City Guide / Atlanta

The 15 Best Clubs in Atlanta, Georgia

By Lauren Finney Harden | Sep 26, 2022
The dark red Sinatra Room at Johnny's Hideaway, one of the best clubs in Atlanta, Georgia.

So, you’ve decided to move to Atlanta—now it’s time to go out and meet people! That can be easily done in a city like Atlanta, where there’s truly something for every type of party-goer once the sun goes down. From dive bars that turn into dance clubs to full-out classic nightclubs, the best thing about Atlanta is that the night can go in several different directions!

With a rich music history spanning from country music to rap and beyond, there are a ton of options for clubbing in Atlanta. If you enjoy the pomp and circumstance of a good night out at a nightclub with fun people, good drinks, and, of course, killer music that goes until 3 a.m. at most spots, here are the top Atlanta clubs to see and be seen, including:

  1. Tongue & Groove
  2. Johnny’s Hideaway
  3. MJQ Concourse
  4. District
  5. Havana Club
  6. The Basement
  7. PBR Atlanta
  8. Gold Room
  9. Blake’s on the Park
  10. Domaine
  11. Midtown Beach Club
  12. Venkman’s
  13. Mary’s
  14. Koo Koo Room
  15. Whiskey Blue

Let’s get started!

1. Tongue & Groove

Located in the heart of Buckhead near Lindbergh, Tongue & Groove is one of the most storied nightclubs in Atlanta. Its multi-level, high-energy dance club has kept Atlantans grooving to the best music in all genres for almost three decades. Fun fact: they’ve played over 245,000 hours of music!

The club is notorious for hosting some of the best local and international DJs and is the home of many glamorous launch parties. Open until 3 a.m. on Fridays and Saturdays, it’s the perfect place to indulge in bottle service. There’s a varied cover charge and usually a line, so get your game face on and your head in the right space before heading over.

2. Johnny’s Hideaway

Johnny’s Hideaway is an “only in Atlanta” experience, where everyone from septuagenarians to college kids have come to dance on the club’s small but iconic dance floor since 1979. Oldies, disco, and today’s hits all mix together, and an eclectic cast of regulars will keep you busy people-watching.

There is almost always a line and a cover here, but it can be bypassed by buying a table with a drink minimum at the door. A dress code is enforced, so check the website before going. Speaking of rules, there are no drinks on the dance floor—they will ask you to leave.

Conveniently located on Roswell Road, the nearby Waffle House is where the party continues into the wee hours of the morning after Johnny’s closes at 3 a.m.

3. MJQ Concourse

Known affectionately as MJQ, this nearly 30-year-old Old Fourth Ward spot is named after Modern Jazz Quartet, the founder’s favorite band. Jazz is not currently on the menu at MJQ, however, as the club is now known for its underground music scene.

Atlantans go there to dance the night away to everything from 2000s jams to the stylings of up-and-coming DJs. It’s a true melting pot, and there’s no dress code. MJQ feels like the best basement dance party you’ll ever attend, though it can get a bit chaotic at times (sometimes there’s a cover, sometimes not, and Wednesday nights are for “Locals Only”).

More of a live music fan? Check out Drunken Unicorn, MJQ’s club-within-a-club. Just note that ticketed events go quickly for this intimate venue.

4. District

Inside a warehouse in Armour Yards is District, which hosts some of the best DJs in the world like Paul Van Dyk and Steve Aoki, as well as events like MMA fights and amateur wrestling. Dance your heart out under 300 floating orbs in the two-story club, which dubs itself a sensory nightlife experience complete with lasers and LED lights.

Entry fees start at $15 and go up, and drinks are around $15 to $20 as well. Of course, bottle service is always an option at District, where there is a strict dress code. If you like to drive to venues, it has ample nearby parking, too.

5. Havana Club

If you love house music and rum, then Buckhead stalwart Havana Club is for you. For almost 30 years it’s been providing Atlantans with three distinct rooms filled with an eclectic mix of music. Don’t miss Havana Fridays, where the best Latin and Top 40 music help get the weekend started. All genres can expect to make an appearance, from dancehall to soca to hip-hop.

If smoking bothers you, this might not be the nightclub for you, as cigars are sold and smoked onsite, as is hookah. Covers can range, but expect to pay at least $20 starting at 11 p.m. Parking is expensive and limited here, so we recommend using a rideshare option instead.

6. The Basement

The Basement is located in hip East Atlanta Village beneath a bar called Graveyard and within walking distance to many up-and-coming venues, clubs, bars, and other nightlife hotspots. Billing itself as an underground live music venue and dance club, The Basement features a “come as you are” policy that is reminiscent of, well, being in a basement (albeit a very cool one!).

The music at this ATL hotspot ranges from Outkast tribute nights to ’80s dance parties. Saturday nights are reserved for “Down and Durty” nights, where the best “Dirty South Anthems” can be heard. Cover charges vary by theme from about $15 to $40 each night. The bathroom situation can be divey, but it’s all part of the experience.

7. PBR Atlanta

As part of Live! At The Battery, PBR is Atlanta’s best country music club, where you’re more likely to see boots than high heels. There’s line dancing, VIP tables, and even a mechanical bull. A country DJ spins tunes until 2 a.m., and there are two bars to serve guests drinks like bourbon and beer (of course!).

PBR Atlanta is part of The Battery complex—attached to Truist Park, the home of the Atlanta Braves—so there’s plenty of people-watching to keep you entertained all night.

8. Gold Room

Located near some of Buckhead’s other notable nightclubs is Gold Room, where you can see some of the world’s best DJs like Diplo and Tiesto spin under a ceiling full of “rain” LED lights. There is no central dance floor, but rather the club is divided into different rooms and sections for a more intimate vibe. Most people don’t arrive until midnight, so plan accordingly.

Take note that there is no food offered, and parking can be extremely expensive, but it’s worth it for the ambiance and people-watching

Pro tip: Fridays are often free if there’s not a ticketed event.

9. Blake’s on the Park

For over 30 years, Blake’s on the Park has been a Midtown staple for the LGBTQIA+ community and its allies. As a video and dance bar, you can expect to see DJs, dancers, drag shows, and more just steps from 10th Street’s iconic rainbow crosswalks.

The dress code is casual and the vibe is more dance bar than nightclub (although guests often show up in their finest). The two-story building and patio help make the intimate spot feel larger than it is, which is a good thing: As the night goes on, it gets more and more crowded with dancers and revelers. Food is served until 9 p.m.

10. Domaine

In the heart of Midtown on Cresent Avenue is Domaine. It’s located in the former legendary Opera space and has hosted all sorts of events such as Bad Bunny’s afterparty and a recent Pauly D appearance. The classic two-story room underwent a multi-million-dollar renovation in 2019 to make it one of the most spectacular production spaces in Atlanta.

Covers on non-ticketed nights range from $20 to $40, which can be worth it to experience the unique outdoor cabana area and elevated garden.

11. Midtown Beach Club

The first “true Vegas-style day club” in Atlanta, Midtown Beach Club is a unique experience in the heart of the city. (Yes, they do night swims, too!) Cabanas can be reserved in advance for up to 20 people, and there is no cover charge unless there is a ticketed event.

Drinks include Caribbean-inspired cocktails like daiquiris, mojitos, and more to put you in the day-drinking mood while DJs spin a variety of tunes. If you’re looking for the ultimate upgrade, there is a single VIP bungalow that overlooks the entire pool.

12. Venkman’s

An Old Fourth Ward staple, Venkman’s has been hosting everything from bluegrass to Yacht Rock to salsa in ATL for over 10 years. (It’s owned by two of Yacht Rock Revue’s frontmen.) A restaurant slash live music venue, this spot is located in the old NuGrape Soda Factory, which gives the intimate location its distinctive exposed brick walls.

Many nights are ticketed events that need to be purchased in advance, although some aren’t—jazz nights on Wednesdays are never reserved, for example. Come as you are to enjoy delicious food at dinner and brunch such as duck egg hash and hot pastrami sandwiches.

13. Mary’s

In East Atlanta Village is Mary’s, a neighborhood staple that has been voted The Best Gay Bar in America by several media outlets. Both gay patrons and their allies get down to DJs, drag shows, and a raucous karaoke bar. Drinks are strong, and there are even mocktails on the menu for non-drinkers.

The room is quite narrow, so you might find more space on the back patio or in the front area. The cover charge is usually around $5, and for any planners—it does get to max capacity quickly—you can purchase tickets to enter in advance online.

14. Koo Koo Room

Tucked nearby Tin Lizzy’s in Midtown is Koo Koo Room, an intimate, all-genre dance club and lounge. You’ll see all types of people here, and the dress code isn’t as strict as it is at other nearby establishments, which makes it perfect for those nights on the fly.

The underground feeling keeps it more under the radar, which is appealing to those who don’t want too much of a scene. You’ll want to take rideshare here, as Midtown parking is notoriously difficult, but fair cover charges ($10 to $20 most nights) and good drinks will keep you coming. You might even spot Charles Barkley there, who is known to be a fan.

15. Whiskey Blue

Perched high above Buckhead’s Hotel Colee is Whiskey Blue, one of Atlanta’s most influential and upscale lounges. (It’s one of Randee Gerber’s 10 national locations of the brand.) While it can be an expensive endeavor—drink minimums in VIP sections can start at $60 per person—it can be a worthwhile one if your goal is to be seen by some of Buckhead’s most stylish people. This is the place to dress to impress!

Choose from drinks like Casamigas Frozen Margaritas (naturally, Gerber is a co-owner of the brand) and a Cherry Bomb, made from rye whiskey, cherry purée, and fresh lemon juice.

Want to enjoy more of Atlanta’s nightlife scene?

No matter your style of music, dress, or dance, there’s a club for everyone in Atlanta, and people often find themselves at one end of the spectrum at the beginning of the night and the other by the end. And, if you’re thinking about moving to Atlanta to experience everything this city has to offer after dark, consider renting from Landing, which offers fully furnished apartments in Atlanta along with flexible leases that make it easy to move on your terms and explore the vast and varied nightlife this city has to offer.

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Lauren Finney Harden

Lauren Finney Harden is an Atlanta-based writer, specializing in lifestyle topics such as parenting, design, food, and style. She's written for publications including InStyle, Today.com Byrdie, Verywell Family, and more, and has served as editor-in-chief of several magazines, including Lonely Planet, and The Atlantan. She's an avid traveler—Uruguay has been her favorite destination so far!—and mom to a toddler.