Wondering how to make the most of Singapore’s vibrant nightlife scene? Here’s Hive Life’s guide to Singapore’s best bars, from underground speakeasies to literary-themed cocktails.
From concoctions starring insects to venues hidden behind nondescript facades, the Lion City has made a splash in the cocktail scene and doesn’t seem to be backing down any time soon with many of its bars landing on the World’s Best 50 Bars and Restaurants list. Read on for our top picks of experiences to add to your itinerary during your next stay.
Sporting industrial decor with exposed brick walls, black leather bar stools and hanging minimalistic lamps, Native is a stylish yet cosy bar that serves up one-of-a-kind cocktails. As the name suggests, they’re all about sourcing both authentic local and regional ingredients for their Asian-inspired concoctions. If you’re feeling adventurous, try their world-famous Antz cocktail – the iconic Chalong Bay Rum and coconut yoghurt recipe is garnished by actual Thai-imported creepy-crawlies.
Insider’s Tip: The friendly staff are more than willing to give you a tour around the bar’s distillery. Just ask!
Address: 52A Amoy Street, Singapore 069878, Singapore
Open From: Mon-Sat 6pm-12am
28 Hong Kong Street might be hidden behind the unassuming facade of an old shophouse, but don’t let appearances fool you. Step inside, and you’re immediately transported to a dimly lit speakeasy, featuring a marble bar counter that propelled this place to a spot on the World’s Best Bars list in 2016, where it’s sat ever since. From experimental cocktails to award-winning bartender creations, it’s guaranteed that you’ll find a drink on the endless cocktail menu here that’s perfect for you. Just make sure to come early because, though tucked away and only advertised by word of mouth, this internationally renowned bar is often packed.
Insider’s Tip: Don’t get scared off by the hype surrounding 28HKS and their hard-to-find storefront. Just keep your eyes peeled for the unmarked door with the number 28 marked above!
Address: 28 Hongkong Street, Singapore River, Singapore, 59667, Singapore
Open From: Mon-Thu: 6pm-2am; Fri-Sat: 6pm-3am
Looking to enjoy more fulfilling meals along with your cocktails? Tippling Club is the place for you. Securing a spot on Asia’s Best 50 Restaurants list in 2019, this quirkily-decorated venue with pops of green and almost-too-many hanging bottles dangling from a ceiling rack above the bar serves up quality food and innovative cocktails prepared by their Michelin-endorsed culinary team. In this laidback and very comfortable premises, customers enjoy cocktails that appeal to a broad range of taste preferences, from sweet to sour, fruity to smoky. Highlights include their Peaches Cardinal with clarified cream, gin, Campari, wild raspberry and peach as well as a Cherries Jubilee with Cognac and cherry stone distillate topped with a beautifully crystallised hibiscus leaf.
Insider’s Tip: Offering a quick glimpse into each cocktail before you pick your poison, Tippling Club does out-of-the-box tasting menus (think gummy bears and fragrance strips) every now and then.
Address: 38 Tanjong Pagar Rd, Singapore 088461, Singapore
Open From: Mon-Fri: 12pm-12am; Sat: 6pm-12am (click here for their kitchen’s opening hours)
The ideal bar to start off a fun, boozy night with friends in Singapore’s renowned landmark, Clarke Quay, wander down the rabbit hole that is Chupitos Shots Bar, a specialised shot and drop-shot venue offering over 130 quirkily-flavoured shots that can only be found in this wonderland. From Pandan Cake to M&Ms and Bailey Smores, the distinctively exotic to the scandalously naughty, many of the shooters here come with their own fun-filled gimmicks and tricks.
Insider’s Tip: Make it to Chupitos Shots Bar Singapore’s hall of fame by completing their various silly, just-for-fun challenges. Also, you get free shots if you visit during your birthday week!
Address: 3B River Valley Road, Clarke Quay, #01-05, Singapore
Open From: Sun-Tue & Thu: 5:30pm-1:30am; Wed & Fri-Sat (& eve of Public Holidays): 6.30pm-3.30am
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First catching Michelin’s attention in 2017, Wine RVLT is a haven for all the self-proclaimed oenophiles out there and has gained even more buzz after winning first place for Specialist Concept of the Year in The Bar Awards Singapore 2019. Garnering a loyal fanbase since opening, this spot welcomes everyone from the well-trained wine-taster to beginners who are just finding their feet. Wine RVLT strives to bring a whole new experience to its customers by serving up the real deal with their attentive and knowledgable staff. The wine ‘menu’ is a constantly rotating corner shelf display of wines where visitors choose whatever bottle catches their attention – and no one judges you either for making a decision just because the bottle was pretty.
Insider’s Tip: If you’re feeling peckish, their flavourful chopped beef tartare is satisfyingly filling.
Address: 38 Carpenter St, #01-01, Singapore 059917
Open From: Mon-Sat: 5:30pm-12am
Landing a spot on the 2019 list of World’s Best 50 Bars, The Old Man Singapore is the sister venue to the original in Hong Kong that was ranked first on Asia’s 50 Best Bars of 2019 and is yet another bar with no sign to indicate its location (so keep an eye out for a pineapple lamp above a door.) Inspired by all things Ernest Hemingway, this playfully chic venue features wood-accented, brown-checkered floors as well as shades of bright green in its velvety bar stools and wall decor. Sitting by their iconic T-shaped bar, customers are encouraged to mingle with others as they are entertained by the friendly staff that treat everyone as if they were regulars. Serving up uniquely creative drinks like Islands in the Stream with clarified pink grapefruit and salted gin and Little Wax Puppy, a beeswax-infused whisky mixed with eucalyptus honey and bitters, this venue retains its charm and exquisite service even on hectically busy nights.
Insider Tip’s: The Old Man Singapore also has a lounge space for those visiting in larger groups.
Address: 55 Keong Saik Rd., #01-04, Singapore
Open From: Mon-Sat: 5pm-12am
Overlooking the Lion City’s famously beautiful Marina Bay Sands Hotel, The Hive Carpenter is a stylish, highly Instagrammable rooftop bar with a cosy and relaxed atmosphere. With everything from amusingly named cocktails like the Pain Killer, a delicious dark rum, pineapple, orange and coconut cream concoction, to classic red and white wines on offer, patrons here come to unwind whilst admiring the mesmerising views.
Insider Tip’s: Weekly specials are cooked up at The Hive Carpenter, so be sure to ask what’s new!
Address: 36 Carpenter Street, Singapore 059915
Open From: Mon-Fri: 8:30am-8pm