Reviews of bars, clubs, live music and a brand new bowling venue at Pointe Orlando.
DISNEY SPRINGS— This mega outdoor lifestyle center rolls shopping, entertainment and dining into one. Visitors will find the world’s largest Disney store, retail stores at the brand-new Town Center, themed restaurants and bars, Cirque du Soleil, a bowling alley, movie theater, water taxis, attractions and more. Free admission and free parking. www.disneysprings.com. 1780 E. Buena Vista Drive, 407.828.3800. DISNEY’S BOARDWALK— This boardwalk created in the theme of Atlantic City’s famous stretch offers a sports bar, piano sing-along bar and dance club, as well as numerous restaurants and shops. www. disneyworld.com. 2101 N. Epcot Resorts Blvd., 407.939.5277. DOWNTOWN ORLANDO— Downtown Orlando is the hometown heart of Central Florida arts, culture, nightlife and entertainment. From world-class performances at the Dr. Phillips Center to celebrated fine dining options, upscale boutique hotels, eclectic shopping and the area’s best bar scene, Downtown Orlando is dynamic and alive year-round. Church Street and Wall Street are popular areas for the younger crowd with casual bars and local pubs to upscale wine bars and rooftop dance clubs while Lake Eola and Thornton Park offer weekly events, farmers markets and scenic environments for visitors of all ages. www.downtownorlando.com. 400 S. Orange Ave., 407.246.2555. INTERNATIONAL DRIVE— This stretch between Universal and SeaWorld is a hub for nightlife and entertainment for adults or the whole family. Find dinner shows, game centers, night clubs or relaxed pubs, especially concentrated around the I-Drive 360 and Pointe Orlando. PARK AVENUE WINTER PARK— Central Florida’s shopping, dining, and cultural showcase, Park Avenue is home to the Morse Museum of American Art, Rollins College’s Cornell Fine Arts Museum and the Bach Festival Society of Winter Park, which regularly hosts free, outdoor concerts in the stunning oak-canopied Central Park where seasonal art festivals, exotic car shows and fashion events are held. www.experienceparkavenue.com. 407.644.8281. THORNTON PARK DISTRICT— Visitors looking to decompress will find relief in the brick-lined streets of Thornton Park, one of Orlando’s most stylish districts. Just east of Lake Eola, Thornton Park District is home to a colorful commercial district with a European feel to the restaurants and boutiques. thorntonparkdistrict.com. 407.701.9382. UNIVERSAL CITYWALK— Think Times Square Orlando style. At this free entertainment complex just outside Universal’s theme parks, you’ll find an electric mix of clubs and restaurants such as Hard Rock Café, Jimmy Buffett’s Margaritaville, Red Coconut, The Groove and Rising Star. 11 am-2 am. No admission fee, but cover charges apply. www. universalorlando.com. 6000 Universal Blvd., 407.363.8000.
Bars, Lounges & Clubs
ABRACADABAR— This is the perfect place for grabbing a late-night drink after leaving Epcot or on the way to dinner at Disney’s BoardWalk. This fun-filled bar has a few tricks up its sleeve, like a magical menu, disappearing art work and wallpaper with hidden symbols. Choose from old-timey classics with a twist like the Elixir 13 made with Absinthe or the Magic Hattan. www.disneyworld. com. 2101 Epcot Resorts Blvd., 407.939.1947. AERO— Florida might be flat, but from this rooftop roost, you have a terrific view of downtown above the buildings and trees. Relax to tunes spun by hip DJs while you enjoy a signature cocktail. www. skysixty.com. 54 N. Orange Ave. BIG BELLY— Originally a speakeasy during prohibition, this venue is still a favorite watering hole with a wide selection of craft beer, multiple tv screens and a dance floor. www.churchstreetbars.com. 33 Church St., 407.649.4270. BLUE MARTINI— This classy and chic martini lounge is the perfect place to grab dinner or drinks, whether it’s happy hour or late-night. Choose from cocktails, champagne and wine to specialty martinis, from a lemon drop or a cosmo to the signature Blue Martini made with Van Gogh blue vodka, cointreau and blue curacao that’s served