A definitive guide to Dubai's best nightclubs
Don’t even think about planning a night out until you’ve checked this guide…
Dubai’s clubbing scene is thriving more than ever at the moment. There’s something for everyone, whether you’re into huge open air super clubs, intimate underground nightclubs, or regular hotspots guaranteed to be busy every single week. Each of Dubai’s nightclubs has something unique to offer, some bring big name urban artists, others host huge house DJs and a few have incredible performers at the heart of their entertainment.
Here’s your definitive guide to Dubai’s best nightclubs.
Dubai Design District
BASE stormed onto the clubbing scene in 2017 and has continued to draw crowds with its huge artist performances, creative live entertainment and futuristic lights and visuals. Over the past two years, the super club has brought the likes of French Montana, Black Coffee, Rick Ross, David Guetta, Jason Derulo and many more. Currently BASE is open two nights per week, Thursdays are focused on the best R&B and urban tunes, while Fridays are tailored to fans of house and techno. Throughout the upcoming season, guests can expect live performances from world-renowned artists.
BASE Dubai, Dubai Design District, Thursdays and Fridays, 11pm to 4am. Tel: (055) 313 4999. basedubai.com
The sister-property of Beirut’s famous Skybar, Sky2.0 opened in March 2019 and has just re-opened for its second season in Dubai. Offering an alternative to the clubbing norm, Sky2.0 puts a heavy focus on design and details, with its UFO-style shell instantly recognisable when you reach d3. The club is open three nights per week, with ‘Dstrkt’ Wednesdays tailored to Dubai’s urban music fans. Thursdays are their ‘Signature’ night, offering a mix of house music and R&B. On Fridays, ‘Boom Box’ will take you back throughout the decades, playing the best in dance, hip-hop and R&B music.
Sky2.0, Dubai Design District, Wednesdays to Fridays, 10pm to 4am. Tel: (04) 587 6333. skydubai.com
Consistently dubbed one of the ‘world’s top 100 clubs’, White Dubai is a must-visit if you’re looking for a big nightlife experience. The superclub regularly hosts big name artists from around the world, including Steve Aoki, Jason Derulo, Skepta and Tinie Tempah. For those with a VIP table, the club offers a taste of luxury living, with a raised area to look out onto the crowd of party people. The open-air club offers views stretching from Downtown Dubai’s iconic skyline, right across the city. Open on Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturdays, there’s a heavy focus on hip-hop and R&B music, with Tuesdays catered to afrobeats, Thursdays dedicated to London’s thriving music scene, Fridays offering a multi-genre party, and Saturdays focused on the very best in urban tunes.
White Dubai, Meydan Racecourse Grandstand Rooftop, Nad Al Sheba 1, Tues & Thurs to Sat, 10pm to 4am. Tel: (050) 443 0933. whitedubai.com
Hailing from America’s number one party destination, Las Vegas, Drai’s DXB offers a taste of the US’ lavish partying lifestyle in the Middle East. From Wiz Khalifa to French Montana, Nelly and Ne-Yo, the super club has had many of the biggest names in hip-hop and R&B on its stage. There’s a popular ladies’ night every Sunday, which offers complimentary entry and drinks for girls, alongside tunes from its resident urban DJ.
Drai’s DXB, Meydan, Sundays and Fridays, 10pm to 4am. Tel: (052) 388 8857. draisdxb.com
What was once a cosy mini-club in Al Murooj Rotana, Toy Room has since moved to Meydan, and evolved into the lively hotpot we know today, regularly hosting popular singers and rappers of the moment. If you’re looking for a more intimate clubbing experience, where the guests are made to feel part of the community, then Toy Room is the one for you.
Toy Room, Soho Garden, Meydan, Mondays and Wednesday to Saturday, 11pm to 4am. Tuesdays and Sundays closed. Tel: (052) 463 3338. toyroomdxb.com
A new addition to Dubai’s ever-growing nightlife scene, Code offers a different take on nightclubs that European visitors might be more familiar with. Rather than an open-air venue surrounding a large central bar, Code is much more of a warehouse-style venue. There’s plenty of sound and lighting production to get the crowd going, without asking them to fill the gaps between expensive tables. Only open once per week, the Thursday night line-up has a house and techno focus, with artists from Elrow, Ministry of Sound and Defected regularly on the bill.
Code, Soho Garden, Meydan, Thursdays, 11pm to 4am. Tel: (052) 388 8849. sohogardendxb.com
Soho Garden Club
Meydan’s popular nightlife destination Soho Garden has just added a new rooftop nightclub to its already extensive collection of venues. The new venue is found on a platform behind the current DJ booth in Soho Garden’s pool area. There’s plenty of tables around the edge of the club, with a large bar located in the middle. At the back of the space, taking precedence in front of Dubai’s iconic skyline is a stage, ready to welcome some of the best musical talent in the world.
Soho Garden, Meydan Grandstand, Nad Al Sheba, Wednesday to Saturday, 8pm to 3am. Tel: (052) 388 8849. sohogardendxb.com
Originating from the Meat Packing District of New York, ‘one of a kind’ 1Oak is a regular haunt for many of the biggest urban musicians and celebrities. In Dubai, it’s a place for residents to come and feel like a celebrity. The futuristic interiors and cushy booths provide an exclusive ambience in the thriving JW Marriott Marquis hotel. While performers have been known to grace the stage, the focus is on resident DJs creating a consistently cool vibe. 1Oak is a great excuse to dig out your finest outfits and party like a rockstar.
1Oak, JW Marriott Marquis, Business Bay, Downtown Dubai, Tues & Thurs 11pm to 3am, Fri & Sun 11pm to 4am. Tel: (052) 881 8888. 1oak-dubai.com
DIFC hotspot Mantis opened early this year in Emirates Financial Towers. The futuristic-style venue is home to a state-of-the-art light and sound system and combines a chic lounge with a laid-back ‘immersive room’ to relax in. The bar also offers an extensive food menu, including ‘sophisticated Asian and South American-inspired dishes and classic European favourites’. Mantis is open three nights per week, on Wednesdays there’s an urban and hip-hop vibe; Thursdays are a mix of commercial pop and R&B, while Fridays offer non-stop hip-hop, commercial, old school and afrobeats.
Mantis, Emirates Financial Towers, DIFC, Wednesdays to Saturdays, 10.30pm to 4am. Tel: (058) 892 2488. mantis-club.com
Fancy partying in the world’s tallest building? Armani/Privé offers a taste of luxury lifestyle inside the Burj Khalifa. It’s one of Dubai’s longest standing nightclubs, having opened in 2010. The venue is located on the first floor of the 163-storey building, and is split between a slightly raised bar area and main dance floor next to the stage. The club, which was designed by Giorgio Armani, now has three ladies’ nights, one of which is hosted by Secret Parties, on Sundays, Tuesdays and Saturdays. It’s also open on Thursdays and Fridays, giving Dubai residents a plethora of options to suit their lifestyle.
Armani/Prive, Burj Khalifa, Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Boulevard, Downtown Dubai, Sun, Tues and Thurs to Sat, 11pm to 4am. Tel: (052) 176 9420. armanihoteldubai.com
The most exciting thing about Billionaire Mansion isn’t actually the nightclub, but the adjoining restaurant. Throw yourself into an immersive dining experience, complete with unique and extravagant entertainment, while indulging in multiple courses of fine-dining cuisine. Once you’re suitably fed and entertained, get ready to party as Billionaire Mansion is known for throwing some equally extravagant nights out. Don’t be surprised if you find yourself dancing next to a table of millionaires (they’ll be the ones with bottles of champagne and sparklers being delivered via a model race car).
Billionaire Mansion, Taj Hotel, Business Bay, Downtown Dubai, Tues & Weds 7pm to 3am, Thur to Sun 7pm to 4am, Mon closed. Tel: (04) 510 3100. billionairemansiondubai.com
With an entrance that has divided the nation, underground-style venue Industrial Avenue stands out from the crowd. Make your way through the grafitti’d urinals (yes, seriously) and you’ll find yourself in a converted event space, with newspaper-lined walls and concrete flooring – a far cry from the plush velvet booths and ornate furnishings you might find in other Dubai clubs. Attached to the club is The Shoreditch, otherwise known as a ‘hangout bar’, where the pre-party begins over a game of table football. Once you’ve made the most of the daily drinks deals in The Shoreditch, head into Industrial Avenue for an up-close and personal music experience where you’re as likely to find yourself in a dance off with a stranger as you are to see the DJ crowd diving from the stage.
Industrial Avenue, Westin Mina Seyahi, Dubai Marina, Mon & Tues 10pm to 3am, Thurs 9pm to 3am, Fri 9pm to 4am. Tel: (052) 293 5907. industrialavenuedubai.com
Located in the very regal Emerald Palace Kempinski, Skorpeus is part lounge, bar and nightclub. From the dance floor, you might find yourself transfixed by the giant immersive screen, displaying a mixture of 3D, patterned and psychedelic visuals. With a variety of events on rotation, you can never be too sure what you’ll find at Skorpeus, whether it’s masked dancers performing a perfectly unified routine, an immersive theatre dinner experience or vibrant latin night hosted by professional salsa teachers.
Skorpeus, Emerald Palace Kempinski, Palm Jumeirah, Wed to Sun 6pm to 2am. Tel: (04) 248 8840. facebook.com/Skorpeus
Tucked away in FIVE Palm Jumeirah is the ultra lavish and golden Secret Room. In contrast, the club is accessed via a grungy graffiti’d corridor, or for super VIP guests, in the comfort of their own car, driven straight into the club. Open on Sundays, Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays, Secret Room offers a mix of hip-hop, R&B and latino music at its weekly events.
Secret Room, FIVE Palm Jumeirah, Palm Jumeirah, Sundays, Tuesdays, Thursdays & Fridays, 11pm to 5am. Tel: (058) 869 8996. secretroomdubai.com
Sheikh Zayed Road
Located on the 32nd floor V Hotel in Al Habtoor City, BOA club is a super-sized venue complete with lavish interiors and a line up of superstar performers regularly on the bill. The club is open five times per week, with free drinks offered for ladies on most nights. The musical offering switches between urban and R&B to commercial and pop throughout the week. You can also expect to find a line-up of artists to perform throughout the week. Past performers include Drake, Kid Ink, Ramz and Jeremih.
BOA, V Hotel, Al Habtoor City, Sheikh Zayed Road, Sun and Wed to Sat, 11pm to 4am. Tel: (056) 501 2039. boadubai.com
Flashy, loud and ostentatious, Cavalli is one of Dubai’s longest standing nightlife venues, having opened in 2009. The huge club, restaurant and lounge has an extravagant interior design – that you’ll either love or loathe – and an impressive calibre of performers. It was also announced as the second best club in the world at the 2019 100 World’s Best Club Awards. Mondays are the home of ladies’ nights at Cavalli, where girls can get free drinks until 3am and a three-course dinner for Dhs150. But it’s not all about the females, as every Tuesday is gents’ night with three drinks and three-courses for Dhs150 for guys, although ladies do still get three free drinks.
Cavalli Club, Fairmont Dubai, Sheikh Zayed Road, Trade Centre Area, daily 8.30pm to 4am. Tel: (04) 332 9260. cavalliclubdubai.com
If your idea of the perfect nightclub is a much more intimate affair, then you should probably check out Analog Room. With a vibe reminiscent of the days when someone would get on the decks at a house party, Analog Room invites the very best underground DJs to come and help the crowd let loose. With a focus on electronic dance music, Analog Room hosts weekly events with a variety of local and international artists.
Analog Room, behind Ibis Al Barsha, Sheikh Zayed Road, Weds 7pm to 2am, Thur & Fri 9pm to 3am. Tel: (050) 883 3172. analogroom.com
When you think about an underground nightclub, you might imagine it to be tucked away in a backstreet, or hidden in the basement of a hotel, but The Hatch is unique. Located on Dubai’s prestigious floating hotel, Queen Elizabeth 2, The Hatch is found in the engine room, seven metres underwater, deep inside the ship. There’s a prohibition feel to the space as you pass through doors down the corridor of the 50-year-old vessel. The Hatch itself has kept much of its original features including exposed pipes, metal staircase and concrete flooring. It’s a space for people to dance and be themselves, and artist expression is encouraged. Due to limited capacity, you have to pre-book to party here.
The Hatch, QE2, Port Mina Rashid, various Thursday and Fridays, 9pm to 3am. Tel: (050) 375 9715. thehatchdubai.com