Logline for the proposed horror film, "Where To Spend New Year's Eve":
Thousands of hallow-eyed would-be-revelers, in a desperate search for a party, comb the streets in their finest digs, racing against the stroke of midnight.
This year, instead of staying home like a curmudgeon, or running around town looking for a place to toast and a lip to kiss, park yourself at one of the bars listed below. You don't need an invite, (though some require reservations) but all guarantee that there will be people, booze, and a countdown to ring in the new year-- followed by a collective sigh of relief that the holiday mishegos is over.
1. Bar Marmont
8171 Sunset Boulevard, LA (323) 650-0575
Though it seems the last place people want to cover up is at Bar Marmont, the night is being billed as a Masquerade ball - face covering required. Offering a $65 three-course dinner along with a complimentary glass of champagne and tunes by DJ Audiomoe, ring in the new year in grand Hollywood style.
Entry not guaranteed without reservations. If you forget a mask, one will be furnished for you.
2. Bar 107
107 West Fourth St., Downtown (213) 625-7382
New Year's is the one night of the year the crew at Bar 107 dress up. Tattoos, Vans and skinny jeans make way for dresses and tails, but in typical downtown fashion, masks are painted directly onto the faces and the tuxes are more Steampunk than Sinatra. No cover charge unless you're not dressed up and then you'll be slapped with a fine of ten bucks.
3. The Varnish
118 E 6th St, Downtown (213) 622-9999
Ring in The Varnish's first New Year's! A two-party extravaganza starts at 7:00PM and goes until 9:00PM featuring $9 champagne cocktails. From 9:00PM until close, for $125 (gratuity included), The Varnish will feature a bottomless Grand Marnier Centenaire punch bowl, and open bar from the printed cocktail list, a live jazz pianist, limbo, and a very special New Year's countdown sung by The Apple Sisters.
A portion of the proceeds from the night will be donated to The Southern California United States Bartender's Guild. Not as fluffy as your friends at the ASPCA perhaps, but just as cute.
4. Chez Jay
1657 Ocean Ave., Santa Monica (310) 395-1741
The nautical-themed Chez Jay in Santa Monica is the kind of place you can imagine getting thrown out of. And returning the next day. And being welcomed.
This year they're celebrating their "50th or 51st New Year's" in the same fashion as usual: With a $55 limited menu that includes soup, salad, dessert, and mains like surf and turf, and steak au poive. At midnight, everyone grabs a streamer attached to a balloon on the ceiling and pulls them down to find various bill denominations tied to the top.
1050 S. Flower St., Downtown (213) 749-1460
The Latin-fusion Rivera is keeping things low-key with a regular night of chiles, Peruvian pisco, and Yucatecan cochinita pibil. If you time it just right though, from 11:00-12:30 for $50, you'll receive a bottomless glass of cocktail off a specialty list, as well as three punches and, of course, the ubiquitous glass of champagne.
6. Seven Grand
515 W. 7th St., Downtown (213) 614-0736
Let's see if we can keep the options for Seven Grand straight: From 7:00 - 9:00 PM there will be $8 Manhattan cocktails. From 7:30 - 9:00, the Deacon Jones Blues Review featuring Lady GG will play, followed by Slick Rick on the turntables for the rest of the night.
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Attendees will be given the option of purchasing a Seven Grand Private Reserve Seating which, for $180, allows two of you to sit in the Jackelope Drawing Room and choose between a bottle of Perrier-Jouet "LaFleur" or Blanton's Single Barrel Bourbon.
The Seven Grand Top Shelf Seating is $140 for two, with your choice of a bottle of Perrier-Jouet Champagne or Sazerac Rye.
General Admittance is $20 after 9:30 and, as always, you will be able to purchase the many delicious whiskeys, bourbons and blendeds available.