For a country known as The Little Red Dot, there is nothing little about Singapore’s bar scene. The secret, however, is knowing where to go that only locals and savvy expats frequent. From funky shop houses to glitzy rooftop terraces – here we take you on the ultimate bar crawl through Singapore's most underrated and hidden haunts.
55-57 Haji Lane – 2nd floor
Don’t sit down and ask for the drinks menu, because there isn’t one. Suggest a couple of ingredients that you fancy and they’ll craft it into something that not only looks pretty, but tastes delicious. Cocktails are on the expensive side, so be prepared to hand over them dollar bills. The space is cozy, intimate, and doesn’t have a lot of seating areas, so best to get there between 4-5pm to snag a spot by the window and watch iconic Haji Lane come alive.
Rooftop, Level 5, 80 Boat Quay (enter from South Bridge Road near the 7-Eleven)
If you’re looking to hang out in the city's ‘suit’ scene, Southbridge is the place to go. Perched above shop houses in Boat Quay, this open-air rooftop bar is a popular place for people working in the financial district to frequent for an after-work drink. It can be a little tricky to find, but the hassle is worth it with a 360-degree view of Singapore’s skyline. The bar gets busy around 7pm, so arrive before the suits do and grab a table with a view over the river. From here you’ll catch the lights from Marina Bay’s 8pm laser show.
Jigger and Pony
101 Amoy Street
Here, you will stumble across a crowd of trendy locals and expats sipping on punch bowls and dancing along to music from across the ages. This is a great place to come if you’re traveling solo, too; simply grab a seat at the bar and it won’t take long to meet someone. If you’re looking to party, try Thursday and Friday night where crowds spill into the street, or if you just want to enjoy the low-light ambiance, earlier in the week is best.
7 Ann Siang Hill
Conveniently across the street from Jigger and Pony is another expat and local favorite. There are no signs letting you know where the bar is, just a symbol on the wall with the opening hours drawn in texta near the door. Be prepared for a show while the bar tenders mix your cocktails using dry ice, fire and other unexpected ingredients. It’s a great place for an evening nightcap thanks to the cozy atmosphere.
78 Moh Guan Terrace #01-19
Located in hipster neighbourhood Tiong Bahru, Bincho is a traditional kopi (coffee) shop that has been turned into a unique dining and bar concept. It can be tricky to find – you enter through a back door. With its old school furnishings, you’ll be transported back in time while sipping on Japanese-inspired cocktails. Head there on the weekend for a lunch time drink so you can pair it with checking out Tiong Bahru’s bustling wet market.