Hamburgs Guide To Nightlife
The Top Places To Visit In Hamburg
Hamburg, the city of blinding lights. Forget New York or London, the city that never sleeps resides in Hamburg, Germany where you can party till the early hours, get up grab yourself something delicious from the deli and bounce back into the day time with culture on your doorstep. Favoured by rockstars and hall of famers as the go-to spot for a whirlwind experience of music, art, culture and food, there really is no guessing as to why I make a repeat trip year after year for Reeperbahn Festival. It's been donned one of the best in Europe, and if my previous posts on Hamburg haven't convinced you enough, this certainly will. Today I'll be talking you through the ultimate spots to hit up during the night for the boogie of a lifetime and what you need to try whilst you're there!
The Chug Club personifies Hamburg perfectly; combining plush comforts whilst providing a mind expanding service that breaks boundaries of what you'll ever try in a small sophisticated bar. It's incredibly easy to find, being only a stones throw away from the wild extravagance of the Reeperbahn, once you've found it, you'll never ever forget it! Stepping into a chapel-like interior where everything feels sacred, mysterious and yet very comfortable. The centre piece of the venue is the glowing red-light bar stacked with their array of speciality tequilas and service with a smile. For any new-comers the menu is explained as being small glasses, bursting with big flavours. Chug Club prides themselves on expertly crafted beverages that woo their customers. A chalkboard hangs on an oppositional wall with their illustrious Chug Of The Day that's changed up frequently, that I can only imagine keeps the bartenders on their toes, as they strive to find new and interesting methods of bringing in tequila into their chugs. These chugs are intended for sipping, not glugging - you're told to enjoy the flavours and aromas with every warm sensation of tequila in the mouth. Whilst most drinking culture relies on the quantity that's bought, Chug Club insist you strive for quality of the drinking experience.
We were incredibly fortunate to meet two cocktail bloggers during our visit, and once I heard about their expert advice and why they frequently make this their watering hole of choice in Hamburg, I was sold for life - quality certainly does beat quantity. Not only does it enrich an ever glowing spotlight upon Reeperbahn, but it makes it all the more special knowing it's a hidden gem known to few, where inside the hospitality is inviting, unique and makes you want to come back weekend after weekend.
Location: Taubenstraße 13, 20359 Hamburg, Germany
1. The Chug Club
2. Kleiner Donner
To all the hip-hop fans of the world, grab your phone and pop the words Kleiner Donner on your notes section, as this is the ultimate go-to place for the best RnB and hip hop in the city. It resides in a relaxed venue - although this massively changes when their DJ sets and parties start up!
When asked what their speciality drinks are, they mentioned they're not about doing cocktails, just simple classic drinks. So if you're just after a Gin & Tonic, a selection of beers or Aperol Spritz, then this is the venue of choice for you.
Upon stepping up to the bar, you're greeted with a blue lightning bolt, with the apt translated name "Little Thunder". My first impression of it, was that simplicity was key, the music, drinks and atmosphere speaks for itself, here you won't find any finesse to lure you, no grand design or lavish architecture. Just you, your drink, good friends and the music. There's always a party to be had in Kleiner Donner says the locals, with some of the top DJ sets taking to the venue where previous photos have seen the place packed out to the max. We hit it up on a quieter day, where small groups were found dancing around and having a giggle.
Location: Max-Brauer-Allee 279, 22769 Hamburg, Germany
The first words that came out my mouth when walking around East, was "Oh my, it's like being in the milk bar in Clockwork Orange". East boasts a fusion of futuristic abstract architecture and industrial chic. It's the best fine dining experience I've ever had in Hamburg, and definitely intend to head back time and time again. Our friend Jessi said, treat yourself to sushi - and yes it was one of the greatest decisions I've ever made. We started off our experience with a few bespoke cocktails recommended by the bartenders that were crafted by East the franchise, meaning if you've been to their sister bars and restaurants you can try them out in East also!
I would highly recommend trying the following cocktails that we sampled; The Perfect Illusionist which utilises Illusionist Gin (a brand name that repetitively seen on every glamorous cocktail menu within Hamburg), El Mare, Tropical Hunter, Royal Angel, Violet, Mr T, Hamburger Apfelkeller and the best Basil Gin Smash I've ever tried. The service within East is incredibly welcoming, warming and attentive to your every need. So whilst you're lapping up the good life sipping something sweet and tropical, you can admire the stunning architecture that would be the dream of every cinematographer to film in. During the beautiful heatwave that we experienced in the first few days, it was incredibly ideal to nip out to the balcony terrace that overlooks other elements of the outdoor seating area that looks magically lit up at night. I'd highly recommend coming to East for a chilled out experience, a special occasion and also importantly, to try the food. I ordered in cous-cous sushi, whilst Paddy opted for the Red Thai Curry. A meal spent with rolling eyes of joy, exchanging forks with each other and plenty of smiles. It seemed a crying shame to be so full, as the truffle fries were a total delight. Please do try them, I really encourage trying out their finest dishes and cocktails, you will not be disappointed.
Location: Simon-von-Utrecht-Straße 31, 20359 Hamburg, Germany
Molotow - the home of indie and rock'n'roll, that was first established in 1990. This venue has a special place in my heart for being such a sensational venue to revisit time and time again. By nighttime you'll usually find me here throwing my hair around, and bumping into bands I know. Whoever books the bands at Reeperbahn Festival, I tip my hat to you for getting it spot on year after year. When one band is setting up on one stage inside, get yourself out to the courtyard for another band, because Molotow is the one place in the city that I can guarantee you to find the most upcoming off the grid bands that will be tomorrows albums charts. Call it Hipster all you like, but it's intended to be one of the vibiest nights out locations if you're into your indie, rock and alternative. Just to name a few from their bookings over the years we have icons such as; The White Stripes, Mumford & Sons, The Hives.
It has outstanding DJ sets every night of the week, meaning this is definitely not somewhere you can head for a quiet drink, the party never stops, but I have heard from the locals you can participate in their music quizzes which is no doubt the most low-key Molotow will get as it's the life of the party! I urge you to try the Mexikaner shot, because a spicy tomato shot amongst the cocktails gives you a super kick into the future!
Location: Nobistor 14, 20359 Hamburg, Germany
If you like your night's out to be super glamorous, cool and fun then do hit up Moondoo, situated in a historic building that was once a hippodrome where horse shows were shown. Nowadays it's famously known for it's combination of house, electro and techno tunes - you'll usually find a really edgy band playing there (like I have, over the years of Reeperbahn!) Or alternatively an amazing DJ set to be the soundtrack to your boogie. It's effortless cool with
They pride themselves on the slogan "Strictly no rules, Just all the great tunes!" which echoes the truth in why it'll usually have an extremely long queue to get inside, because once you're in you've entered a haven of abstract shapes on the ceiling, plush purple studded velvet booths sweeping from each sides of the room. It's the place to get super glammed up, so grab your heels, prettiest dress or sharp suit for a New York inspired club. It's history of previous top-billers include The Beatles and The Kinks.
It's a staggering place to visit fusing the glamour of 70s disco fever of Studio 54, with decadent vintage feels of gold leaf pillars, it screams finesse from corner to corner . Truly sensational to behold, and even cooler to spend the night at.
Location: Reeperbahn 136, 20359 Hamburg, Germany
Mojo Club in Hamburg is acoustically one of the best venues you'll ever head to, as well as being reminiscent of Brixton Academy in England. The cylindrical layout makes it super easy to navigate around the circular bars, and find yourself amongst to a separate DJ set in the toilets, a bizarre concept at first, but that's Hamburg - just when you think you've seen it all, the locals surprise you again!
The club was founded back in 1989, previously noted for being the go-to location for dance floor jazz and came back wildly renovated in 2003 where it became one of the most iconic clubs in Hamburg. By day, a slab of pavement that you walk over, by night the floors open up in a spacecraft manner to reveal two staircases into the unknown. Just keep an eye out for the circle on the floor marked with a large M, then you cannot miss it. The place is full of soul and character making it one of the best locations to hit up for an underground boogie, and meet some of the laid back locals who put on their dancing shoes after midnight.
Location: Reeperbahn 1, 20359 Hamburg, Germany