The Maroon

Get the ghost of a good drink

Your City: Decatur offers a unique twist on the usual haunts

Johnson talks to a patron from behind the bar. With all the different themed nights, the Dervish draws in every type of crowd.

Ashley Sieffert

Johnson talks to a patron from behind the bar. With all the different themed nights, the Dervish draws in every type of crowd.

Ashley Sieffert

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New Orleans is famous for its drinking and decadence, and no place shows it quite like the Whirling Dervish.

Located at 1135 Decatur St., the Dervish is home to both tourists and members of the city’s underground subculture.

It’s a quite spot located conveniently in the French Quarter but far enough away from Bourbon St. to be pleasant.

The Dervish serves up a variety of drinks and music, with several different theme nights.

They open early evening and keep going until the early morning.

There is certainly never a shortage of events going on at either the Dervish or Mythique, its upstairs neighbor.

Monday night is metal night, Friday is the ever-popular 80s night, and Sunday is gothic/industrial night.

On any given holiday, you’re sure to find the best party on Decatur at the Dervish.

During Halloween, the customers pack into the bar in elaborate costumes.

The Whirling Dervish has been around for so long that it’s become a local legend.

Though its name has changed from The Crystal, to The Blue Crystal, to Penndragon’s, to The Crow Bar, and then finally to The Whirling Dervish, the bar’s attitude and content remain largely the same.

In the late 70s and 80s, it was known as a “goth” bar, and has always been a sort of subculture haunt.

New owner Don Becker has been heading efforts to draw in a broader crowd.

Becker is the former owner of The Morgue and the present owner of Flannigan’s Pub.

He also runs all of the French Quarter haunted history tours.

The tours use the Dervish, and describe it as a mysterious place where vampires and other creatures of the night might be lurking in the shadows.

Mythique and the Dervish are also rumored to be the favorite haunt of several ghosts.

One ghost is always seen upstairs and another hangs out where the old DJ booth used to be.

The third is seen outside the bar where he was supposedly murdered when the club was known as The Crystal.

A fourth ghost, the owner at the time of The Crystal was bludgeoned to death with a baseball bat in the upstairs room.

Now his ghost is said to lurk in the upper bar.

There is also a rumor that a ghost haunts the ladies room.

Female bar goers have often reported sightings, and the feeling that they’re being watched.

The Whirling Dervish and Mythique hold a unique place in New Orleans that’s near to the heart of many locals.

The history and phenomena surrounding the bars draw in an unusual crowd.

A combination of local kids and clueless tourists make up the hodge-podge patrons.

They manage to keep things unique in a city full of blasê bars.

Though the Dervish has changed owners and names many times in the past few years, the atmosphere and style remain intact.

No stay in New Orleans would be complete without at least a stop for a drink by The Whirling Dervish or its newer sister bar, Mythique.

Johnson talks to a patron from behind the bar. With all the different themed nights, the Dervish draws in every type of crowd. (Ashley Sieffert)

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1 Comment

One Response to “Get the ghost of a good drink”

  1. Christopher Wolff on December 11th, 2016 3:48 pm

    Sadly, 1135 Decatur has once again closed it’s doors. In this incarnation it was known as Spitfire and I was blessed enough to spin dark electronic until well into this morning. It’s hard to say what’s next for that building but it’s history and culture run deep.

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