Spending an evening sipping absinthe infused cocktails in a dim-lit Parisian jazz club is right up there with catching the Eiffel Tower’s sparkle show after dark, gazing at the Mona Lisa and strolling down the Seine. No trip to Paris is complete without it. The bustling capital city is one of the cradles of jazz and as such is home to some of the most charming, intimate and buzzing jazz clubs in the world. That’s why we took the guesswork out of it for you and narrowed it down to the very best ones. Here are the best jazz clubs in Paris to make all your roaring 20s aesthetic dreams come true.
7 of the Best Jazz Clubs in Paris
Since 1946, Caveau de la Huchette has been providing tourists and locals alike with the very best in jazz and swing dance. Nested in a building which dates to 1551 that has been purposed for everything from a Rose-Croix and the Templars meeting place to a secret freemason lodge, the atmosphere doesn’t hurt either. They’ve put a spin on the building’s history with the slogan The Temple of Swing for 70 Years and they are certainly right. Over their more than 70 years in operation, they’ve seen some of the world’s most beloved jazz musicians from Art Blakey and the Jazz Messengers to Nancy Holloway and remain a staple in Paris’ jazz scene.
Just a few quick blocks from Montmartre, you’ll find Lulu White Drinking Club. When it comes to atmosphere and jazz that can only be described as transformative, Lulu White is the place to be. This uber-stylish and vintage jazz club is famous for its classy craft cocktails and ambiance that just can’t be matched. From the absinthe loaded menu to the art déco charm throughout, Lulu White sings a song of the Gatsby days and is sure to make a regular out of anyone.
Jazz Club Etoile is one of Paris’ leading jazz bars and it isn’t hard to see why. Set in Le Méridien Etoile in the same neck of the woods as Arc de Triomphe, this buzzing jazz club perfectly paints a picture of the city’s most vibrant musical era. Not only that, but they know a thing or two when it comes to cocktails and good food. With delectable craft cocktails, a clubby atmosphere, delicious food and even better live jazz – what more do you need?
4. 38 Riv
Just a few blocks off the Seine in the heart of Marais, you’ll find 38 Riv. Hidden in a 12th century vaulted and bricked cellar with more charm than you can imagine, it’s the perfect spot to enjoy some classy tunes in the City of Lights. Its intimate setting also makes it a prime pick for date night. When it comes to jazz, they don’t limit themselves either. You’ll find all of your favorite styles here from swing to bebop to manouche and so much more. You’ll also find the occasional funk, groove and soul nights.
This Saint-Germain favourite is one of the best jazz clubs in Paris for its intimate charm, bopping live jazz tunes and delicious food. Hidden behind a heavy wooden door in the storied Latin Quarter, you’ll be transported to a whole new world of piano-bass duets, saxophone riffs and bent notes like you’ve never seen before. Simply put, any visit to Paris is incomplete with at least a few glasses clinked at Chez Papa’s. Be sure to also indulge in a few of their world-class hors d’oeuvres and other gourmet delights.
Just across the river from the Notre Dame, you’ll find one of the most bumping jazz joint in Paris with quite the past. The words medieval dungeon may not be the first to come to mind when thinking of the best jazz clubs in Paris, but bear with us. This intimate stone laden haunt is famous for its romantic atmosphere and former days as a medieval dungeon. Oh, and they also put on some of the best jazz shows in the city. Besides stellar jazz of every kind, you’ll find an impressive lineup of blues and rock n roll evenings.
Just a few steps from the Pantheon, you’ll find ever-vibrant Le Piano Vache. So vibrant, in fact, that it’s served as the backdrop for several films such as Klapisch’s Young Peril and Kazangjians Sex Boys. In addition to some of the best jazz riffs Paris can offer, you’ll find a quirky and charming atmosphere complete with mismatched tables and a no-frills approach to a good time. Simply put, Le Piano Vache doesn’t take itself to seriously. It’s a place to have a fun, indulge in some drinks and enjoy some of the best music around.