Back in the Prohibition era, speakeasy bars were all the rage – a hiding spot to fulfill your social and drinking needs. It was also referred to as a blind pig or blind tiger. Although these illicit establishments don’t have to exist anymore (thankfully), there are many modern speakeasy-inspired bars where people visit them for their hidden, exclusive appeal. Here are our picks of the best speakeasy bars in Hong Kong…
Rosewood Hong Kong‘s hushed Maison LeCircle is an exclusive hidden bar that offers access to distinctive wine and spirits in a lush setting. Sitting on the fifth floor, the lesser-known bar invites you to try their unique cocktail and wine list and the indulgent selection of cigars. But here’s the catch – it’s invite-only. The exclusive club has a strict guest list, meaning you have to be quite the hot shot to nab a seat here. So, until you get the invite, check out the sophisticated Darkside at Rosewood, an intimate jazz bar with a vintage appeal, instead.
5/F Rosewood Hong Kong, Victoria Dockside, 18 Salisbury Road, Tsim Sha Tsui. Open Tuesday to Sunday 3:00pm to 10:00pm.
To get to ROOM 309, you need to head to the third floor of The Pottinger Hong Kong and ask for a key from “The Reception” next door. Once you have the key, you enter the tiny bolthole, home to heavenly cocktails and expert bartenders. The bar resembles a hotel room that allows a maximum of 20 guests at a time. Experience an intimate affair in this chic space, but don’t hold your breath on securing a seat – it’s walk-ins only.
3/F The Pottinger Hong Kong, 74 Queen’s Road Central, Central. Open every day 4:00pm to 12:00am.
Probably the closest bar to a speakeasy on our list, Feather Boa is truly a word-of-mouth venue. Perched in Soho, the bar is hidden behind a nondescript door that looks like an abandoned building. You have to knock on the door to be granted access. Then, it’s up to the bartender if she wants to let you in. Those lucky enough to make it through the doors must try the freshly made daiquiris and enjoy the plush setting that feels like something out of a bygone era – circa 1800s Renaissance era. Why is there no photo, you ask? Well, that’s because there are no official pictures online.
G/F, 38 Staunton Street, Central, 2857-2586. Open Wednesday to Saturday 8:00pm to 2:00am.
This 20-seater Japanese whisky specialist is one of Tsim Sha Tsui’s best-kept gems. The meticulous service, top-notch drinks and secluded appeal make it a top pick for pre or post-dinner drinking.
If you haven’t heard of 001, that’s because it’s one of the lesser-known drinking dens in Central’s bustling scene. It’s actually been around for some time now and was one of the first spots to set the tone for exclusive bars in the district. You have to go downstairs inside a concealed liquor store or through its backdoor behind the market stalls on Graham Street.
LG/F, Welley Building, 97 Wellington Street, Central, 2810-6969. Open Monday to Saturday, times vary.
Taco lovers head to 11 WESTSIDE, but insider experts head to The Wilshire for drinks after. The K-town neighborhood bar welcomes discerning cocktail lovers to try its refined selection of iconic drinks by head bartenders Daniel Eun and Jon Chan. Essentially, it’s a bar inside a bar.
1/F, 11 Davis Street, Kennedy Town. Open Tuesday to Saturday 6:00pm to 12:00am.
Secret whisky bar and lounge Stockton has long attracted the likes of city dwellers looking for a sophisticated respite. Like something out of the Halycon Times of 1800s London, the sleek space offers a brilliant selection of classic cocktails and elevated bar snacks. We’re talking massive cold cut boards and meatballs to die for. Head here with a group or date if you’re looking to impress. Oh, and dress dapper.
32 Wyndham Street, Central, 2565-5268. Open Monday to Saturday, times vary.
SYP seems like the latest ‘it’ neighborhood but Ping Pong Gintoneria has been here for a while now. And it continues to attract returning customers who enjoy a fancy tipple. The speakeasy is nestled within a hard-to-miss red door and down the stairs. Its spacious, upbeat space is popular for, well, its G&Ts.
129 Second Street L/G Nam Cheong House, Sai Ying Pun, 9835-5061. Open Tuesday to Sunday, times vary.
This bar-within-a-bar sits within the luxury Landmark Mandarin Oriental Hotel to celebrate New York PDT‘s Hong Kong outpost. You enter through a secret phone booth. Yes, the food menu is designed by two Michelin-starred Chef Richard Ekkebus.
15 Queen’s Road Central, Central, 2132-0110. Open every day 5:00pm to 12:00am.
4/F, Kiu Yin Commercial Building, 361-363 Lockhart Road, Wan Chai, 3571-9797. Open Monday to Saturday 6:00pm to 2:00am.