There are thousands of bars in New York City that offer elaborate drinks, reasonably priced bar snacks, and fun bar-side games that the whole group are sure to enjoy.
But setting themselves apart from the crowd are themed bars that provide patrons with entertainment, creatively themed drinks, and an eclectic atmosphere, unlike anything they have ever seen before.
Visit these refreshing themed bars and let their gimmicks take your drinking experience to new heights.
Otto’s Shrunken Head
The decor is as subtle as the name, but if you’re a tiki enthusiast, you and your grass skirt will fit right in.
The light fixtures are glowing candy-colored blowfish, the walls sport gaudy ’50s tropical prints, and the drink menu is heavy on beach-bar standards like piña coladas and margaritas.
Once surf rock gets going in the back lounge, the place becomes more Cali than Bali.
House of Wax
Inside the long-anticipated Brooklyn outpost of film-geek haven Alamo Drafthouse, you’ll find a hallway lined with all sorts of grotesque curiosities: death masks, model fetuses, and even monkey skeletons. But walk through and you’ll find that the macabre is served with a side of cocktails.
The theater’s house bar—which is modeled after 19th-century panoptic attractions and displays many relics of that era.
From Berlin wax-house Castans Panopticum—tuck into cocktails like the Lolita Nymph (Brooklyn gin, orange-and-basil shrub, orange blossom) and the Butcher of Hanover (Fernet Branca, Carpano Antica Formula, IPA, lemon and Angostura) before your movie starts.
Full Circle Bar
Full Circle Bar is a Skeeball-themed dive bar — complete with a bar made from Skeeball machine parts — that features its own machines to play.
Head over on Thursdays and Sundays for free skeeball (typically $1 per game). Sunday also has a happy hour, when everything costs $4 from 11 p.m. to close.
Originally a Williamsburg gem, Barcade now has multiple locations in throughout the city.
It attracts a loyal fan base with an array of vintage arcade games and a robust drink selection. The bar in a former metal shop fuses craft beers and cocktails with a healthy helping of childhood nostalgia.
This 60’s beauty themed bar plays vintage songs, with chrome-domed hair dryers re-doubling as armchairs, and manicurists still painting nails.
This beauty salon turned bar is now a host to the odd comedy set or back-room dance party, but otherwise, the most notable change is the aforementioned alcohol, which has allowed for a great $10 “Martinis and Manicures” deal.