When it’s time to get your hips moving to the inescapably energetic beats of Latin music, here are the top five places in DC to get on your feet. From salsa lessons to bachata and everything in between, you’ll find dance parties for beginners and Latin lovers alike.
2463 18th St. N.W.
Washington, DC 20009
Located in Adams Morgan, Bossa is a bar, lounge and restaurant that kicks up the DJ-spun Latin music on the weekends late into the evenings. Friday and Saturday nights usually feature a live salsa band. The kitchen is open until 2 a.m., so there’s plenty of time to grab a margarita and some nosh while dancing to those Latin beats. Be sure to check out the art exhibits on each floor.
1343 Connecticut Ave. N.W.
Washington, DC 20036
Situated off of the circle in Dupont, Café Citron is a favorite spot for great Latin food and drink. More than a great place to eat, Café Citron kicks up the great Latin beats late at night. If you’re new to salsa, take a free lesson on Wednesdays and Fridays. Even if you’re not new to salsa but want to improve your skills, there’s intermediate salsa lessons on Wednesday evening from 8:15 p.m. to 8:45 pm. And there are plenty of drink specials to get you moving.
Lima Restaurant & Lounge
1401 K St. N.W.
Washington, DC 20005
Lima is well known for offering amazing Peruvian cuisine, but it also offers Latin dance in its lounge area. The music of salsa and merengue are complemented with hip hop, house and reggaeton. On Mondays, Lima offers free salsa lessons for beginners and intermediates alike starting at 9 p.m. Then dance the night away. Weekend evenings change to different types of music depending on the week. With three floors and a heated patio, Lima is always a great scene.
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2001 14th St. N.W.
Washington, DC 20009
On U Street, an unmarked basement club called Tropicalia is hidden beneath the Subway restaurant. This hip and funky dance club is flanked by a white glowing bar and the eclectic paintings that add a touch of sophistication to the dance floor. Tropicalia’s beats tend to be on the more trendy side of fusion. Latin music is played here often, but don’t be surprised if you get a little funk mixed in.
3423 14th St. N.W.
Washington, DC 20010
Located in Columbia Heights is Zeba bar. Offering great drink specials, Zeba is a local place in a densely populated Latin area. Not surprising, Zeba offers Bachata night on Wednesdays. This romantic, peoples’ dance from the Dominican Republic is offered from 9 p.m. to 10 p.m. and then open dance continues on until 2 a.m. Weekend nights see different types of music, but there are usually Latin beats on at least one night.
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Jamie Hardin is the counter-culture Washingtonian in the know. Inspired by food, sustainability issues, and public health, she prides herself on finding DC’s off-the-beaten path treasures. When she isnt enjoying organic food or reducing her carbon footprint, Jamie’s traveling on her scooter or walking her two pit bulls. Her work can be found at Examiner.com.