ALCHEMY 1503 30th St., South Park. The stylish bistro offers a threecourse dinner for $38, or $52 with wine pairings—plus a midnight champagne toast. alchemysandiego.com.
ANALOG 801 Fifth Ave., Downtown. The retro bar will celebrate with beats by Cheyenne Giles, super karaoke and a massive balloon drop at midnight. Dinner packages start at $40 and include a three-course meal, champagne and party favors. email@example.com for reservations. $20 for just the party. analogbar.com
BAMBOO LOUNGE 1475 University Ave., Hillcrest. The theme is “This One for the Ladies.” Free appetizers, $30 bottles of Prosecco and a $45 dinner package including two specialty rolls, two happy rolls and a bottle of Tempranillo or Chenin Blanc. Music by DJ Monique. sdbamboolounge.com
BARONA CASINO 1932 Wildcat Canyon Road, Lakeside. Barona’s rounded up the members of Big Bad Voodoo Daddy to perform at its “Swingin’ in the New Year” celebration. There’ll be dancers and party favors. Free. barona.com
BASIC 410 10th Ave., East Village. The brick-oven pizza joint invites you to “keep it basic” with lots of pizza, beats by DJ Joey Jimenez and a midnight champagne toast. $15. E-mail firstname.lastname@example.org or call 619-531-8869 for reservations.
BERTAND AT MR. A’S 2550 Fifth Ave., 12th Floor, Bankers Hill. Enjoy an elegant dinner at the restaurant that boasts exquisite views of San Diego. Á la carte menu items include truffled macaroni and cheese and foie grass “au Torchon.” Or, splurge for the fivecourse prix-fixe dinner ($105). bertrand atmisteras.com
BIG NIGHT SAN DIEGO Hilton San Diego Bayfront, 1 Park Blvd., Downtown. This giant event features 12 themed party areas, six dance floors, bands (including local favorites Lady Dottie & The Diamonds), DJs, balloon drops, food and party favors. “Main Event,” $119.99; VIP $189.99. Hotel options start at $199. bignight sandiego.com
CUCINA URBANA 505 Laurel St., Bankers Hill. Choose from either a three- or four-course menu with selections like baked spinach gnocchetti, pan-seared halibut and almond torte with poached pear. Complimentary party favors and midnight champagne toast. $50 for three courses, $65 for four. 619-239-2222 for reservations. cucinaurbana.com
CURRANT 140 W. Broadway, Downtown. The posh restaurant on the ground floor of the Sofia Hotel offers a three-course prix-fixe dinner (with selections like lobster bisque, pheasant roulade and chocolate turtle cheesecake) that comes with a champagne toast and party favors. $49 per person, from 5 to 11 p.m. currant restaurant.com
EPIC NEW YEAR’S EVE Del Mar Fairgrounds, 2260 Jimmy Durante Blvd. Moby spins and Ferry Corsten performs at a party featuring a dozen DJs and performers, three indoor stages, plush lounges, VIP tables, heaters, food, drinks and a photo booth. $60-$1,100. eventvibe.com
HORNBLOWER CRUISES 1066 N. Harbor Drive, Downtown. Cruise aboard a yacht that circles San Diego Bay. hornblower offers three options, each for four hours, that range from dinner with a DJ ($149), dinner with live music by West of 5 ($159) or a VIP dinner with a five-course meal, wine pairings and two floors of entertainment ($210). All include unlimited champagne. hornblower.com
HORTON PLAZA EVENT SPACE 338 Horton Plaza, Downtown. This “downtown countdown” will have an open bar, hors d’oeuvres all night, four rooms, two stages, a performance by the band N.R.G. and DJs. A portion of the proceeds benefit A Reason To Survive (ARTS), a nonprofit that provides at-risk children with art education. $99. downtowncountdown sandiego.com
HOTEL DEL CORONADO 1500 Orange Ave., Coronado. This lavish celebration pulls out all the stops: a four-course meal, plenty of Moet & Chandon champagne, ice sculptures, Hennessey XO, chocolates and music by The Mar Dels, all taking place in an extravagantly decorated ballroom. Discounted room rates for gala guests. $260-$310. hoteldel.com
INN AT THE PARK 3167 Fifth Ave., Bankers Hill. Spend the last night of 2010 at Park Manor Suites’ restaurant, with dinner seatings at 6 ($59.95) and 9 p.m. ($79.95). The later seating includes a champagne toast and free admission to the Top of the Park dance party, held at the rooftop lounge (starting at 7 p.m.). $15 party only. Room rates start at $179 and include buffet breakfast. parkmanorsuites.com
3 COCKTAIL RECIPES
These are the winning recipes from the San Diego Spirits Festival’s Gaslamp Bartender Battle. CityBeat columnist Aaryn Belfer was among the judges.
• Fiery Passion in Paradise Created by Krystal Brookhart, Donovan’s Circle of 5ths, 1st place 1 oz. passion fruit; 1 ⁄ 2 lemon squeeze; 1 ⁄ 2 -oz. basil-and-cayenne-infused simple syrup; 2 oz. vodka Shake vigorously, strain into sugar rimmed bucket glass, garnish with basil leaf.
• Hot Miggy Created by Michael Lamantia, Hard Rock Hotel, 2nd place 1 ⁄ 4 cup hibiscus tea; 1 1 ⁄ 4-oz. tequila; 1 tablespoon Nature’s raw agave nectar; 1 splash of orange, cherry and lemon bitters; 1 splash lemon juice; 1 1 ⁄ 4-oz. pink grapefruit juice. Garnish with a split pineapple leaf and one hibiscus flower. Serve warm.
• Big Nose Kate Created by Andrea Silvers, Hard Rock Café, 3rd place 1 1 ⁄ 2-oz. bourbon; 1 ⁄ 4-oz. wild hibiscus syrup; 2 dashes of bitters; 2 slices of orange (both squeezed in drink, one dropped in, the other tossed); splash of vanilla extract; sprinkle of cinnamon Top with ginger beer, garnish with a hibiscus flower and serve in an 8-oz. highball glass with ice.
THE KEATING 432 F St., Downtown. Don your best “Roaring ’20s” attire for live jazz, a midnight champagne toast and a late-night party at the hotel’s nightclub, Sway, where there will be hosted cocktails and hors d’oeuvres from 8 to 9 p.m. and a burlesque performance. $30. You can also enjoy a five-course dinner (seatings at 5:30, 7:30 and 10 p.m.) at the hotel restaurant, The Merk, starting at $50. 15percent room discount for party guests. thekeating.com
KENSINGTON GRILL 4055 Adams Ave., Kensington. For early birds, there’s a three-course menu served before 6:30 p.m. For the rest, there’s a four-course meal after 6:30. Complimentary party favors and midnight champagne toast. 619-281-4014 for reservations.
MADAME CORA’S MARBLE ROOM 535 Fifth Ave., Downtown. Ring in the New Year at this old-fashioned vaudeville supper club, featuring The Olio Jazz Band, The Cherries Jubilee cabaret dancers, tap dancing by Claudia Vorce and a four-course supper. $80. Free midnight champagne toast. themarbleroom.com
MARRIOTT GASLAMP 660 K St., Downtown. Called “Bottoms Up,” this one includes food (everything from street tacos to sushi), beats by DJs Rooster and Ramsey and midnight champagne toasts in the lobby and at the Altitude Sky Lounge. $125. Room packages start at $299 with valet parking. bottomsupnye.com
NATIONAL COMEDY THEATRE 3717 India St., Middletown. The NCT’s annual performance comes with a catered buffet, midnight champagne toast and an after-party with the cast. $69. nationalcomedy.com
NINE-TEN 910 Prospect St., La Jolla. At this swanky eatery, you pick items from an á la carte menu or indulge in a five-course “Mercy of the Chef” dinner. $70, $100 with wine pairings. nine-ten.com.
NYE BEACH PARTY 2011 Catamaran, 3999 Mission Blvd., Pacific Beach. Sleeping Giant Music, one of the city’s biggest DJ outfits, teams up with VAVi Sports to put on a beach party with hors d’oeuvres, beer tubs and a clear view of the bayside fireworks. $119- $160. newyearsevesandiegoparty.com
PALA CASINO 11154 Hwy. 76, Pala. Your dinner options are The Oak Room, Choices (buffet) and Mama’s Cucina Italiana, all of which offer prixfixe specials for $109, $36 and $59 respectively. Or, you can party at the Pop Vinyl event in the Grand Cabaret with a live band, party hats, noisemakers and a midnight champagne toast. $20. palacasino.com
4 GAMES FOR AN INTIMATE HOUSE PARTY
• Scrabble—for the serious spellers
• Taboo—for the loud mouths
• Apples to Apples—for the know-it-alls
• Jenga—for those with extreme hand-eye coordination, and those without
As with most things—other than piloting airplanes and apologizing to your significant other—all of these are even more fun when intoxicated.
THE PEARL HOTEL 1410 Rosecrans St., Point Loma. Dine poolside on a three-course meal at 6:30 or 9 p.m. Or just party with DJ DexDiego and partake in a complimentary midnight champagne toast. Dinner and room packages start at $299. $49 for dinner. No cover for dancing and the toast. thepearlsd.com
QUALITY SOCIAL 789 Sixth Ave., Downtown. The fancy dive bar hosts an “Inaugural New Year’s Eve Bash” with Las Vegas’ DJ Mike White, a hosted bar, a selection of housemade sandwiches and specialty desserts and a live countdown with party favors and a champagne toast. $75. qualitysocial.com
ROPPONGI 875 Prospect St., La Jolla. Serving a four-course prix-fixe menu with options like roasted butternut squash with caviar pearls, edamame and shrimp dumplings or surf & turf petite filet mignon with lemon thyme, fingerling potatoes, local spiny lobster and stir fried Chinese broccolini. Plus, entertainment by cover band E4. $68. roppongiusa.com
ROUGE: NEW YEAR’S 2011 542 Third Ave., Downtown. Loco Leo Nightlife presents “a fantasy in red” at The Ideal Hotel. Wear your finest red and black attire for a night that includes a hosted bar, hors d’oeuvres and sounds by DJ Fabstar and DJ Ciel. $50. email@example.com
SEA ROCKET BISTRO 3382 30th St., North Park. This “Tapas Extravaganza” highlights fresh, sustainable seafood dishes priced between $4 and $14. Free midnight champagne toast. Elena@searocketbistro for reservations. searocketbistro.com
SEARSUCKER 611 Fifth Ave., Downtown. Choose the theme of your fivecourse meal: Raw, Hot, Cold, Bold or Celebration, plus craft cocktails by Snake Oil Cocktail Co. $75 food-only between 5:30 and 7 p.m. $100 between 7 and 10:30 p.m. with a complimentary glass of champagne and party favors. searsucker.com
SHERATON SAN DIEGO HOTEL & MARINA 1380 Harbor Island Drive, Downtown. This formal dinner and reception includes an auction, light show, dancing and champagne toast, plus a rock orchestra courtesy of the Xceptional Music Company. 7:30 p.m. $75.
STARLITE 3175 India St., Middletown. The hip farm-to-table restaurant offers two ways to celebrate: Book a table for a three-course dinner and stay for the party with specialty cocktails and DJ Vaughn Avakian, or just come for the party from 9 p.m. to 2 a.m. For dinner: $45 before 9 p.m., $55 after 9 p.m. $15 in advance for the party or $20 at the door. starlitesandiego.com
STONE BREWING WORLD BISTRO AND GARDENS 1999 Citracado Pkwy., Escondido. Head to the mecca of craft beer for a buffet with sushi, fresh seafood, pastas and more; live music by Sue Palmer & Her Motel Swing Orchestra; a midnight toast; a commemorative glass; complimentary valet parking; and all-you-can-drink beer. $150, $99 for designated drivers. stoneworldbistro.com/newyears
TANGO DEL REY 3567 Del Rey St., Bay Park. Feel like you’re in Havana with live performances by Cuban musicians, a dance show by Omo Aché Cuban Dance Co., a buffet of authentic Cuban cuisine. At midnight, enjoy champagne and a balloon drop. $89 before Dec. 30, $99 day of. tangodelrey.com.
USS MIDWAY 910 N. Harbor Drive, Downtown. A gala held aboard the U.S.S. Midway aircraft carrier, where you can enjoy an open premium bar, dinner by Peartree’s Catering and dancing to The Big Daddy Orchestra. Black tie optional. $159. peartreescatering.com
TOAST ENOTECA & CUCINA 927 J St., Downtown. Celebrate the big night with a flight of four of Toast’s finest wines, including a sparkling, white, red and dessert wine. $25 for just the flight or $45 with a food pairing. Free midnight champagne toast. opentable.com
VIEJAS CASINO 5000 Willows Road, Alpine. The casino hosts a show with DJs 2Rille, Kiss and Chuck Fresh and live music by Radio Karma, Siren’s Crush and Rising Star. Free. viejascasino.com
W HOTEL 421 West B. St., Downtown. This extravagant party features five different rooms with 14 performers (including local electro-pop duo Hyena), plus fashion and lifestyle installations by traveling shopping collective Thread, specialty cocktails and more. $50. Dinner options at The Restaurant at W are available. Room packages start at $429 (includes two tickets). nyewsandiego.com
WEST COAST tavern 2895 University Ave., North Park. Fill your stomach with a four-course chef’s tasting menu, paired with your choice of beer or wine. Live DJs provide the music, and, at midnight, watch the ball drop and toast with free champagne. $49.95. 619-295-1688 for reservations. westcoasttavern.comWESTGATE HOTEL 1055 Second Ave., Downtown. Ring in the new year elegantly at the Westgate Hotel. The evening includes a reception, a seated “White Truffle” dinner with wine pairings, a performance by Gregory Page and a midnight champagne toast. $180. westgatehotel.tix.com
BARS AND NIGHTCLUBS
4TH & B 345 B St., Downtown. Grammy nominated DJ / producer Dirty South puts on a dance party. $30-$55. 4thandbevents.com
AC LOUNGE 4673 30th St., North Park. A masquerade ball with three DJs, cocktail specials, free champagne at midnight and giveaways throughout the night. Complimentary masks provided at the door. $20 through Dec. 30, $30 day of. airconditionedbar.com
ANDAZ 600 F St., Downtown. DJ Alex Dreamz headlines a sprawling party featuring DJs and live music, dancers, body painting, live art, stilt walkers and bottle service. $80-$699. andazsandiego.com
ANTHOLOGY 1337 India St., Middletown. At 5:30 p.m., the Sky Ladd Quartet featuring Leonard Patton plays jazz standards. At 9:30 p.m., Dave Mason entertains with classic rock. $15-$236. anthologysd.com
5 SONGS THAT WILL CLEAR A DANCE FLOOR
• “Macarena”—Los del Río
• “Who Let the Dogs Out (Techno Remix)”—Baha Men
• “Every Rose Has its thorn” —Poison
• “Boom, Boom, Boom, Boom!!” —Vengaboys
• “Rock Star”— Hannah Montana
BELLY UP tavern 143 South Cedros Ave., Solana Beach. The Mother Hips, Billy Midnight and Nicki Bluhm & The Gramblers rock out. $35-$37. 858-481-8140. bellyup.com
BLIND LADY ALE HOUSE 3416 Adams Ave., Normal Heights. Celebrate Belgian-style at 3 p.m. (when it’s New Year’s in Belgium, duh). Stop by to toot a horn and scream “Happy Day!” Fill up on craft pizza and lots of varieties of Belgian beer. blind lady.blogspot.com
BOURBON STREET 4612 Park Blvd., University Heights. DJ Lil’ Chris spins tunes at a free party with a $1,000 “Bourbon Bucks” balloon drop. bourbonstreetsd.com
THE CASBAH 2501 Kettner Blvd., Middletown. Local alt-rock champs Transfer headline a jamboree featuring funkmeister Rafter and indie-rockers Shapes of Future Frames. $20- $25. casbahmusic.com
EL DORADO 1030 Broadway, Downtown. Don your best hipsterfied tux for a New Year’s Eve Prom hosted by fashion queen MayStar and featuring videos and photos, $25 bottles of champagne and music by Groundfloor and Adam Salter. $10 before 10:30 p.m., $20 after. eldoradobar.com.
ELEVEN 3519 El Cajon Blvd., City Heights. Legendary punks The Zeros headline a rock show featuring New Mexico, The Dabbers, Gun Runner and The Wild Weekend DJs. $13-$15. elevensandiego.com
THE FLAME 3780 Park Blvd., Hillcrest. A special edition of “Club Sabbat” includes tunes by DJs Robin Roth, Liquid Grey and Drew Harlander and a grinding midnight performance by Chain Goddess. $7. clubsabbat.net.
HARD ROCK HOTEL 207 Fifth Ave., Downtown. Renowned house music DJ / producer Robbie Rivera is among the 11 DJs who will put on a massive dance party with multiple rooms and VIP table service. $65- $100. hardrocknye.com
HOUSE OF BLUES 1055 Fifth Ave., Downtown. Victory Nightlife puts on a block party featuring DJs, dance performances and “The Countdown,” a multimedia laser light spectacle. $20- $30. hobblockparty.com
KAVA LOUNGE 2812 Kettner Blvd., Middletown. Wizard, Skandar, Argyle, MC Ridda and more put on “Bass Odyssey 2: Lost in Bass,” a dance party with hors d’oeuvres. $10 presale. kavalounge.com
O’CONNELLS 1310 Morena Blvd., Bay Park. Rosie Flores, The Palominos and more put on a rockabilly dance party with free swing lessons at 7 p.m. $15-$20. oconnellsbar-sd.com
ON BROADWAY 615 Broadway, Downtown. Five DJs provide the tunes for a masquerade ball with a midnight ball drop and VIP packages. $25- $700. obec.tv
ONYX / THIN 852 Fifth Ave., Downtown. SEIZE, DJ Nono and more DJs spin tunes at a party featuring a champagne toast, sushi, drink specials, special effects and more. $25. onyxroom.com
RICH’S 1051 University Ave., Hillcrest. One of the city’s biggest gay clubs puts on a massive dance party with DJs Nikno and Will Z and a $1,000 cash drop. richssandiego.com
SHAKEDOWN BAR 3048 Midway Drive, Sports Arena. Nihilist, Eukarist and DJs Old Man Andy and Sam Hitz put on a hard-rock show with skateboard-themed giveaways. theshake downsd.com
SODA BAR 3615 El Cajon Blvd., City Heights. Skuzz-rockers Crocodiles headline a celebration featuring the warped sounds of Heavy Hawaii, Raw Moans, Mrs. Magician and DJ Mario Orduno. $12. sodabarmusic.com
TIN CAN ALE HOUSE 1863 Fifth Ave., Bankers Hill. Local indie-rockers Lights On headline a workingclass-themed party featuring The New Kinetics, D/Wolves, DJ Ryan Hand and special guests. Free. the tincan1.wordpress.com
TIO LEO’S 5302 Napa St., Linda Vista. Party down Latin-style with the JD Salsa All Star Orchestra and DJ David Garcia. $25-$35. tioleos.com
6 TV SHOWS IF YOU HAVE NO FRIENDS
3 IF YOU’RE NORMAL
• New Year’s Eve with Carson Daly, 10 p.m. KNSD 7/39 (Lil Wayne, Nicki Minaj, My Chemical Romance perform)
• Live from Lincoln Center, 9 p.m. on KPBS (New York Philharmonic with Lang Lang performs)
• Dick Clark’s New Year’s Rockin’ Eve with Ryan Seacrest, 10 p.m. on KGTV Channel 10 (Ke$ha, Taio Cruz, Avril Lavigne, Natasha Bedingfield, Jennifer Hudson, Ne-Yo, Train, Mike Posner, Willow Smith, Jason Derulo, Far East Movement, La Roux, Drake perform)
3 IF YOU’RE NERDY
• Twilight Zone marathon, all day on SyFy Channel
• Back to the Future marathon, all day on AMC
• Doctor Who marathon, all day on BBC America
TURQUOISE 873 Turquoise St., Pacific Beach. Come in your glitziest costume to a black-light party featuring dance music by Sene Africa and DJ Roman Empire, tapas and plenty of champagne. $40. theturquoise.com
URBAN MO’S 308 University Ave., Hillcrest. DJ Taj puts on a dance party with a balloon drop at midnight. $5 after 9 p.m. mosuniverse.com
VOYEUR 755 Fifth Ave., Downtown. Hot NYC DJ / production duo Designer Drugs put on a hipster dance party with all-you-can-drink liquor till midnight. Hardcore partiers can spring for a combo pass to Dirty South’s after-hours party at 4th & B. $100- $130. voyeursd.com