Barcelona’s nightclubs can basically we split into two halves. Studenty and posh. Personally I prefer the studenty ones – yes there may be too many dicks on the dancefloor, but at least you can wear whatever you like, and really go wild and have fun without basically giving a damn (which is what clubbing should be all about right?).
The other sort, which the Catalan locals seem to love, as well as female guiris (I guess I’ll have to do a post on guiris some other time! Basically tourists, who look, act and embody every stereotype of tourists) are the ‘exclusive’ nightclubs. I tend to avoid these places, as 1) I hate shoes 2) I hate people who wear shoes 3) no one actually has any fun at these places, they just check each other out a bit and then go home.
Most of these clubs, like Opium Mar, CDLC, Shoko and Sotavento can be found on the Port Olimpic, just by Barceloneta beach. Others like Sutton Club are up by the Diagonal. Many of them are run by the same people, and they are all basically identical copies of one another. If you’re on holiday, have a bit of cash and like your girls/guys nice and dressed up, then there are some merits to a visit – esp. to Opium Mar. This is the one place (I’m not counting Catwalk) which stays open to 6am on the Port Olimpic and the club which pretty much everyone tries to get in. During summer on a saturday night that can be tough!
Anyway the point is that none of these ‘exclusive’ clubs are in fact exclusive at all (hey they even let me in on occasion). You don’t need any special contacts or to grease the palm of the bouncer. You just need to follow a couple of basic rules about dress and get yourself on the guest list… how do you do that? Well there are a tonne of nightlife agencies offering guestlists to all the above clubs and a thousand others you’ve never heard of, desperate to fill the dancefloor of each, from Monday to Sunday. (During summer in particular most of the top venues will throw parties every night!)
Our amigos at Barcelona Life have just started to add some information about club guestlists in Barcelona to their website, starting with info on the all-important Opium guestlist, Sutton guestlist and more. After all it’s one thing to spend a night in a crap venue, but it’s definitely worse to be rejected by one! For some of the other nightclubs you can do some simple Googling to find an agency.
Sadly, all of the best music clubs in the city, like Apolo (home of Nasty Mondays and Crappy Tuesdays!), Razzmatazz and La Terrrazza don’t operate such lists… relying instead on old fashioned methods, like having a good DJ, to get people in.