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Best of New York Nightlife 2003

Best Smokers' Refuge

  • Circa Tabac

    32 Watts Street, 212-941-1781

    Smokers can breathe a raspy sigh of relief upon entering Circa Tabac. This self-styled “cigarette bar” is exempt from the smoking ban thanks to a loophole that that gives grandfather status to establishments that can show that ten percent of their business comes from the sale of tobacco products. A clubby, candlelit shrine to nicotine, Tabac offers more than 200 brands of cigarettes (from Gauloises to Indian bidis) as well as cigars. The décor is sort of Art Deco by way of Havana, with vintage ad posters for rolling papers and glass cases displaying antique lighters and humidors. It probably wouldn’t satisfy Bloomberg, but there’s a very efficient ventilation system in place to keep the fumes to a minimum.

From the 2003 Best of New York issue of New York Magazine

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