Feb 24, 2023 - Things to Do

LGBTQ+ nightclub Bunker opens in D.C.

We don't know what the clock is counting down to, but it sure looks cool. Photo: Chelsea Cirruzzo/Axios

A new LGBTQ+ nightclub is open on 14th and U streets in an underground space that was formerly Tropicalia.

Driving the news: The fallout shelter-themed nightclub called Bunker is celebrating its opening weekend with no-cover happy hours and different DJs every night.

Why it matters: The number of LGBTQ+ venues in D.C. has fluctuated in recent years, with the closures of mainstays such as the DC Eagle, and the opening of new venues like As You Are.

  • Most of the District's LBBTQ+ venues operate as bars or restaurants, whereas Bunker is one of the few LGBTQ+ nightclubs in the city (alongside Green Lantern and the upcoming Town 2.0, per ABRA licensing).

What to expect: Radioactive warnings are spray-painted onto concrete walls and a giant countdown clock ticks down over the DJ booth. A cabinet of “supplies” near two gender-neutral bathrooms is packed with decorative medicine bottles and gas masks.

Photo: Chelsea Cirruzzo/Axios

Bunker's music selections will rotate — from electro-pop on Thursdays to disco on Sundays — with local and international DJs taking the reins, co-owner Zach Renovatres tells Axios. The club will also host drag shows featuring talent from diverse subsets of the LGBTQ+ community.

  • “We really want to ensure patrons of all different aspects of our beautiful rainbow can come and enjoy our events,” he says.

Worth noting: The bar will have a cash cover after happy hour ends at 9pm, with costs ranging from $10-$30. An ATM is located right outside the door.


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