Dzyga is an arty cafe-bar at the northern end of Virmenska. You can't miss it as the street is a dead end and the bar is at the very end! It's only a stones throw from the Rynok and is quieter and has some nice views. It's a nice place to start or end the night sitting outside in the atmospheric old Armenian quarter. If it's not the weather to sit outside the inside was cool too with lots of local art on display. The beer was a good local wheatbeer and washed down the pork fat in chocolate perfectly - which is not as bad as it sounds - I had to give it a try. The rest of the food that we tried (the bar was located just below our apartment) was good - the breakfast and ice-cream mainly!
35, Virmenska street, Lviv, Ukraine
+38 32 276 7420, dzyga.com
Palazzo Versace is a super swanky hotel at Marina Mirage on the Gold Coast. While my budget won't stretch to their room rates, everyone is welcome to enjoy a drink in the hotel. We chose the Versace signature cake, which was served with tea or coffee from a vast selection. At $16 it was great value, with a whopping big piece of cake (no supermodel portions here!) and was served on beautiful china while we lounged on silk-cushioned chairs.
Fun alternative music venue in an old (-looking?) building in the centre of Beijing.
Watch the beautiful people smoke and pretend to ignore each other upstairs, in the cool bar and terrace.
Tomato is a cool salad bar, bar, tea and coffee house, is a breath of fresh air among the carbohydrate-laden eateries of Budapest. It's a beautiful traditional corner cafe, black and white tiled floor, soft lighting, good wine and the best salads in town. So when you've had your fill of goulash, i'd highly recommend this little gem. Friendly staff all speaking good English.
If you're wanting to check out Prague's gay scene, then this fun and funky dance club in the Vinohrady district is where to start. The first thing you see on entering the long underground bar is a full size Communist Skoda car hanging from the wall. Underneath it is a dancefloor pulsating to the sounds of club hits and Czech songs mashed up. Imagine Madonnas 'Like a Virgin' sung in Czech language, and you get the picture. Wednesday nights are the best, as many locals are in then. Well worth checking out.
A bar in Drayton Park opposite the Arsenal Football Stadium, the perfect venue for watching the world cup. Multinational staff and punter will ensure a competitive atmosphere, fantastic food and prosecco on tap. What more can you want?
020 7704 2387
66a, Drayton Park, London, N5 1ND
Google map: tinyurl.com/2wahhtd
A great place to take a break from the heat and enjoy an inexpensive ice-cream, snack or fresh fruit juice at Le Jardin cafe in the lobby. The hotel is now run by Sofitel but it's steeped in history and has hosted many famous guests.
16, Saad Zagloul Square,
Raml Station, Alexandria
Google map: tinyurl.com/374xvw3
A top-quality restaurant in the heart of town. Serves a range of fantastic food including lots of Canarian cooking. The steaks are particularly good and reasonably priced. Staff are very attentive and helpful. I'd recommend their 'queso asado' (toasted goats cheese with Canarian sauces; the house steak with bacon, apple and onion; 'papas arrugadas con mojo' (small potatoes boiled and wrinkled in sea salt with local garlic and chilli sauce); and half a litre of local wine.
Calle El Peñón, Puerto de la Cruz (round the corner from the bus station)
Tel: +34 922 37 01 33
Google map: tinyurl.com/2uu6rvz
Picture Solihull and you think of new housing, not canals, or indeed Africa! But walk along the peaceful Stratford-Upon Avon Canal from the Drawbridge Inn to Bridge 10, enjoying the wildlife. Then saunter along Tythe Barn Lane in Shirley to Akamba (akamba.co.uk), a very unusual garden centre, to enjoy a glass of wine or a coffee as you listen to African music in a secluded seating area surrounded by towering palms and banana plants - and even a lifesize gorilla and a (smaller) giraffe. Its Solihull but not as we know it!
Tythe Barn Lane, Shirley B90 1PH
Nearest station is Whitlocks End
The Bohemian (or The Bo, as it's affectionately called) is a live-music Johannesburg landmark. Just round the corner from Melville, this grungy pool hall/pub hosts local bands at least twice a week. The vibe is super-chilled and there is no need to dress up, more important in fact you should be willing to play a game of pool or watch live sport on any of their big screens. There are also half-price pizza specials on Monday and Wednesday nights as well as student specials on pizza and beer. This place rocks literally.
5 Park Road, Richmond, Johannesburg
Last summer as I was walking west along the Devizes-Newbury stretch of the Kennet and Avon canal, I came across quite a peculiar pub perched on the bank. Situated in the heart of the Wiltshire countryside, overlooked by the White Horse of Alton Barnes, is the Barge Inn: the ‘crop circle centre of the universe’. The walls and ceilings were crammed with an array of pictures and murals of recent crop circles, all appearing within a 10-mile radius of the pub.
The pub is as old as the canal itself and offered a fascinating and charming rest stop with a refreshing pint and an interesting conversation.
The Barge Inn, Honeystreet, Pewsey, Wiltshire
01672 851 705, the-barge-inn.com
Very nice arty Jazz club and although in the famous Calle Huertas, is not touristy in that sense. Two sittings and the repertoire changes every a few days.
Dos Hermanos is a dependable and friendly bar and restaurant in Old Havana. Fish and shrimp are especially good and the mojitos are great. This is a bar that Hemingway and other famous writers hung out in. Its location - right by the ferry terminal and the Museum of Rum - is an easy walk.
On Sol and the waterfront, near the Ferry Terminal.
There's no sign to look out for, just a snail over the doorway. The Bar With No Name isn't the secret it used to be, but it is still a great spot for wine, beer or cocktails - and food. A funky atmosphere and large, covered smoking area make it a popular spot with locals, but it is still unknown by many visitors.
Fade Street, between South Great Georges Street and Drury Street
Google map: tinyurl.com/38pajwv
Peacock Bar starts off the evening as a really raucous burlesque cabaret club, but once shows are over becomes a 70s/80s/90s club with great super-cheesy music. Really up for it 20-30-something crowd, lots of whom are all dressed up.
A fantasic place to stay when visiting Edinburgh, the staff were extremely friendly and helpful, great local knowledge. It has views of the castle and is right in the heart of the city. The room itself was awesome with great personlised touches, homemade muffins yum :) We also dined in the restaurant and we loved the food and service, we wouldn't normally dine where we stay, but was so glad we did and we even got a 10% discount which we thought was a nice touch. We really enjoyed our stay, I'm sure you will too – it's a little gem.
The Toff in Town is a fabulous venue hosting a variety of events and performances from jazz, cabaret and burlesque nights.
There’s an old fashioned glamour to the place, evoking Paris of the 1920s, in particular the partitioned section of the venue which has private booths, a bit like an old fashioned railway carriage.
Superb wine and nibbles, ideal for a midnight encounter.
Second Floor, Curtin House
252 Swanston Street
Melbourne VIC 3000
+ 61 3 9639 8770
A rather extraordinary gathering place, bar, and gourmet restaurant in St Petersburg Russia, popular with expatriates and tourists.
Every Tuesday night at 7.30, The Other Side becomes a select prepaid restaurant presenting an original Nouveau Russe menu created and cooked by Chef Greg Easter. He is an author and respected chef with extensive experience in California, Italy, and now Russia.
The food is cus-na! (very tasty), presented with class, and has had an appreciative reception.
1 Bolshaya Konushennaya Street
St Petersburg Russia
00 7 921 960 26 91; othersidebar@mailru
I would expect my favourite night club to be in London or New York.
However, when I first came to Reina in Istanbul I was absolutely fascinated. The amazing view of the lights of Bosphorus, the music, the beautiful people - 1001 Nights in modern Istanbul way.
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