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When the sun goes down, an entirely different side of the city is revealed. ShermansTravel experts sort through the dives and overpriced cocktails to show you the best bars and nightspots that really give a taste of the local vibe, while also pointing out the jazz clubs, theater performances, and dancehalls that travelers might not find on their own.

Dallas Nightlife


The bright red drum-shaped Margot & Bill Winspear opera house and the steely, space age Dee and Charles Wyly Theatre call out Dallas’ shiny new AT&T Performing Arts Center, a $354-million complex that opened to much fanfare in 2009. Located in the heart of the city’s arts district, the multi-venue center hosts performers like Al Pacino, Mel Brooks’ Young Frankenstein, and the Dallas Opera.

2403 Flora St., TX, 214-880-0202, www.attpac.org
Tags: nightlife | theater | things to do | performing arts

Belmont Bar

Specialty cocktails shine at the Belmont Hotel’s bar, which offers seating in the hotel’s lobby or on the outside terrace overlooking the downtown Dallas skyline. The most popular cocktails mix ingredients that beat the stifling summer heat, like the Ice Pick, a boozy version of an Arnold Palmer made with Citron Vodka, Grahams Sweet Tea Vodka, Paula’s Limoncello, house-made lemon and lime juice, and fresh mint leaves.

901 Fort Worth Ave., TX, 866-870-8010, www.belmontdallas.com
Tags: nightlife | trendy | lounge | local favorite

Firewater Bar and Grill

Enjoy live music and good food in a relaxed atmosphere; service is quick and attentive, bands are original, and the sound system excellent.

10261 Technology Blvd. East, TX, 214-352-5700, www.firewaterbarandgrill.com
Tags: nightlife | bar | bar menu


Seventy taps line the bar in this brewpub; sample something in the inviting beer garden or visit on one of their frequent wine tasting and cigar nights.

2718 Boll St., TX, 214-754-8771, www.gingermanpub.com
Tags: nightlife | cigars | brewpub

Library Bar

Tucked away in a quiet corner of the Melrose Hotel, this lovely lounge is the perfect hideaway for a leisurely cocktail; with leather seating and comfortable surroundings.

3015 Oak Lawn Ave., TX, 214-521-5151, www.melrosehoteldallas.com
Tags: romance | nightlife | smart splurge | hotel bar


Sleek, hip, and stylish subterranean lounge with fabulous drinks and modern furnishings that lure Dallas’ elite.

1602b Main St., TX, 214-747-6227, www.obar.com
Tags: nightlife | trendy | lounge | signature cocktails

PM Lounge

Red velvet carpeted stairs twirl down to the Joule’s dim, swank lounge, bedecked for evening festivities with fuchsia lacquered sofas and chandeliers dripping with crystal baubles. An exacting bouncer, bottle service, and a busy dance floor draw A-listers and those who dress like them – an impressive feat considering that downtown Dallas used to empty out when the workday ended. 

1530 Main St., TX, 214-748-1300, www.pmnightlifelounge.com
Tags: nightlife | trendy | lounge | local favorite

Poolside at the Joule

Only hotel guests may swim to the edge of the Joule’s 10th floor rooftop pool – which cantilevers some 8 feet past the building’s end – but visitors can experience the dazzling downtown cityscape via the poolside bar (open to non-guests after 7pm), which mixes cocktails like watermelon sangria and tangerine mojitos. Bed-like sofas and dark-wicker lounge chairs trimmed with fiery-orange throw pillows contrast with the oversized white-tile flooring.

1530 Main St., TX, 214-748-1300, www.thejouledallas.com
Tags: nightlife | swimming pool | trendy | rooftop lounge | lounge

Roundup Saloon

Join a posse of cowgirls and cowboys in the five bars of this cavernous gay country-and-western dance den and karaoke bar.

3912 Cedar Springs Rd., TX, 214-522-9611, www.roundupsaloon.com
Tags: gay and lesbian | nightlife | dancing | country music

Urban Oasis/Dragonfly at Hotel ZaZa

Poolside bar service, whimsical décor, and the backdrop of the Uptown Dallas skyline draw a sleek, under-40 set to Urban Oasis and Dragonfly, Hotel ZaZa’s restaurant and lounge duo. Dress to impress before settling in on one of the patio’s lounge chairs, as celebrities like Jessica Simpson and Michael Jordan are rumored to bed down at the hotel.

2332 Leonard St., TX, 800-597-8399, www.hotelzazadallas.com
Tags: nightlife | trendy | lounge | local favorite

Victory Park

Proximity to Dallas’ Uptown, Downtown, Arts District, and Turtle Creek neighborhoods distinguish this $3-billion entertainment development of restaurants, shops, and lounges. Although some residences line the small neighborhood, the complex best serves as a dining destination when performers take the stage at the nearby American Airlines center.

The intersection of Interstate 35, North Dallas Tollway, and the Woodall Rodgers Freeway, TX, www.victorypark.com
Tags: nightlife | shopping | things to do | outdoors | park

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