Bangkok’s Hidden Jazz Scene

Bangkok’s nightlife isn’t all rowdy and naughty. On the opposite spectrum, the city’s got a fascinating lineup of cool and classy jazz bars ideal for whiling away the hours in style. Finding somewhere to relax and listen to great music in Bangkok is not a difficult task. Bangkok’s bustling jazz scene attracts both local and international musicians to perform in its clubs and bars nightly. As the capital of Thailand, Bangkok is perhaps the most vibrant, colorful and energetic music venue in the country, and these clubs and bars are some of the best places to enjoy world-class jazz in Bangkok.

1. The Bamboo Bar The Bamboo Bar is a landmark that personifies the passion, seductive elegance and spirit of both The Oriental Hotel and Bangkok’s rich history. From a humble beginning in 1953 in what is now the hotel’s renowned Authors’ Wing, The Bamboo Bar grew in size and reputation to become an international legend. The bar underwent an extensive renovation in 2014 to propel this iconic establishment into the future whilst preserving its unique history and unique character.

The beverage and liquor menus are the creative work of Mandarin Oriental’s award winning mixologist team, with Bamboo Bar Originals retaining their Signature status on the cocktail list alongside popular classics. Dare to try the Bamboo Bar’s new “Flavour Cocktails” which are the masterful blend of legendary tradition and modern innovation and set to become the favourites for many. Smart dress code applies for all guests with elegant attire and proper footwear for ladies and smart shirt, long trousers and closed shoes for gentlemen.

Location: 1st Floor, 48 Oriental Avenue, Bangkok, Telephone: +66 (0)2 659 9000

2. Three Sixty Lounge  Situated in Khlong San district of Bangkok in Millennium Hilton Bangkok Hotel on Charoen Nakhon Road, Three Sixty Lounge offers some of the best dining experience in Bangkok with 360 degree vistas of the city, exquisite food and cocktail, and mood setting jazz music playing softly in the background. The bar consists of two distinct areas: One is a large rectangular open air space covering the entire middle part of this tall riverside building, and the other part, as the name suggests, is an amazing 360 degrees cupola balanced on the edge of the Millennium Hilton tower.

The atmosphere is laid back yet feels sophisticated. Wind down on one of the comfortable sofas on the open rooftop and contemplate the panoramic views on each side of the tower to start off a relaxing evening. It’s a great feeling to relax above a frantic city while enjoying some great wines and soft music. The cupola, on the other hand, has a very different atmosphere with dark tones, dimmed lights and soft carpets, but mostly it boasts incredible view of the Chao Phraya River at the very feet of the hotel. The effect is accentuated by the angle given to the very large panoramic windows which allow you to literally look down the building and observe the fascinating life on the river.

Location: 123 Charoennakorn Road, Klongsan, Bangkok 

Telephone : +66 (0)2 442 2000

3. The Living Room The Living Room at Sheraton Grand Sukhumvit Hotel is renowned as one of the finest places in Bangkok to sit back with an expertly crafted cocktail or single malt, and enjoy smooth, easy listening live jazz music. This is a mature, demure and all together classy affair, with talented musicians taking to the stage every night from 6.15 PM, before a jazz trio at 9.15 PM on Tuesday to Saturday. As a testament to the quality of the jazz being performed here, several of the musicians have international fans that travel from afar specifically to hear their favourite artists play.

Set in a circular room made atmospheric by heavy black drapes and low lights, live jazz at Sheraton Grande Sukhumvit Hotel is clearly not an afterthought. The décor is tasteful, the service refined and there is a fine tapas menu of regional delicacies such as charcuterie platters, with the option of ordering from Sheraton’s two flagship restaurants: Basil for modern Thai dishes and Rossini’s for classic Italian cuisine. Randy Cannon is the headline act at The Living Room. His jazz trio has been together for over 10 years, and their performances are so intuitive it’s clear they are both skilled musicians and lovers of melodic and technical jazz. Their tunes are sure to get your toes tapping and head swaying in sync with the music.
Location: 250 Sukhumvit Road, Bangkok, Telephone: +66 (0)2 649 8353

4. Maggie Choo’s  Evoking the ambience of a retro cabaret establishment of Shanghai in 1930’s, Maggie Choo’s seamlessly combines British colonial-era furnishings with retro-Chinese influences. Meticulously decorated in the style of the period – the basement level space of Novotel Fenix Silom has been transformed into an intriguing venue that intrigues gentlemen into its seductive Victorian-era gentlemen’s club vibe and sophisticated live music experience. With nightly performances from live jazz and blues musicians, as well as DJs, and together with classic and imaginative signature cocktails, plus an adjoining vintage noodle shop for late night eats, Maggie Choo’s exudes a unique atmosphere among Bangkok’s plethora of bars. Maggie Choo’s opened in 2013 and has been enjoying impressive popularity that attracts discerning, upscale clientele. 

An eclectic drink list features premium quality champagnes, wines and spirits, while signature cocktails are sophisticated creations imbued with the colonial-era theme of Maggi Choo’s. Victorian era-themed signature cocktails combine premium spirits with local Asian ingredients to create unique taste profiles – examples include the Coconut on The Bund – made with Tanqueray, homemade coconut cream, fresh lime juice, mulberry & mace cordial; and Empress Of India – Smirnoff, dragon fruit, marjoram, lime, and orgeat. Renditions of classic cocktails feature well-balanced drinks crafted from gin, rum or brown spirits.
Location: Basement, Novotel Fenix Silom, 320 Silom Road, Bangkok

Telephone: +66 (0)91 772 2144

5. Sing Sing Theater  Sing Sing Theater has arguably the most creative interior design concept in Bangkok. Paying homage to far Eastern aesthetics, the club boasts intricate wrought iron patterns, hundreds of lanterns hanging from the ceiling and plenty of dragon imagery to go with the elegant girls dressed in Chinese Qipao which they called the ‘Muses’. Sing Sing also hosts unique concept parties with themes like Underwater or Carnival being completely immersive experiences and a whole lot of fun.

The design of Sing Sing may remind you of Maggie Choo’s since both venues are the work of the same designer and art director, and, in particular, the work of Ashley Sutton who has been striking the town with his elaborate design and established Sing Sing as one of the hottest clubs in Bangkok.

The club itself is split into two downstairs bars, a central dance floor which doubles as a stage for performances, and a balcony hanging over the dance floor, a prime spot for checking out the action down below. The music at Sing Sing Theater covers a lot of ground, and is far more ambitious than most clubs in the capital. Here you will find critically acclaimed international acts such as Gilles Peterson, French deep house artist Kilngande and, holding a weekly residency, Jul&Co, house DJs who play live percussion and beatbox, combining live performance with electronic dance music. A more down-tempo live act is usually playing between 20:00 to 22:00 which is perfect for the after dinner crowd. Dance performances are also common, featuring anything from burlesque routines to freaky girls in gas masks.
Location: Sukhumvit 45, Bangkok, Telephone: +66 (0)63 225 1331


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