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We all know Cambridge isn’t famed for its ‘wild nights out’ but it is the place that dreams are made of AND we have had some fucking wavy times in the process, here is a list of 10 places you will end up in on a Cambridge night out our roving reporter Sam Juniper has been out and about reviewing some of our favourite Cambridge hot spots.
Novi – to line that stomach before going out, out.
A pretentious Cambridge espresso bar by day, a pretentious Cambridge cocktail bar by night: if you want to impress somebody in the hopes they’ll have sex with you, this is a good shout. From the wide selection of refreshing beverages to the endearing yet somehow self-congratulating décor, you can’t help but feeling you’re too much of a peasant to enjoy this place. Make sure you bring plenty of family jewellery to pawn once you reach the fourth round of cocktails/craft beers/quinoa infused gin.
You may think this assessment is a little harsh, but their own website claims they are inspirational. How can a bar be inspirational? Do their Kentucky Ice Teas give you motivational speeches about the value of hard work? Does their selection of flatbreads teach you to dream big? Will their V60 pour over brew awaken you from your capitalist thrall, causing you to spearhead the revolution of the proletariat which will result in the wholesale destruction of the Bourgeois world order as we know it?
The Regal – because who doesn’t want a £10 pitcher?
The Regal is Cambridge’s branch of Weatherspoon’s, the simultaneously most loved and hated pub chain in recorded history. With its inexplicably sticky yet accommodating dancefloor, its hordes of reckless hedonists, and its imposing bouncers outside the entrance, this spot perfectly blends the experiences of clubbing and pubbing into one confusing, boozy mess.
‘I’d rather have a spoon stuck in my mouth than be stuck in a Spoons’ seems to be the attitude held by most University of Cambridge students. This is not necessarily a bad thing, as it means there’s more £10 cocktail pitchers to go around! If – for some twisted reason – you want to mingle with all the locals, this is your place.
Upon entering the building, you’d be surprised to learn that it’s the second biggest pub in the world. Sure, it’s big – but second biggest in the world?! It’s a little underwhelming, to tell the truth. You could probably build a bigger one yourself. The obvious upside of such a large venue is that there’s plenty of space to avoid everyone else: an enviable quality which makes The Regal one of the most frequented spots in town.
An admirable trait of Weatherspoon’s is its ability to bring people from all backgrounds together – often in mutual condemnation of the frustrating policy which bans drinks from the dancefloor or the enormous pile of vomit which has just appeared out of nowhere. It’s equally impressive that this shared goodwill evaporates the moment you find yourself violently jostling with fellow patrons to get to the bar.
If re-mortgaging your home isn’t an option for financing your night out, The Regal is strongly recommended. Make sure you try Six Point Resin – a 9.1% craft beer at £3 a can which is guaranteed to make you forget the chain of sad decisions which led you to drinking it in the first place.
The Eagle – for the more adventurous of boozer
Frankly, this pub is overhyped and sends completely the wrong message to the young people of today. The Eagle and Child is famous for the graffiti left on its walls and ceiling by American World War 2 pilots – this is advertised as a Cambridge tourist attraction and throws up a horrific double standard. When a bunch of ungrateful foreigners set fire to the roof of a pub it’s ‘iconic’ and a ‘historical artefact’, but when I set fire to the roof of a pub I’m an ‘arsonist’ and ‘deeply disturbed’. Yeah, that makes perfect sense – when will all you lunatics open your eyes and call out this juvenile vandalism for what it is?!
Oh, and don’t get me started on how they try and take credit for the discovery of DNA. Their food is not magic. Watson and Crick didn’t suddenly draw up the canonical list of amino acids (which laid the foundations of molecular biology) because of a Eureka moment caused by their fish and chips. If anything, I’d go as far to say it was in spite of that: alcohol is a poison that destroys the life of all men – who knows how much more the 1962 Nobel Prize winners could have accomplished had they not been getting pissed in this den of mediocrity?
Lola Lo – Let’s Kill Disco every Thursday
What’s better than one floor of tiki paradise? Three floors! Combining a half-hearted Caribbean theme with mediocre chart hits from the last five years, this nightclub really makes you appreciate the bravery of whoever was given the task of branding. It even has an 80s style disco floor, which – as any true Hula partygoer knows – a beach paradise would be incomplete without. Complete with its own smoking terrace where you can bitch about your close friends and family in style – safe in the knowledge that someone within earshot probably knows them, a night here will be memorable for some reason or another.
There’s no better place in the world to meet a homogeneous mass of 18 year olds in supposedly edgy clothing. That’s all you will find here: clogging up the stairways, the dancefloors, the smoking area, the entrance. They’re everywhere. They’re multiplying at an alarming rate. It is rumoured that if you strike one down, two will rise in their place. Beware, or you may be crushed by the mob.
If you are not one of these 18 year olds, this is a prime opportunity to make new friends who are also desperately fighting for their survival in the swarm of pretentious teenagers. From international students, to bored 20-somethings, to office Christmas parties who are still fruitlessly searching for the exit, there’s plenty of people that you can share a jägerbomb with before the damned crowd of youths drink it all.
So what are you waiting for?! I have it on good authority that Let’s Kill Disco on a Thursday is the most superior night on the Cambridge scene. Whip out your dancing shoes, your favourite ever-so-slightly culturally insensitive Tiki garb, and your contactless card – there’s no going back!
Fez – If and only if Thursday Lola is full
Do you like confined spaces? Do you like sweating profusely? Do you like a 50-50 chance of being outnumbered by the staff? Then look no further than Cambridge Fez, but do not be fooled by its exotic name – this establishment is not Ottoman at all. I don’t think anybody inside could give a coherent argument as to why the Ottoman Empire fell apart in 1922. What a bunch of posers, it was obviously the longstanding ethnic and racial tensions within the empire which were exacerbated by their defeat in the Great War.
If you’re a fan of R&B or hip hop, this is your best bet provided there are enough heads in the building to pretend you’re more street than you are with you. There’s no doubt that you’re rolling the die by coming here, but Sultan Mehmed II didn’t conquer Constantinople without taking any risks, did he?
Kuda – A new Friday night option?
Whatever you do, don’t come here when the Cambridge students are out. They’re a perverted and silly bunch. They’re the kind of people who will obliviously mouth the words to three Katy Perry remixes in an hour and grind along to Blurred Lines as if it was a feminist anthem. That’s only on Sundays however, you should be safe to come out when they’re all squirrelled away in the library.
When the ‘smoking terrace’ is the back alley of a Waterstones renowned by locals for its abnormally high levels of public urination, you have to decide whether it’s really worth getting lung cancer after all. To compensate for this unfortunate smoking area, the inside (which is all underground) is spacious and well decorated: sort of like a sesh bunker, one that we can all keep partying in long after the imminent nuclear holocaust eradicates all life on the surface due to toxic radiation.
Hahaha, only joking. Don’t go to Revs.
Oh hell yeah. You know shit’s got real when they’re posting a bouncer at Maccy Ds. If you are a voyeur of drama, then you’re in for a right treat. I’m not sure what it is: maybe it’s the fact it’s gone 1am, you’re all binned, everyone is bitterly disappointed about how their night has gone, and the food isn’t that fantastic… But this McDonalds really seems to bring out one’s melodramatic side.
I really shouldn’t have to explain the concept of a McDonalds to you. It is one of the most prolific brands in the world – if you get out of the house so little that you aren’t even aware of the world’s most popular fast food brand then don’t even bother going out in Cambridge.
Gardenia’s – obvious choice for that cheeky photo and falafel kebab
If you can’t stomach the thought of a Big Mac at the end of your night, fear not – there is an escape. Right around the corner from McDonalds is Gardenia’s, a small takeaway shop which offers anything your typical kebab shop does, alongside a few specialities.
If you’re not too binned, you may be able to notice that the walls are covered with photos of far sexier clubbers than you who are enjoying their food in Gardi’s, all taken on a disposable camera. If you ask nicely enough, it could be you and your friends who are later condemned to the pile of discarded pictures, forever subject to the humiliation of not being good enough to make it onto the wall of a takeaway.
Christ’s Pieces – the end of the night
Who doesn’t love a bit of fresh air? This is a nice spot to head for a post-sesh walk – provided you’re not scared of the dark, strangers, or grass. Feel free to pilfer among the beautiful flowers, take a nap on one of the many benches, and admire the urine soaked green. Just don’t do anything illegal that will spoil the place for everybody else, that’s what bad people do.
Although it’s tempting, this is a far from ideal place to consummate any whirlwind romance which may or may not have started the same evening. You could easily get mud on your clothes, contract pneumonia due to the cold, or get caught in somebody else’s Snapchat story and go viral in the process – this would be a hugely embarrassing for you and potentially detrimental to your future employment prospects. If you think you’re better than advice you read on an internet blog, at least use protection.
So there you have it, a classic Cambridge Night out in a nut shell! Cambridge we love you. Peace.