Where To Go Out When You're In Your 30s

25-year-old you is gone (thank god). Here are the spots for your current nightlife era.
warmly low lit bar with stools and couch seating

photo credit: Monterrey Bar

Age is but a number, evidenced by the grandparents out there who’ve celebrated birthdays at Space. But tastes inevitably change when you reach a new decade, and your 30s tend to mark a shift in the types of nightlife you can tolerate. Out with the well tequila shots and in with buying an $8 bowl of fancy olives to nibble on while you sip martinis and listen to a friend talk about regenerative farming. If you can relate, this guide has good 30-something-friendly spots, none of which feature the punishing EDM and $80 cover charges you somehow accepted in your 20s.


photo credit: Cleveland Jennings


Little River

$$$$Perfect For:Date NightFirst/Early in the Game DatesDrinking Good Cocktails
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You’re in your 30s, which means there’s a decent chance your fridge has some gross-looking milk punch and your credit card statement has way too many charges from Cocktail Kingdom. If this is you, then you’ll love Kaiju, a bar where you drink to appreciate. These complex cocktails are our favorites in Miami. Nerd out with the bartenders while your significant other strikes up a conversation with a friendly stranger. They deserve the night off from listening to you go on and on about sotol.

The Abbey is an appropriate place to go on long, melodramatic tirades about what Miami rent prices looked like in 2013. Even though you can’t smoke inside anymore (don’t even get you started on that), it’s the kind of dark, divey drinking establishment South Beach used to be full of. You can’t recapture the past, but you can squeeze into a comically small booth with a beer and your bitterness. Fun fact, the Abbey turns 30 in 2025. Soon you’ll have that in common, too.

When you were 26, you had conversations with strangers about ostensibly nothing until 4am. But now you crave substance, or at least a discussion about the podcast you’re listening to. Try your luck at WetLab. It’s slightly hidden inside UM’s Marine and Atmospheric Science campus, and often frequented by scientists and people who are down to talk about the disastrous state of our coral reefs (a topic you recently learned about in a podcast). There’s also a waterfront view, which is convenient because appreciating nature is now part of your personality. And the bar usually closes by 10pm, not that you’ll stay long enough to know that.

Between the dim lighting, candles, and wine, you could get sleepy at this Downtown bar in 20 minutes. But bring the right friends (a.k.a. the ones who are single and tell unhinged stories) and NIU Wine will be a good choice for post-dinner drinks and maybe a Spanish bar snack or two. The space is very tiny, but they take reservations. Make one as soon as the Google Calendar invite lands in everyone’s inboxes because that’s the only way you arrange social plans now.

Maybe you’re one of the many 30-somethings who can’t afford a Standard membership. And now that they don’t do pool day passes anymore (sorry to break the news), the only way you can spend time at the beautiful property is as a customer of the restaurant or bar. We prefer the bar. It might not have Lido’s waterfront view, but the cocktails are good and the vintage cocktail lounge design will appeal to anyone who binges Architectural Digest home tour videos.

ZeyZey is the closest thing there is to a club for 30-year-olds in Miami. To be clear, it’s very much not a club. The sprawling outdoor space usually has some sort of live music on the weekends and a rotating food vendor or two, and people dance seemingly without feeling conscious of every cell in their bodies. It’s energetic and loud, but not so loud that it’ll trigger your migraines. Come to relive the days when the thought of camping at a music festival didn’t make your skin crawl. And if you arrive before the sun sets, no one will glare at you for bringing kids.

Oh, how you ache for the days when you played Nintendo 64 until your eyes hurt. Or maybe for that time you sneaked backstage at Warped Tour. We don't know what you were doing from the years 1996 through 2004, but The Bend will likely make you giddy with nostalgia. The retro Hialeah cocktail bar has a huge Yoda statue, a functional gaming system, emo night every Wednesday, and it vaguely resembles the set of That '70s Show.

Us folks in our 30s know that a beer and a sandwich can remedy everything from depressing Wednesdays to depressing Thursdays and even occasionally depressing Mondays. The housing market may not be in our favor, but at least we can go to Off Site and enjoy a cold lager we’ll inevitably describe as “drinkable” and the greatest fried chicken sandwich in Miami. There’s pretty much always an open seat here, it’s not too loud, and you pay in advance at the counter, so the second you get a sodium headache, you can just leave. Don’t worry about saying goodbye to anyone. The days of those social graces are over.

Sadly, the Gramps of Wynwood is not a place most people in their 30s want to go anymore on a Saturday night. This isn’t Gramps’ fault. It’s Wynwood’s fault. But there’s a new Gramps in Key Biscayne that is very much a place for Miamians in their 30s. Gramps Getaway has the affordable drinks, fun (but not chaotic) atmosphere, and excellent playlist that made us fall in love with the original. But here, there’s also a waterfront view and seafood from The Lazy Oyster. It’s the perfect way to end any Key Biscayne beach day. We’d tell you to wear sunscreen but you probably don’t turn on the kitchen lights without rubbing SPF 500 over your face, so you already know the drill.

This tiki bar functions more like a restaurant. You can make a reservation, everyone inside is sitting down, and a server will come over to take your drink order. That means no standing for hours and screaming “Mai Tai!” over some poor stranger’s head. Instead, you can hang in a dark room and relax while sipping very strong tiki drinks. They are so strong, in fact, that you’ll probably only have one or two. Which is convenient since you've been trying to find economically efficient ways to drink since your friend made you that spreadsheet that tracks your expenses.

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Just because you don’t want to pay $25 for a beer doesn’t mean you don’t want to dance. So go to one of these spots instead.

An outdoor table alongside Biscayne Bay.

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