93 Front Street
Tel: 441 295 5155
Part Middle Eastern hookah lounge, part lavish dance club, and part fabulous restaurant, Café Cairo brings some much-needed sex appeal to Front Street, Hamilton's main shopping and nightlife thoroughfare. Occupying the second floor of a waterfront building, the restaurant, which serves traditional Middle Eastern dishes, is decorated with creatively recycled pieces: hand-carved Egyptian plows recast as regal chairs, inscribed copper bed frames molded into ornate tables. Late at night, the bar area morphs into a trendy club that's ridiculously popular with the locals, as much as for the dance music as for the hookah pipes out back, where one can partake in fruit-flavored tobaccos. To ensure entry, men should come armed with a female.
Open Mondays through Saturdays 5 pm to 3 am.
12 Bermudiana Road
Tel: 441 296 3330
Bermuda's homage to glitz and glam, LV's has seen its share of movers and shakers—even hosting a private cocktail fest for Beyoncé. The multilevel space has bass-heavy beats, Russian bartenders with toothpick legs, dark moody lighting, and lots of dripping clear acrylic that is supposed to evoke frozen icicles—or perhaps stalactites of spilled vodka? Various glowing sculptures and private nooks abound. It's also one of the best people-watching spots in the island, where you might spy a very relaxed Bermudan gentleman in a blazer, Nantucket Red shorts, and yanked-up argyle knee-high socks—leaving with a towering blond model draped on each arm.
Open Mondays through Thursdays 4 pm to 1 am, Fridays 4 pm to 3 am, Saturdays 7 pm to 3 am.
4 Bermudiana Road
Tel: 441 292 3500
For fans of cocktails, there's really no other choice but Opus. A café by day, in the evening the wood-lined Japanese-style bar is the perfect place to plop down on a cube (yes, those cubes are chairs) and order a frothy glass of something decadent. Try the Opus Fizz, made from strawberries, vanilla, and healthy blast of Champagne. Or throw your hat—and brain—to the wind with a highball like the Gin Genie, made from Tanqueray, mint, lemon, sugar, ginger ale, and crème de cassis. Dance parties erupt on Saturdays, so be ready to sip and sway to the DJ's picks.
Open daily 7:30 am to 1 am.
87 South Road
Tel: 441 236 7459
Classy, no, but a classic, yes. The Swizzle Inn's motto is "Swizzle In, Stagger Out"—and that's what just about every local and visitor is doing, from young to old, neophyte to professional tippler. The originalthe oldest pub on the islandis out by the airport, a 17th-century building bedecked in graffiti and business cards (3 Blue Hole Hill; 441-293-1854), but if you want to skip the pricey and lengthy cab ride, try the new location on South Shore, near most of the resorts. Here, order up a few pitchers of the pub's famous Rum Swizzle, a potent hot-pink rum-and-fruit concoction served in mini martini glasses. Then drift, drift, drift into a state of mind-and-muscle relaxation that may leave you babbling to the stars. Do not be ashamed: You are engaging in a sacred island ritual. Food is served and you should order something—maybe some nachos or shepherd's pie? Better get a glass of water and an aspirin while you're at it.
Both locations open daily 10 am to 1 am. Food served until 10 pm.
10 Dundonald Street
Tel: 441 295 0857
Café by day, wine bar by night, Ten is worth the ten-minute walk uphill from Front Street, the main downtown drag that most tourists fear to veer off. For one thing, you'll meet a lot of friendly local 30-and-up-somethings at the bar (Ten is a favorite starting-off point for weeknights out). For another, the place has a relaxed, warm vibe—with some great but not particularly Spanish tapas to enjoy along with your glass of Cab or Shiraz (try the mini lamb chops glazed in mint and oregano or the veggie pot stickers). Stay for a while and enjoy a little jazz, as well as the oddly Asian/post-industrial/Spanish red decor that includes mesh metal blinds and a huge baroque oil painting over the bar.
Open Mondays through Fridays 7 am to midnight, Saturdays 9 am to 3 pm.