The Best Clubs and Happy Hours in Whistler That Are Worth Checking Out

Add dancing to the list of activities to do in Whistler
Add dancing to the list of activities to do in Whistler | © Danita Delimont / Alamy Stock Photo
Doug ONeill

The sports scene in Whistler, Canada, is seasonal: skiing in winter, biking once the snow melts. What Whistler offers year-round, however, is some of the best clubs to party in once you’re off the slopes. Culture Trip has the lowdown on where to find the best happy hour, great DJs, techno nights, live music and packed dance floors.

Buffalo Bill’s Bar and Grill

Two dance floors. Star Wars pinball machines. A couple of pool tables. A high-tech DJ booth. Patrons of every stripe will enjoy themselves at Buffalo Bill’s. Theme nights, from Martini Mondays to Ladies Nights on Friday, attract a diverse crowd with a dress code ranging from smart party dresses to dudes in jeans and tees. Everyone else could still be in their ski gear. Live music nights are especially popular. Buffalo Bill’s has a reputation for hosting well-known bands, with the award-winning Tragically Hip performing here.

Crystal Lounge

No one really dresses up when heading out to the Crystal Lounge. It’s a laid-back, easy-on-your-wallet kind of place offering live music, stand-up comedy, open-mic nights, trivia games and big screens for game nights. Traditional pub grub food and nightly drink specials are crowd-pleasers. Hockey game night, when patrons are encouraged to wear their team’s jersey, can get loud. If it’s playoffs season, arrive early to hold down a table.

Dubh Linn Gate Irish Pub

Traditional Irish food, a lengthy whiskey list, a boisterous dance floor and live music have made the Dubh Linn Gate popular for more than two decades. Word has it that the bar is authentically Irish, having been transported piece by piece across the ocean to Whistler in 1997. Resident band the Whiskeydicks, who brand themselves “Celtic Gypsy party rockers,” play traditional and modern music. Otherwise, guests enjoy the antics of DJ Foxy Moron, voted Whistler’s best DJ in 2016.

Garfield’s Nightclub

An indoor skate ramp is just one of the ingredients that makes Garfinkel’s one of the best nightclubs in Whistler. The venue has been a Whistler favorite since it opened in 1991. Garfinkel’s has one of the largest dance floors in town whose owners are also fans of local DJ Praiz. The club’s popularity is bolstered by big-screen TVs and pool tables along with DJs, live bands and performance artists. Patrons can book a VIP booth in advance.

Merlin’s Bar and Grill

When management encourages “Dancing on the bar and any other flat surface,” you know you’re in for a lively night, especially when a punk band is performing onstage in the heart of the Whistler-Blackcomb resort. The DJ station is a suspended gondola car. The wood interior gives Merlin’s a rustic feel – but don’t expect country and western or anything mellow. It’s the kind of place where unsuspecting patrons are commonly pulled into conga lines. The outdoor patio becomes prime real estate in the summer.

Moe Joe’s Nightclub

Moe Joe’s was the joint venture in 1999 of four pals who met while backpacking in Europe and dreamt of one day opening a bar together. While Moe Joe’s Disco Nights are still as popular as they were 20 years ago, the mid-20s and older crowd also come for the Sunday Glow Party, Recovery Monday, techno, funk and soul nights – as well as Monday night when happy hour lasts until 11pm.

Tommy’s Whistler

Located in Blackcomb Lodge, Tommy’s is much in demand for bachelorette parties and corporate parties. During the winter, Tommy Tuesdays haul in the ski crowd with the banner: “Friends don’t let friends get thirsty.” The indie-rock alternative crowd takes over on Wednesdays, and the split-level dance floor gets packed on Fridays and Saturdays. The cocktail happy hour runs from 9pm to 11pm. Tommy’s appeals to club-goers who like to dress up for a night out at one of the best clubs in Whistler.

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