Nightlife in Edinburgh

Hit the New Town or paint the Old Town red with our guide to the crème de la crème of Edinburgh’s nightclubs.
For big nights out, Edinburgh is hard to beat. From student hangouts with cheap drinks and big tunes to atmospheric spots for the more seasoned clubber, the city has it all in spades. While Edinburgh has plenty of clubs that churn out the usual chart toppers ad nauseum, it also has some very fine establishments that put a lot more thought into the music, the atmosphere and the drinks. Here are some of the clubs that make Edinburgh’s nightlife so special.
Sneaky Pete’s
This tiny venue has rapidly become an Edinburgh favourite, due to its carefully curated selection of live music and club nights. If you’ve ever wanted to dance your socks off with 149 other joyously sweaty souls, then this is the place for you. Regular nights cover every genre imaginable (and even some that we swear are made up), including electronic, house and techno from local label Firecracker; afro, cosmic disco, soul funk and disco from resident DJ Teesh; and 90s hip hop and 00s soul from local girls Ride. Friday nights are usually reserved for special guest DJs. Check the website for the list of what’s happening and when.

Cabaret Voltaire
One for the discerning clubber, Cabaret Voltaire offers the finest electronic music in Edinburgh in its unique setting under the arches on Blair Street. On Friday nights, this is the destination for house and techno, as residents Denis Sulta, Theo Kottis and Jasper James continue their four-year reign. Wednesday mornings have been written off for over five years by Hectors each Tuesday night til 3am, with three rooms covering off house, disco, techno, soul, funk and hip hop. It’s usually rammed so get on the guest list and get there early. You can book booths or the snug if you want your own designated party space.

The Liquid Room
Since its closure due to fire and subsequent rebirth two years later, The Liquid Room has established itself as a firm favourite. Housed in a church basement on Victoria Street in the Old Town, this dark club hosts a wide variety of club nights alongside a stellar list of live music. If you want something with less computers and more guitars, make this the focal point of your Friday night when Propaganda takes over with the best in contemporary and classic indie from 10.30pm until 3am. Most Saturday nights are a very different affair, as local electronic collaboration Nightvision bring the biggest names to town. Previous guests have included Chase & Status, Annie Mac and Groove Armada. 

The Voodoo Rooms
West Register Street’s The Voodoo Rooms cater for all your nightlife needs in one plush-but-not-pretentious setting. A night out here can consist of cocktails at the stylish bar, dinner in the restaurant, followed by anything from a slightly risqué cabaret show to an intimate gig, all wrapped up with a spot of dancing to wrap things up. It’s a beautifully appointed space, so you may feel a little out of place if you don’t make something of an effort with your attire.
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