Houston Music

Houston's Top 10 Latin Bars and Clubs

As our sister blog Eating...Our Words does, from time to time Rocks Off will be giving your our picks for the top taverns in various Houston-area neighborhoods. Of course, the lines can be porous, but here anything with a TABC license that cannot reasonably be considered either a restaurant, coffeehouse or live-music venue is fair game.

10. BELVEDERE Belvedere is not technically a Latin bar, but that doesn't mean it can't have a great Latin night, now does it? This upscale lounge has been home to Latin Thursdays for the past seven years, and the awesome DJs keep the place ridiculously packed. So if you're planning to strap on your bachata shoes and head over, best do so early.

1131 Uptown Park, 713-552-9271, belvedereinfo.com

9. FOX HOLLOW Does the name Bombon ring a bell? If so, you're probably familiar with Fox Hollow's Latin nights, which boast some of the city's best Latin music to go with the drink specials, salsa lessons, and some ridiculously hot dancers taking over the dance floor. Sometimes they'll even throw in live salsa music for good measure.

4617 Nett, 713-869-2117, facebook.com/foxhollow

8. ESCAPADE This place is compound of six Latin clubs spread into two buildings, which makes for plenty of space to bust a move or six. Plenty of live music too. Needless to say Escapade gets super-packed, with everything from rap to merengue and punta. Between that, the dancers, and the huge TV screens that line the walls, the dance floor is a dizzying, maddening place to be, which only adds to the allure.

11903 Eastex Fwy., 281-372-1100, escapadehouston.com

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7. PAPARRUCHO'S Restaurant by day, Latin club by night is basically how it goes at Paparrucho's. The Galleria-area space is a perfect spot to fill yourself full of pre-dancing carbs, and you don't even have to move a muscle until it clears out to make way for the dancers. Once they do, though, you better put that full belly to good use, because you ain't sittin' if you're at Paparrucho's past sundown.

3055 Sage, 713-212-3178, paparruchos.com

6. CHULA'S SPORTS CANTINA This sports bar's lack of salsa nights doesn't negate its authenticity as a Latin bar. It's super soccer-centric and full of cute girls in very tiny apparel, and we dare you to try and find a time when it's empty. Boatloads of dudes are always hanging out by the massive bar, downing cervezas by the dozen while checking out the game and the goods. We like this place.

10516 Katy Fwy., 713-465-6544

5. PISTACHOS LOUNGE & BAR Quite possibly the newest member of our Latin list, Pistachio's is a wee baby in terms of age, but this salsa haunt has made a major impression in just a short time. With Sibido Thursdays, Social Fridays and the inimitable Latin Saturdays, this lounge isn't pretentious but it is full of chatty, dancing patrons who are ready to take advantage of the tequila specials and merengue tunes.

5887 Westheimer, 832-755-6491, pistachosloungebar.com

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4. GUAYABA LATIN BAR & GRILL Another one of those restaurant/bar combinations, Guayaba boasts some killer mojitos, things become even more exciting when the lights go down. A dance floor, some sweet DJs and all the Latin music you've been missing in your life -- it's all under that restaurant roof.

17505 Hwy. 249, 281-477-8555, guayabagrill.com

3. METROPOLIS DISCOTHEQUE & EXTRAVAGANZA If you haven't been to Metropolis, you're really missing out. It's enormous, with one of those two-for-one club things going on, which will mean something when you see the equally intimidating line outside. Just remember, as you stand and wait to be given the once-over, it'll all be worth it in the end. Beers, bachata, and babes.

8935 Richmond, 713-975-1917, metropolisdisco.com

2. CRYSTAL NIGHTCLUB A Latin gay club, complete with fabulous drag queens and an uber-friendly crowd? Don't mind if we do! Crystal has been around for nearly 20 years, but this well-kept little treasure doesn't receive the same fanfare as the more visible Montrose establishments. (It's way far away from there.) The commute is worth the effort for the salsa dancing alone, even if you're just hanging out on the sidelines and taking in the view.

6680 Southwest Fwy., 713-278-2582, crystalhouston.com

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1. TROPICANA NITE CLUB Salsa, salsa, and more salsa is what you'll find at Tropicana, which is No. 1 on our list for a number of reasons. The most important on the list is that it is seriously the greatest place to dance. If you're new to the scene, you'll be welcomed to jump right in and learn -- Tropicana welcomes novices alongside the seasoned vets.

As a side note, it's located right next door the No. 2 bar on our list, Metropolis, so why not try completing some sort of Latin club bingo by hopping between both sometime? Just make sure to hydrate before you do.

3222 Fondren, 713-977-4188, clubtropicanahouston.com


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Angelica Leicht
Contact: Angelica Leicht