AOL Travel
Print

Best Oklahoma City Nightlife

AOL PICK from our Editors

Oklahoma City’s best nightlife may be smack in the buckle of the Bible belt, but that doesn’t mean that everyone is in bed by 9PM. After-dark options for fun range from the peaceful jazz sounds of the Red Piano Lounge to the frenzy of an Oklahoma City Thunder basketball game. There’s something for everyone, including the kids. But don’t expect to stay out all night; even the latest night hot-spots shut down by 2AM.

Red Piano Lounge

Neighborhood: Downtown

First things first: Yes, there really is a red piano in the Red Piano Lounge. Located in the historic Skirvin Hotel, this favorite Oklahoma City lounge is both sophisticated and comfortable, with oversized leather chairs and marble-topped cocktail tables. One reviewer described it as “stepping into a Humphrey Bogart movie.” The bar staff is friendly and knowledgeable, and the drinks are reasonably priced. The Red Piano features live jazz nightly (except Sundays) and various drink specials (martinis on Tuesday and margaritas on Wednesday). Have a drink or get a bite to eat or just listen to the music and watch the people.

More Details on

Red Piano Lounge  

Oklahoma City Thunder

Neighborhood: Western Avenue

In 2008, the Seattle Super Sonics franchise of the NBA relocated to Oklahoma City and became the Oklahoma City Thunder. They are currently the city’s only professional sports team, which has made them wildly popular with sports-crazed local residents. In 2010, the Thunder secured a place in the NBA playoffs, although they lost in the first round to the defending champion Los Angeles Lakers. The Thunder play at the Ford Center in Oklahoma City, which is a mid-size arena. There really isn’t a bad seat in the house, so picking up last-minute tickets still guarantees you a good view of the action. And like all NBA events, Thunder games are about more than the basketball—there are contests and T-shirt tosses and dancing girls. The team’s mascot, a bison named—of course—Rumble, does tumbling tricks, including executing a series of dunks off a mini-trampoline. This is a perfect night out for basketball fans and families alike.

More Details on

Oklahoma City Thunder  

Purple Bar

Neighborhood: Bricktown

The Purple Bar is in Bricktown, at Nonna’s Euro-American Restaurant and Bar. While the restaurant itself often gets mixed reviews, the bar is universally praised. The space is beautiful, with hand-blown glass lights over the bar and a nice second-story terrace with views of Bricktown, delightful on cool nights. The Purple Bar serves a full menu of salads, soups and mains from 2-5PM, and offers a full appetizer menu in the evening, including Kobe Beef sliders and a selection of artisanal cheeses. While you can’t get a full meal in the evening, you can certainly cobble one together from the appetizer list. You can also order dessert from the restaurant, located downstairs; we recommend the strawberry shortcake. The Purple Bar offers an extensive cocktail menu, including half a dozen variations on the martini (lemon drop, German chocolate cake and strawberry lemon) and a selection of champagne cocktails.

More Details on

Purple Bar »

RedPin Bowling Lounge

Neighborhood: Bricktown

Let’s face it: the downside of going bowling is typically the bowling alley itself. Fortunately, the RedPin isn’t your typical bowling alley. Located in Oklahoma City’s Bricktown, the RedPin is upscale bowling for grownups. Billed as a “restaurant and bowling lounge” this is a chic, cool bowling alley that serves better versions of your usual bar-food fare. The space is divided into thirds, with the bowling alleys (each of which has its own couch and cocktail table) at one end and the sit-down restaurant at the other; the bar is between the two. Food is served family-style, and while you can sit down in the restaurant section, we suggest that you take advantage of the RedPin’s service and eat while you bowl. We also suggest that you order the sliders, which come in beef and chicken varieties and are topped with various things (garlic and bleu cheese, bacon, shiitake and portobello mushrooms). The RedPin is kid-friendly during the day, but is open only to the over-21 crowd after 9PM Fridays and Saturdays.

More Details on

RedPin Bowling Lounge  

Cafe Nova

Neighborhood: Western Avenue

Oklahoma City is a pretty-laid-back place, but if you’re jonesing to get dressed up and really go out, Cafe Nova is the place to go. Located in the Western Avenue district, Cafe Nova is a full-service restaurant, but the food can be hit-or-miss. Rather than shelling out for dinner, sit at the bar and have a drink. This Oklahoma City bar itself—with a gigantic deer’s head hanging on a mirrored wall—is much cooler than just about anything else you’ll find in the city, and the bar staff is friendly and helpful. Cafe Nova’s industrial vibe—exposed brick, minimalist furniture and contemporary art—makes this a place to see and be seen. If you want to people-watch, Nova is the place to be. Cafe Nova also offers a variety of late-night bar specials on weekdays, which mean you can go out for drinks and an appetizer and not spend a fortune. 

More Details on

Cafe Nova  
See All Oklahoma City Nightlife »
ADVERTISEMENT