8 Elusive Hotel Speakeasies to Seek Out Across the Country
From Charleston to Aspen and Beyond, Some Secrets Are Best UnkeptBY Kimber Westphall
Thankfully, the era of Prohibition is a distant memory, but the elusive nature of speakeasies lives on. Today, you’ll find some of the best libation havens concealed behind bookshelves, situated on a subterranean level, or requiring a secret password to enter. As an ode to the clandestine cocktail, PaperCity rounded up the coolest hotel speakeasies today — there’s even a secret window to order up a sneaky spritz. Spanning from Aspen to Charleston, these are the eight best hotel speakeasies to visit right now.
The Board Room at The Little Nell
The Little Nell‘s speakeasy, The Board Room, is discreetly hidden behind a bookshelf and requires a password to enter. Those in the know will discover a moody contemporary den complete with plush couches, a roaring fire, a bar area, and a pool table. Dedicated service is provided by a personal sommelier with access to The Little Nell’s award-winning wine list, full bar, and chef’s menu. The popular Five-Star hotel is also home to one of two custom Imperial Shakers in the state of Colorado.
This private space is available as a buyout for a soirée, plated dinner, or a meeting, all complete with food and beverage pairings.
The Fox Hole at Hotel Emeline
Charleston, South Carolina
Charleston’s stylish new boutique hotel home to secret cocktail windows made famous via Instagram. Leading up to the hotel’s Italian wood-fired restaurant Frannie and the Fox, a wallpaper-lined hallway (appropriately named The Fox Hole) features four wooden stools built right into the wall. Press the button to call on the bartenders beyond the cocktail window’s wooded slats. (We recommend the Garibaldi.) No password required.
Hidden Bar at Noelle Hotel
Located beneath Noelle Hotel is one of the best-kept secrets in downtown Nashville. Literally called Hidden Bar, the hard-to-find spot (hint: look for a two-way mirror and storage closet) offers experimental cocktails and surprising pairings, allowing bartenders to really flex. Pop-ups often take place in the subterranean lounge based on seasonality. The hotel is even known for hosting Bathrobes and Brunch, where they encourage diners to show up in pajamas.
For travelers looking for something a little quieter, New York-inspired Patterson House remains a local favorite.
901 at Hyatt Centric Las Olas
Fort Lauderdale, Florida
This speakeasy was originally used as a guest room, but has recently been transformed into a swanky, reservation-only speakeasy. Named 901 for the former guest room it occupies, the lush, sultry ambiance takes you back to the Jazz Age in style. Upon entry, guests are greeted by a red-lit room embellished with black drape curtains, plush velvet furniture, and a retro record player, setting the mood for cocktails like “Late Check-Out” and “The Butler Did It.” Dishes like mini Connecticut-style lobster rolls and house-fried chips tossed in duck fat live up to the opulent setting.
Pin + Proof at Omni Hotel Louisville
Don’t blink, or you may miss the “shhh” mural hinting at the location of this Kentucky speakeasy just off the Omni Hotel lobby. Inside the bourbon mecca, a 1920s-style cocktail lounge is equipped with four professional bowling lanes and drinks like the Bees Knees and Kentucky Breakfast.
B&GC at Halcyon Hotel
Set beneath the hip Halcyon Hotel, B&GC (Boys & Girls Club) is Denver’s coolest clandestine bar. In celebration of cocktailing on the low, admittance into this speakeasy requires a simple ring of a doorbell (text 720-925-8598 to make reservations). Upon entry inside, guests are transported to an elegant room where the lights are low and the drinks are flowing. B&GC-goers are guided on an odyssey of libations, including everything from the aromatic Bee Bee to the Bourbon Blinker.
The Press Room at AC Hotel
Greenville, South Carolina
Another reservations-only spot where a password is required for entry is The Press Room. But this password is in the form of a typed code (make a reservation here). The speakeasy is located on the site of the former Greenville News building and has been transformed into a dark, mysterious bar that seats up to 30 individuals for an intimate gathering. Inventive cocktails and small plates are offered for the private experience.
The Rest at Bodega
Salt Lake City, Utah
Although not technically a hotel, this hunting lodge-inspired speakeasy is worth a mention. Bodega appears to be a street-level Tavern, offering beer and standard cocktails, but with a reservation, its subterranean secret, The Rest, can be revealed. This speakeasy is filled with eclectic combinations of taxidermy and old books, with a strong supply of whiskey.