Nightlife in New York City changed in a big way this decade. After the early aughts brought about the rise of the Meatpacking District megaclub, the 2008 economic crisis shorted the circuit, sending cool kids and creatives downtown, while rising rents and limited space pushed the real dance scene out to Brooklyn. Social media and Uber made it easier to find, promote, and travel to clubs from Times Square to Ridgewood, Queens. At the same time, lack of privacy has made it harder to get celebrities through the door—and give us the Page Six fodder we know and love.

Towards the end of the decade, nightlife saw a resurgence of excitement—Studio 54 hitmaker-turned-hotelier Ian Schrager returned to the scene with Public Arts and Paradise Club in his Public and Edition Hotels, respectively. On the hotel front, we got Marriott’s Moxy brand and Tao Group collaborations at Fleur Room and Little Sister. Then there was the “social club” trend—spots like Make Believe, Short Stories, and Gospel—where you might unwind over cocktails and conversation in the evening and hit the dancefloor as the night goes on.

To celebrate how we got here in the first place and remember those who’ve come before, these are the nightclubs (both those still going strong and those long gone) that defined going out in NYC during the 2010s.

[Photo by Josh Wong]