Sydney was at one stage a leading nightlife destination and as such we fostered some of the best musical talent in a plethora of clubs around the city. From the depths of Kings Cross all the way over to Pitt St in the CBD and back towards the queer district of Oxford St, hundreds of nightlife venues have come and gone and here are some that we consider iconic for their own reasons.
Moulin Rouge is arguably the most iconic Kings Cross of all time. Playing host to iconic crews such as Bang Gang with their Bang Gang Presents series, the electro house being dropped was of an all time calibre. It was the first ever club owned by a female, starting its career as a burlesque club and becoming the institution that we know it as today.
Renowned as alleged mob boss John Ibrahim’s big foray into the dodgy dealings. Tunnel night club had, like so many places back then, a heavily policed female majority policy. This made it popular with the ladies and beefed up athletes who were all probably on blow. Somehow it still remained at the pinnacle of Sydney clubbing institutions until it cited unpaid debt as part of the reason for its close.
A prominent gay club, the most recent on this list of closers. It hosted Sydney Hellfire as well as drag shows, trivia nights and events for all communities. Personally I went to happy hardcore events there, but ask anyone and tell you that there was so much more to the place than just what the music you experienced. There’s not much to say except that it was widely renowned as one of the best clubs in Sydney and it stuck it out for as long as it could post lockouts, but all good things come to an end and in 2017 we said goodbye to one of Sydney’s oldest clubs!
Located under the heritage Australian Gas Light Co building at the lower end of Pitt St, it lead a strong life holding a bunch of NRG nights and supporting some big names. However its life would eventually come to close as it became embroiled in a gang war. A drive by shooting put this place down as one that would eventually come to a close. You can read more about that whole situation here!
Nestled in a Pitt Street dungeon, it held prominent queer events until 1997 and continued to run for a few years after. Most notably infamous for the death of a 22 year old punter in 1999 the place believed to be an adverse reaction to drugs. The joint then sought to look after its patrons by creating a room with relaxed vibes and a cooler temperature stickered with information regarding the effects of drug use. Needless to say this area became a haven for gurners who would reportedly use it as a picnic ground.
These were some of our picks for iconic venues that you can (for the most part) only hear talked about by word of mouth and nostalgic punters. Nightlife is constantly evolving and we’re constantly trying to look forward, but we can’t pretend we don’t miss some of the older ones!
What venues do you miss? Tell us below!