The Definitive Night Owl's Guide to Big D

Dallas may be a hive of activity during business hours, but the hustle-and-bustle doesn’t end when the sun goes down. If anything, it's when the city really starts to come to life with a dazzling array of nighttime diversions to entertain every kind of night owl.

In the mood to hit the dance floor? Then you'll want to check out The Nines, a multi-level hot spot providing everything from burlesque shows and aerial acts to quality programming by some of the city's best DJs.

For smooth jazz, head to Sandaga 813 and the Balcony Club. Or for live country music, Adair's offers up the cream of the crop (for free) every night of the week.   

On the hunt for a cozy drinking den serving up mind-blowing cocktails? Then you've got options. Some of the finest cocktails in all of Dallas can be found at Parliament, a lively Uptown haunt with a loose prohibition theme. But, good luck on deciding what to order–the menu features over 100 different libations to choose from.

More jaw-dropping drinks and an equally stunning setting to match can be found at Midnight Rambler, a buzzy subterranean hideout in downtown's swish Joule hotel. And for those who fancy a chilled-out bar scene, be sure to stop off at the Windmill Lounge, a low-key dive with a lively local crowd and seriously solid cocktails to boot.

Speaking of dives, you can't find a seedier, nor more popular place to chug cheap beer and potent punches than at Double Wide, a trailer park-themed watering hole located in Deep Ellum.

Whether you’re looking for a terrific cocktail, live music or the best place for dancing and partying the night away, we've rounded up the ten quintessential Dallas hot spots worth exploring during your next night out.



This venerable watering hole pays homage to the trailer park culture with its kitsch-adorned decor and surprisingly tasty low-brow cocktails. As the name indicates, the bar is set up in a double wide trailer--replete with wood paneling,...  Read More

Windmill Lounge
Photo courtesy of Windmill Lounge Facebook


While some places strive to be a dive, this quirky booze filled oasis, hidden down a sketchy stretch of Maple Avenue-- is the epitome of one. And as such, it's one of the most beloved cocktail havens in town, and perhaps, even in the country....  Read More

The Balcony Club
Photo courtesy of The Balcony Club Facebook


As the saying goes, sometimes the best things come in small packages– which is undoubtedly the case with this pint-sized, 1,400 square foot– jewel of a jazz joint. And what this laid-back watering hole lacks in square footage, it more than...  Read More

Station 4
Photo courtesy of Station 4 Facebook


Easily one of the city's best and biggest gay dance clubs, Station 4 (or S4 as locals call it), boasts late-night house and hip hop madness Thursday through Sunday, plus awesome drag shows and pageants in the Rose Room upstairs. Spread across...  Read More

Sons of Hermann Hall
Photo courtesy of Sons of Hermann Hall


Dallas has plenty of honky-tonks, but few are as authentic as this century old Deep Ellum mainstay. Originally built to house several lodges for a fraternity of German immigrants, the hall now serves as a live music venue showcasing a variety of...  Read More

The Nines
Photo courtesy of The Nines Facebook


Formally the Red Light Lounge, this 3000-square-foot multi-level dance palace is one of the only places in the Deep Ellum neighborhood where you can get your fix of electro-house, EDM and other hands-in-the-air sounds supplied by some of the...  Read More

Sandaga 813
Photo courtesy of Sandaga 813


Lovers of smooth jazz 'n blues can't do much better than at this Exposition Park live music venue, which has a reputation for bringing in top-shelf talent from around the globe. Even musical heavy weights like Wynton Marsailis and Erykah Badu...  Read More

Photo courtesy of Parliament Facebook


This slick spot for savvy drinkers is not exactly easy to find. It's stashed behind a black tarp-covered patio in the State and Allen neighborhood of Uptown and it boasts almost no signage. Though, even with all the obscurity, you most likely...  Read More



Sure, the drinks are cheap and the burgers are legendary, but what lassos most folks into this Deep Ellum dive is its undeniably unpretentious vibe and weekly roundup of live music. But it's not just any live music– Adair's brings in the cream...  Read More

Midnight Rambler
Photo courtesy of Midnight Rambler


Prohibition chic meets twenty-first-century cool at this intimate subterranean hideout in the Joule Hotel. Equally dazzling are the neo-classical craft cocktails, which have been conceived by two of the country's top mixologists, Chad Solomon...  Read More


Meet Ilene Jacobs

As a perpetual wanderer, foodie freak and wannabe chef, Ilene is always on the lookout for the best places to see, eat, drink and sleep. When she's not writing about the latest happenings in...  More About Ilene