Zurich’s nightlife mainly takes place in the old town on both sides of the Limmat. In the side streets around Nieder- and Oberdorfstrasse on the right side of the Limmat, there are a lot of hidden bars and cafés. New bars and clubs are also constantly opening in the city, especially west of the main train station in the fourth and fifth district, around Langstrasse. Also in the vicinity of the Hardbrücke are old industrial buildings such as the moods in shipbuilding (Internet: www.moods.ch), the La Salle restaurant, the stages of the Schauspielhaus or in the Maag area, as well as hip clubs such as the tonimolkerei (Internet: www .tonimolkerei.com). Most bars and clubs close at 2 a.m., but there are also some that are open until 3 a.m. or 4 a.m. The minimum age for drinking alcohol is 18 years. Very few clubs have dress codes.
Information on club nights and performances (including theater, concerts and operas) can be found in the Züritipp, the Friday supplement to the Tages Anzeiger (Internet: www.zueritipp.ch), and in the ticket that appears on Thursdays, an insert by the Neue Zürcher Zeitung (Internet: www. nzz.ch/ticket/zh/index.html). Disco goers should get the monthly forecast, which contains detailed event directories for the Zurich club scene.
In addition to the first-class museums (including the Kunsthaus Zürich, the Kunsthalle Zürich and the Migros Museum für Gegenwartskunst) and galleries, Zurich also has one of the most renowned theaters in German-speaking countries and a world-class chamber and symphony orchestra. Richard Wagner lived in the Villa Wesendonck (now part of the Museum Rietberg), and the romantic painter Füssli also made Zurich his home.
There are event information on the Internet for museums, concerts, cinema and theater (Internet: www.kulturinfo.ch or www.museums.ch). Tickets are available from the Billettzentrale Zürich (BIZZ), Bahnhofstrasse 9 or at Werdmühleplatz (Tel: (044) 221 22 83. Internet: www.bizz-online.ch); also at Jecklin, Rämistraße 30 (Tel: (044) 253 77 77. Internet: www.jecklin.ch), Jelmoli City, Seidengasse 1 (Tel: (044) 220 44 66), Musik Hug, Limmatquai 28-30 (Tel : (044) 269 41 41. Internet: www.musikhug.ch) and from UBS TicketCorner (Tel: 08 48 80 08 00. Internet: www.ticketcorner.com).
The most traditional Zurich events are the Sechseläuten, the city’s spring festival, which takes place every April, and the boy shooting in September. The Sechseläuten (Internet: www.se Wechselaeuten.ch) includes a parade of traditionally dressed guild members and the Böögg (a snowman figure filled with fireworks), which you light to mark the end of winter. The Knabenschießen (Internet: www.knabenschiessen.ch) is a city festival at which a shooting competition for boys and, since 1991, also for girls, a market and a fair have been held on and around the Albisgüetli. During the Zurich Festival (Internet:www.zuercher-festspiele.ch) in June and July ballet, opera, theater and concerts are held on various stages in the city, and during the Züri-Fäschts (Internet: www.zuerifaescht.ch) the city of Zurich is transformed into one huge festival venue. The highlight of the festivities is an impressive firework display on Lake Zurich. The theater spectacle on the Landiwiese on the western shore of Lake Zurich in August is also a colorful festival .
Quite a few of the best bars in the city serve food or have an attached restaurant. A trendy bar with a modern restaurant and lounge is Kaufleuten, Pelikanstraße 18.
Address: Pelikanstraße 18, Zurich
Café Bar Odeon
The historic Café Bar Odeon, Limmatquai 2, is a popular meeting place during the day and in the evening.
Address: Limmatquai 2, Zurich
Jules Verne Panorama Bar
In the Jules Verne Panorama Bar, Uraniastraße 9, on the first floor between the Brasserie Lipp and the Urania Observatory, the view of the city is wonderful.
Address: Uraniastraße 9, Zurich
In Niederdorf you will find traditional beer halls, often with good, plain food. The Safari Bar, Zähringerstraße 29, is one of the casual pubs.
Address: Zähringerstraße 29, Zurich
The desert, Oberdorfstraße 7, is one of the informal pubs in Niederdorf.
Address: Oberdorfstraße 7, Zurich
In addition to the traditional beer halls, there are also countless bars in Niederdorf. The Wirtschaft Neumarkt, Neumarkt 5, is one of the more upmarket bars. In summer you can also sit in the garden.
Address: Neumarkt 5, Zurich
The bar-restaurant Kantorei, Neumarkt 2, is one of the more sophisticated bars in Niederdorf.
Address: Neumarkt 2, Zurich
Brick oh lac
In the Ziegel oh Lac, a restaurant in the Rote Fabrik, Seestraße 395, you can sit by the lake in summer and eat at affordable prices.
Address: Seestraße 395, Zurich
Many clubs in Zurich belong to a larger art and entertainment center. The club room and the action hall are located in the Rote Fabrik, Seestrasse 395, five kilometers from the city center. Here you can play different styles of music, but there are also live performances.
Address: Seestraße 395, Zurich
Limmatbar in the Palais X-tra
Many clubs in Zurich belong to a larger art and entertainment center. The Limmatbar is also located in such a center, the Palais X-tra, Limmatstraße 118, and attracts young, fashion-conscious clubbers.
Address: Limmatstraße 118, Zurich
In the law firm, Kanzleistraße 56, near Helvetiaplatz, different music is played every night – the spectrum ranges from techno to house to disco.
Address: Kanzleistraße 56, Zurich
A good club is the Mascotte, Theaterstraße 10, near the Bellevue stop.
Address: Theaterstraße 10, Zurich
In the Dynamo, which belongs to the Jugendkulturhaus at Wasserwerkstraße 21, alternative punk groups play good live music.
Address: Wasserwerkstraße 21, Zurich
Salsa and funk are played at El Cubanito, Bleicherweg 5.
Address: Bleicherweg 5, Zurich
Big concerts take place in the Volkshaus, Stauffacherstraße 60, among others.
Address: Stauffacherstraße 60, Zurich
Moods in shipbuilding
You can hear first-class jazz in the stunning setting of the mood in shipbuilding, Schiffbaustrasse 6, near the Hardbrücke, which is located in the former Sulzer shipbuilding complex. In summer there are two concerts a week between Tuesday and Sunday. In the same building there is also a restaurant and a theater.
Address: Schiffbaustraße 6, Zurich
The oldest jazz venue in Zurich is the Casa Bar, Münstertgasse 20, where entertainment is offered every evening.
Address: Münstertgasse 20, Zurich
Hotel Bar Aries
In the chic Hotel Bar Widder, Widdergasse 6, you shouldn’t miss the jazz evenings that take place on Wednesdays.
Address: Widdergasse 6, Zurich
Bar of the Dolder Grand Hotel
Piano music is popular in the elegant bar of the Dolder Grand Hotel, Kurhausstrasse 65. After the expansion, the traditional house with a view over the city and the lake was reopened in spring 2008.
Address: Kurhausstraße 65, Zurich
The Tonhalle, Claridenstraße 7, is known for its acoustics and consists of two halls – the larger one holds 1455 people, the smaller one 636. From August to June the Zurich Chamber Orchestra plays in the Tonhalle, and the Tonhalle Orchestra, founded in 1868, performs symphony concerts.
Address: Claridenstraße 7, Zurich
Phone: (044) 206 34 34
Zurich Ballet in the Opera House
The city’s ballet troupe, the Zurich Ballet, performs in the Opera House, Falkenstrasse 1.
Address: Falkenstraße 1, Zurich
Telephone: (044) 268 66 66
The Schauspielhaus Zurich, Rämistraße 34, is one of the largest and most important theaters in Switzerland. Around 14 new productions – from Shakespeare to Friedrich Dürrenmatt, born in Zurich – are staged here every year. The theater, which was built at the end of the 19th century, includes two event venues, the Große Haus (745 seats) and the Schauspielhaus-Keller (130 seats), in which more experimental, unconventional theater is performed.
Address: Rämistraße 34, Zurich
Phone: (044) 265 58 58
The newly renovated Theater 11 is located on the site of the former Stadthof 11, Thurgauerstrasse 7, in the immediate vicinity of the exhibition center and the Hallenstadion. Analogous to the Hallenstadion, the new architectural building gave Theater 11 two faces: during the day it seems rather mysteriously closed, while at night there is a glittering and festive atmosphere.
Address: Thurgauerstrasse 7, Zurich
Theater an der Sihl
Smaller theaters such as the Theater an der Sihl, Gessnerallee 9, often offer modern and high-quality performances.
Address: Gessnerallee 9, Zurich
Theater am Hechtplatz
The Theater am Hechtplatz, Hechtplatz 7, is small, but offers modern and high-quality performances. The stage program mainly consists of comedies, musicals, cabaret, chansons and children’s theater. Since 1963 the theater has also been home to the Zurich fairytale stage.
Address: Hechtplatz 7, Zurich
Modern, experimental dance can be seen in various venues, including the Rote Fabrik, Seestrasse 395.
Address: Seestraße 395, Zurich
Telephone: (044) 481 91 43
Hans Arp, Hugo Ball and other Dadaists who were active in Zurich expressed their ideas in Cabaret Voltaire in 1915. In the heart of Zurich around 90 years after its creation, the legendary Cabaret Voltaire, Spiegelgasse 1, was reopened in the medieval building between Münstergasse and Spiegelgasse.
Address: Spiegelgasse 1, Zurich