Header image courtesy of Adrien Olichon (via Unsplash)
Clarke Quay is Singapore’s historical riverside quay, situated in the Singapore River Planning Area, upstream from the mouth of the Singapore River. The area is brimming with things to see and do, from chic bars and clubs to family-friendly day activities. However, if it’s the views you’re after, the neighbourhood is famous for its variety of sophisticated rooftop bars, which showcase the city lights in all their glory. Here are the best rooftop bars to try in the neighbourhood for drinks with a view.
Situated on top of the iconic National Gallery Singapore, Smoke & Mirrors is a rooftop destination boasting panoramic views over Pandang playing field, Esplanade Park, and the picturesque Marina Bay. Leave your work and worries behind while you're on this open-air rooftop, where you can sip on the famous petite Pony Express cocktails, crafted by the expert bartenders. The venue is decorated in sleek, modern furniture, with the sculptural bar being the main centrepiece—and, of course, the unobstructed view. There’s also a winning selection of bar bites. Be sure to book in advance—it gets busy (for good reason).
Smoke & Mirrors, 1 St. Andrew's Road, #06-01 National Gallery Singapore, Singapore 178957 | (+65) 9380 6313
Known as an oyster and gin bar, Southbridge rooftop bar offers more than its extensive drinks selection and gourmet shellfish. In fact, it’s said to have the best views of the Singapore River—to be fully appreciated from its outdoor rooftop space. Gaze at the riverboats as they meander along, making their way to Marina Bay Sands, or watch the nightly light show from the skyline behind. Experience deluxe dining at its best, with an oyster in hand. If that’s not your thing, there’s also a selection of bar nibbles including sliders and grilled sandwiches. Whether you choose to sip on bubbly, wine, cocktails, this cosy space is a must for Singapore first-timers (and beyond).
Southbridge, 80 Boat Quay, Level 5, Rooftop, Singapore 049868 | (+65) 6877 6965
Serving “equatorial classics,” 1927 Rooftop Bar is known for its extensive range of rum-based classics, as well as an admirable rooftop setting. Nestled within So Sofitel Singapore, the luxurious cocktail bar exudes an old-meets-new aesthetic and is named after the building in which the hotel was built. Although the bar is only on the sixth floor, its terrace showcases its nearby buildings in a new light. Come here to admire sunset after work, and take some photographs whilst you’re at it.
1927 Rooftop Bar, So Sofitel Singapore, 35 Robinson Road, Singapore 068876 | (+65) 6701 6800
Decked in chic timber furnishings, Fry Rooftop Bar is located in the heart of Club Street, on the roof of Unit 96. The venue is famous for its enticing happy hours, where city dwellers pop in for a glass of wine or two. With panoramic views of the city, Fry invites guests to stargaze and catch the occasional firework displays, whilst chatting with good company and cheers-ing to good memories. There’s even a Bingo competition every Wednesday if you’re up for it.
Fry Rooftop Bar, 96B Club Street, Singapore 069464 | (+65) 8418 5995
If you’ve yet to visit Sum Yi Tai, put it on your to-do list now. The hidden gem is nestled in the midst of the CBD, and follows an oriental-inspired theme. Separated into two parts—the rooftop, and the ground floor—the bar-and-restaurant welcomes you at the entrance with a neon-pink lit tapas bar and a pair of flying dragons. Take the lift up to the highest floor, where stunning skyscrapers cocoon the space. Diners and drinkers come here to marvel at the stunning view, whilst drinking refreshing cocktails and snacking on dim sum tapas. The multi-concept dining spot is reminiscent of Hong Kong eateries from the 80s, lending a grunge-cool aesthetic to its interiors.
Sum Yi Tai, 25 Boon Tat Street, Singapore 069622 | (+65) 6221 3665
Transport yourself to tropical Bali at Potato Head Singapore. With an outpost in Hong Kong and its flagship in Bali, you pretty much know what to expect at this trendy city escape. Boasting a cool sunset backdrop, the rooftop is decorated with an abundance of plants and flowers. Try the exotic cocktail flavours, including the popular Zombie drink, which will definitely take the edge off. There’s also a range of sharing snacks, including the Miso Dirty Fries and the scrumptious Broc Party. If you’re hungrier, try the Impossible burger.
Potato Head Singapore, 36 Keong Saik Road, Singapore 089143 | (+65) 6327 1939