Nightlife — bars & clubs
Some of the most popular bars rub shoulders with the restaurants at major hotels and developments like the Magdalena Grand, Crown Point Hotel, the Seahorse Inn, and the Villas at Stonehaven, so you may not need to go far! But there are others like BarCode (Scarborough), D’Lime (Castara), Jade Monkey Casino Bar & Grill (Crown Point), Time to Wine (Shirvan Plaza, near Scarborough) that are ever-popular haunts for classic and exotic drinks, yummy food, and good times. Several also feature happy hours, an easy and fun way to start the evening. For partying through the year, The Shade (Bon Accord) is the place to be. And never to be overlooked, Sundays are a no-contest with the famous Sunday School street party in Buccoo.
Here’s more on the most popular ones:
- The Shade (Bon Accord) is still the coolest club, though — it is open-air, after all. Friday and Saturday nights draw huge crowds to the carat-thatched bar, and the palylist of soca, dancehall and hip hop, with a sprinkling of alternative, rock and reggae.
- Bar Code (Scarborough) is a sports bar with two pool tables and open air seating with views of the esplanade and sea. Located right at the port, you can watch ships and ferries in the harbour. The food is local and quite good. Live music acts from time to time. 639-CODE
- Jade Monkey (Crown Point): a bar, grill, and casino featuring cocktails, pub food, and DJ music so you can dance the night away
- At the Buccoo Town Plaza, the Sahara Lounge and Rouge Sports Bar are now open for business.
- There are lots of pool halls, casinos, and karaoke nights, and Itsy Bitsy Folk Theatre also presents dinner theatre several Tuesdays during the year.
The multiplex cinema MovieTowne cinema at Gulf City Lowlands Mall screens the latest blockbusters, and regional fare courtesy the Trinidad & Tobago Film Festival.
If you want to try your luck at the tables or with the one-armed bandit, there are lots of casinos to choose from, including Crystal Palace Casino (upstairs Bar Code on Scarborough esplanade), The Royalton at Crown Point Hotel and Sunset Palm Club (Mt Irvine).
Many bars and restaurants, especially in the Crown Point area, offer live entertainment at least a few nights a week, and sometimes karaoke for those in the mood. Of course, there are countless live entertainment options featuring local and international acts around festival times — like Carnival, Jazz Experience, Great Fete weekend, and Heritage Festival. The recently opened Shaw Park Complex is also a location of choice for shows and performances.
- Chart House/Sundowner’s Bar (Crown Point Hotel): Thursday–Saturday, 7–9pm
- Kariwak Village (Crown Point): Friday & Saturday sees the Kariwak Players perform
- Blue Haven Hotel (Scarborough): Thursday (guitarist), Friday (pan) and Sunday (band)
- Robinson Crusoe Pub(Magdalena Grand, Lowlands): Wednesday (karaoke), Friday and Saturday (band) – TT$30
- Pelican Reef Bar and Grill (Crown Point): Tuesday (guitarist), Wednesday–Friday (band)
- Café Iguana Jazz Bar (Crown Point): Thursday 8.30–10.30pm (live jazz), Friday 10pm–midnight (local band), Saturday 10–11pm (African drumming), Sunday from 9pm (Latin dancing)
- Tobago Jazz Experience: Each April, there are countless jazz and world music events during the TJE that take place all over the island, culminating with the major mainstage events.
The hymns are a little different from what you might be used to, but when you ketch the spirit, well… it’s heaven on earth. Join the locals for a baptism of fire at the famous Sunday School street party in Buccoo. Shake a leg to the steelpan music from the Buccaneers from 9pm. Craft, food and even gambling stalls fill the street. From 11pm, the locals get cranking… and can go until sun-up, so pace yourself.
Written by Nazma Muller