Singapore Night Life
You have a few options for “going out drinking” in Singapore,
mainly depending on your budget:
- Cheapish – go to one of the many hawker centres
or food courts, buy a few beers and sit down and make a night of it. We
sell cheap and good beers in the hostel; do support the hostel by purchasing
our beer. Moderate – visit some of the more dubious
nightspots in Singapore, where happy hours are cheap and non-happy-hour
prices not too high. You could also visit some of the many nice (but expensive)
bars, but only during happy hours, which are roughly between 17:00 and
- Expensive – most of the bars and nightclubs
in Singapore after happy hour
On the “Betel Box Beer Index”, Cheapish is less than S$6 per
beer during non-happy hours, Moderate is less than S$10 per beer and Expensive
is S$10 or more per beer.
You probably find that cheapish beers mostly exist at a "coffee shop"
or a drinks stall in a hawker centre. where entertainment value is limited.
I have to add one for the ladies; one of the great things about Singapore
nightlife are the ladies' nights...drinks (mostly Champagne, draft beers
or housepoors) are free for the ladies! Sorry guys, there are no “gentlemen's
nights”...Most ladies' nights are on Wednesdays & Thursdays.
Boat Quay & Clarke Quay
Boat Quay has a number of bars and restaurants along the Singapore River.
Unfortunately, prices are high and competition is tough, which means that
waiters and other people working for the bars and restaurants will come
up to you and try to convince you to eat or drink at their establishment.
Having said this, the setting of Boat Quay is stunning with views across
the Singapore River towards the new Asian Civilisations Museum and the area
is very lively. It would probably be better to walk around Boat Quay, have
a beer at the famous Harry's Bar and explore some of the other bars in the
back streets rather than spending your night on Boat Quay itself.
New York styled bar in Clarke Quay. Pretty people, picky bouncers. Expensive.
Cocoon- Part of Indo-Chine's Forbidden City concept bar/
restaurant. Unique interior decor. Expensive
Opiume - very nice bar in front of the new Asian Civilisations
Museum, which is opposite Boat Quay; this bar is expensive, but during
happy you get 1 for 1 on housepoors, beers and wine.
- BQ - hip place, especially on Fridays
– this is a bar and restaurant, with a small beer brewery on site!
Brewerkz is located right on the waterfront at Clarke Quay and beers are
S$2.50 on weekdays and S$5 on Sundays. If you are a tequila or margarita
fan, check out Cafe
Iguana next door to Brewerkz. Moderate.
Bar - one of the most famous bars in Singapore, which often
has live jazz bands performing. Moderate.
Malone's Irish Pub - just behind Boat Quay on Circular Road.
Bar 2 - Literally a cool bar with room temperatures chilled
down to near freezing. Two parts, one 13 degrees one is 0!!! No cover
charge. Happy hour 6-9 (1for1). On Circular Road. Moderate
- Clarke quay - HOOTERS - These waitresses wear very
tight hot pants made out of thin nylon like material. hoot. hoot. hoot.
Oh yes, the food is good as well. American style. ;) (Moderate)
- Jazz @ south bank - Jazz band is pretty good. Week
ends band generally plays better. (Moderate)
- Actors bar - Their concept really interesting. They
do not have a paid band. Rather, 'live' music is from any customer who
is brave enough to step up to jam away. Its really interesting when you
see a quiet guy dressed up smartly, chilling out after work, goes up on
stage and he CONTROLS the crowd! Your entertaintment value will obviously
differ depending on your luck. : ) (Moderate)
- Sahara- Missing those Arabian nights? Arabic decor,
sheesha, finger food make this a perfect place to just chill. (Moderate)
Elephant - Loud Rock and roll bands leave being heard every
- Insomnia: Wednesday 9 - 11pm (free flow for $20)
OF SOUND- big club, big names, big price tags. How
ever $25 does get you 2 standard drinks and entry to 4 different zones
with 4 different types of music. Nice.
- Butter Factory - new youth magnet. Popular with both
the locals and
Penthouse - another local hang out (Expensive)
- Arena: Live band, posh interior.
Wed/ Thurs - Men $25 and Ladies enter for free (Free flow of Vodka
drinks and Lychee martinis - for both men and woman!!!)
- Archipelago (boat quay): Micro brewery with very tasty
beers. happy hour till 8pm
- Pumproom (clarke quay): Another diner with a micro
At the mouth of the Singapore River, is the One Fullerton and the Esplanade.
Both venues are the current "to-be seen" areas with classy restaurants
and lounges. Any water views come with a price tag but there are a couple
of night spots that are notable.
at the Esplanade (this is a sister bar to Harry's on Boat
Quay) and features similarly good live jazz music. Moderate.
- Onyx - Located in the same place as previous tenant
Centro. "Concept bar" with club music and waterside chillout
- Max Brenner Chocolate Bar (not necessarily a nightspot
but for those chocoholics, you might want to try out the suckao- diy pure
chocolate flakes in a flask of hot milk over a open flame. This is an
international chain with shops in Sydney Paddington and London Harrods)
To get to Boat Quay, take bus number 2, 33 or 51 from near the Betel Box
Hostel (see Map & Transport
CHIJMES & Raffles Hotel Vicinity
CHIJMES is a great place to go for a few drinks. This is an old cloister,
dating from the 1850s, which has been converted into a “premiere lifestyle
destination”, i.e. lots of expensive bars and restaurants...
It is a lovely place with many bars, cafes, restaurants and a few shops,
and it is definitely worth going for a drink here. Raffles Hotel is just
across the street from CHIJMES (but don't bother with the Singapore Sling
at the Raffles Hotel; it is very pricey!).
You have quite a few options for getting to CHIJMES. You could take the
MRT to City Hall MRT station (quick and easy) or take the bus (numbers 2,
7 and 51). See Map & Transport
- China Jump Bar and Grill (ladies' Night on Wednesdays
– guys have to pay S$20 just to get in though...)
- Father Flanagan's (nice Irish pub). Moderate
- Insomnia small bar with live band – ladies'
night on Wednesday 9 - 11pm (free flow for $20)
- Liberte (nice bar with comfortable couches outside
on the porch with views to the former church of this old cloister complex
- New Asia Bar- Fancy dancing by tall bay windows of
the highest bar at the top of the tallest hotel in Singapore? New Asia
Bar is in the Swissotel Raffles City. Make your way towards the Equinox
Bar on the ground floor and the reception of New Asia Bar is here. Dress
code applies (no slippers, no sleeveless for the guys, no shorts). You
will be shown to the private lift and blasted up to the 70th floor. After
9pm S$20 cover including one drink. The last happy hour is at 1am. Expensive
Mohammed Sultan Road Area
Mohammed Sultan Road has changed quite a fair bit in the last year. Nowadays
its a quieter nightlife venue.
To get to Mohammed Sultan Road, take bus 51 from the bus stop near the
Betel Box Hostel ( See Map
& Transport Connections ) and ask the bus driver to notify you when
you get to River Place on Havelock Road. From there it is only a 5 minute
walk to Mohammed Sultan Road.
Bar is the most popular bar in Singapore for bar-top dancing.
Bar top dancing was illegal until 1 Aug 2003 and Coyote Ugly was keen
to adopt this bar feature; just like its namesake in the movies.
- En Lounge
(Ladies' Night on Wednesdays – everything is free for the ladies,
guys have to pay to get in but some cheaper drinks are available for them).
All in all, this place must be one of the cheapest clubs to drink if you
drink like a fish stuck in the desert. Cheapish
Orchard Road Area
This is one of my favourite places to go out for a drink. Emerald Hill
is a small street off Orchard Road (near Somerset MRT) with rows of 19th
century Peranakan shophouses, some of which are used for the bars listed
below and some for small shops, but the majority of these shophouses are
still used for residential living.
Bus number 7 will take you directly to Orchard Road, including the Orchard
Road entrance to Emerald Hill. Just ask the bus driver to notify you when
you reach Centre Point (a shopping mall) on Orchard Road. You can also get
here by MRT; the nearest MRT station is Somerset and it is less than 5 minutes
walk to Emerald Hill from the station.
- Alley Bar (this is a very nice bar, but more expensive
than some of the other bars along Emerald Hill)
- Ice Cold Beer (one of my favourite bars in Singapore,
Ice Cold Beer has a happy hour from 5 pm until 9 pm and again from 1 am
until closing, as well as special promotions for certain types of beer
at certain times of the night...yes it is complicated, but basically it
means “don't drink too much during 9 pm and 1 am, except for certain
brands of beer...”)
- No. 5 (these guys also have a double happy hour, first
from noon to 9 pm and then again from 1 am until closing)
- Que Pasa (wine bar with very good tapas)
- The Dubliner Irish Pub (on Penang Road diagonally across
from Somerset MRT) is one of the best places to watch Rugby in Singapore.
If you are craving for a roast and yorkshire pudding, you are at the right
Murphy's Irish Pub is a laid back Irish community pub where
families, husbands and wives gathered for a night out or simply an everyday
stopover after work
None- lively bar in Marriott Hotel with a good live bands.
Wisma Atria - A mixed themed entertainment cluster with very
cool toilet (gents) with a one-way mirror at the urinals.
See Map & Transport
Connections for information on how to get to Orchard Road/ Tanglin Road
vicinity from the Betel Box Hostel.
- Orchard Towers - this is one of the more controversial
and raunchy nightspots in Singapore; this shopping centre on Orchard Road
also has around 10 bars and nightclubs, which are frequented by ladies
and lady-boys, mainly from Thailand. Although nobody will harass you and
the bars and clubs are perfectly safe, this place is not for everyone.
However, the beers are cheap during happy hours and reasonably priced
during normal hours, and the live bands playing in the various bars and
clubs are quite good.
- Gold Dust Theatre Bar - this is a cabaret & comedy
club setup by local celebrity Kumar as a followup from the closure of
"Boom Boom Room". This place is a gem and we highly recommended
Dust is located on the second floor of Orchard Towers 2 which is behind
Orchard Towers. Moderate.
bar - Nice place for R & B / Hip Hop fans. Just dont
enter with a jersey that does not look like any 'Red Devil' one. For all
manchester united fans only! (Moderate)
Hard Rock Cafe - Good food, good music, as in any branch
in the world. (Moderate)
Zouk & Velvet Underground
- Zouk - this is the most famous nightclub in Singapore,
but it is expensive! Zouk
now has a branch in KL, Malaysia but this place is the original and has
set the tempo for the clubbing scene for over a decade.
- Velvet Underground - another famous nightclub and
right next door to Zouk
To get to Zouk, Zouk Winebar and Velvet
Underground, take bus 16 or 51 leaving from near the Betel Box
Hostel, just have a look at the Map
& Transport Connections section.
A little enclave tucked in the east side of Singapore more famous for its
ferry services to Pulau Ubin has a number of bars, cheap restaurants and
hawker center. A more laidback environment compared Orchard Road area; check
out Charlies Corner (cheap beers, chicken wings and hotdogs),
Nasi Lemak at the Hawker Centre and take a stroll along Changi Beach. The
car parks next to the Hawker Centre is a hangout place for lady-boys in
To get to Changi Village, take bus 2 leaving from near the Betel Box Hostel
or from Victoria St area, just have a look at the Map
& Transport Connections section.
This little town is popular with local and expats alike. Just a short distance
away from Orchard Road and Botanic Gardens, this suburbian town has a bohemian
and laid back feel. Do check out the Holland Road shopping centre which
has a range of enthic furnishings and second hand books stores.
- Wala Wala - Popular place local bands would want to
perform. Good competitor in local band scene. (Moderate)
- Harrys - Popular with locals for good live bands with
mixed range of music. Original branch is at Boat Quay. Popular night spot
in Singapore. (Moderate)
- Eski bar - Freezing tempratures! Grrrrr! Original Branch
is at Boat Quay. (Expensive)
- Tangos - the name says it all. Bright lights, minialist
décor and a crowd comprising the young 'n' trendy- this place is
probably one of the most swanky (by Holland Village standards) joints
in the 'hood. (Expensive)
To get to Holland Village, take bus 7 leaving from near the Betel Box Hostel,
just have a look at the Map
& Transport Connections section.
Chinatown & Tanjong Pagar
This area is adjacent to the main Chinatown district. Couple of area of
interests include the URA
City Gallery and the Red
- Backstage Bar - 13A Trengganu St (corner Temple &
Trengganu St, entrance is in Temple St). Gay lifestyle bar for cheeky
- The Roof Bar - 32A Pagoda Street. Guess where this
bar is located? On the roof of a old shop house! duh... (Moderate)
- Neil Road, Duxton Hill, Duxton Road and Tanjong Pagar Road -
boasts an array of 'naughty' pubs and bars. Many 'cheeky' ones from which
you can buy an infamous "lady drink".
Cafe & Bar - 65/ 67 Neil Road. For the gay at heart or
To get to Chinatown, take bus 33 leaving from near the Betel Box Hostel,
just have a look at the Map
& Transport Connections section.
- Beach club on Tanjong Beach with swimming pool, sun deck. Hosted
a number of international names at its parties.
- For a good listing of nightspots in Singapore, as well as reviews, have
a look at: Hotspots.com
- For reviews of where to drink and hangout in Singapore, have a look
straight to the top