12 Cool Hangouts and Hot Spots in Atlanta

One dozen fun spots you might not know about.

  • Enjoy a drink and some gaming nostalgia at Joystick Gamebar. (photo Sharif Hassan)
    Enjoy a drink and some gaming nostalgia at Joystick Gamebar. (photo Sharif Hassan)
  • Visit Ponce City Market via the BeltLine.
    Visit Ponce City Market via the BeltLine.
  • There are cool bars aplenty on Edgewood Avenue.
    There are cool bars aplenty on Edgewood Avenue.
  • ...such as The SoundTable.
    ...such as The SoundTable.

Looking for a new place to hangout in Atlanta? We've picked 12 hot spots for you.

  1. Sister Louisa’s Church of the Living Room & Ping Pong Emporium: Usually open from 5 p.m. to 3 a.m., this quirky, not-for-the-fainthearted watering hole in the Old Fourth Ward is popular among locals who like to laugh at edgy art, have a drink or two and play some late-night ping-pong.

  2. Joystick Gamebar: If you want to challenge a rival to classic arcade battles like Mortal Kombat, Street Fighter, NBA Jam and more, Joystick is the place to do it. Those games are almost vintage at this point (!), but still super fun, especially when you add a good food and drink menu to the mix.

  3. Ormsby’s: If games are your thing, but you want a different variety, check out Ormsby’s in West Midtown. With bocce ball, shuffleboard, skee ball, pool, board games, what more could you want?

  4. The Euclid Avenue Yacht Club: This super chill pub in Little Five Points is perfect if you want to relax a bit before catching a show at Variety Playhouse, and the wings are famous for hitting the spot.

  5. Krog Street Market: This market is the perfect place to make like a honeybee and wander from eatery to eatery in an open, friendly atmosphere. You’ll find anything from tapas to beer to full dinner to ice cream, and the Atlanta BeltLine is just steps away. Pro tip: To ensure that your visit isn’t ruined by a parking ticket or a boot, DEFINITELY pay attention to where you park your car, and be sure to look for and abide by posted signs.

  6. Ponce City Market: PCM is now open to the public and it is even cooler than you thought it’d be. Fully restored from the historic Sears building (Atlanta’s largest adaptive reuse project), PCM has been reinvented as a vibrant community hub housing the Central Food Hall, various shops, flats and offices, located right on the Atlanta BeltLine. In fact, you could even stroll on the Eastside Trail from the Krog Street Market to Ponce City Market.

  7. Condesa Coffee: Cocktails and coffee go together at Condesa Coffee, and though it’s conveniently situated just off of Freedom Parkway on Boulevard, this locally owned coffee shop is rarely overly crowded. That makes it the perfect spot to relax, have a meeting, do some work and jettison the bustling cafes for a spell. Pro tip: The new downtown location is on the Atlanta Streetcar route.

  8. Elliott Street Deli & Pub: This laid-back Castleberry Hill gem is little off the beaten path, but well worth a visit, especially if you love sandwiches (personal favorites are the Dirty Bird and the Mad Italian), live music and pop culture artifacts. Open for Sunday home Falcons games.

  9. MJQ Concourse: Ready to dance? Don’t forget about MJQ, an underground (literally) and low-key place to dance the night away. 

  10. Elmyriachi: Check out this family friendly Mexican food spot that boasts really good (and ethical) food: They serve only pork, chicken and steak that are all natural, hormone free and antibiotic free. The fryer oil is all-natural and non-GMO canola oil, and all produce comes from the farmers market. They even convert oil waste into bio-diesel (locally).

  11. Apres Diem: With a French name that translates to “after the day,” you’ll definitely want to unwind here. The candlelit interior, lounge area and open patio are welcoming whether you’re on a date or hanging out with friends, and the close proximity to the Landmark Theatre makes it a great spot for dinner and a movie.

  12. The SoundTable: One of the main anchors of the bar block on Edgewood Avenue, The SoundTable is a dimly lit restaurant with a hip, modern vibe. Deft mixologists have got the drinks covered, and a substantive menu keeps your mouth watering with items like lamb burger and shrimp chorizo tacos. Local and national DJs keep the tunes pumping, so expect to shake a tail feather or two.

Beth Clark is a writer and foodie who loves to roam around Atlanta, uncovering the city's quirky, glam, upscale and down-home character. Curiosity is her compass, and you'll find her writing on www.thecitydweller.me.


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