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Portland manages to pack a nice nightlife punch for a city of its size. Brewpubs rule (Portland’s numerous breweries have earned it a spot as one of our Top 10 Cities for Beer Lovers), but hipster hangouts, boisterous gay bars, swank lounges, and outstanding live music venues prove the city has something for everybody. 

Portland Nightlife


Two-story space with four bars, billiards room, VIP area with private cabanas, and entertainment room featuring live performance artists, DJs, dancing, and more.

9 NW Second Ave., OR, 503-228-6900, www.cegportland.com/barracuda
Tags: nightlife | trendy | dancing | bar


Indie rock bands bust it out big time at this dimly lit bar and club, but live music isn’t the only reason the locals love Dante’s. On any given night you might see burlesque, hear a DJ set, or nosh on thin crust pizza – although on Monday it’s all about “Karaoke from Hell,” accompanied by a live band.

1 SW Third Ave., OR, 503-226-6630, www.danteslive.com
Tags: nightlife | lounge | dancing | cover charge

Darcelle XV Showplace

Established in 1967, Darcelle XV is the oldest cabaret venue for female impersonators on the West Coast; hugely popular with straight audiences (the gay crowd is small but present) looking for a Vegas-style show.

208 NW 3rd Ave., OR, 503-222-5338, www.darcellexv.com
Tags: nightlife

Dixie Tavern

Portland’s Coyote Ugly crowd cuts loose to classic and modern rock in this two-story establishment boasting live acts, DJs, and a mechanical bull on select nights.

34 NW 3rd Ave., OR, 503-234-9431, www.dixiepdx.com/dixie
Tags: nightlife | bar

Doug Fir

The restaurant and bar are great, but the live acts at this lounge draw the biggest crowds every night, making it ground zero for Portland’s music scene

830 E Burnside St., OR, 503-231-9663, www.dougfirlounge.com
Tags: nightlife | lounge | bar


A mix of straight and gay patrons converges on the dance floor and in the “living room” of this super-hip club housed in a giant warehouse; outdoor smoking section.

1001 SE Morrison St., OR, 503-239-7639, www.holocene.org
Tags: nightlife | trendy | gay

Saucebox Café & Bar

Come for the hot food and stay for the chill vibe at this restaurant and lounge combo where arty installations and an award-winning pan-Asian menu rule (try the signature dish, the deliciously spicy Javanese roasted salmon). And don’t miss the thrilling drink menu, where you’ll find cocktail classics alongside newcomers like the frothy white night martini or the robust halekulani mai tai.

214 SW Broadway, OR, 503-241-3393, www.saucebox.com
Tags: nightlife | trendy | lounge | cafe | dj

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