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Top 10 Nightlife in Australia

Destination(s): Adelaide

Whether shaking it on the beach, in a dance club, or on a rooftop bar under the stars, it’s a well-known fact that the men and women from Down Under know how to party with the best of them. To get your own Australian evening started on the right foot, we’ve compiled a list of some of Australia’s best bars, clubs, and nightlife haunts to drink, dance, see films, and be merry, which includes: having a cocktail (or cocktail-mixing lesson) at the Hilton Hotel’s slick Zeta Bar in Sydney; dancing to Latin music at the elegant Melbourne night spot called The Night Cat; gambling and dining at the classy Skylight Adelaide Casino in Adelaide; drinking and dancing to trance and electronica at Melbourne’s funky The Lounge, with a balcony overlooking Swanston Street; and lying down on cushions for movie night after enjoying a vegetarian buffet at Govinda’s & Movie Room in Sydney. read more about Top 10 Nightlife in Australia

Govinda's & Movie Room

Govinda's & Movie Room

  • 112 Darlinghurst Road
  • Darlinghurst
  • tel:61 2 9380 5155
  • Visit website
  • Sydney, 2010
Zeta Bar - Hilton Hotel

Zeta Bar - Hilton Hotel

  • 488 George Street
  • Level 4, Hilton Sydney
  • tel:+61 2 9265 6070
  • Visit website
  • Sydney, 2000

"Excuse me madam, would you like a lesson in perfecting cocktails with that martini?"
The Hilton's Zeta Bar, apart from being one of the most stylish and grown-up drinks venues in town, also teaches the dark art of mixing cocktails at its own Belvedere Bar School. You'll find out about the right tools, which ingredients go best together and why, plus a bit of history too. 2 hours: cost $95.
For non-students, Zeta's 007 type ambiance and slick modern lines elevates it to top of the bar class. Mind you, there are 4 tricky escalators to negotiate your way there from the George St entrance. But the destination is well worth it. There are lashings of velvet furnishings and drapes, plush leather ottomans, immaculately coiffed staff and a cocktail list longer than War and Peace.
A recently featured mix was the Smoked bacon & maple syrup Manhattan, apparently inspired after a NYC old-fashioned staple. "We stir a large measure of smoky bacon infused bourbon with maple syrup and a dash of cherry syrup and sweet and dry vermouth. Served straight up with a cheery garnish and a side of crisp bacon."
If that's a little too porky for your taste, choose another poison, adjourn to the outdoor terrace (heated in winter, but Sydney doesn't really 'do' winter) and step into your own Bond movie set. "And … action!" read more about Zeta Bar - Hilton Hotel

Q Bar

Q Bar

  • 34-44 Oxford Street
  • Darlinghurst
  • tel:61 2 9360 1375
  • Visit website
  • Sydney, 2010

The Exchange Hotel in Oxford Street is an institution. And Q-Bar, one of its many offerings (see also Spectrum and 34B) has almost reached icon status too, but in the sense of having attracted a mainly young, party hungry crowd (and surprising hetero given this is gay Sydney central) for almost 20 years.
You can talk, dance (live bands or DJs), drink, play pinball or pool, mingle amid cave-like spaces and generally just 'hang' in a laid-back atmosphere without too many hassles. And there's not a million dollar makeover in sight. The Hot Damn punk/party on Thursdays is one of the more popular nights.
Plenty of celebs have apparently visited over the years; from Boy George to Bono; Kylie to Elle. Maybe it was the cheap spirits and attitude-free zone that attracted them? Or maybe it was the private VIP lounge; members only, with darkened booths, a large sunken lounge, and giant AV screen.
A review from 'jd' on Barfinder probably says it best (typos and all): "… one of my fave places. undergound naughty vibe. good crowd, great music (my opinion) drinks are steep. dark loud hot and sleazy." read more about Q Bar

Lounge (The)

Lounge (The)

  • 243 Swanston Street
  • First Floor
  • tel:61 3 9663 2916
  • Visit website
  • Melbourne, 3000
Night Cat (The)

Night Cat (The)

  • 141 Johnston Street
  • tel:61 3 9417 0090
  • Visit website
  • Melbourne, 3065

The Night Cat adds to Fitzroy's reputation of having the best music in town. The open warehouse type feel gives guests a great view of the myriad of different styles of music on offer. From African to Hip Hop, and Reggae to Groove, the Night Cat is all about discovering something different. It is also one of the only venues in town that has a central circle stage, meaning the audience can surround it and get 360 degree views. Many of the shows are free, adding extra incentive. The Salsa classes (Thursday and Sunday) are also especially popular, more so with singles looking for a dance. read more about Night Cat (The)

Esplanade Hotel (The)

Esplanade Hotel (The)

  • 11 Upper Esplanade
  • tel:61 3 9534 0211
  • Visit website
  • Melbourne, 3182
Luna Leederville

Luna Leederville

  • 155 Oxford Street
  • tel:+61 8 9444 4056
  • Visit website
  • Leederville, 6007

The Luna Palace Cinema in Oxford Street, Leederville, is a modern cinema in a historic building. Luna Leederville tends to avoid screening the big Hollywood blockbusters and instead you can watch a great selection of alternative, independent and foreign films. Monday nights offer excellent value at Luna Leederville with their long-standing Monday double feature. The Luna Outdoors opens in summer and you can watch films oustide in the evening air. Located on the Leederville cafe strip, the Luna Leederville is a meeting place for many locals.
read more about Luna Leederville

His Majesty's Theatre

His Majesty's Theatre

Skycity Adelaide Casino

Skycity Adelaide Casino

British Hotel Restaurant (The)

British Hotel Restaurant (The)

  • 58 Finniss Street
  • tel:+61 8 8267 2188
  • Visit website
  • Adelaide, 5006