Top 5 Unusual Bars in Montmartre
Montmartre is naturally unusual. The streets are a little windier, the people are a little weirder and the houses a little more crooked. It’s all part of the magic in the 18th arrondissement; I went in search for some nightlife to match.
I wanted to steer clear of the Pigalle strip at the bottom of Montmartre hill which, as we know, is one long road of unusual. I imagine there aren’t many other places in the world where once can purchase wholesome tapas and a strip tease within the same vicinity; or enjoy a drink in what was once an opium den (looking at you, Moulin Rouge).
What unusual spaces exist further up Montmartre? Read on to find out.
1. Marlusse et Lapin in Montmartre
14 Rue Germain Pilon
From the outside of Marlusse et Lapin you’d never begin to imagine what kind of unusual setting exists within.
The bar is two blocks from the I Love You Wall near the western end of the hill. It opens promptly at 6pm every night; this is when you may want to arrive. It’s tiny and fills up before 8pm.
The bar layout is actually a fully equipped, old hotel room. Floor to ceiling wallpaper, weird portraits of strangers, beds draped in red linens — even a wooden closet in the corner along side a sewing machine.
Drinks are reasonably priced, the music is always good and the staff are wonderfully gregarious; it’s hard to pull yourself away at a reasonable hour. Thankfully they close at 2!
I prefer Marlusse et Lapin during the week as it is less crowded and you’re more likely to find a place to sit (by place I mean the hotel bed or sofa).
Unusual as they come and utterly fabulous!
OPENING HOURS: MONDAY TO Sunday – 6pm to 2am
ADDRESS: 14 Rue Germain Pilon, 75018 Paris, France
METRO STATION: Blanche
2. Bar À Bulles in Montmartre
4Bis Cité Véron
During the late 18 and early 1900s, the Moulin Rouge housed a giant elephant in its back courtyard that was hollowed out inside to hold private opium parties. When the property burned down 1915 the den was lost forever.
It took six years for the Moulin Rouge to be rebuilt into the establishment it is today. Behind the building is a rooftop property that is accessible via a dark alleyway just next to the club.
This is how you get up to the Bar À Bulles.
The bar is an unusual space. It feels as though someone was simply storing mismatched furniture and lampshades in an empty room and people just happened to start drinking.
The bar is strictly a nightlife venue during the week. On Saturdays and Sundays, however, they are open from midday right through until 2am featuring a full brunch and dinner menu complete with tapas!
The best part? You can reach out on the terrace and touch the windmill of the Moulin Rouge below. Many local Parisians don’t even know this is possible.
ADDRESS: 4Bis Cité Véron, 75018 Paris, France
METRO STATION: Pigalle
3. Lapin Agile in Montmartre
22 Rue des Saules
In 1905 Pablo Picasso released his now famous painting At the Lapin Agile. This officially put Lapin Agile on the map for visitors to Paris. The painter would frequent this bar many nights a week, drawing sketches of the performers in exchange for drinks.
The Lapin Agile is the oldest cabaret venue in Paris that is still in operation.
This is not to say you can show up here today and expect a Parisian cabaret spectacle. On the contrary the performances have taken a more improvised and low-key route in recent years.
The bar feels like an old, medieval cave, the kind of place you feel compelled to drink cherry flavored brandy even if you usually find it gross.
Every evening, a troupe of six to nine musicians gather in the space and entertain the customers for three consecutive hours. It’s light hearted, it’s fun and patrons are encouraged to join in should the brandy so incline them — unusual Montmartre strikes again.
OPENING HOURS: Tuesday TO Sunday – 9pm to 1am
ADDRESS: 22 Rue des Saules, 75018 Paris, France
METRO STATION: Lamrack – Caulaincourt
4. Le Très Particulier in Montmartre
Hôtel Particulier Montmartre
I really love Le Très Particulier in Montmartre, the hotel bar in the Hotel Particulier in the suburban area just east of the Montmartre Museum.
The hotel itself is unusual; built into an old 18th century townhouse, hidden behind lush greenery. This is the hotel of preference for many international celebrities who want to visit Paris but remain under the radar.
The hotel bar has opted for a kind of avant-garde jungle scene. Retro Caribbean may be a more accurate way of describing the interiors.
The restaurant in the hotel also does a great brunch on weekends!
OPENING HOURS: Monday TO Sunday – 6pm to 2am
ADDRESS: Hôtel Particulier Montmartre, 23 Avenue Junot, 75018 Paris, France
METRO STATION: Lamrack – Caulaincourt
5. Le Tagada Bar
40 Rue des Trois Frères
It’s a small, inviting little spot that many in these parts consider to be one of Paris’ hidden gems.
The unusualness comes not from the decor of this Montmartre bar, nor is there an old brothel in the back or performances every evening. It is simply the unique hospitality of the team behind the bar that make for an unusual night out in Paris.
Never will you encounter a more genuinely enthusiastic bunch of individuals coexisting in a work space, all with the main goal of making your night as enjoyable as possible. Every customer who comes through the doors at la Tagada is treated with respect, good humor and concern.
The manager is often spotted wandering the floor checking in on guests and whether or not they are having a good time. Being checked on by a manager… in a bar… in Paris? Imagine!
Tagada Bar opens everyday between 5am and 2am. Pay them a visit, you’ll be unusually glad you did!
OPENING HOURS: Monday TO Sunday – 5pm to 2am
ADDRESS: 40 Rue des Trois Frères, 75018 Paris, France
METRO STATION: Abbesses