Of all the reasons to fall a little in love with São Paulo, its vibrant nightlife is one of the best. The SP night is blessed with a sophisticated, wide-ranging selection of styles and genres – and a relaxed, fun-loving crowd, so when nights out here are good, they’re some of the best you can have anywhere.
Many of the city’s night owls are drawn to uptown, top-ranking ‘baladas’ (clubs) like Provocateur and Disco, where champagne and premium spirits are the order of the day. The neighbourhoods of Jardins, Vila Olímpia and Itaim Bibi are the natural homes of those clubs, with dancefloors commanded by national and international DJs playing techno and house. There is a solid selection, too, of clubs and bars for the older crowd – think The History, Charles Edward and Itaim's Piove (see below for listings information).
In Vila Madalena, the neighbourhood's more bohemian tone translates to buzzing botecos (local bars), and small live music venues like O do Borogodó. Further north in Barra Funda, an expanding collection of clubs includes Alley Club,Lebowski and Clash Club. Barra Funda has become a fine alternative, lately, to the city's other great clubland hotspot: Centro and Baixo Augusta.
In Centro, a boom in clubs adds to a healthy scene of pop-up parties and roaming clubnights like Voodoohop held in edgy venues like Trackers Towers. Alberta #3, Lions, and Cine Joia, are reference points down here, the latter serving mainly as a live music venue, but running occasional clubnights too. It was recently joined by another cinema refurb – the huge Metrópole, another music venue that runs the odd clubnight.
According to Facundo Guerra, one of SP's hippest and most successful nightclub entrepreneurs, Centro is where it's at: 'There are still places that haven't succumbed to the speculative property bubble around Baixo Augusta,' he says. Guerra, one of the owners of Cine Joia as well as Lions, Yacht and the bar Z Carniceria, is preparing to open two more Centro nightspots in 2013 – a 3,000-capacity music venue and a jazz club, the latter in a prime position on Rua da Consolação, right at the top of Avenida Paulista, where the old-time Bar Riviera used to be.
- Charles Edward is at Avenida Presidente Juscelino Kubitschek 1426, Itaim Bibi (3078 5022).
- Piove is at Rua Jerônimo da Veiga 75, Itaim Bibi (3071 2301).
- The History is at Rua Gomes de Carvalho 820, Vila Olímpia (3846 4498).
Pick one of the nightlife categories below – chic, hip, gritty or over-thirties – and dive straight in.
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São Paulo’s top over-thirties nightclubs
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São Paulo’s down and dirty nightclubs
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