1420 K St., N.W.
Washington, DC 20005
Approximately $1 million dollars — including $200,000 just for the sound system — was put into the creation of Soundcheck. This underground nightclub can host about 300 people. It has an edgy futuristic decor with LED lighting and large video screens. Soundcheck books talent from around the world but also works hard to give opportunities to local artists. Its music format leans heavy on EDM. Soundcheck enforces a dress code on Friday and Saturday nights, and it encourages its patrons to be dressy casual.
911 F St., N.W.
Washington DC 20004
A multi level venue near the Verizon Center, Ultrabar caters to a wide audience. Each of its four levels has its own dance floor, VIP area, DJ and musical format. You will likely find hip hop, Latin, top 40 and EDM playing on any given night. Housed in an old bank building, the club can host about 1,000 people. For folks who want to escape the dance floor, Ultrabar has cool lounges throughout the venue including one in the basement vault. Its suggested attire for men is a button up collar shirt with slacks and “hard soled” dress shoes. And for the ladies, it suggests attire that is classy and sexy.
1326 U St., N.W.
Washington, DC 20009
The two-level Pure Lounge offers a throbbing dance floor on the ground level and a cool lounge bar on the second floor. Located in the heart of the U Street neighborhood near Howard University, it describes its decor as “a super sleek red upper level and a Miami style white lounge on the lower level.” Pure Lounge is very popular among patrons seeking top notch R&B, hip hop and reggae. It is also widely known for its exceptional drink specials. Pure Lounge doesn’t advertise a dress code but does encourage its patrons to be stylish.
1337 Connecticut Ave., N.W., 2nd Floor
Washington, DC 20036
Located near Dupont Circle and occupying 3,200 square feet of space, Kabin Lounge is designed to mimic “a lush and unique modern-day Aspen cabin ambiance.” Its music format is typically top 40, hip-hop, and house. USA Today’s 10Best.com ranked Kabin as the top nightclub in D.C. The fact that it never charges a cover for its weekly events adds to its appeal. Kabin does not have a strict dress code because it “understands that dressing fashionably can be interpreted in many ways.” However, it does not accept baggy jeans, athletic gear, athletic shoes, Timberland boots, ripped T-shirts or hats.
1212 18th St., N.W.
Washington, DC 20036
Opened in 1995, Eighteenth Street Lounge is an institution among the D.C. nightlife scene. Housed in the upper levels of a historic mansion once inhabited by President Theodore Roosevelt, it has a very relaxed vibe. Keeping very much with the original floor plan, Eighteenth Street Lounge is divided into multiple rooms, each with its own personality. The music format ranges from DJs playing house music to live funk bands. Eighteen Street Lounge encourages “popper attire” and forbids athletic attire and accessories.
Related: Best Gay Bars in Washington, D.C.