If you are a trendsetter or white-collar, the bars in Beijing those are the places you must go. With maximum bars in the country and highest popularity, the city has already developed its own pub culture. Different from many metropolises, the bars in Beijing are wildly distributed. Apart from those located in different corners of the city, most of them are centered in the areas of Sanlitun, Houhai and the Workers Stadium.
The Bar at Migas
Migas has opened a fresh indoors bar downstairs. The room is quite spacious, with some interesting objects such as driftwood and corrugated iron smack of post-modern industrial chic. Apart from moving their legendary rooftop parties inside, Migas booked chilled-out live music nights throughout the week, garnering them a brand new and different sort of popularity. Except bottles like Asahi, Corona, Duvel and Kwak (30-50RMB), the cocktail listing is definitely an impressive mix of classics and new creations. The price of wine ranges from 45-115RMB for a glass and 215RMB upwards for a bottle.
Address: 6/F, Nali Patio, 81 Sanlitun North Road in Beijing
Opening Hours: Sun-Wed 6pm-2am, Thu-Sat 6pm-Late
Having a reputation for its techno and hard house music, it has attracted many young people. Albeit with the same shining decor and go-go dancers as its predecessor, Coco Banana is glitzy and appealing. The bartenders are Attentive and fast, and drinks are decently made. DJs generally play a far more refined set of house music to accompany the night. This place can get packed on when there is a special DJ playing. People come along to enjoy huge names playing inside the setting. But it’s worth coming along no matter who is on the decks. Drinks are pricier but this can be expected at all night clubs. Beers start off from RMB 30.
Address: 8 Gongti Xilu, Chaoyang District, Beijing
Opening Hours: 9pm-4am daily
As one of Beijing’s best live music venues, this much-loved venue maintains a list of top quality global and local acts. Besides many high-profile Chinese bands, it also attracts cutting-edge foreign bands, such as Maximillian Hecker, Steve Aoki and Simple Plan. It earned its status with its ex-cinema opulence and second-floor lounge. It’s a fantastic area to relax with a beer and listen to a band. The upstairs bar and sofa places are a chilled-out space when the music gets loud or you get tired. In addition, they produce an amazing Bloody Mary for just 35RMB, so you can drink while you’re enjoying the gigs.
Address: West courtyard former site of Duan Qirui Government, Zhang Zizhong Road 3-2, Dongcheng district
Opening Hours: 2pm to 2am daily
Run by the networking guru Brian Gale, Hidden Lounge looks better-suited to hosting events and private parties than as a place to hang out every other night. The place is a huge, cavernous basement inside a residential compound, more like a speakeasy. Beautiful decor, intimate seating, and excellent works of art adorning the walls make for a truly special atmosphere. Hidden Lounge provides 25RMB glasses of house wine (100RMB per bottle), 25-35RMB bottles of beer, and cocktails split into 25RMB (gin and tonic, rum and coke etc) and 35RMB (martinis etc) categories.
Address: Room 101, Bldg 8, CBD Apartments, Shuanghuayuan Nanli Erqu, Chaoyang district
Phone: 8772 1613
Open Hours: 6pm-1am daily
Brussels Restaurant & Bar
With the logo of the Manneken Pis, Belgium’s famous urinating statue, the Belgian-themed pub provides a large space for eating, drinking and watching sports on large-screen TVs. Brussels Restaurant & Bar is a roomy wo-story venue that can seat about 120. Regular beers are priced at 40RMB. There are a number of French and German bottled beers too, plus draught lagers (Stella for 30RMB; Tiger for 25RMB), house wines (35RMB a glass) and a range of cocktails (40RMB). As for other beverages, a 60ml Maker’s Mark Old Fashioned will be 60RMB while a smoky martini with Caol Ila will be 40RMB.
Address: 4 Gongti Bei Lu (around the corner from Q Mex), Chaoyang district
Phone: 6591 9525
Open Hours: 6pm-2am daily
Different from typical hutong bar, Chill provides a quaint and quiet place to stop after a hard working day. One side of the bar lies cheese plates, leather sofas and lounge music. On the other side, there is a comfortable room of floor-chairs. The prices of Tsingtao or Tiger bottles are only RMB20.The ginseng and blueberry-flavored North Korean liqueurs are 25 to35RMB. Belgian beers such as Kwak, Grimbergen and Achel are about 40 to 50RMB. Some powerful cocktails (all 45RMB) offer wide varieties.
Address: 2 Andingmen Xidajie, Dongcheng District, Beijing
Phone: 6405 9575
Open Hours: 2pm-late daily
Situated in an art-industrial setting, Xian enjoys a reputation of impressive classic cocktails and a high-class setting. There’s an open terrace with views of the park, a lively pub with beers in bottle or on the tap, and a relaxing surrounding to sit back and drink variety of whiskeys. The bar offers classic cocktails (all 60RMB) and ten types of martinis (from 60RMB). You can also find creative signature drinks here such as ‘Thymless Passion’, a gin, ginger and lime blend with fresh thyme (80RMB). With more than 150 options, the whiskey selection is definitely the show-stealer.
Address: East Hotel, 22 Jiuxianqiao Road Chaoyang District, Beijing
Phone: 8426 0888
Open Hours: Mon-Fri 5pm-late, Sat-Sun 2pm-late
With its relaxing lounge music, cozy leather sofas and unpretentiously stylish warm décor, Mesh creates a casual and intimate setting for young people after their long working days. The ground level bar in the Opposite House hotel allows you to see the crowds on the street from the large windows. The bar provides an extensive wine list and highly original cocktails. The Watermelon & Chilli Martini (RMB80) is one of the city’s best cocktails. The Passion fruit and lychee martini is 70RMB, beers go for 40RMB.
Address: 1/F, The Opposite House, Bldg 1, 11 Sanlitun Lu, Chaoyang district
Phone: 6417 6688
Open Hours: 5pm-2am daily