The best places to go bowling in NYC

The only way you’ll master that 7-10 split is by bowling! NYC has some excellent alleys where you can practice.
Lucky Strike
Photograph: Courtesy Lucky Strike
By Jennifer Picht and Time Out contributors |
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When you’re searching for things to do in winter, you can’t go wrong with this classic indoor pastime: bowling. NYC has plenty of alleys, including some of the city’s best bars with games, where you can attempt to facilitate the perfect strike. From funhouses like Bowlmor Lanes where you can play a bazillion arcade games to party venues like Brooklyn Bowl with its insanely delicious fried chicken, your options are endless. To make it a little bit easier, we’ve complied and ranked the best spots for you.

Best places to bowling

1
Bowlmor
Photograph: Courtesy Bowlmor
Sports and fitness

Bowlmor Lanes

icon-location-pin Midtown West

Bowlmor’s newer Midtown West location boasts 50 lanes divided among seven NYC-themed rooms: enter the Times Square of the 1960s through a naughty storefront, or warm yourself by the cozy fireplaces in the Bethesda Fountain–inspired bowling suite. There’s also a great location at Chelsea Piers.

2
Brooklyn Bowl
Photograph: Courtesy Adam Kane Macchia
Things to do, Concerts

Brooklyn Bowl

icon-location-pin Williamsburg

The performance venue-slash-16-lane alley is set in the abyss of a renovated warehouse, which leaves more than enough space for an on-site Blue Ribbon. Gorge on comfort food favorites (like a sloppy joe or fried chicken platter) among fellow mid-20s brethren—the scene is decidedly a postgrad favorite.

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3
Frames
Photograph: Courtesy Frames
Things to do, Games and hobbies

Frames

icon-location-pin Hell's Kitchen

The alley formerly known as Leisure Time Bowl offers 26 lanes (plus two more in the VIP room), two full-service bars, a steakhouse and a dance lounge; it’s one of the few clubs in the city where you’ll see bowling shoes doubling as dancing shoes.

4
Lucky Strike
Things to do, Games and hobbies

Lucky Strike Lanes and Lounge

icon-location-pin Hell's Kitchen

The Hell’s Kitchen outpost of this national chain boasts 26 state-of-the-art lanes and 11 billiard tables ($15 to $20 per hour). Have a drink in the lounge or a meal in the restaurant while you wait for a personal buzzer to announce that your lane is ready. We recommend booking ahead for weekends; lane reservations can be made up to three weeks in advance.

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5
Bars, Lounges

The Gutter Bowling Alley and Bar

icon-location-pin Greenpoint

The addition to the Williamsburg bar scene adds a unique twist—eight bowling lanes. Special events like Monday night trivia at 7pm help draw in crowds not enticed enough by the combination of alcohol and hurling bulky objects.

6
Rab's Country Lane
Photograph: Courtesy Rab's Country Lane
Things to do, Games and hobbies

Rab’s Country Lanes

icon-location-pin Staten Island

A bumper system allows adults, kids and double-digit bowlers to all play on the same lane. We like the in-house pizzeria (owned by Gennaro’s), the on-site pro shop, the High Roller Lounge’s pool tables and darts, and the 100-ounce beer tub for $22.

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7
Whitestone Lanes
Photograph: Courtesy Yelp/Amy T.
Sports and fitness

Whitestone Lanes

icon-location-pin Queens

This alley is open 24/7. That’s a turkey right there, but we also dig the fab chicken wings and crispy french fries on offer at the snack bar. You can also have your bowling balls custom-drilled at the on-site pro shop. Pay $19 for all-you-can-bowl on Saturday and Sunday mornings (8am–noon) as well as on Monday and Tuesday nights (10pm–2am). Also, $60 gets up to five people an hour of unlimited bowling, shoes included.

8
Showplace Enterainment Center
Photograph: Courtesy Showplace Enterainment Center
Things to do

Showplace Entertainment Center

icon-location-pin Staten Island

You name it, they have it: dartboards, pool tables, a pro shop, a sweet game room with five Skee-Ball machines, a sports bar with bucket specials and a pizzeria-grill. Moreover, the pulsating Xtreme Glow-in-the-Dark Bowling makes for a wildly bright Friday or Saturday night. From 9:30pm to 12:30am on Mondays, it’s Bowl-Till-You-Drop: all-you-can-bowl for $10 per person (minimum four people per lane). From 9:30am–11:30am on Saturday and Sunday, up to six people can rent a lane for $10 per hour.

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