell’, a hidden cocktail bar that you enter through a phonebox in Crif Dogs, one of NYC’s best hotdog joints! Once you enter PTD and settle down at the bar or in one of the padded leather booths, you can take in the quirky wooden décor and order a selection of new twists on old classic cocktails, including an ‘Old Fashioned’ that uses bacon-infused bourbon!

You can also order hotdogs to eat while you drink, and Crif Dogs provide some amazing variety including one with avocado and sour cream, or one with melted cheese and a fried egg. The dogs are delicious, and definitely some of the finest in New York, and the experience of eating them in a speakeasy-type setting only adds to the sense that this is NYC distilled into one experience. Well worth a visit! It’s impossible go out in NYC 😉

pdt nyc


We hope you like these places to go out in NYC, you will love them!



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