CLUBS IN CLAPHAM
FOR A NIGHT ON THE TILES
Finding a decent club in Clapham is like rolling a die – you can easily find yourself in a sweaty space pumping generic music or unknowingly make your way to a themed night (there are a lot of them). Trust me, I’ve been there. We all look for different things when out for a night on the tiles, and this is where this guide should come in use.
From themed nights in historic venues, glitzy bars, a staple of the gay scene to smaller disco haunts, we’ve picked as varied a list as possible, each space with its own appeal.
After something a little quieter? Check out our favourite pubs in the area.
The Clapham Grand
GRAND NIGHTS FOR A GRAND VENUE
The Clapham Grand isn’t your typical club, it’s an institution renowned for being the epicentre of varieties. It hosts famous musicians, bands and comedians, offers film screenings and, last but not least, plays home to some quality club nights.
Club nights at The Clapham Grand are typically put on by a collection of London’s best promoters. With this comes a spectrum of themes, including the likes of Keep on Grooving (think Horny – Horny), Made in the 90s, Old Skool Anthems, Ultimate Anthems, Pizzup (a self-described ‘ultimate night out for women’), and drag nights that take flamboyance and sashay it to a new level.
I’ve been to a few nights here and, though it might seem like a pretty boring thing to write, the staff have been the friendliest out of any club-like venue I’ve ever been to, and this extends from the door staff through to the bar. There’s no strange assertion of dominance – a power move, if you like – just friendly faces letting you in or pouring poison. In other words, how it should be.
Expect strobes, lasers, balloons drops, confetti canons, stage bars and a sound system that’ll fuel your two-step all night long.
Most of the nights open at 10.30pm and close at 3am but do check in advance.
Fan of the colour pink? Do neon lights float your boat? If so, Tonight Josephine may be your new bestie.
Bright colours, glitz and a pink feathered ceiling pave the way for your BNO in Clapham. Neon lettering reading ‘well behaved women don’t make history’ – in homage to Empress Josephine’s hedonistic lifestyle – sets the tone: this isn’t a place to come to for a quiet catch up on a Friday night; this is party town, where cocktails flow, questionable dance moves reign, and ‘c’est la fu**ing vie’ becomes the evening’s mantra.
Picking your poison isn’t easy with their juicy cocktail menu, featuring classics like Espresso Martinis, Cosmos, Aperol Spritz through to fan favourites like HOT AF (a spicy margarita), Honey bee (whiskey, honey, citrus & egg white) and Club Tropicana (a citrus-based sling). These are just the tip of a very boozy iceberg.
Pedants will argue that this is more a cocktail bar than a club, but it’s open until 2am (Thurs-Sat) and has a better party atmosphere than most of the clubs in Clapham.
STUDENT CLUBBING FOR THE ALUMNI
The Clapham contingency has been dancing to the beat of Infernos for years. This is the place you come to when you’re hankering for loud music (make it disco or unremitted chart music while you’re there); to sink spirits and shots; to signal in the weekend by saying a booze-fuelled goodbye to the working week.
On the topic of work, any remnants of professionalism are firmly left at the door. You see, Infernos is a space where student life thrives and never dies. You might have graduated years ago and find yourself working in finance (I’m allowed to stereotype, I lived there), but that doesn’t mean you can’t get absolutely sloshed in a sweat pit.
Are there sticky floors? Yes. Is red bull aplenty? But of course. Queen & Baywatch played at least once a night? Highly likely. But this is what Infernos is renowned for. It’s student clubbing for the alumni. To some, it’s hell. To others, it’s a kind of hell they revel in.
Open Friday and Saturday, 10pm – 4am, this Clapham club also offers private karaoke booths for groups wanting to sing their lungs out.
Two Brewers has been at the heart of London’s gay scene for over 40 years, and it has well and truly earned its reputation as a stalwart of the LGBTQIA+ community.
Open 7 days a week, 365 days a year, this is an institution where something’s always happening. Weekdays see a bar-like vibe with quizzes, karaoke and their famous cabaret shows coming out to play.
Fridays and Saturdays are when clubbing comes out in full force. The bar opens at 5pm and shuts at 4am, but the party vibe stems from glitter-extravaganza drag nights, a dance floor that’s always buzzing and music that’ll have you raving like it’s 1999.
Two Brewers attracts a wide range of people and ages, something that it prides itself on. Security staff are friendly; bar service quick; and the entire place much cleaner than many of its London counterparts.
Two Brewers = your weekend entertainment sorted.
GLITZ IT UP
Gloria always threw the wildest parties. She asked for all inhibitions be left at home. A party gal through and through. Though she may be a matter of fiction, her message is rooted in reality: come to Blame Gloria for a good time and leave your problems and bad attitudes at home.
You might think this sounds similar to Tonight Josephine and you’d be right – they have the same owners.
So if you’re after a bit of glitz and a dose of party fever, paired with an extensive menu of boozy concoctions, Gloria may be the one. She’s open til 2am on Fridays and Saturdays.
By the way, she loves a tune, particularly the upbeat, cheesy, with an ounce of sass ones.
A SPECIAL SHOUTOUT
Tequila Mockingbird gets a special mention because, though it’s more a cocktail bar than a club, Fridays and Saturdays see space made for a dance floor. The result? Incredible cocktails and a space to get your groove on.
Simmons Bar – Clapham
ANOTHER SPECIAL SHOUTOUT
Signature five-hour-long happy hours, bold interiors, neon lights, disco balls and a dance floor to match, Simmons is known for laying on a good night, and their Clapham venue is no different.
Open all week with late closing times (2-3am), Simmons is the perfect bridge between bar and club. It’s not a sweaty mess like Infernos, but you’re sure as hell going to get your chance to shine on the dance floor. That’s if you can stand (there’s a bloody long cocktail menu to work through).
Let us if you’ve been to any of these clubs in Clapham and what you made of them.
After more Clapham tips? Check out our guide to our favourite pubs in the area, the best spots for a Clapham brunch, our pick of the best coffee shops, and where you can get a decent massage (based on the extensive experience of one of our Butlers).