When it comes to partying, everyone can name a reason why their own hometown should be considered number one. (Well maybe not everyone - sorry, Omaha.) Because not all nightlife is created equal, we’ve searched across the continent and picked out the best of the best to present the Top Ten Party Cities in North America.
We’ve got Hollywood hotshots in L.A., Mardi Gras revelers in New Orleans, spring break debauchery in Cancun, and much more. Whether you’re a hip-hop head looking to bust a move, a club addict who always expects VIP treatment, or a die-hard barfly who only needs a bottle and a booth, you can’t go wrong in these zip codes.
Party City #1: Las Vegas
Why it’s #1
The city that a decade ago was only known for gambling and, well, other things, has exploded into the nightlife capital of the world. Vegas even stole one of New York’s biggest parties in 2007 when it nabbed the MTV Video Music Awards. The world watched as Justin Timberlake, Rihanna and the rest of the winners heated things up at a one-of-a-kind event that took over the entire Palms Casino Resort & Hotel.
Nearly 40 million visitors hit up Vegas every year for over-the-top bachelor parties, all-night concerts, and of course, quickie weddings – like Pamela Anderson, who hitched her latest hubby at the Mirage in October.
And the Vegas club scene only keeps getting bigger. Notable additions in 2007 included DJ AM’s megaclub LAX, ultra-exclusive celeb haunt Noir Bar, and Blush, the latest chic party spot from hotel impresario Steve Wynn. Other notable venues include TAO, JET, Pure, and Moon.
Party City #2: New York
Why it’s #2
With eight million people and more bars and restaurants than anywhere else in the country, it’s hard to beat New York. McSoreley’s Ale House in the West Village, the City’s oldest drinking establishment, started serving brews back in 1854, and a new hotspot has popped up virtually every day since then. And given the new “secret bar” trend, it’s harder than ever to keep up with Manhattan’s ever-evolving drinking scene.
Just because you visited that ultra-hot club last year, doesn’t mean it will be there today. With so many competitors and the desire for the newest thing, clubs frequently change their names to give the illusion that it’s the next big thing.
Whatever kind of party you’re into, it’s a safe bet you can find it in New York, where 2007 saw everything from a pre-hab Lindsay Lohan spinning records at swank nightclub The Plumm, to Diddy’s notorious ‘White Party’ closing out summer in the Hamptons, to two million people getting down in Times Square for New Year’s Eve. Other notable venues include Tenjune, Pink Elephant, Socialista, Butter and Marquee.
Party City #3: Montreal
Why it’s #3
Sure, it’s freezing half the year, and yeah, it’s in Canada, but head up North in spring or summer and you’ll find one of the continent’s hardest-partying cities, where beautiful faces, classy nightclubs and all-out parties are the nightly norm. Montreal is ahead of the curve in the “supper club” evolution; look for that to spread to the US.
The legendary Grand Prix weekend in June is way more than just a car race—it’ s a 72-hour festival that brings in legions of partiers from around the world.
With more than 50 notoriously risqué strip clubs, Montreal is one of North America’s top destinations for bachelor parties, but it’s also home to a growing number of ultra-hip nightspots like Tribe Hyperclub, where Paris Hilton threw a VIP party in’07. Other notable venues include Opera, Radio Lounge, House and Millenium.
Party City #4: Miami
Why it’s #4
With no shortage of perfect weather and hot spots boasting sweet seaside views, South Beach residents party hard all year long. Bigger is always better in this town, and when Miami hosted the 2007 Super Bowl, ESPN the Magazine took over the trendy Design District to throw a 10,000-person strong block party, complete with a performance from LL Cool J.
How dedicated are Miami locals to partying? When the smoking-in-bars ban went into effect, instead of taking a step outside, bar patrons started ordering up nicotinis—preferring to drink their cigarettes from a glass rather than miss a second of the party.
The hottest scene is at always-happening South Beach, where an A-list crowd fills megaclubs like the three-story Chakra and hip lounges like Mokaï, where Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes were spotted dancing up a storm this year—behind a wall of security guards, of course. Other notable venues include SET, Setai, Shore Club, Mokai, and Mansion.
Party City #5: Los Angeles
Why it’s #5
Hollywood’s hard-partying startlet set makes sure there’s always an over-the-top revelry going down in the City of Angels. Velvet ropes abound in this town, so if you want to make the scene, you had better be someone or know someone, or at least look the part.
Bars close at 2 am in LA, but the golden rule is that there’s always an after party, and after that, there’s always an after after party.
Celeb watchers give it their all to get into hotspots like Les Deux, where