Firmly on the cultural map, the West Village is home to New York’s longest continuously operating Off Broadway theater, and Robert Lyons’s New Ohio Theatre recently took up residence in the neighborhood. In addition to shopping, eating and drinking, popular things to do in the nabe include catching a new indie film at one of the city's best movie theaters, or a contemporary gallery show.
RECOMMENDED: Full guide to West Village
Setting the pace for campy, good-natured fun (though not classic glamour), the city’s oldest cabaret is still going strong at 55. A generous mix of regulars and tourists laugh and sing along with drag performers, comedians and rising stars in the cabaret room on the second floor. (Special showcases are still in the intimate game room, which is also upstairs and has a separate bar.) In the ground-floor piano bar, the merry singing waitstaff is entertaining enough to avoid charges of gimmickry.
The long-darkened 1930s Waverly was once again illuminated in 2005 when it was reborn as a modern three-screen art house, showing the latest indie hits, choice midnight cult items and occasional foreign classics. Actors and directors often introduce their work here on opening night, and the high-toned café provides sweets, lattes and substantials.
Located in the former site of the Food and Maritime Trades High School, this center for the LGBT community was established in 1983 and is now the second-largest center of its kind wordwide. It hosts meetings and events for more than 300 groups and receives more than 6,000 visitors weekly.
This East Village bar and restaurant is out to become your new go-to for everything from burgers and fries to late-night breakfast. If you come for a dinner and drinks, choose from classic bar eats like burgers ($8 for a single, $11 for a double), barbecue, spicy or curry wings ($8 for five, $14 for 11) and fries or onion rings served with a variety of gourmet dipping sauces (both $6). The aptly named bar also offers a variety of boilermakers, or beer and shot pairings. Try the El Diablo Shuffle, a shot of Rancho Alegro Blanco Tequila with Tecate ($8), or the Soft Pour Corn, Johnny Drum Private Stock Bourbon washed down with Sixpoint Sweet Action Cream Ale ($10). Stay long enough, and you might even make it to midnight pancake time, when the kitchen starts turning out hot stacks of buttermilk ($8), red velvet ($10) and strawberry ($10) pancakes.
Venue says: “Best happy bar in NYC by New York magazine "best of New York issue". Pancakes served 7 days a week midnight to close.”