10 Best Clubs in Amsterdam to Dance the Night Away
By Anne de Buck
Amsterdam Local Expert
Arrange a club night with the girls. Gather the men for a night out on the town. Call the group for a fun, friendly get together to blow some steam. Whatever you’re looking for, all signs indicate that it’s time to get out on the dance floor.
Some days all you need is to move to the music and dance your heart out. Amsterdam is the perfect city to help you let loose and have a little fun. Succumb to the rhythm, shine in the spotlights and release extra energy. 10Best will direct you to the best dance clubs in town; Amsterdam promises a night you’ll never forget.
Discover the underground music scene at Korsakoff or enjoy diverse programming at the Sugar Factory and Bitterzoet. Dance under historic ceiling paintings at Club Arena, once a former church chapel. Searching for a club with luxury and style? Look no further than Jimmy Woos. Paradiso is known for its live music, while Melkweg has a little something for everyone. Chicago Social Club and Club NL offer an intimate, cozy ambiance.
One final note: the city is home to the Amsterdam Dance Event (ADE), an electronic music conference and club festival. Thousands of DJs and artists come together to spin and showcase their talent. Better put on your dancing shoes; you're in for something special.
Located in a canal house dating from 1662, this was once home to the notorious gay club, DOK, whose visitors included David Bowie, Elton John and Jean Paul Gaultier. Following the demise of DOK, it was patronized largely by students until a major revamp in 2005. After 8 years it was time to remodel again and recently the club opened its doors again with a new interior and new agenda. Club Odeon is now again one of the hottest doors in town with a cocktail bar, restaurant and one of the best sound systems in Amsterdam. Club nights will vary depending on the night of the week. (+31 20 521 8555)
Spice up your night at Sugar Factory, where music is an art. Unleash your creative side and find your freedom. Express yourself through movement and dance -- actually, it's encouraged. From DJs and swing bands to soul music and salsa nights, the Sugar Factory program is always fresh and unique, as the themes frequently change. While there is an entrance fee, drinks are relatively inexpensive once you are in. If you arrive earlier in the evening, before the space turns into a dance floor, you can watch other type of performances such as theater, live music, cabaret and poetry. Stop by the Sugar Factory and join the continuous celebration.
Bitterzoet, a hip club in the heart of Amsterdam whose name translates to bittersweet, can definitely be bitter or sweet depending on your style. With such a varied program, make sure to check the calendar ahead of time. Bitterzoet covers all types of music, from rock and punk to hip-hop and indie, as well as ska, funk and even reggae. The club brings together an assortment of DJs, bands and musicians, often focusing on up and coming talent. Surrender to the beat on the dance floor or chill out for a moment on the second level. Bitterzoet is not only a nightclub but also a space that holds projects, exhibitions, performances and concerts. The entire experience will be fun and entertaining. (+31 20 42 123 18)
Leave the day behind the second you step into Club AIR. For the remainder of the night, set the bar high and let your spirits soar. With friendly, attentive service, creative, quality programming and a large space divided to create a cozier atmosphere, Club Air is the perfect place to let your hair down and dance till dawn. Venuez even awarded Club AIR the "Best Use of Technology of the Year," so the superb sound system will definitely get your feet moving. Plus, the club has welcomed many international famous artists, such as Afrojack, John Digweed, Sasha, Dr.Lektroluv, Sven Väth and Steve Aoki. Coming from another engagement? No worries. AIR, which is located near Rembrandtplein, offers lockers upon arrival, so you can safely store your belongings. (020 820 0670)
If you love electronic music, Studio 80 is the place to be. Listen to a variety of DJs, from seasoned veterans and renowned artists to new talent and experimental initiatives. However, this club is more than just a place to let your hair down; it's also a great place to learn. Studio 80 aims to educate and support young aspiring talent. The venue offers workshops, internships and seminars. For instance, in one of the workshops, you can learn the tricks of the trade and acquire the basic skills to be a great DJ. At Studio 80, immerse yourself in the electronic and contemporary music culture. (+31 20 521 8333)
Housed in an abandoned dairy factory, Melkweg was originally founded in 1970 as an outlet for the arts. Now, the venue welcomes young and old, amateur and experienced, with its multi-faceted mix of experimental and classical programming; therefore, the Melkweg is also well known for its nightlife. To top it off, you can also experience five different disciplines in one place. It doesn't matter what you find fascinating; Melkweg has a little something for everyone. For most night programs, you must be at least 16 years old. Additionally, you can receive discounts on club nights and pre-sale advantages for concerts if you have a Melkweg membership. (+ 31 20 531 8181)
Chicago Social Club
Chicago Social Club (CSC) serves as both a bar and a club. Sunday through Thursday, CSC is a laid back place to have a drink with friends. Thursday, Friday and Saturday, though, the space transforms into a fun, intimate nightclub. The club has two levels, creating a more gezellig (best translated to nice and cozy) experience. The program is varied, always high quality and often features techno or hip-hop music. CSC is like coming home and dancing with all your (new) closest friends. Go ahead. Shake your thing on the dance floor. Please note you must be at least 21 years of age to enter. (+31 (0)20 530 7303)
Previously one of the first true lounge clubs in the Netherlands, Club NL is now home to house music. The classic red velvet décor creates a cozy and sexy setting. Bar tenders are ready to make you a cool, crisp cocktail or create another one of your favorite drinks. Make sure to try their signature shot, the Doodoo. The shot is made with vodka, Tabasco, an olive, lime and a special secret ingredient. With a buzzing dance floor, DJs spin late into the night. Several celebrities have visited Club NL, such as Mick Jagger, P. Diddy, Tony Hawk and Naomi Campbell. For smokers, the club is complete with a smoking room. Club NL, located right next to Dam Square, is open every night, so you always have a place to move to the beat. (+31 20 622 7510)
At Jimmy Woo, a luxurious night club located near Leidseplein, you'll be dazzled by the design and blown away by the sound; the club won the "Dutch Design" prize and was awarded the "best club sound in the Netherlands." Come for one of the themed club nights, dance to the DJ downstairs or relax and have a drink upstairs. Every night is a unique experience at the Woo. The space is intimate and cozy, fitting only 600 or 650 people. Tip: Be sure to arrive early or reserve a table. Dress to impress. As it's a members club, Jimmy Woo is known for its door policy and likes to minimize the guest list. Enter the Woo and embark on a night of fun in style. (+31 20 626 3150)
Since 1968, Paradiso has been a location for creative talent. Now, the former church has evolved into a concert hall, club and cultural center, attracting people of all ages. Five nights a week, Paradiso is a club, providing an outlet for people to let loose and dance the night away. World famous musicians, such as Al Green and Lady Gaga, have also played in the Main Hall, while several other artists, such as Franz Ferdinand and Kings of Leon, have made their start in the Small Hall. Therefore, Paradiso has the entire music spectrum covered: electric, rock, folk, soul, country, reggae and blues. It's truly a place for everyone to have a good time. (+31 20 626 4521)