This New Year’s Eve, Party Like You’re Not Supposed To


Absinthe and vintage cocktails will be served at Rosewood Hotel Georgia in Vancouver.

To recall the spirit and vibe of the Roaring Twenties, several venues are giving Prohibition-themed parties to usher in the New Year.

Rosewood Hotel Georgia in Vancouver will host a party at its vaulted underground cocktail bar — called Prohibition — inviting guests to travel back to the 1920s with seasonal punches, traditional absinthe service and vintage cocktails served on its black stone bar underneath a custom-designed glass-and-metal chandelier. Guests will enter through an unmarked door outside the hotel; the bartenders Robyn Gray and Brad Stanton have created a cocktail made with 88-proof Dorothy Parker gin ($236 per person per seat).

The U.S. Grant hotel in the historic Gaslamp Quarter in San Diego will host its fourth annual Bivouac New Year’s Eve celebration in a former speakeasy inside the hotel, with absinthe cocktails, specialty cask ales and absinthe-infused ice cream. Unlimited sparkling wine will be offered from 9 to 10 p.m. (tickets from $50 to $975).

In Los Angeles, Prohibition NYE will host its fourth annual Roaring Twenties celebration in Union Station, which will include an open bar, oysters, live jazz and burlesque dancers ($150 per person).

At Hotel Congress in Tucson, a 1920s themed party means access to a pop-up bar called the Opium Den as well as a juke joint (party tickets are $25, which includes admission and a toast with mesquite-smoked whiskey).

In honor of F. Scott Fitzgerald, who is buried in Rockville, Md., the Newseum, in Washington, will host a “Great Gatsby”-inspired black-tie “Night at the Newseum” New Year’s Eve gala, with parties and bars on seven floors (tickets from $135 to $195).

Paul Dickson, whose book “Contraband Cocktails: How America Drank When It Wasn’t Supposed To” was recently published, says that the parties are an outgrowth of the popular speakeasy-style cocktail bars that evoke the Prohibition era. “We are still fascinated with the culture of the time — the Algonquin Round Table, Dashiell Hammett’s ‘Thin Man,’ the boozy escapades of W. C. Fields and so much more,” he said in an email. “‘The Great Gatsby’ is, after all, a novel about a bootlegger.”

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