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Live Out Your “Great Gatsby” Dreams With Modern-Day Speakeasy Experiences

speakeasies near me

This article was written by The Zillennial Zine’s spring editorial intern Katelyn Rodriguez. Find her on Instagram at @katelynrodwrites. If you would like to share an article with The Zillennial, send us an email at

If you’ve been out of school for a while or weren’t a history buff like myself, you’re probably wondering what in the world a speakeasy is. Well, dear reader, a speakeasy is a bar that was first developed in the 1920s during prohibition when the sale, transportation and manufacturing of alcohol were banned throughout the United States by the 18th Amendment. Those who wanted to keep the drinks flowing during this era had to find a creative way to do so without being caught and, thus, the speakeasy was born. According to an article from History, “Millions of people in small towns and large cities imbibed at secret taverns and bars called speakeasies. Although the exact origins of the term are unknown, it might have arisen because prospective patrons had to whisper—or “speak easy”—through a small opening in a door to enter the illegal establishments, providing the name of the person who had sent them.” It’s safe to say the prohibition era wasn’t all the glitz and glam The Great Gatsby made it out to be.

What are speakeasies like today?

While the modern-day speakeasy concept is far from illegal, it is still a fun way to unwind after a busy work week. Some of these modern iterations have different themes to them, while others stick to the classic vintage vibe. Before you visit a speakeasy, I recommend checking out its website first because some have dress codes in place for patrons, while others may post their passcode for entry on the website if they have one.

How can I find a speakeasy near me?

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Finding speakeasies near you may seem like a daunting task if you live in a small town like me, but I found it to be an easier process than I originally thought. I have been wanting to find speakeasies near me for quite some time now seeing that I have a love for all things vintage. I know of a restaurant in Los Angeles that has a speakeasy in the back since we went for my brother’s birthday in September. However, I was clueless about any being near my hometown in Central California until I did a quick Google and Yelp search. I found one called Savvy Bar that’s open from Thursday to Sunday. A glance at its website allowed me to see that they post its rotating passcode on it weekly for those who want to get in. Social media is another great option for finding local speakeasies, whether it be through Tiktok, Instagram or Facebook.

Where are some of the best speakeasies located?


London’s first speakeasy bar officially passes the vibe check 🤌 #londonbars #londonhiddengems #londonbar

♬ In the Mood – Glenn Miller

According to an article from Travel and Leisure, 13 of the best speakeasies are located in some of the country’s major metropolitan areas, such as San Francisco, Los Angeles, and Pittsburgh to name a few. While this may be true, I’ve seen posts on TikTok about speakeasies popping up in the UK and Europe, which only adds to the fun traveling abroad brings, especially if you’re looking for ways to experience the nightlife. A quick search of the word ‘speakeasy’ on TikTok will give you a wide variety of videos regarding the bars and how to get into them if you’re in the area.

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Overall, modern-day speakeasies are definitely a good place to live out your Great Gatsby fantasy, whether it be for date night with your partner or besties. I am definitely excited to check out the speakeasy near me, as well as some I’ve seen posted on social media, in the coming months. 

 Have you ever been to a speakeasy or know of any speakeasies near you? Let us know in the comments below!

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