Tokyo is one of the many destinations that’s earned a reputation as a city that never sleeps. Leave time to party around the clock at these Tokyo institutions – and for the hangover the day after the night before. Discover clubs in areas including Roppongi, Shinjuku Ni-chōme and Harajuku in our roundup of the best nightlife in Tokyo.
Arty Farty is a great place to stumble into after a few boozy drinks in the Shinjuku Ni-chōme area, Tokyo’s LGBTQ hub. The popular dance club always has a fun and welcoming crowd, and allows you to come and leave as you please, meaning you can hop back and forth to the club from nearby bars. The entrance fee also gives you access to their sister club, the Annex, which is located nearby.
DJ Bar Bridge plays a range of music from jazz and hip-hop to cheesy music from the 1980s, all pumped through their top-grade sound system. The club, only a minute away from Shibuya Station, has an impressive view of the famous Shibuya Crossing and features a number of resident DJs who rotate throughout the week. Some of Tokyo’s top DJs also play here from time to time, and the venue attracts a diverse crowd, from college graduates to businesspeople reliving their disco days.
This nightclub franchise, which originally opened its doors in the UK, has locations worldwide, including this outpost in Tokyo. Sankeys Penthouse overlooks Harajuku’s colourful and busy streets from its top-floor vantage point; it occupies the two top levels of Q-Plaza and features a terrace. Grab a drink in the casual bar area and dance the night away on the 10th floor, before sinking into the upstairs couch area to chat with friends.
When your ears need a break from the standard house, techno and EDM tracks playing at other clubs, slide down to Shibuya and into the Room. This low-key, laid-back basement bangs out R&B hits, as well as soul and jazz tunes. The Room is far from the go-go-go of your average Tokyo nightclub, but if you’re scoping out a place to enjoy a drink, a dance and a date, this bar’s got a scotch on the rocks waiting for you.
Want to dance until the sun rises and keep rocking until breakfast? Oath’s got you covered for clubbing until 8am on the weekends. This trendy underground club is hidden down an inconspicuous pathway and located in the basement where Shibuya’s Trump Room used to kick it. Behind the unassuming black door is a sprawling dance space decked out with a gaudy yet glorious mix of antiques, mirrors and decor. With drink prices too low to believe, Oath rolls your pregame and after-party into one marathon club experience.
Add a little magic to your club life at PLUSTOKYO. Dancing and drinking combine with dining and design, resulting in a unique social experience stretched out over several themed rooms. Mix and mingle with art aficionados admiring the drawings of Morio Nakajima, the alternative designs of Wataru Komachi and the many neon galleries, each dominating their own room. But you’re here to dance, not gawk at art, so grab a drink and head to the rooftop to get down.
Warp Shinjuku is out of this world. Think you can hang in this three-level club’s orbit? Say hello to the Universe on the main floor, and get down under the three-stage Solar System. Rocket your way up to the middle level’s Bar Meteo to rest your space boots and sip on a meteor shower of drinks. Finally, blast off to the Cosmo Room and dance Uranus off on this exclusive floor for some close encounters of the groovy kind.
Another Roppongi hotspot, the former Vanity Club is one of the most popular in Tokyo. V2 is a tourist-friendly club with a multilingual staff, a panoramic view of the city and enough room to host 1,000 partiers without needing an exclusive invitation. Party all night to EDM tracks spun by guest DJs from around the globe. V2 offers VIP and bottle service, but the fact that they operate a pizza parlour in the twilight hours is what gets us dancing through the door.
Nick Dauk contributed additional reporting.