Stickman's guide to Bangkok
Clubbing In Bangkok
By High Tree Climber
Clubbing in Bangkok is one of the best things in the world, at least from what I experienced. What do people normally expect from top bars and top clubs? I think most will agree that it depends on the location, the crowd, the music, quality of cocktails and good service most. Well, I think Bangkok’s clubs have a very high standard on all these criteria. I’m not talking about Hi-so clubs, I’m talking about places in the middle priced category or a bit above.
When talking about locations, then I have to say that I have seen great stuff in Bangkok. “One is The Bed club” at Sukhumvit soi 11 which looks like a pipe. Another one is “Mystique” at Sukhumvit soi 31. Both of these places have been specially designed by an engineering company for the purpose of being a party house and they succeeded in doing that. There are plenty of great clubs in many of the major hotels such as the Grand Hyatt, Conrad Hotel, Novotel and many others which are a bit pricey though. These places are clubs/bars even though they are not my favourite ones.
Most of the bigger places with an international crowd hire western DJs and organize special events. Music style varies from day to day. Most clubs have hip-hop nights and other specials. Clubs are equipped with the latest techniques and can provide top quality tone and light effects.
The kind of people does vary depending on the location. Famous places such as Q-bar, the Bed Club, Mystique, Hard Rock Café and some others do attract mostly expats, some travellers and many long term holiday makers but also a local crowd who make up about 50 percent. As sad as it is those places mentioned above are also pick up joints and attract some “working girls”, but there are always plenty of regular Thais as well. At Hard Rock Café and at Q, I noticed that foreigners tend to be a bit more elderly than at “the Bed Club” for instance.
I strongly believe that service and friendliness in clubs and bars in Bangkok beat the rest of the world. There is no waiting queue in front of the places, unlike in the West you will never have to wait for more than a couple of minutes to get a drink and if we are talking about understaffed places, we are surely not talking about places in Thailand. A few weeks ago when I went to Q-bar for instance, I was on the way with a small bag on my back, and I wanted to get away from it. So I just asked the DJ coz I was standing closest to him. He took my bag without any question….hey, in the country where I live I would not even dare to express such a demand. The staff is always very friendly, they do a very good job and are always helpful to please the customers.
The quality of cocktail in the good places is worth every single baht you spend. According to my opinion the best cocktails are mixed at Q and Bed club. For 200 Baht you get a real drink. I’m a real Bacardi/Coke lover and I will never forget my drinks I got at The Bed whose colour wasn’t different from a glass of water. In Switzerland and in many other countries, I always have to order a double shot, to feel something other than the coke taste, and that costs a fortune.
Good clubs become busy at around 11 or 11.30 and are always packed by then. Unfortunately they close at 1 am due to government regulations. That is the only drawback I can find about clubbing in Bangkok. Most clubs in the hotels are open till 2 am, so that’s a good choice to go there after the 1 o’clock closing time. Better leave the place a bit before 1 am, otherwise you are going to most likely end up spending the hour in a taxi instead of a club. After 2 am its time to do something against your appetite and some more beers are still welcome at this time of the night. There are many places to go after that. It’s not a problem at all to keep drinking and enjoying some music till sunrise. I’m thinking of all the seafood places at Ratchada Soi 6, the “Por Kung Pao” and many other similar places which are crowded till 5 or 6 am. The reason is simple: Thais like to eat something after having a party, so do I. Ask your local friends and they will name you a list of spots.
I have been clubbing around the world. I visited some famous clubs in big cities of Canada, the States, New Zealand, Australia, many clubs in different European cities and many in Southeast Asia. To tell the truth, there is no doubt one can find quality clubs just about everywhere. But if I compare the value for money thing, the kindness of the staff and the other criteria which are important to me, then the best clubs and bars in Bangkok are top ranked in my personal hit list.
I always feel like a customer who is welcome there, unlike other spots in the west where u have to be grateful that you are allowed to spend your money. Another point is the atmosphere in Bangkok which is much better than at other places. It’s really hard to get into a bar-fight here in Bangkok compared to Europe, the States or Australia. People tend to be much more aggressive in clubs in the western world, especially if alcohol is part of the game. I used to have troubles with guys here in Bangkok because of some injustice I couldn’t accept, but none of them where Thais.
All the places I mentioned above are places which get a mixed crowd. There are also a vast number of spots for the Thai scene. Here I’m thinking of clubs at Tong Lor, Ratchada soi 4, many places at Sukhumvit soi 100+ and just everywhere else. I had very good experiences when clubbing around in these kind of places. Thais are very friendly and it’s not hard at all to open a conversation or to be invited to join a group with a glass of whisky. It’s also a good occasion to practice your Thai, as most of us know, the words come out much easier with a drink or two.
Let me name and describe two of my favourite quality bars/clubs in Bangkok, if I am looking for and international crowd. If you get around a lot, check out this great link about the bars in the world. http://www.worldsbestbars.com/city/Bangkok/
The Bed Club:
The outside of this place is as awesome as is the inside. Very nice decor, the crowd is really international, cocktails are generously poured and the food is good, beautiful staff with sexy uniforms, international DJ’s, very packed on Tuesday (hip-hop night), Friday and Saturday. It’s a must to go…..
For many it’s the number one bar in Bangkok. In fact, Q has a lot to offer. Q-bar has the most extensive stock of cocktails, international DJs, nice lounge and a spacious terrace. Great atmosphere, nice mix of Thais and foreigners and next to some working girls a lot of regulars as well.
Enjoy your drinks.
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