Best of Philly 2005: Nightlife & Bars

Where to drink, dance and hook up

Places to Cheat

City: The Westin hotel lounge We’d do it, if we did it, at the clubby little bar here. It retains its glossy paneled look, with a fireplace and canoodle-friendly sofas, from its former life as a Ritz-Carlton (99 South 17th Street; 215-563-1600).

’Burbs: Glenmorgan This bar at the Radnor Hotel, with its sunny look and pale woods, is so peppy and Ferragamo-loafer-filled, you’ll feel less guilty. Try to wrap things up before 5 p.m., when the half-price-drinks happy hour gets busy (593 East Lancaster Avenue, St. Davids; 610-341-3188).

New Hope bar that makes you forget you’re in New Hope: Triumph Brewing Company
Not a single man in ass chaps at this huge, casual, modern pub that’s a respite from the sweatsuit-filled streets of New Hope. With outdoor seating and live music, this is the place for brews, and pubby food like burgers, or lamb shanks braised in amber ale (400 Union Square, New Hope; 215-862-8300).

Alfresco drinking spot: The Swan Hotel It’s worth the long drive up 95 to Lambertville, and the hours of antiquing, when you finally get to an icy, bubbly, incredibly refreshing vodka tonic in the inn’s walled brick courtyard (43 South Main Street, Lambertville; 609-397-1960).

Drinking spot in the western ’burbs: Turk’s Head Inn Cool, lofty, with a crowd ranging from its 20s to the 80s, this bar and restaurant is set in an historic building in downtown West Chester with a roomy brick terrace. Downstairs, perch at the copper bar under the 16-foot-high tin ceiling, and nibble snacks like spicy lollipop lamb chops and grilled octopus (or a burger). The huge upstairs bar is more of a rocking weekend scene, and beers range from lambic frambois to Miller Lite (15 South High Street, West Chester; 610-696-1400).

Cocktail waiter at a Stephen Starr restaurant: Michael Honer He’s a skinny, cheery sprite who skillfully delivers kiwi mojitos and berry-cobbler martinis in the garden at Washington Square with a naturalness and sense of humor that set him above — in a polite and adorable way — the well-trained staff of the Starr pantheon (Washington Square, 210 West Washington Square; 215-592-7787).