The Pavilions (Pawilony)

While Nowy Świat is best known for its glitzy bars and flashy restaurants more intrepid explorers will be familiar with it for contradictory reasons: Warsaw’s cheapest booze. Step into the courtyard at number 22 and you’ll find yourself summoned into a shadowy demi monde of dark, divey bars where beer retails for a fraction of the prices you'll find elsewhere around the centre.

Occupying a rat-like maze of low-level prefab blocks are a series of super bars squirrelled amongst crappy stores selling pet food and second hand ironing boards. Known to some as 'The Pavilions,' to others as 'The Secret Garden,' this collection of bizarre bars represents Warsaw drinking in its rawest form. Accessed through mesh grill doorways, most remain nameless, with opening hours generally left to the discretion of the owners. Essentially populated by students, artists and people who aspire to work in music all these bars come bathed in darkness with drinkers squeezed in like sardines on budget furniture disguised with drapes and darkness. The most notable of these is Klaps - a real oddity with sex aids as beer pumps and plastic boobs on the walls. The very antithesis of what Nowy Świat is about, this is a piece of Warsaw not to be missed. Check their website at pawilony.org


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