After Dark Select Manhattan Gay Bar Listings

Club scene - trendy crowd

La Cages au Manhattan... 

By Byron Bohl, Johnny Ramos & John Hoglund

In, out or almost there, if you're of the gay persuasion, you won't be bored in the city where gays never sleep. Manhattan after dark pulsates with the gay bar nightlife scene where many lifestyles blend and oddly dominate everywhere from the East or West Village to Chelsea, Hell's Kitchen, the Upper West Side - and beyond. Once confined to a handful of hidden watering holes scattered mainly in West Village dives or a handful of classier uptown bars, today they are as common as pizza and pedicure parlors. It really starts at Happy Hour. From all the variables today that include: dance bars, muscle clubs, piano bars, homo-style bistros and ladies' lounges, gay Gotham is explosive, vivid and overwhelmingly trendy at times.. Boring its not!

For a plethora of tourists and visitors, the gay bar scene today has expanded but still predominantly focused on a few neighborhoods. Naturally, it begins with the venerable Stonewall Inn (now a NYC landmark!) located on Christopher Street (opposite Sheridan Square) in the quasi-trendy West Village and extends into more upscale, uber-trendy Chelsea and red hot Hell's Kitchen area. The East Village still retains a funky, more bohemian flavor and clientèle. The majority of clubs in Manhattan are free-spirited and are either at borderline or full-scale raunchy or more sophisticated havens for the young and restless. Age doesn't matter. Anything goes.

Whatever you taste, here are some select hot spots recommended by AfterDark-NYC where you will find the queer set on in their natural habitat:

Rockbar NYC - logo  Rockbar NYC
  185 Christopher Street (Btween Washing & Weehawken Streets)
  (212) 675 1864 /

  Great bar. Live entertainment. Comfortable atmosphere, friendly staff and patrons and   good drinks. A most intimidating Kareoke.. Some terrific talent. Many  sounded like they were in a Broadway show. This place has a lot of live entertainment and special events to satisfy any taste  - especially bears. Something for everyone here.

Rockbar nyc bartender

Rockbar nyc performer







Sonewall Inn Exterior  53 Christopher Street (Sheridan Square  & Waverly Pl.)
 212 – 488 2705 / 
Stonewall - crowdTree Pool Trin
   Stonewall logo


 Maybe the world's most famous gay bar.  Now, officially designated a NYC landmark.   

This historical space is populated by locals and visitors from around the globe. Everything from talent contests to Drag Bingo and always a lively, fun crowd.  

With a colorful history, the famous Stonewall Inn is located on the site of the infamous Stonewall riots in June 1969. A movement was born.It is the location of the gay rights demonstrations against a "Public Morals" police raid that changed the face of the gay community nationwide. It is now squeezed between a pet shop and a head empoium. It has been revamped more than once since those days when gay rebels barricaded police inside using an uprooted parking meter. 

 The legend lives on with histrionic photos from the riots hanging amid state of the art flat screens (that occasionally show soft-core porn.) Downstairs, old and new styles mix with stressed wood paneling against a large mirrored wall and a red lit (side) den with cozy seating for more "personal" encounters. Upstairs, it's a big ball beat with flashing lights, disco ball, leopard-print seats and a stage. It's also the home of popular gay historian/legend "Tree" behind the bar regularly.     

The Boiler Room logo  The Boiler Room 
  86 East 4th Street
  212 – 254 7536 /

  East Village hole with mix of locals and NYU gang attracted to Internet jukebox, cheap  drinks.
  The tempo at this casulally friendly, unobtrusive bar that helped put the pulsating East Village gay bar scene on the map.
Minus the uber-trendy Chelsea cosmo-clone crowd, The Boiler Room is about regular guys acting like guys - with a beer or
well-poured drink.

Boiler Room crowd  Good, discreet seating areas make meeting people easy and comfortable.The main room is easy to manilulate where nooks
and crannies abound. look for a scattering of NYU guys on weekends. Always welcomning.
 The Boiler Room boasts one of the best jukeboxes in the city: Where else could you possibly primp,  preen and prowl to both Streisand and the Stone Roses? What? No Pussy Riot?

Red Rooster


29 Second Avenue (Between 1st & 2nd Streets)

Proceed with some caution. Not for the white glove crowd. 
Late night sexy hipsters in this notorious, seedy dive that's become a long-running
gay mainstay. Anything goes - especially in the naughty back room.
Watch your wallet.

The Cock entranceAndrew Stevens CB2

The Cubbyhole awning  The Cubbyhole
  281 West 12th Street (4th Street)
  212 – 243 9041 /

  Always popular and welcoming hangout bar with the ladies and some guys too. Terrific staff  makes you feel at home.

  If you like a hole in the wall village bar,. this one's for you.  The Cubbyhole is the perfect name because this place that is packed out on the weekends is cozy and gregarious. And, the drinks get high ratings.

  Always jumping, this village emporium that is popular with the ladies beckons you in and makes you want to stay all night.  Not too much room to move usually (and the line for the bathroom can get out of control.) One guarantee: Friendly bartenders and pulsating patrons.

Cubbyholde crowd Cubbyhole crowd






Eagle logo

  The Eagle
  554 West 28th Street (10th & 11th Avenues)
  (646) 473 1866  /

  Voted best NYC leather bar by New York Magazine.

  Old mainstay. Two levels now with a roof deck.Has it all from leather lovers, tournaments to the beer blasts.

  Very popular gay mainstay located in Chelsea. Some feel it's the only designated leather bar in Manhattan. However, if you aren't into the leather scene arena, don't let that discourage you from checking it out. The crowd is very mixed and not pretentious. Drinks are reasonably priced and the bartenders are all nice. There are different parties or themes depending on the night, with the weekends most crowded (obviously). It's known for getting pretty cruisy on weekends so keep that in mind if you are shy about having advances made toward you. In the summer, the roof is open and provides an open-air atmosphere that is great.

If you're looking for a place to hang and grab a few drinks in a relaxed atmosphere with good people, definitely consider this bar.

Eagle - 3 guys

Male model for ADNYC gay bars list

 The Eagle -  4 guys








115 Christopher Street
(Hudson & Bleecker Streets)
212 – 627 2044 //

Regular cruise bar with no glamor. Always nice staff and pleasant
crowd in heart of West Village right on olde Christopher Streeet.



LGBT Center






208 West 13th Street (7th & Greenwich)
212 620 7310

NYC headquarters for gay life with many events, meetings, support groups & happy things.

The Monster logo



  80 Grove Street (at Sheridan Square)
  212 – 924 3558 /

  Show tune madness upstairs with disco and drag/strip shows below, this old village favorite   remains the top

  A West Village institution
  Walk in at street level to the bar/piano lounge piano bar which looks like it hasn't    changed in 30 years. But don't let the decor confuse you. Pull up a stool and the friendly crowd and fun singers will have you hooked. For a change of pace, work your way downstairs to find drag shows and a rocking dance floor.

The Monster Bar NYC – Sheridan Square, West Village

The Monster Bar - West Village 

The  Ritz Bar logo

  The Ritz Bar & Lounge
  369 West 46th Street  (Between 8th & 9th Avenues)
  212 333 4177 /www.the

  Upstairs lounge, roof garden, dance floor. Always nicely crowded.

   Docked amid  Restaurant Row’s exciting restaurants, clubs, gay bars and post-theater eateries, this nautical-  themed watering hole keeps the Gucci crowd afloat with an inviting half-price happy hour before a younger crowd invades set to a boogie-friendly back room. The array of porch lanterns, stone Buddhas, and faux-marble fountains may feel designer chic, but the wall-to-wall couches encourage semi-horizontal carousing and cruising. When it gets majorly congested on weekends, the upstairs captain’s quarters,a dark, clubby space with a large model schooner near the bar, is a welcome retreat (except during warmer weather when the wedge-shaped outdoor deck sways!) Lively and hip crowd always on hand.

The Ritz disco ballsThe Ritz crowd scene







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