In Hangzhou, there are bars that rock and there are ones that especially cater to those white collars whose marriages have perhaps hit rock bottom. The bars that rock tend to have good music, a wide range of reasonably priced drinks, and plenty of expert foreign advice. Several bars come to mind that are frequented by expats, travelers, college students and connoisseurs who are interested in good drinks, occasional live music and maybe some background sporting events on the big screens.
Shamrock Irish Pub三叶啤酒屋 View In Map
Your classic one size fits all after work pub. Shamrock has been around Hangzhou for years, although not always at the same location. The current incarnation is tucked away under a hotel by the name of Jiujiajiu. The drinks here are reasonable, starting at 18 Yuan for a glass of Carlsberg and 25 Yuan for your basic liquors. There are several pool tables for those seeking to loosen their tendons after a hard day of work, as well as poker cards for the locals ready to drink the night away. The background music here is surprisingly, well, background. Shamrock is one of the only bars in Hangzhou where you will be able to have an audible conversation. What music they do play is usually a blend of rock n’ roll that is tasteful and classic. There are plasma screens permanently showing sports games of different varieties. The food is delicious and there is occasional live music to boot. Be sure to check out their special events.
Add: 89 Jiefang Lu, (Junction of Jiefang Rd. and Jianguo Rd.) Under Jiujiajiu Hotel, Hangzhou
Phone: 0571 8755 5212
Business Hours: 10:00 – 02:00
Reggae Bar黑根酒吧 View In Map
Reggae Bar is full of life, with beats, grooves and flashing neon lights. Sounds like the dance clubs that you’ve been to? Well not quite. Unlike the places with Chinese DJs yelling over loops of house music, here you’ll more likely hear a few Bob Marley hits followed with a Tupac dance remix. The DJs are really what make Reggae Bar a Hangzhou fixture. With special evenings like Digital Invasion and Rockers Delight, who would ever want to go to a crowded overpriced dance club? The drinks are reasonable especially if you like your beers dark and tasty. The notorious Old Speckled Hen with its less than sobering 5.2% alcohol content is only 30 Yuan (if you do the math like me that’s kind of like a 10 Yuan Tsingtao). Belgian hits such as Chimay and Duvel are something of a steal at 48 Yuan a piece. Reggae Bar features an upstairs and downstairs area. There are private areas and there are areas perfect for dancing. So come dancing wit Jah, till 6 in the mornin’!
Address: 131 Xueyuan Lu, just south of Wener Lu, Hangzhou
Phone: 0571 8657 5749
Business Hours: 18:00 – very late
Maya Bar玛雅酒吧 View In Map
Situated on Shuguang Lu, right across from Huanglong Stadium, Maya Bar is smack in the middle of the party zone. However, unlike the clubs at Huanglong Stadium that are irresistible magnets for all of the skimpiest skirts in Hangzhou, Maya Bar has a more sophisticated and artistic air. Though they love to advertise their strange looking burritos and their decent tasting nachos, it’s really their magazine shelves that strike at the heart of any homesick expat. At Maya Bar, you can find a great selection of English language magazines and peruse them in a quiet and cozy room with a beer in hand and a friend to share the joke with.
Add: 94 Baishaquan, Shuguang Lu, Across from Huanglong Stadium, Hangzhou
Phone: 0571 8799 7628
Business Hours: noon – 02:00
Casablanca卡萨布兰卡 View In Map
Though I miss the old Casablanca, I am thankful for the new Casablanca. What Casablanca lost in her elegant white walls she gained in location! Location! Location! Though the address says 23 Hubin Rd, it really means, go to where 23 Hubin Rd would be, and then head straight for the water. At literally a dozen metres from the West Lake, this is the perfect place to enjoy the best of both nature and booze. Start the night at Casablanca. Enjoy live music, drinks, and food. Enjoy the log cabin décor, the Christmas lights and some more drinks and food. When all the tourists have finally cleared out of the beautiful West Lake, and the kids have stopped shooting light up toys into the air, then grab onto your partner and wobble on over a few steps to the water’s edge. Take a seat, a deep breath and take in a view of the lake at night with the moon reflecting over the water surface and a dark contour of Baochu Shan and Baochu Pagoda in the horizon. Try to recall a few lines of Li Po’s poetry. But be careful not to fall in, you might get fined!
Add: 23 Hubin Lu, close to the water, Hangzhou
Phone: 0571 8702 5934
Business Hours: 19:00 – 02:00
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Keywords: Popular bars Hangzhou bar guide Hangzhou expat bars Hangzhou bars Hangzhou
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