five places to party at this new year’s eve (if you actually want to have a good time)

Want to ring in 2017 without the fear of post-party regret? Make like the smart clubbers and read our guide to clubs you may never have heard of, but should have partied at.

by Brooke McCord
29 December 2016, 5:00pm

When it comes to memories of New Year's Eve parties past, there are the good, the bad, and the downright ugly. Whether you stick to what you know and end up on a night out that's double the price but no better than average, or are willing to branch out and try something new — in a post-internet, social media-saturated world, finding something that's off the beaten track can be pretty difficult.

Want to see in 2017 without the fear of post-party regret? We suggest you make like the smart clubbers this year and head further afield and deeper underground to some of the world's most unhinged parties. In other words: we're saving you from the same old celebrations, or the pain stakingly awkward experience of queuing up for Berghain (before being refused entry). Here, we chart five lesser known, off the radar clubs from around the world to head to for a guaranteed good time this New Year's Eve.

Sisyphos, HaupstraBe, Berlin
You'll find the Berliners who are bored of Berghain hanging out in Sisyphos, located in the Rummelsburg district. While it doesn't qualify as one of Berlin's recognizable big-name clubs, Sisyphos is renowned for Friday-though-until-Monday parties that attract some of the most sought after global names in techno or tech-house. What's unique about Sisyphos — aside from its warehouse setting, labyrinth of hidden areas only accessible by ladders, and its large sand-floored outside area littered with abandoned cars — is the fact that its lineups are almost never disclosed. You're just as likely to catch a three-hour set from Richie Hawtin (who turned up to play unannounced in 2015), as you are a set from one of Berlin's burgeoning DJs.

De School, Doctor Jan van Breemenstraat, Amsterdam
If you ever visited Amsterdam's late-night institution Trouw and have been trying to find a club that lives up to it since, then let us introduce you to its younger sibling De School — also run by the Post CS BV crew — which opened last January. Surpassing the definition of a nightclub, De School also boasts a café, a restaurant, an exhibition space, and a gym (if you've ever got the energy left for a post-rave workout). If you didn't put two and two together, the venue — located in Amsterdam West — was formerly occupied by a technical school, while the club space takes over the former underground bike shed. The lineup usually revolves around local rising DJs who play extended sets, but international names regularly make the cut.

Bassiani, Akaki Tsereteli Avenue, Tbilisi, Georgia
Bassani is Georgia's underground dance and techno playground. Picture a brutalist concrete maze that takes over an abandoned swimming pool compound in the basement of Dinamo Arena, Georgia's national football stadium, that hosts parties that go on well past dawn. Set up much like Berlin's infamous Stattbad (now permanently closed), Bassiani's DJ booth is located in the deep end, while club-goers make themselves at home on the barely-lit sloping dance floor or the multiple elevated platforms. A key pillar in the capital's growing post-Soviet underground music scene, Bassani is cited as the catalyst for a new wave of nightlife in Tbilisi. In other words, it's the stomping ground of Georgia's political activists or those pioneering the new wave of progressive thinking gaining precedence in the city.

Output, Brooklyn, New York
Brooklyn's Output doesn't give much away. With a Resident Advisor bio that simply reads, "Output is open to anyone, but is not for everyone," it's safe to say the Williamsburg venue has a minimalist approach to clubbing. What we do know: Output's industrial warehouse-style space hosts 500 or so people, has a Funktion One sound system that puts out sound at heart-palpitating volume, a strict no-photo policy (because who actually wants to see those photos your annoying friend took at 6am?), and has previously pulled in the likes of John Digweed, Seth Troxler, and Carl Cox. Aside from the heavyweights, Output is also renowned for its carefully curated lineups of the unsung local heroes of the New York dance scene. If you're looking to see in 2017 with a triple-header, you can catch Recondite on December 30, Digweed on New Year's Eve, and Maya Jane Coles on January 1.

Robert-Johnson, Offenbach, Frankfurt
When it comes to size, Frankfurt's Robert-Johnson makes a hell of a lot of noise for such a small venue. When starting out, co-founder Ata Macias approached his club like an art gallery: white walls and a black floor, with movable interior equipment, in order to replicate the idea of entering a friend's living room in which you inevitably want to dance he night away. With that in mind, Robert-Johnson is absent of branding; the bar is hidden and DJs are positioned on the dance floor where fans can reach out and touch them. The Robert-Johnson sound? Contrary to the hard techno Frankfurt is typically associated with, it's deep, minimal, and psychedelic. There's also a restaurant called Club Michel at the Robert-Johnson offices, where Ata and co kick off the night by cooking for the DJs.


Text Brooke McCord
Image via Flickr

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