What is Bottle Service?

24 May What is Bottle Service?

Bottle service in its modern form has been around since the 1990s and is now a common service offered at most upscale nightclubs. If you’re not sure what bottle service is exactly, there is no need to feel embarrassed. Despite how common bottle service has become, many people don’t know exactly what it means, how it works or why people opt for bottle service for a special night on the town. This guide to bottle service will tell you everything that you need to know, so you can be a true VIP at the club.

Bottle Service Basics

Bottle service is a VIP amenity offered at clubs for guests who make arrangements in advance. With bottle service, you receive a reserved table in the club for you and your invited guests and guaranteed entry to the club. Each table has its own dedicated server or bartender, called a bottle boy or bottle girl in some clubs. In exchange for this priority service, you agree to purchase alcohol by the bottle rather by the glass. You also receive a selection of mixers for your cocktails at the table.

How Bottle Service Started

Bottle service has its roots in Japan. Prior to World War II, high end nightclubs in the country began offering special service to customers, allowing them to order bottles of alcohol, drink what they wanted and then store the rest for a future visit. In the late 1980s, clubs in Europe were inspired by this customized service and began offering a basic form of bottle service to good customers. The idea was to make sure that VIPs’ needs were catered to when the club was extremely busy. During the 1990s, American clubs began to catch onto the idea with the first bottle service bars popping up in New York City and then spreading to other major cities in the U.S.

How Bottle Service Works

Each club has its own specific rules for bottle service, but the basic idea of the service is generally universal among all clubs. When you opt for bottle service, you will be given a menu of bottles of spirits from which to choose. Typically, the alcohol featured on bottle menus is top shelf, but some clubs do have mid-range brands among their bottle service offerings. Most clubs provide a standard assortment of mixers, including cranberry juice, seltzer, tonic water and orange juice. If you have a favorite mixer, you can usually request to have it supplied. For example, you can ask for cola to accompany your rum. You will also receive an assortment of garnishes like cherries, lemons and limes. The waiter or waitress will pour your drinks for you using the mixers on the table and the alcohol that you purchase. You can continue to ask for drinks to be made until your bottle is empty. Then, you will need to purchase another bottle to have more.

The Benefits of Bottle Service

There are several distinct advantages to bottle service, including:

  • Guaranteed entry to the bar. You won’t have to worry about being shut out behind the velvet ropes if you have your name on the guest list for bottle service.
  • A dedicated table. Having a reserved table gives you a place to talk to friends, take a break from dancing and regroup if you get separated. The table is typically yours for the evening, provided that you continue to purchase bottles.
  • Priority service. You won’t have to worry about having empty glasses and fighting for the attention of a bartender when you purchase bottle service at a club with good customer service.
  • Cost. In major cities where cocktails at the best clubs can cost between $15 and $25, bottle service can be economical. This is especially true if you take advantage of special VIP discount programs, which will be discussed later.
  • Prestige. Bottle service sets you apart from other patrons at the club, making you a true VIP for the night.

Things to Remember About Bottle Service

While there are many advantages to bottle service, there are a few things that you could keep in mind to ensure that you have a great night at the club. First of all, the cost of bottle service is high. Bottles can be marked up 2000%, costing between $200 to $500 in major cities. It’s definitely more expensive than purchasing a bottle of alcohol at home and making your own drinks; however, the price is more for the experience than for the alcohol itself. In some clubs, the cost of bottle service does equal the cost of purchasing individual cocktails due to the high cost of drinks. Another thing to remember is that bottle service requires advance arrangements. You can’t go to a club and request bottle service the same night. Bottle service is also typically best for groups of more than 2 people, and you should plan to spend most of the night at the same club to make bottle service worth your while.

Bottle Service Etiquette

There are a few rules of etiquette for bottle service of which you should be aware. First, always remember to tip your server when you pay your bill. Some clubs will add a gratuity to the check automatically, but if not, you should tip at 15 to 20 percent as you would tip a bartender or server in a restaurant. Second, you should let the server make your drinks. Don’t start pouring and mixing them yourself. Third, be polite. Getting the VIP treatment doesn’t give you a pass to be rude. You’ll find you’ll get more perks when you act respectful and polite.

How to Get Bottle Service

Many bars now allow you to reserve bottle service online; however, at the best clubs in major cities, it can be difficult to get on the list. Club promoters are one source for bottle service reservations, but their services are often pricy. A better option is to choose a nightlife reservation service like Birthday Bottle Service. These services can not only get you a table but also get you special prices on bottles and enhanced amenities to make your night truly unforgettable.

Why is Birthday Bottle Service the best...


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