Best Bowling Alleys in Brooklyn

Brooklyn’s bowling alleys range from the basic to the extravagant to the old time to the new. There’s a Brooklyn bowling alley named for a former Dodger, one that looks old but is actually new, another whose prices seem unbelievably low and one that puts on as great a cosmic bowling show as you’ll find anywhere. Compared to some of the bowling alleys in Manhattan , Brooklyn bowling alleys tend to be fairly low key and inexpensive.

The following are the five best bowling alleys in Brooklyn, New York.

  • Melody Lanes Bowling Center
  • 461 37th Street
  • Brooklyn, New York

Melody Lanes is a small bowling alley and not really easily accessible from many parts of Brooklyn and Manhattan, but it is very affordable and family oriented. There are not a lot of frills here, just basic bowling with solid facilities and a helpful and friendly staff.

This is ideal for beginner bowlers or for those looking for a laid back atmosphere but with a good dollar for dollar value.

  • Shell Lanes
  • 1 Bouck Court
  • Brooklyn, New York

Shell Lanes is known first and foremost for very low prices, about 40% less than what you will find in nearby comparable bowling alleys. It has leagues every day of the week, including senior, junior and mixed leagues and nighttime Cosmic Bowling.

Shell Lanes isn’t just a bargain bowling place, however. The Cosmic bowling features glow in the dark bowling balls, lasers and club like music, on Friday and Saturday nights.

Shell Lanes also offers great children’s party packages costing less than $20 per child.

  • Maple Lanes
  • 1570 60th Street
  • Brooklyn, New York

Maple Bowling touches all the bases. It has a smoke free policy, making it very kid and non-smoker friendly, Cosmic Bowling for nighttime fun and a great birthday and office party program that packages food a different theme depending on the occasion (including a Build a Bear, Madagascar and Lego Bowling).

Maple Lanes also has a number of leagues and the prices here are reasonable and the staff is very friendly.

  • Gil Hodges Lanes
  • 6161 Strickland Lanes
  • Brooklyn, New York

Gil Hodges Lanes, named after the Brooklyn Dodger great, has been there for about fifty years. And it shows in a lot of ways, but it is very big (34 lanes) and is family managed. They have made a number of updates through the years, with Cosmic Bowling and better scoring systems.

The food is decent enough, and this is really geared to large group, families and leagues. For example, they offer a ‘Madagascar Club’ for the kids, children’s birthday parties and after school parties. In addition, Gil Hodges Lanes has about 25 to 30 ongoing leagues with leagues specifically designed for men, women, couples, and children.

  • The Gutter
  • 200 North 14th Street
  • Brooklyn, New York

This is about as ‘hip’ as bowling gets. First of all, it’s located in the heart of Williamsburg, which Brooklyn natives know is one of the coolest neighborhoods around. The décor is so raw and warehouse like that it’s basically screaming that “we don’t need to impress anybody.”

For those who are in search of a good bowling ball this is the perfect place to begin with and Brooklyn is one of the best cities where you can have a nice bowling game as it is considered a hub for bowlers.

Exposed brick walls, basic benches and very low prices make this a very relaxing and unassuming place. You wouldn’t guess it, but this is a new place; opening in 2007. There are no automatic scoring machines or light shows, just a very basic setup.

But this is hardly a dive; in fact, you’ll see a great mix of hipsters, professionals and working class locals. There are a couple of small leagues here and The Gutter has party packages. There are only eight lanes of bowling, and it’s a popular place, so be prepared to wait unless you’ve made reservations.

The Gutter has a 21 years or older policy, and has a great bar with all sorts of beers and alcohol.