A Guide To Singapore Nightlife

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Singapore comes alive after dark; bars and restaurants slide effortlessly from casual daytime dining into vibrant trendy watering holes for locals and expats alike. Nowhere is this more evident than along Orchard Road and the Quaysides where bars play funky jazz, blues and house music and restaurants offer an astonishing variety of food from Malay, Thai, Indian, regional Chinese, Vietnamese and Western.

The Quays

The three quays; Boat, Clarke’s and Robertson’s play host to dozens of restaurants, bars and clubs along the banks of the Singapore river, a perfect venue for alfresco eating and drinking with only a short stroll between them. Don’t let hunger rush your choice of restaurant, there are many to choose from and all have menus and photographs of the food on display. Starting at Clarke’s Quay there is a trendy tapas bar with comfy sofas and lots of cushions in a Moorish setting serving a very good house riocha. The Crazy Elephant bar also on Clarke’s Quay is good for loud rock music from both the DJ and the resident band, worth going for the daily happy hour from 5.00 onwards. If Thai food is your thing then Boat Quay will not disappoint, there are three or four good ones all with riverside tables (recommended) I had an excellent deep fried squid with chilli tofu tom yum, fiery but delicious. Service at the riverside tables can be slow especially early in the evening before it gets busy if any logic can be deducted from that. For a change from the usual Thai or Cantonese that we are now so used to in the West try a plate of seafood Indonesian style at the House of Sundanese Food on Boat Quay. For authentic regional Indian food try Our Village or Kinara both on Boat Quay or Northern Indian buffet style at Bukhara in Clarke’s Quay.

Wherever you are around the Quay area you are sure to hear music in the evening, just keep walking until a particular sound entices you in; Harry’s on the corner of Boat Quay plays live jazz and Mambo No.5 play good soul, funk and R&B.

Orchard Road

If it seems busy during the day don’t expect it to get any quieter in the evening. Orchard road is littered with bars and clubs making light work of any pub-crawl. Prices tend to be dearer than in the Quays and Colonial District but the choices make up for it, from the ultra trendy to homage’s to British rock bands and sleazy hostess nightspots. As with the Quay areas the number and variety of restaurants is huge and two of the best are situated in the Grand Hyatt and Shangri-La hotels. Mezza9 is ideal for anyone who is staying overnight in Singapore and cannot decide what to eat, this is a huge restaurant serving food from around the globe, from Chinese roast duck to buffalo mozzarella, oysters to dim sum. (Grand Hyatt hotel, Scotts Road) Blu restaurant situated in the excellent Shangri-La hotel on Orange Grove Road serves trendy Californian cuisine paired with exciting wines at executive prices. If, for some unknown reason you want a reminder of a British pub then the Excalibur (Tanglin Road), The Sportsman (Far East Shopping Centre) or the Dubliner on Pennang Road are the place for you.

Away from the bars and restaurants you will find most of the shops and the huge shopping malls open until late with many of the malls offering cheap, clean and very good dining options on every floor.