Some of Wellington's best bars and venues are discreetly tucked away for you to find. From elegant cocktail lounges to award-winning bars and party clubs, Wellington Tourism nominates some night owl hotspots.
Duke Carvell's Swan Lane Emporium
3 Swan Lane
+64 4 3852240.
The latest enterprise of the culinary genius that is the Bresolin family, Duke Carvell’s is a nostalgic yet chic place that has an air of romance and intrigue. They offer a wide range of original cocktails, and the evening menu consists of tapas that can create a banquet-like feast.
Level 1, 53 Courtenay Place.
One of Wellington’s newest bars. Library is a lounge bar, reading room, live music venue and dessert venue all in one.
Upstairs 82 Tory St
+64 4 890 3724.
Based on a gentlemen’s retreat, the Hawthorn is an oasis from the hustle of downtown. Opened mid-2006 by brothers who wanted to share their vision of a public living room, The Hawthorn has all the grace one would expect from the 1920s. Big band music complements the nattily attired staff.
+64 4 384 9084.
Providing sophisticated drinks to a discerning clientele since 1999, Motel is one of the first bars of its ilk in Wellington. The drinks are exceptional, the service refined and discreet. Motel is a bar existing apart from the world. Recently named one of the top 100 bars in the world.
32 Wigan Street
+64 4 384 7039.
An exotic world on Wigan St, Havana Bar is a haven for lovers of world music. Teeny tiny, the Cuban themed bar is an escape from pretension and the work-a-day world. Havana’s eclectic mix of music and personalities has made it a bit of a local haunt. Experts in the Cuban specialties, Havana has a wide range of beer, wines and spirits, both Cuban and otherwise.
Corner of Courtenay Place and Blair Street
+64 4 801 6336.
Hummingbird - where ambience, wine, food and music equals conviviality. Hummingbird is also known for its jazz music. This is an area of hospitality that the ‘hummer' prides itself on. An eclectic mix of the best sounds that history has produced. Hummingbird is mindful that our customers wish to enjoy social intercourse and their ability to communicate is not intruded on.
19 Edward Street.
Wellington's first enoteca cucina, an Italian style wine bar that is not to be missed.
Vivo offers a casual atmosphere, the most extensive wine list in the area, and a great menu of Italian style cuisine.
Beaujolais Wine Bar
11 Woodward Street
+64 4 472 1471.
Beaujolais Wine Bar, established in 1990, is Wellington's original and most enduring destination for wine lovers, and renowned for an excellent range of quality wines from NZ and around the world. Their expert knowledge and ability to source exciting wines sold by both glass and bottle ensures Beaujolais is a regular drop in for wine buffs. Beaujolais also offers a unique selection of quality beers, sherries, ports, single malt whiskeys and spirits.
101 Ghuznee Street
+64 4 384 8212.
A bar that is famous as a venue for local and original New Zealand music. Bodega are New Zealand ale specialists, offering 17 different tap beers with a massive imported beer selection. Serving the city's only hand drawn ales and the home of Wellington's Tuatara beers.
Good Luck Bar
126 Cuba Street.
The Chinese Opium Dens of Wellington are the stuff of legend. The dens themselves may be long deserted but the legacy remains intact. The discrete flight of stairs now hides an opulent cocktail den. Take a seat and be waited upon in the cozy, candlelit lounge. Make your way past the floating lantern bar to Wellingtons premier alternative dance floor where you'll find the country's best live acts and DJ’s playing only the freshest selections.
Level 1, 104 Cuba Street
+64 4 385 2890.
If Cuba Street was a bar, it would be Mighty Mighty. This quirky and kitsch bar serves Lion Brown by the jug and celebrates some of the best toasties in town. Frequent live acts, a great dance floor and a guaranteed good time – Mighty Mighty is frequented by everyone from suits to mods. The club opens its doors to Wellington’s collectors & makers, hustlers & bakers on the first Saturday of the month for the Mighty Mighty Market, 2-6pm.
46 Courtenay Place.
Sip on a fine cocktail at this new burlesque themed bar opened by the folks who own the stylish Hawthorn Lounge
106 Cuba Mall
+ 64 4 384 3359.
A Wellington institution established in 1963, Matterhorn is found down one of Wellington's more famous corridors. The bar prides itself on understated yet stylish surroundings, innovative menus and great service. Winner of numerous national awards, Matterhorn regularly receives international acclaim for its cocktails and was the supreme winner of Cuisine New Zealand’s Restaurant of the Year award in 2008.
End of Forresters Lane
+64 4 385 2242.
Down Forresters Lane is Alice, where Lewis Carroll’s beloved classic ‘Alice In Wonderland’ comes to life. Try the Mad Hatter's Tea Party which comes in a dainty China tea pot with two tea cups.