Header image courtesy of The Upper Deck
Whether it’s beer pong, flip cup, or darts, we love a little friendly competition on nights out—but one of our favourite ways to unwind with friends is to shoot some good ol’ American pool. While there are plenty of LCSD facilities with pool tables, sometimes a game of pool is best enjoyed with a cold drink and a more casual atmosphere. From glamorous steakhouses to traditional English pubs and American sports bars, here are our favourite bars and restaurants in Hong Kong with pool tables.
Trying to secure a pool table on a busy night can often be a fool’s errand. Many bars are only equipped with one small table, so you’ll either have to wait, play with strangers who take it too seriously, or get bumped by revellers who seem to materialise just as you line up a shot. Avoid all that at Scratch, a Wan Chai stalwart that manages to fit five nine-foot-long Brunswick pool tables inside its L-shaped space, which are available by the hour.
Even if you tire of pool, you can also ask the friendly staff to set up a game of beer pong, flip cup, or stack cup—all it takes is a little silver tarp and a jug of beer and you’re good to go!
Scratch, 2/F, 89 Lockhart Road, Wan Chai | (+852) 2529 8080
In contrast to the glitzy clubs and cocktail bars below it in Lan Kwai Fong, Racks is a casual spot that often gets likened to a college bar thanks to its convivial atmosphere, hip-hop and rap music, and selection of games. Besides the compact beer pong tables, you’ll find three pool tables available by the hour here, two of which are positioned next to the floor-to-ceiling windows overlooking Wyndham Street.
The tables are smaller than regulation nine-footers and are surfaced with remarkably smooth baize, making them very beginner-friendly. Although they are well spaced out, Racks’ popularity as an after-hours spot makes it a little tougher to crack on with a game during busy nights, so keep that in mind.
Racks City, 2/F, Winning Centre, 46–48 Wyndham Street, Central | (+852) 2686 0400
Located around the corner from the main Lockhart Road strip, this two-floor location offers exactly what it says on the tin: billiards and darts. The lower floor has a street art vibe with murals and industrial fittings, while a more traditional sports bar (à la Hong Kong) awaits upstairs.
The tables are well-spaced out, which helps to reduce cue-bumping to a minimum, while electronic dartboards and beer pong tables provide a little diversity of entertainment. Being that Billidart is a full-service restaurant and bar, it is a popular after-work hang out with office workers in the area.
Billidart Restaurant & Bar, 7/F & 8/F, Kwan Chart Tower, 6 Tonnochy Road, Wan Chai | (+852) 2144 3010
While most facilities offering pool tables tend to fall into either the sports bar, dive bar, or specialist pool hall category, Tazmania Ballroom (or “Taz”) bucks the trend by being a glamorous Lan Kwai Fong club. A sister bar to Dragon-I and Cassio, this cavernous two-storey space in LKF Tower was superstar designer Tom Dixon’s first project in Asia, and boasts lustrous gold fittings, street art-style murals, and a chic outdoor patio. Taz has three pool tables and three ping pong tables, though you may not see all of them on some nights, as the club deploys an ingenious suspension system to hoist them out of the way for the dance floor!
Tazmania Ballroom, 1/F, LKF Tower, 33 Wyndham Street, Central | (+852) 2801 5009
This classic billiards bar has three locations across Kowloon, with the two-storey Tsim Sha Tsui being our favourite for its convenience and private corner tables. With its full-sized pool tables, dark wooden fittings, and stained-glass lamps, Joe’s nails the quintessential pool bar look while offering other more Hong Kong attractions like electronic dart machines, beer pong tables, and a foosball table. Besides a full range of standard drinks, there is a massive menu of both Cantonese and Western dishes to get you through the night.
Though we shed a tear when Blue Goose shut its Wan Chai location a few years back, the massive amount of space afforded by its new location on Lamma Island was a welcome change. Not only does the beloved British pub now have a beautiful outdoor terrace overlooking the lapping waves, but it also has a little (and free!) games room upstairs. It’s nothing fancy—just a small pool table with a few comfortable armchairs scattered around it—but that’s what we love about the Goose.
The Blue Goose Tavern, 47 Yung Shue Wan Main Street, Lamma Island | (+852) 2982 1688
This British pub in the heart of Wan Chai’s famed Lockhart Road has built up a loyal customer base through its wide and affordable food and drinks menus, as well as its spacious outdoor terrace. Besides its regular pub quiz nights, customers can entertain themselves with a game of pool. There is only one (small) table, which means that you may have to wait for your turn—but at just $10 a game, who cares?
Trafalgar, 5/F, The Broadway, 54–62 Lockhart Road, Wan Chai | (+852) 2110 1535
Providing a welcome respite from the bottle service spots and shisha bars around it, this Lan Kwai Fong live house-slash-sports bar is a laid-back spot for a game of pool and a drink before dinner. There’s only one table, so you’ll have to give it up (or play with a stranger) if other people clamour for a spot, but it’s free and well-located, so who’s complaining?
Rula Live, 58–62 D’Aguilar Street, Central | (+852) 6031 2116
Although Infinity may seem like a regular Thai restaurant at first glance, it is actually a hugely popular late-night hangout (which Chinese speakers may be able to figure out from its name, 狗毛, which means “hair of the dog”). Not only does Infinity offer beer towers, beer pong, and darts, but there is also a full-sized pool table. All of the above, combined with its affordable and tasty Thai food and late closing times (in the pre-Covid era, anyway) have made it especially popular with F&B workers coming off long shifts.
Infinity Thai Restaurant & Bar, 3/F, Cosmos Building, 8–11 Lan Kwai Fong, Central | (+852) 3188 3938
With two locations in Causeway Bay and Tsim Sha Tsui, this “refined sports bar” is a household name among the local crowd. Both locations have beer pong, pool tables, and darts machines, as well as game consoles, though Arena is more spacious and upmarket (by virtue of being slightly newer). There are often fun events and competitions, where winners can snag prizes like festival tickets, bar tabs, and even football merch.
Zerve, 9/F, Zing!, 38 Yiu Wa Street, Causeway Bay | (+852) 5688 2723
Arena Bar by Zerve, 1/F, 10 Knutsford Terrace, Tsim Sha Tsui | (+852) 9683 7083
With its exposed brick walls, slick, industrial-chic space, and collection of fine whiskies, Free House is up there as one of the fanciest sports bars around. Unfortunately, it does only have one pool table, but considering that Free House also offers private karaoke rooms, beer pong, and craps, there’s plenty of entertainment to be had.
Free House Bar and Café, 2/F, 88 Plaza, 88 Po Heung Street, Tai Po | (+852) 9561 4831
Being that this spacious steakhouse only opened a few months ago, its décor—and by extension its pool table—is in great nick. With beautiful Art Deco-inspired touches and a stunning view of the Tung Chung waterfront, this may well be one of the most picturesque places in Hong Kong to play pool.
The Upper Deck, Shop 101, 1/F, T Bay, 9 Yi Tung Road, Tung Chung | (+852) 2757 8889