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Where to find the best martinis in Hong Kong

By Lily Valette 13 October 2023

Header image courtesy of @buenosairespoloclub (via Instagram)

Served in a recognisable cocktail glass with a long stem, conical body, and a flared rim, with just a green olive or a twist of lemon peel as garnish, the martini is undisputedly a classic cocktail. It has remained in fashion since its creation over a hundred years ago, and the gin or vodka and vermouth concoction is a staple for mixologists and drinkers alike. Loved in its classic form and in many possible variations, the martini is a versatile cocktail, with the only constant being how strong it is.

Martinis are served in every bar, and nowadays, in many cafés, too. However, this does not necessarily mean they are good everywhere they are served. Since we believe that the aftermath of drinking one too many martinis is only worth it if it tasted heavenly, we have scoured Hong Kong for the best martinis the city has to offer—check out our top picks below.

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Buenos Aires Polo Club

With a sleek wooden interior, emerald curtains, paintings of polo horses on the walls, and the smell of red meat being grilled nearby, stepping through the doors of Buenos Aires Polo Club gives you the feeling of travelling through space and time into the past. The bar there—a small room with a big counter and leather bench seats—could serve as the décor of a good story, the set of a spy movie, the place where authors come to write, and where James Bond comes to drink. When you find yourself in that type of ambience, you’ll want to drink in style.

Here is where the Dirty Martini served at Bueno Aires Polo Club comes in—dry, strong, and flavourful. Other martini orders on the bar menu, from the Vesper to the Beefsteak Martini, Gibson, or Espresso Martini, are all a sure bet. There’s even a Martinez on the bar menu—the drink that is believed to be the origin of today’s martini.

Buenos Aires Polo Club, 7/F, 33 Wyndham Street, Central

Photo: @ichuhk (via Instagram)


Resembling a tropical jungle in the heart of Central, Ichu’s Terraza is a colourful getaway. Loud music and fruity cocktails are the trademark of this outdoor space where every sip you take makes you feel like you are on a sunny holiday. True to the Peruvian roots of the restaurant and bar, it is no surprise that Pisco Sours and Chilcanos are the main strengths of the bar menu. However, we will let you in on a secret: Ichu’s Terraza serves a Lychee Martini that will keep you buzzed all night long. Served in a deep cocktail glass filled to the brim, the lychee, vodka, and vermouth mix are perfectly balanced. Be careful—this one goes down like fruit juice.

Ichu, 3/F, H Queens Building, 80 Queen’s Road Central, Central


With a whisky bar on the fifth floor and a cocktail bar on the sixth floor of a rather nondescript tower in Tsim Sha Tsui, the Japanese bar Butler has established a name for itself in Hong Kong as a purveyor of good spirits and great mixology. Not only does Butler have an Extra Dry Martini on its signature cocktail menu, but it also serves one of the best Dirty Martinis. Dirty Martinis—comprised of dry gin and olive brine—are trendy but not easy to master when you are behind the bar. When you find a good one, you don’t let go, which explains why regulars flock to Butler.

Butler, 5/F, Mody House, 30 Mody Road, Tsim Sha Tsui

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Photo: @barleonehk (via Instagram)

Bar Leone

Bar Leone’s cosy and humble space, designed in the style of a Roman backstreet dive, is always full, booming with chatter, laughter, and the sound of shakers doing their thing. We could go on and on about the delicious food menu and tasty Negronis crafted by celebrated mixologist Lorenzo Antinori, but on today’s agenda, it’s all about the Leone Martini. Made with Ginepraio gin, dry marsala, orange blossom, and smoked olive, the Leone Martini is not for the faint-hearted.

Bar Leone, 15 Bridges Street, Central

MO Bar

After a full day of serving breakfast, lunch, brunch, and other daily whatnots, MO Bar dims the lights and gets ready for after-work and after-shop patrons, setting the dynamic atmosphere of the space at The Landmark Mandarin Oriental. Among the many beverage options that are available from the bar, the ice-crisp Vesper Martini stands out.

At this point, we have all heard the story of how the Vesper Martini was invented by Ian Fleming’s James Bond in Casino Royale. However, it seems to us that LMO’s Vesper Martini takes more inspiration from the religious definition of the word—an evening prayer, which is what this cocktail feels like when we finally sit down for a pick-me-up after a long day of work.

MO Bar, G/F, The Landmark Mandarin Oriental, 15 Queen’s Road Central, Central

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Lily Valette


Born and raised in the French countryside, Lily arrived in Hong Kong looking for an adventure. Passionate about books, she spent some time in Parisian publishing houses and is the author of an illustrated book about hair. Life in Hong Kong for her entails looking for seaside places to eat and a lot of hiking.