Best Nightclubs, Pubs, & Lounges in Whistler
Whistler is a party town and its residents certainly know how to have a good time. It is very important to remember this, as the venues you will inevitably find yourself spending the night in are not always as big, beautiful and stylish as you might be used to. Nearly every nightclub in town is underground, dark and some look more like pool-rooms or sports bars than true nightclubs.
However partying in Whistler really is a unique experience thanks to the staff and locals who are all there to have just as much fun as the average visitor. For that reason ignore the long lines, expensive coat check and cramped dance floors. Get there early, bring an open mind, make some friends and get ready to go crazy, whatever the time of day.
Note: This list is written in no particular order. We're just providing a little something for everyone.
Pete Thompson - Whistler Correspondent, YAHglobal.Com
Cinnamon Bear Bar
4050 Whistler Way, Whistler, BC 604-966-5060
Located in the Hilton Hotel the Cinnamon Bear is a bit of a hidden gem in Whistler. Despite being one of the best sports bars in the village and located right by the Whistler Gondola it is one of the easiest places in town to find a seat and table.
Decent drink prices, loads of big screen TVs and the only bar in Whistler that offers unlimited pub snacks with your pitchers the Cinnamon Bear is always a great place to start a big night out in Whistler. They also have two free pool tables that attract loads of friendly pool players and every Tuesday the bar hosts their famous pool tournament.
4154 Village Green, Whistler, BC
The sports bar of choice in Whistler Village, The Crystal also offers on of the best deals on beer at $14.50 a pitcher. The walls are covered in TVs that play every sport imaginable from hockey to rugby and on an important sporting night the Crystal is packed with excited fans. If you really want to watch however make sure you get there early and grab a seat as there isn’t that much space.
For après ski it is an obvious choice due to the cheap beer but the Crystal also has ridiculously cheap chicken wings before 6pm at only $3 for 10! It is a wildly popular choice for partiers on Tuesday evenings thanks to their infamous and hilarious Karaoke night.
201-2075 Lake Placid Road, Whistler, BC 604 962 7220
This big, plush and modern bar and restaurant located in Creekside only opened in late 2012 and inevitably struggles in competition with popular après bar Dusty’s. However it has a different take on food than many places in Whistler offering a much more international menu and has plenty of TV’s for watching sport. If the busy Dusty’s patio isn’t for you then a short walk to a comfy sofa in the significantly quieter Doc’s could be worth a try.
4308 Main Street, Whistler, BC
If you’re coming to Whistler from the city and are used to big ‘superclubs’, spread over three or four stories of fun, then unfortunately you’re out of luck. However, Garfs’ is as close as you are going to get! The biggest venue in Whistler, it has been voted the best in town for live events, two years in a row at the Vancouver Nightlife Awards.
Locals seem to steer clear of Garfinkels but on a Saturday night it is by far the most exciting place to be, with its huge dance-floor and bar it is sure to be full of weekend warriors celebrating their freedom and is guaranteed to be hosting at least one hen party. Losing the pool tables and TV screens Garfs’ tries it’s best to keep the city club vibe alive in Whistler.
Garibaldi Lift Company GLC
4165 Springs Lane, Whistler, BC
The GLC has been voted by the Forbes Traveler as one of the best après ski bars in the entire world. While that has probably sky rocketed your expectations of this place it does somewhat live up to its prestigious reputation. While it might not be as wild as the European après bars that top Forbes’ list it brings a bit of class to the après experience that you might not find in many other places.
With awesome food, good service and a more chilled après atmosphere it is the perfect place to relax after a hard day on the slopes and fill your tired body with Gorgonzola Potatoes and pitchers of beer. It doesn’t have the best patio in town unfortunately, which is often shaded from the spring sun, although when they want to the GLC can capitalize on the mass indoor migration of patrons to start a real après ski party.
In summer, the patio becomes the ideal viewing platform for the carnage going on in the downhill mountain bike park, from the safety of a comfy chair, cocktail in hand.
Maxx Fish Nightclub and Lounge
4232 Village Stroll, Whistler, BC
Although it is one of the smallest nightclubs in Whistler Maxx’ dominates Tuesday nights in the village. Whistler’s best know DJ ‘Matt the Alien’ spins Dubstep beats to all those who can stomach them. Maxx Fish uses their limited space well, packing in two decent sized bars, plenty of seating and the customarily small dance floor that is expected in Whistler clubs and always makes for an exciting night.
Dusty’s Bar and Grill
2040 London Lane RR 2 Whistler, BC
Dusty’s is the home of the locals’ après scene in Whistler. Located down in Creekside, the original base of the ski resort, it isn’t easy to get to for everyone but is definitely worth the visit even if you’re staying in the main village.
It has the biggest and sunniest patio in town as well as a large mezzanine above for when the sun encourages everyone to head outside. At the end of the weekend Dusty’s is packed with visitors clinging onto their vacation for the last few hours and forces more than a few into work blurry eyed Monday morning.
Their signature après dish is their Bucket O’ Wedges with their secret Buttrub Mayo. If you want more than just appetizers try the meaty Warrior Burger to go with it.
Moe Joe’s Nightclub
4115 Golfer’s Approach, Whistler, BC
While many of Whistler’s nightclubs steal the show on one particular night of the week, MoeJoe’s is always a good place to party as it is consistently busy, often picking up the latecomers who can’t deal with long lines at other venues on busy nights.
A good second choice on most nights Moe Joe’s’ Sunday glow party is the best place to finish the weekend. They bring the rave experience to the underground Whistler nightlife complete with blinding lights and luminous face paint.
The Amsterdam Café Pub
4232 Village Stroll, Whistler, BC (604) 932-8334
The Amsterdam has a beautifully old European pub design with dark wooden pillars lining the cozy bar and tables. It also has one of the best people watching patios in Whistler on the corner of the village square, with a large outdoor projector for watching summer sports.
The service at the pub however doesn’t usually meet the high standards set in Whistler and the music is notoriously loud for such an intimate pub but it isn’t a bad place to have a quick and atmospheric pre dinner drink.
The Dubh Linn Gate Inn
4320 Sundial Crescent, Whistler, BC (604) 905-4047
This authentic Irish pub is situated so close to the bottom of the Blackcomb Excalibur Gondola that you can almost step right off the lift and onto their awesome new 100-person patio, complete with padded sofa chairs that surround a roaring open fire.
Inside, The Dubh Linn Gate has one of the widest selections of drinks in Whistler and is one of the only place in town you can get a real pint of larger, and of course a decent Guinness. It is also famous for it’s live music that turns almost every night into a big après party.
The fantastic food is also a must for hungry skiers before a heavy night of drinking, in particular the Traditional Fish and Chips and equally as large and tasty is the Steak and Guinness Pie. A little bit more expensive than some place the genuine party atmosphere and excellent food and drink are well worth it.
The Longhorn Saloon and Grill
4284 Mountain Square, Whistler, BC
The Longhorn has one of the best locations in town. It is the first bar you see as you reach the bottom of Whistler Mountain and has an inviting patio with loud music that always makes you feel like you’re missing out on something special.
However this isn’t always the case, especially for locals, who know the Longhorn as the home of Whistler’s most expensive ‘cheap’ pitcher at $22. On the right night, (try Sunday’s locals night) this is a good place to party if your wallet can handle the pressure but avoid being sucked in for après drinks and venture into the village for a better value afternoon.
The Savage Beagle (The Village)
4222 Village Square, Whistler, BC
The Savage Beagle (as it has most recently been know) has been through many ownership, and name changes over the years although nobody has been able to keep it open for long. It is Whistler’s smallest venue and nightclub and the basement level dance-floor is probably the dingiest in town. However during each short tenure this place has had at least one night that caught the locals’ imagination each week, most notably their messy take on European style après-ski that had people partying like it was 2am as soon as they left the slopes.
Keep an eye on this place (it will most likely be resurrected as The Beagle) as you never know what it has to offer each time it re-opens.
Suite 110-4204 Village Sq Whistler, BC
‘Tommy’s’ is Whistler’s original nightclub and even after 25 years it is still the town’s best place to party until the early hours. While the layout is much the same as the rest of the competition, mixing bar and nightclub qualities, Tommy’s Hawaiian style gives it a much more relaxed atmosphere.
Tommy’s is also home to Whistler’s most popular night out, the famous 80’s night when the dress code and music goes retro and dancers don leg warmers and face paint for a throwback night of epically cheesy proportions.
4122 Village Green, Whistler, BC
Buffalo Bill’s may seem like a sports bar first glance, somewhere that looks like the perfect place to grab a burger and watch the hockey. However by Whistler’s definition Bill’s is first and foremost a nightclub and on the right night beats any other in town.
Like most of the clubs in Whistler the party takes place deep underground on a tight, intimate dance floor which is packed on a busy night. Two bars give ‘Bill’s’ an edge on the local competition so it doesn’t usually take long to get a drink. As the second largest club in the village ‘Bill’s’ also has plenty of space for two pool tables and loads of comfy booths to relax in after you’ve run out of steam on the dance floor.
Wednesday night at ‘Bills’ is local’s night, when all the seasonal workers descend on the club for the biggest party of the week, and is not to be missed. If you’re in town on a Saturday ‘Bill’s’ is as busy as anywhere but is famous for attracting the slightly older female cliental locally know as ‘cougars’. The owners also try to add a touch of class to proceedings at the weekend by instigating a no hat rule so be warned.