140 Hill St., Singapore, Singapore
For a range of art galleries in a one-stop location, visit the MITA Building
(Ministry of Information and the Arts) and head for the ARTrium space,
where events are also staged, including monthly lunchtime concerts. It's
only a 15-minute walk from the Singapore History Museum.
National University of Singapore, 50 Kent Ridge Crescent, Singapore, Singapore
Phone: 6874-4616, 6874-4617, or 6874-4618
After visiting the Singapore Art Museum, Singapore History Museum, and
the Asian Civilisations Museum -- all of which have impressive art collections
-- you may not be in the mood for more museum hopping, but if you have
the time, you should take a special trip out to the NUS Museums on the
National University of Singapore campus at Kent Ridge. At any one time
NUS displays some 1,000 objets d'art from a collection of about 10,000
pieces. Collections include the Lee Kong Chian Art Museum Chinese art
collection; the South and Southeast Asian Gallery, with its ceramics and
textiles; and the Ng Eng Teng Gallery, dedicated to the intriguing works
of the late Singaporean sculptor and potter of that name. Admission is
free; the museum is open Monday-Saturday 9-5.
PLASTIQUE KINETIC WORMS
61 Kerbau Rd., Singapore, Singapore
Some quirky galleries are clustered around the Kerbau Road district of
Little India, which is a pleasant area to wander, well supplied with watering
holes, restaurants, and shops. Worth a look is Plastique Kinetic Worms,
billed as "a community arts space organized and managed by artists."
This small gallery offers a platform for young struggling artists. It's
wise to phone ahead, as the management is casual and the gallery could
be closed when you get there.
Asian Civilisations Museum, 1 Empress Pl., Singapore, Singapore
Phone: 6339-2876 or 6339-1720
Movers and shakers stop moving and shaking and just chill out in front
of spectacular views of the Singapore River and business district skyline.
The opulent -- if a little confused -- decor includes massive Czechoslovakian
crystal chandeliers and towering gold-leaf Buddha statues. The bar declares
itself Asia's first prosecco (sparkling white wine) and vodka bar. It's
part of Indochine, so there's Indochinese finger food such as spring rolls
and prawns on sugarcane. www.indochine.com.sg/baropium.html. COST: No
11 Unity St., No. 01-30/31, Singapore, Singapore
Get a taste of Spain's most exciting city at this bar with a Catalan flavor.
Barcelona serves up salsa music, fine wines, and tapas-style finger food
and has plenty of plush, comfy couches to sink into. There's live music
Thursday-Saturday starting at 8:30 PM; the bar closes at 1 AM on weekdays
and 2 AM on Saturday. COST: No cover charge.
No. 01-01 Capital Square Three, 25 Church St., off Raffles Pl., Singapore,
A sophisticated but relaxed bar for the mature who like to converse, not
shout, Bisous has personality thanks to its hands-on owners, particularly
Dutchwoman Jacky Stevens, who is ever-present, clad in her signature vests.
If you come in for an early drink, you can also enjoy a set three-course
lunch (S$19); the kitchen serves substantial snacks such as fish-and-chips
up to 11 PM. Bisous is also a rugby bar, sponsor of a local rugby team.
Note that the bar is closed on Sunday.
No. 01-05/06 Riverside Point, 30 Merchant Rd., Singapore, Singapore
Beer lovers hone in on this large pub at Riverside Point, bordering the
Robertson Quay entertainment hub. Its open-plan brewery and handcrafted
beers, bitters, and ales are an established hit. The pub's most popular
brew among a range of five limited-edition beers and five signature brews
is the India Pale Ale, but the Singapore Pale Ale, Golden Ale, Wheat Ale,
and Pilsner Lager are also reliable options. American chef Dan Durkin
serves up classics from his homeland such as Cajun jambalaya and a barbecue
combo. The kitchen is open from noon to midnight.
Grand Hyatt Singapore, 10-12 Scotts Rd., Singapore, Singapore
An impressive array of whiskeys and wine combined with excellent music
and a lively singles crowd are the magnets here for globe-trotters, local
lovelies, and sundry fun seekers. The music is familiar Top 40s and soul,
R&B, and jazz standards, with a live band from 9 PM on, at which time
the dance floor gets packed. COST: Cover charge: S$15 Wed.-Sat. after
DEVIL'S BAR @ RED CAFE
No. 02-01 Orchard Parade Hotel, 1 Tanglin Rd., Singapore, Singapore
Phone: 6732-0819 or 6737-1133
To see just how devoted soccer-crazy Singaporeans are to the premier English
soccer team, Manchester United -- called "the red devils" for
their red jerseys -- drop in on the Devil. Big relay screens ensure patrons
don't miss a single goal, the bar is awash with "Man U" memorabilia,
and there are soccer souvenirs in the megastore. Besides watching the
games, you can quaff the local Tiger beer, listen to live music, dance,
or play pool. The bar's also made the news for its "daring"
bar-top dancing. COST: Cover charge for men only, S$10 weekdays, S$15
weekends (includes 1 drink).
One Fullerton, Level 1, Singapore, Singapore
This airy seafront bar, in the Esplanade arts center area, offers Mediterranean
ambience complete with tapas, which you can wash down with sangria. The
crowd is cool and young; you'll find them lounging on velvet sofas, grooving
to drum-n-bass and chill-out tracks from one of the resident DJs.
B1-01/06 Orchard Hotel Shopping Arcade, 442 Orchard Rd., Singapore, Singapore
This pub is famed for its wine and cheese promotions, weekly Sunday Roast
lunches, and excellent live Irish-Celtic bands. The pub building was built
in Dublin, Ireland, and reassembled in Singapore. COST: No cover charge.
5 Emerald Hill, Singapore, Singapore
No. 5 Emerald Hill Cocktail Bar, in full, is in a restored turn-of-the-20th-century,
two-story Straits Chinese shophouse. It's such a relaxed place that you
can loll on the floor on cushions and carpets. There are live music and
pool upstairs. The truly adventurous will try the house snake and gecko
wines. Bar snacks and pizzas range from S$6 to S$12. COST: No cover charge.
7 Emerald Hill Rd., Singapore, Singapore
For wine lovers, Que Pasa, with its Spanish-provision-store look, is a
sure bet. It's the place to lounge in style -- in deep Chesterfield chairs.
Spanish tapas go for S$3-S$14 and up, wines by the glass are S$9-S$11.
The upstairs lounge is bottles-only, for S$45-S$53, or you can order sangria
for S$32 per jug. Monthly wine tastings are held for a nominal fee. COST:
No cover charge.
TIVOLI BEER BAR
No. 01-23/24 Robertson Walk, 11 Unity St., Singapore, Singapore
A friendly and casual European-style bar, Tivoli has a strong loyalty
to Carlsberg beer but is also able to produce unusual brews such as England's
Tetley's. A pint of draft Carlsberg will set you back S$9. COST: No cover
31 Lorong Mambong, Singapore, Singapore
In the hip little nook known as Holland Village, somewhat off the Orchard
axis, this wildly popular bar provides live music covers upstairs by house
band the Unexpected and a bustling bar downstairs. There's an outdoor
sitting area with a pleasant boulevardier feel to it, not to mention good
food. It's always crowded. COST: No cover charge.
CENTRO: THE CLUB
One Fullerton, Level 3, Singapore, Singapore
Decadent glam -- crystal chandeliers, fake croc-skin walls, and lurid
chaise longues -- makes the perfect backdrop for the cool and trendy,
who are seen posing here nightly. This spanking new club is near the downtown
Esplanade arts center, just opposite the Fullerton Hotel. Centro's views
across the waterfront are dramatic and panoramic through ceiling-to-floor
glass walls. The music is mostly house with variations, dished up by four
resident DJs. There are occasional live gigs, too, often international
names. The minimum age to get in is 22. Note that the club is closed Monday
and Tuesday. COST: Cover charge: men $28, women $22; women free Wed.
Pacific Plaza Penthouse, 12th floor, 9 Scotts Rd., Singapore, Singapore
This lavish, 10,000-square-ft penthouse disco was previously the very
happening Venom -- the Gothic steel-pipe interior has now given way to
Oriental teak paneling and Chinese calligraphic hangings. There's a bit
more bar space than dance space now, but it's still a dancer's dream,
dishing up DJ-spun Top 40 pop, techno, and house music. The club has retained
all the attitude of Venom, as well as the long lines outside. Note that
the club is closed on Monday. COST: Cover charge: S$15 Mon.-Thurs. (after
10 PM); S$18 for women, S$22 for men Fri. and Sat.; S$18 women, S$25 men
Fountain Court, Chijmes, No. B1-07/08, 30 Victoria St., Singapore, Singapore
By day it's a Tex-Mex American-style restaurant, by night a busy yuppie
disco featuring retro tunes for the over-25 set, who line up to get in.
The decor is fashionable contemporary Chinese. There are jam sessions
on Monday night. Unlike many dance clubs, it has a reputation for friendly
service. COST: Cover charge: S$25 men, S$20 women Thurs.-Sat. (after 10:30
PM); women free on Wed.
No. 02-05 Leisure Park, 5 Stadium Walk, Singapore, Singapore
A huge dance floor offers the proper scope for serious ballroom dancers
at this palatial venue, which also has 45 private karaoke rooms staffed
by those female "guest relations officers" (the place is also
known as Theatre Nite Club KTV Lounge). This must be one of the last bastions
of the old-fashioned tea dance, which takes place on Sunday at 2 PM. It's
sometimes booked out for private functions, so call ahead. Live bands
from China and other countries do the honors. http://dynasty.firstbydesign.com.
No. B1-02 Specialists Shopping Centre, 277 Orchard Rd., Singapore, Singapore
This is where the ever-changing Singapore nightlife can get confusing:
the current incarnation of Europa Ridleys is at the former location of
the Pleasure Dome nightclub; the former Europa Ridleys was at ANA Hotel,
where there is now Europa Ibiza. Got that? Blue and orange lighting and
decor themed on -- believe it or not -- famous fragrances set the somewhat
odd tone in the disco section. There is an adjacent wine bar. A young
(strictly twenties) local crowd dances the night away. COST: Cover charge:
Fri.-Sat. women S$20, men S$22.
IBIZA ENTERTAINMENT BAR
Mezzanine story, ANA Hotel, 16 Nassim Hill, Singapore, Singapore
The respected Europa group still manages this revamp of the former Europa
Ridleys. It's an anything-goes party place -- casual enough to permit
sandals and shorts. The Red Room section targets women patrons, offering
beauty manicures, makeovers, and massages, from S$15. The music selection
is wide, including Latin, jazz, and house, and live acts are imported
from overseas. The crowd is mixed, but mostly business class, as the location
is somewhat off the beaten track of Orchard Road. Note that the club is
closed Sunday and Monday. COST: Cover charge: one drink minimum.
MADAM WONG'S 2 (SOS)
No. 01-02/03 Central Mall, 5 Magazine Rd., Singapore, Singapore
The SOS tag refers to the popular former Sultan of Swing club that used
to be on this site. Madam Wong's moved here after growing out of its original
digs on Mohamed Sultan Road. With the exception of the address not much
else has changed -- lush oriental decor pervades, retro and Top 40 DJs
are still the staple, and the club's name alone has pulled its usual trendy
crowd with it. There's a happy-hour buffet (S$20), including free-flowing
draft beer, spirits, and wines. Note the age requirement: men must be
at least 22 to enter, women must be at least 20.
No. 05-19 Orchard Plaza, 150 Orchard Rd., Singapore, Singapore
Sole heir to the now defunct Fire club, Sparks occupies Fire's former
premises, complete with upstairs karaoke rooms. Here you'll find live
music for a lively young crowd. COST: Mon.-Thurs. women free, men S$8;