Bars in the Village and beyond

Richard Burnett

Richard “Bugs” Burnett is a Canadian freelance writer, editor, journalist, blogger and columnist for alt-weeklies, mainstream and LGBTQ publications. Bugs also knows Montréal like a drag queen knows a cosmetics counter.

This article was updated on July 21, 2022.

Montréal is home to one of the largest LGBTQ Villages in North America, but there are lots of great spots beyond the Village as well in a queer-friendly city that likes to let the good times roll.

Each year the lively kilometre-long summertime pedestrian mall on Saint-Catherine Street in the Village stretches east from Place Émilie-Gamelin near Berri-UQAM Métro station to Papineau Avenue. The pedestrian mall and surrounding area is filled with some 40 patios which are called “terrasses” by locals. And, of course, there are great spots in other ‘hoods as well.

Here is a selection of LGBTQ and queer-friendly establishments with rooftop bars, karaoke, drag shows and some of the best patios in the city. 

Cabaret Mado

1115 Sainte-Catherine Street | Website

Named for Montréal drag icon Mado LamotteCabaret Mado is one of the busiest LGBTQ bars in the Village and a great place to spot visiting celebrities like Charlize Theron and Jean-Paul Gaultier. Local, national and international drag artists headline shows nightly. The street front patio is a great spot to catch up with friends.

Complexe Sky

1478 Sainte-Catherine Street | Website

Complexe Sky boasts three floors of entertainment with a popular summertime rooftop terrasse that also has an outdoor pool and jacuzzi. Enjoy a pitcher of ice-cold sangria on the street-level terrasse which is great for people-watching.

Bar Renard

1272 Sainte-Catherine Street | Website

Trendy Bar Renard is popular with LGBTQ and straight young hipsters. The bar boasts a wide selection of wines, microbrewery beers and cocktails as well as a street front patio in the heart of the action. Inside, because of its floral décor, Renard’s unisex washroom has become an iconic selfie location.

District Vidéo Lounge

1365 Sainte-Catherine Street | Website

Queer icon Lady Gaga and her entourage partied at District Vidéo Lounge when it opened in 2017. Montreal drag legend Jimmy Moore hosts a weekly drag show, and patrons can select music videos on the indoor screens or hang out on the very comfortable patio.

Aigle Noir

1315 Sainte-Catherine Street | Website

Montréal’s Black Eagle is called Aigle Noir. While it serves the leather and denim communities, it is also popular with bears and the athletic crowd. Happy hour specials and a cruisy summertime terrasse. A true Montréal classic.

Club Unity

1171 Sainte-Catherine Street | Website

Club Unity is one of the biggest nightclubs in the city, with two dance floors and legendary summertime rooftop terrasse with great views of the city.

Le Normandie

1295 Atateken Street | Website

Sports bar Le Normandie on Atateken Street is a terrific watering hole with cheap drinks and karaoke. A local institution since 1981, the tavern has two of the nicest and busiest summer patios in the Village.

Bar Le Cocktail

1669 Sainte-Catherine Street | Website

Legendary Montréal female impersonator Michel Dorion’s classic Bar Le Cocktail is a terrific nightclub to see live shows by many of the best drag performers in the city – including Dorion – and Le Cocktail’s comfortable and popular patio draws a great mix of people.

Le Date Karaoke 

1218 Sainte-Catherine Street | Website

A classic neighbourhood bar in the Village whose karaoke song list features more than 35,000 titles.

Bar Le Stud

1812 Sainte-Catherine Street | Website

Popular with the bear and leather communities, Bar Le Stud on the eastern edge of the Village welcomes all types of men, and all types go. Open since 1995, their motto is, “Stud is a men’s bar, where men love men.” There is plenty to do inside the labyrinthine nightclub, which boasts two popular patios – one on Sainte-Catherine Street and the other on Papineau Avenue.

Bar Minéral

1641 Atateken Street | Website

A wine bar by day and nightclub after dark, Bar Minéral on Atateken Street is an architectural delight and boasts a very comfortable sunshiny patio and excellent light food menu.

 

Stock Bar

1171 Sainte-Catherine Street | Website

Montreal is famous for its gay male strip joints and none is bigger than Stock Bar in the Village. Ladies Night every Wednesday.

 

Café Cléopatre

1230 Saint-Laurent Blvd. | Website

Outside the Village, Café Cleopatre is the last remnant of Montreal’s fabled red-light district. This building has been a showbar since the 1890s. There is a street-level female strip joint, but the historically queer-friendly upstairs cabaret still occasionally hosts LGBTQ and drag events.

Bar Notre-Dame-des-Quilles

32 Beaubien Street | Website

Rosemont neighbourhood bar NDQ is a legendary LGBTQ hangout outside the Village. NDQ programs queer-themed events and parties, and is home to a miniature bowling alley!

Taverne Marion

1151 Ontario Street | Website

Located just outside the Village, the bright and cheery Taverne Marion with its white-washed brick walls and large garage-style windows has become a trendy hangout for straights and queers alike.

Richard Burnett

Richard “Bugs” Burnett is a Canadian freelance writer, editor, journalist, blogger and columnist for alt-weeklies, mainstream and LGBTQ publications. Bugs also knows Montréal like a drag queen knows a cosmetics counter.

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