Photo Credit: Caucas'

Worst Stairs in DC Bars

Photo Credit: Caucas’

Last weekend, I headed to Stetsons to celebrate the engagement of my friends Alex and Zvi.

While we were there, I noticed a woman (probably I little older than I am) who seemed extremely drunk – she was swaying, eyes half closed, and couldn’t walk straight… I pointed her out to my friends because I was so taken aback by what I saw. She was leaving and I made a comment to the effect of, “no one should let her near those stairs”, but then I saw her boyfriend follow behind her and figured that she’d be taken care of so I turned around and continued my conversation with my friends. Not a second later, we heard a loud THUMP and looked down the staircase to find her sprawled on the floor. She was completely unresponsive and a med student who had run down seemed to be having trouble locating her heartbeat. Luckily, an ambulance had been parked across the street and so the paramedics were able to get to the scene pretty quickly.

As my friends started turning away and mingling amonst themselves, I realized that this girl’s friends were still upstairs and didn’t know what had happened. I went up to them and told them she had fallen down the stairs. When they came back from checking on her, they didn’t seem that phased — probably because they hadn’t seen her at the bottom, limbs at awkward angles, with no sign of life in her — but mentioned that she was whimpering in the back of the ambulance. Her friend made a comment that she didn’t know how this could have happened because her friend wasn’t that drunk. That statement completely baffled me as I had immediately noticed the girl and her state…

This incident has really stayed with me. This woman’s life may have very well changed drastically, and all it took was a single misstep.

Being the klutz that I am, I’ve always been really aware of the danger of steep, long staircases in bars. I had even begun a list in my head of bars to avoid. Since then, the list has grown and I feel like I should get it down on paper/screen to share with all of you. I asked my friends for their inclusions and the same bars came up in conversation again and again.

So, I present to you my list of the worst stairs in DC bars.

Dupont Circle

1. Lucky Bar – Steep, narrow, and the only path to the bathroom makes for a lethal combination.

2. Public Bar – Getting to the roof means going up 4 flights of stairs.

3. Front Page – The stairs down to the bathrooms are brutal.

U Street

1. Stetsons – For obvious reasons.

2. Local 16 – The staircase is windy, crowded and tends to be slippery. Yikes!


What did I miss? Let me know in the comments.

  • Diana

    I’d add 3rd edition in Georgetown, and maybe Big Hunt in Dupont.

  • Marc Saltzman

    18th street lounge has three flights and they’re always crowded..

  • Carolyn

    I would add Patty Boom Booms to this list. I had a nasty fall down their stairs last year. Ankle was swollen for a good month afterwards. Clumsy people out there, beware!

  • Anonymous