For anyone heading out and about in London and looking for the perfect cocktail, stellar music and unforgettable evening, Islington really is the place to find all three – and here’s just five of our top picks to prove that point. Don’t forget, of course, that here at Nights Gone Wild, we offer some of the very best pub crawls in London.
One of Shoreditch’s most established and biggest event spaces and venues, Club Aquarium is also one of the most confusing – at least for those unfamiliar with nightclub’s that also happen to be sports facilities complete with their own swimming pool. Yes, you heard that right, Club Aquarium really does derive its name from making a gimmick of having its own indoor swimming pool and aqua facilities. Bear with us though, because this Jekyll and Hyde event space (one part health mad, the other party mad), isn’t just strange – it is strangely brilliant.
Swimming facilities aside, Club Aquarium is your typical nightclub, hosting a wealth of nights to suit all music tastes from urban garage to throw back 90s nights. Hence, the club provides the perfect combination of standard club bar, drinks deals, glitter balls, dance space and live music and DJ sets to please everyone. What is more, Club Aquarium also operates a number of comedy nights and gigs. So, if heading into Shoreditch be sure to take the plunge, just not perhaps literally, that is.
When it comes to pure fun, there is nowhere in Islington more perfect than that of Lucky Voice, situated on Upper Street. A karaoke bar of the highest calibre, Lucky Voice is likely to be unlike any karaoke bar you’ve ever before seen.
The bar itself is stylish, understated, low-lit and oozes atmosphere. What’s more it is entirely free of karaoke fanatics swinging microphones, equipment and cheesy karaoke compares. That is because this is a karaoke bar that gets it right. Hence, guests can enjoy banging out their favourite tunes in private booths, take part in cocktail master classes or team up and go head-to-head with other Lucky Voice patrons whether to sing or partake in Lucky Voice’s popular weekly music quiz. Perhaps not the coolest or hippest Islington venue, but everyone needs a guilty pleasure and in Islington, that’s exactly what Lucky Voice provides.
On to what is cool, very cool in fact, there is Nightjar. Specialising in rare spirits, vintage cocktails (made properly!) and celebrating all things jazz and blues, Nightjar is a speakeasy styled bar located on Islington’s City Road.
As well as one of the best places (not just in Islington but arguably the whole of north London) to get a perfectly made cocktail, Nightjar is also a place where folk can enjoy getting suited, booted and dolled up and guarantee a great night out without breaking the bank. It is beyond us quite how Nightjar do it, as they refuse to pack out the venue or even permit attendees to stand (so booking is advisable to ensure you get in), but this place is so reasonably priced after a cocktail or two you’d be forgiven for thinking you really had stepped back in time; entry to Nightjar is usually around the £5 mark in the week and remains under a tenner even at weekends.
The Book Club whilst being a bar in the most literal sense is actually the hub for some of Islington’s most artsy and literary minded. Hence, when it comes to considering The Book Club, the phrase ‘don’t judge a book by its cover’ could not be more applicable.
Whilst visitors to The Book Club are more likely to end up locked in an intense spot of ping pong than a mosh pit or witnessing a slam poetry battle than a dance off by day, rest assured; come night and under the cover of darkness, the DJs really do come out to play here. So, to get amongst Islington’s best art, culture and creatives, head over to The Book Club; whilst you may be surprised, you will not be disappointed.
When thinking of clubs in Islington Fabric is likely to figure high if not be the first thought for many locals and Londoners. In fact, if Islington and nightclub don’t make you think ‘Fabric!’, chances are you don’t know Islington.
An electronic dance club, Fabric operates via three separate rooms, two of which are almost always open and packed out most night with would be revellers and DJs hailing from all corners of the globe. The special emphasis Fabric and its Founder, Keith Reilly, place on finding, booking and giving a stage to some of London and the wider world’s best, most eclectic and most exciting DJing talent ensures that the atmosphere in the club is as electric and charged on any night as its music. Hence, a nightclub in the purist sense of the word, Fabric is a refreshingly gimmick free venue that champions music, dancing and revelry above all else (including its drinks menu). What’s more, running a veritable onslaught of events years round, Fabric is a staple of Islington night life – provided party goers are looking for quality music over a quality made cocktail, that is.