There are two sides to Bangkok; the typical tourist angle, with the major Buddhist temples and other famous attractions and the expat community, which is very large and growing all the time. While Bangkok nightlife has always been vibrant, the seasoned expats aren’t looking for neon lights and pretty girls, they seek out places with the right ambience, small bars where you can engage in stimulating conversation with other expats.
Spoiled for Choice
As you would expect, the expat community have many options when looking for the best place to drink in Bangkok, with a blend of small, independently run lounges and hotel bars that are nicely themed. The stunning Vesper Cocktail Bar is a very popular haunt which is a few metres from Sala Daeng BTS Silom, making it very accessible, where you can enjoy fine Italian martinis. This is one of the very few venues in the city that are serious about their craft and the bartenders are among the best in the business. If you work in the Silom area, this is a perfect place to unwind with your favourite drink.
Mass Transportation System
Seasoned expats make good use of the BTS and Skytrain and the best bars and pubs are never far away from a station. Google ‘great pubs in Bangkok’ and that will give you all the information you need to plan an evening expedition, using the BTS to get around. If you are old enough to remember Bangkok in the 1970s, you will know just how much difference this mass transportation system has made.
If you come from the UK, there are many British-themed drinking establishments from Sukhumvit Soi 4 right up to Soi 71, Phrakanong and you can have a great time exploring the many pubs and bars, all with pool tables and darts, of course. British menus are everywhere, so you won’t miss your Sunday roast and with a full English breakfast, you are fuelled up for the day!
Bamboo Bar (Mandarin Oriental)
If it’s jazz you’re after, this is a must visit venue, steeped in colourful history, the Bamboo Bar is decked out in dark wood and leather, with rattan furniture, while the live Jazz sessions are a major attraction. This venue has a definite far eastern colonial charm and you’d expect nothing less from the chic Mandarin Oriental, always stylish and elegant; while some of the old characters hang out here and you can listen to some of the stories of the 60s and 70s.
The Internet hosts a wealth of information and Google is your best friend when looking for great drinking venues in the City of Angels.