The Bar and Billiard Room began life in 1896 with the opening of the famed Raffles Hotel. Its function has changed a few times over the years, but the room has been restored to its former glory. In fact, the decor and general atmosphere is so reminiscent of the days of British colonialism that you may find yourself adopting an accent, donning a pith helmet, and calling for a spot of tea. As evening settles in, this is the perfect place to sip a single malt scotch and enjoy a cigar while watching a friendly challenge on one of the antique pool tables. The bar is also popular for afternoon tea, complete with very British tarts and finger sandwiches.
Brewerkz is an American-style brewpub, making its own microbrews right on the premises since 1997. The vast interior has a trendy industrial feel with super high ceilings and exposed pipes and beams, warmed by an abundance of dark wood. The Canadian brewmaster crafts some fine beers, including the ever-popular IPA (India Pale Ale), golden ale, brown ale, alt bier and even a pilsner lager. If you can't decide, try a sampler of several styles. The food here is excellent as well, featuring American / British favorites such as cheddar- and bacon-topped potato skins, nachos, wings, fish and chips, shepherd's pie, baby back ribs, grilled steaks and jambalaya. A big screen TV is tuned to all the big games, whether it's rugby, football or baseball.
Established in 2000, Dbl O (pronounced double-oh) continues to be a popular night spot with local Singaporeans. Three resident DJs GemStarr, Timo-J and Ollie 'Des keep the dance floor packed til the small hours with their mix of familiar old school hip-hop, with new flavours of R&B, funk, disco, dancehall, reggae and mash-ups. The club has tried to reach a wider audience in recent years, with a focus on the creative arts, by sponsoring various art, music and fashion events and by the emergence of the dbl O Art Space aiming to nurture local talent.
Emerald Hill is a prestigious street with a row of former shophouses that have been converted into upscale nightspots. At #5 Emerald Hill Cocktail Bar you'll find a classy space that capitalizes on architectural details and an exceptional array of cocktails and shooters. Que Pasa is a trendy wine and tapas bar decorated to resemble a "Spanish provisions store" with shelves of wine and canned goods, barrel tables and wood. Ice Cold Beer is the most casual and hardest-partying of the three, and boasts special ice tanks that perfectly chill your beer in no time flat (well, almost), plasma TVs, darts and pool, plus good pub grub, all to the tune of classic rock standards.
Get far from the madding crowds of Clarke Quay at this laidback little French bar on Ann Siang Hill, where traditional Chinese businesses and fancy new restaurants sit cheek-by-jowl in restored shophouses. With its distinct bistro feel – think French movie posters and lots of dark wood – you almost can't help but don a faux-French accent and ask the garçon for some of the escargots delicieux. Downstairs, there's even more of a homey feel with a pool table the center of attraction. A branch with river views recently opened at 41, Robertson Quay.
Combine fine sangria and tapas with a lively Latin-flavored soundtrack, and what do you get? Well, in Singapore you get BarCelona! Sit yourself down with a nice cold drink (be it wine, an icy beer, sangria or a fruity cocktail), then order some wonderful little plates of grilled sausages, sautéed mushrooms, mixed seafood and olives. It's all so atmospheric – you may forget you're on a tropical island and not in the sunny Mediterranean!
This former 1927 coal-fired power station has been restored into a mega-entertainment complex, attracting local Singaporeans for drinking, late nights and dancing. Twelve outlets in all mean that there should be something to cater for all tastes within these vast walls. The largest outlet is Powerhouse, a 10,000 square foot space dedicated to dance – with resident and visiting DJs knocking out tunes til the small hours. The ever-popular Dragonfly heaves at weekends with revellers swinging their stuff to the latest Mandarin hits covered by the resident band and dancers, while The Boiler Room beckons those who prefer their music a bit more mainstream – with R&B, pop, rock and soul. There's a change of pace with Movida, which offers a different vibe altogether with dancers encouraged to grind their hips to the beats of World Music, while the Bellini Room is for all those swing lovers to get down to the cool jazz quartet. When it's time to rest your legs, head to the Gallery Bar, The Lobby, the St James Wine Bar & Bistro or outdoors to Peppermint Park for a breath of fresh air, while sports fans should head to the New Paper Sports Bar. Karaoke fans needn't leave disappointed either with Mono providing an intimate bar and ten private rooms for those who love to belt out a tune or two of their own.
If you like your bars crowded and noisy, then head to Ice Cold Beer. Located on Emerald Hill, a quaint little lane of refurbished 1910 shophouses just off Orchard Road, Ice Cold Beer does what it says on the tin: over 50 types of beer served chilled from custom-made ice tanks. There's also a darts board, pool table and plenty of loud classic rock music to keep you entertained, while their famous chicken wings, hot dogs and pizza will line your stomach for all that beer.