What Singapore lacks in space horizontally, it makes up for it vertically. The result is a staggering city landscape unlike any other, peppered with towering skyscrapers. It is not surprising then that the island has some of the best rooftop bars that serve up a killer combination of libations and panoramic views. With more and more city slickers flocking to these nightlife destinations to live it up – much like how the mythical Greek gods did at the peak of Mount Olympus – here are some of Singapore’s top rooftop watering holes that will have you raising your glass.
Orgo Bar & Restaurant
Orgo is a modern, open-air terrace bar perched atop the Esplanade Theatre. The bar’s appellation, conjured from the phrase “organic chemistry”, refers to its strict use of organic produce in its cocktails, as dictated by master mixologist Tomoyuki Kitazoe. The addition of liqueurs, colourings and syrups is entirely out of the question. Orgo is best known for its inventive flavours (fancy a wasabi salt chocolate martini?) and unique takes on classic drinks – the Fresh Singapore Sling substitutes bitters with orange peels—all meticulously crafted with the freshest fruits, vegetables and herbs of the Japanese variety. Like its cocktails, the atmosphere at Orgo is a result of a perfect chemistry: a combination of stylish wicker furnishings, sultry tunes, cozy lighting, and gorgeous view of the city skyline surrounding the bar.
Orgo Bar & Restaurant, 8 Raffles Avenue, #04-01, Esplanade – Theatres on the Bay, Singapore 039802, tel: 6336 9366
Smoke & Mirrors
For those whose taste for refinement extends to art, Smoke & Mirrors is just the place for you. The bar sits on the rooftop of the National Gallery Singapore and is helmed by Yugnes Susela (formerly of Tippling Club), whose imaginative drinks parallels the artworks in the gallery below. The Painting Class, 1957 ($25), a fizzy Prosecco-based cocktail mixed with Peruvian pisco and strawberry sake, is inspired by the eponymous painting by Singaporean artist Lim Yew Kuan. Familiar classics are also reinvented. Case in point: the Singapore Sling, distilled in the form of the Old & New Sling, using non-traditional rye whiskey and lime juice. Enjoy Cantonese-style bar bites such as the Roast Pork Belly ($16) and Crab Claws with homemade chilli dip in between cultured conversations while you take in views of the Padang, Esplanade and Marina Bay Sands.
Smoke & Mirrors, 1 St Andrew’s Road, #06-01 National Gallery Singapore, Singapore 178957, tel: 9234 8122
New Asia Bar
Maintaining a reputation as one of the 50 Best Bars in the world is no mean feat, but that is exactly what New Asia Bar has managed to do. For those seeking a night of extravagance, find paradise on the 71st floor of Swissôtel The Stamford. New Asia is the place to see and be seen. On any one of its weekly themed nights, you will find the sleek space bustling with a glamorous young crowd, all dressed to the nines – but that’s just icing on the cake. New Asia’s real draw is its stunning view of the twinkling cityscape, which stretches all the way to Malaysia and Indonesia. Besides the usual selection of beers, wine, and champagne, New Asia serves a variety of classic and signature cocktails. A must-try for whiskey lovers is the China Mule, a tasty whiskey concoction of ginger beer, lychee, lime and vanilla.
New Asia Bar, 2 Stamford Road, Level 71 Swissôtel The Stamford, Singapore 178882, tel: 9177 7307
1-Altitude Gallery & Bar
Towering 282 metres above ground, 1-Altitude Gallery & Bar is the world’s highest alfresco bar. Come by on Friday and Saturday nights and you will find the triangular bar teeming with a vibrant, affluent crowd. To keep your head straight from the dizzying views, try a glass of 1-Altitude’s signature cocktail Zen Breeze, a refreshing composition of vodka, green tea, lemongrass and mint. Accompany your drink with one of their gourmet pizzas, such as the Pear and Gorgonzola Pizza. For finer dining options, simply head to Stellar, 1-Altitude’s award-winning restaurant located just one floor below.
1-Altitude Gallery & Bar, 1 Raffles Place, #63-01 One Raffles Place Shopping Mall, Singapore 048616, tel 6438 0410
CÉ LA VI
Located atop the iconic Marina Bay Sands, CÉ LA VI is abundant with impressive offerings: innovative cocktails and top grade wine, an unparalleled modern Asian menu, internationally renowned DJs on deck, and a spectacular view that sweeps across the Marina Bay skyline. It is no wonder that CÉ LA VI draws a clientele of international jet-setters and fashionable residents. CÉ LA VI is split into two spaces: the indoor Club Lounge and the alfresco Vue Terrace. A great dish to start with is the chopped tuna tartare or the soya-glazed Hokkaido scallops. The drinks menu features strong cocktails, a wide range of spirits, and a notable rum selection. Be sure to try the Lady Be Mine martini, a refreshing cocktail with lychee, rose water and apple juice, delicately finished with a single rose petal.
CÉ LA VI, 1 Bayfront Ave, SkyPark at Marina Bay Sands, Singapore 01897, tel. 6688 7688
Spago brings the West Coast dining experience to Singapore with its first international outpost in Marina Bay Sands. First opened in West Hollywood in 1982 by famed chef Wolfgang Puck, it has gone on to win the AAA Four Diamond Award and two stars in the Michelin Guide-Los Angeles edition. Spago’s menu elegantly intertwines its authentic Californian roots with local flavour: the Pan Seared Red Snapper Laksa is a coconut broth with a rich blend of Thai basil, ginger and clam liquor; the Kaya Toast combines the familiar kaya and soft-boiled egg with slices of seared liver and a fancy foie gras-espresso mousse. Over at the bar, cocktails include interesting concoctions such as The Garden of Eden (mango black tea infused vodka mixed with lemon and cane sugar) and Devil in Disguise (Patron Reposado tequila with passion fruit and Kashmiri chilli).
Spago, 10 Bayfront Avenue, Level 57, Tower 2, SkyPark at Marina Bay Sands, Singapore 018956, tel. 6688 9955
[email protected] recreates the unique hawker centre dining experience, updated with a touch of luxe and housed within a sophisticated space designed by renowned Japanese firm Super Potato. The restaurant, situated on the rooftop level of OUE Bayfront, serves three distinctive cuisines – Chinese, French, Japanese. Likewise, the elegant rooftop lounge offers a range of canapés and tapas dishes that complement its menu of signature cocktails.
[email protected], 50 Collyer Quay, Level 19, OUE Bayfront, Singapore 049321, tel. 6634 4555
This upscale penthouse lounge 45 floors above the CBD was specially created as a refuge for working professionals. In addition to its oyster bar and steakhouse, Empire’s gourmet bar bites menu includes familiar offerings such as truffle fries and pizzas. If you’re in a more celebratory mood, be sure get the Empire Platter to share with friends. As night falls witness Empire transform into one of the hottest nightclubs in Singapore, as DJs start cranking out tunes every Friday and Saturday from 10pm.
Empire, 50 Raffles Place, #45-01/02, Singapore Land Tower, Singapore 048623, tel. 9336 1443
LeVeL33 tells you exactly where it’s situated in the Marina Bay Financial Centre, but the establishment’s name hardly hints at its prominence as the highest microbrewery in the world. Inspired by classic European beers, these house-made brews are perfected with authentic brewing methods. Five classic brews can always be found on the menu (an IPA, stout, wheat beer, house porter and blonde lager) but special seasons call for special flavours, such as a chestnut beer for Christmas. Chef Jimi Tegerdinem helms the kitchen, presenting a menu of updated Old World European classic dishes – all sure to leave your mouth watering.
LeVeL33, 8 Marina Boulevard, #33-01, Marina Bay Financial Centre Tower 1, Singapore 108981. Tel: +65 6834 3133
SuperTree by IndoChine
Nowhere else in the world will you find a view overlooking the city skyline on one side and a surreal landscape of vertical gardens on the other. Supertree by IndoChine promises exactly that unique experience at their indoor restaurant and al fresco bar. On the menu is a mixture of Indochinese, Western, and fusion dishes. Head up to the rooftop bar, 50 metres above the ground and choose from SuperTree’s comprehensive beverage menu, comprised of beers, wines, cocktails and premium drinks such as sake and báijiǔ.
Supertree by IndoChine, 18 Marina Gardens Drive, #03-01, Gardens by the Bay, Singapore 018953, tel. 6694 8489