Cleverly camouflaged and often situated in secluded areas, speakeasies are discovered by the adventurous. You may be surprised, but Kuala Lumpur has a number of these cool bars for the curious to explore. Here is a round-up of unique ones:
Picture a classy, gentlemen’s styled bar infused with wooden finishing. Tate is located on the ground floor of the luxurious Intermark Hotel. Once you spot the lamp in shaped of a hat, you are at the entrance. Give the white wall a push and you will meet with a knight, and beyond him is Tate. You will be greeted with the dim lighting and a light lingering scent of whiskey and cigars.
The pricing here is on the premium side, but you will not be disappointed with the selection of whiskey, wine and cocktails.
So kick back on a leather couch and enjoy your drink in style.
Ground floor, The Intermark, 182 Jalan Tun Razak, Kuala Lumpur.
2. Blue Elephant
This is one of the new kids on the block. Blue Elephant, though newer than its fellow speakeasies, has easily become popular among the young working crowd. Situated in Damansara Heights, this gem can be found above the popular Italian restaurant, Neroteca. Go up the flight of stairs lined with movie posters and you will find a huge bookcase. Pull this to the right and a buzzing bar is revealed.
This silver-screen themed bar does not host many seats so be sure to get there early or book a table.
The vibe is anything but quiet, expect to mingle while the DJ spins some cool tunes. An array of drinks are served here and their cocktails are beyond creative. Give their signature ‘Blue Elephant’ a shot, it is not often you find a delicious blue cocktail infused with Chardonnay!
15 Plaza Damansara, Medan Setia 1, Bukit Damansara, 50490 KualaLumpur, Wilayah Persekutuan Kuala Lumpur.
3. Omakase + Appreciate
Omakase + Appreciate is hidden in one of the most unassuming places. Most people will not voluntarily open a ventilation door and the one at the basement of Bangunan Ming Annexe is not any different. But if you do open this uninviting door you will be surprised to find a cosy little bar.
The experienced star ‘mixologists’ are Chong Yi Shawn and Karl Too and each week the duo will craft a unique menu so visitors are never bored with the selection.
If the drinks are still not to your liking, they are more than delighted to create a personalised one for you! If you are looking for quality drinks and a simple and quiet environment, this compact spot is your best bet.
LG, Bangunan Ming Annexe, Kuala Lumpur.
No one would expect a guesthouse to be turned into a bar, but that is exactly what Barlai is. There is certainly a hipster vibe radiating from this vintage styled bar in terms of design and drinks. Where else can you find an alcoholic ‘milo dinosaur’?
Their doors open early so if you fancy happy hour after work, you are more than welcomed.
Barlai often hosts vintage bazaars selling old-school items like vinyl, posters and clothing.
3 Jalan Sin Chew Kee, Bukit Bintang, Kuala Lumpur.