When you visit Asia, you can satisfy many appetites. Whether you fancy touting the temples, crave noodles or durian, or are in search of some of the most beautiful beaches, you can find it all here.
For those of you looking for a cold cocktail to get your night started, Asia has that covered as well. Let’s take a tour of some of the most memorable places to grab a drink in the East.
Koh Samui, THAILAND
Our first stop is Thailand, where sunbathing and full-moon parties are on the top of many to-do lists. When it comes to the best parties and drinks, The Ark Bar Beach Club is the number one go-to for many travellers. It sits in the heart of Chaweng and offers a stunning ambiance.
There is a dynamic party vibe with food and drinks to cater to every palette. Practice your best dance moves because the DJ is sure to get you moving with the hottest hits until the wee hours of the morning. If the party scene is not your style, relax in one of the quieter areas in the resort, whether on the serene beach or in one of the expansive restaurants.
While you are there, ask the bartender for a bucket of Sangsom, the official rum of Thailand, which will cost you approximately ฿350 baht, a much better bargain than buying by the glass at around ฿90 baht. For those of you who don’t care for rum, we urge you to try it anyway as many non-fans have found a special place in their heart for its smooth taste and texture that is often mistaken for a brandy or whiskey. Sip it alone or add a splash of Coke or Sprite with a lime. Paradise!
The Ark Bar Beach Club is the spot for backpackers, single people, and those looking for a place to have several cocktails and let their hair down from sunrise to sunset. Also, the reasonable prices make room for a lot of fun.
Next we head to China, where we have found the best spot for margaritas — that’s right, margaritas. Located in Shanghai, Mayita’s is more than just food and drinks, it’s an experience. The restaurant is decorated in warm colours coupled with Mayan-inspired accents that seem to bring you out of China for a moment and into a new world. Don’t be surprised if you end up laughing and chatting with the staff who bring life to the place. During the warmer months, the outdoor patio is a party favourite. You may have to stand in line to take a photo as the immaculate view, which gives you a peek at the Bund, is a hit for engagement and family photos.
Go in hungry, thirsty, and ready for Mexican dishes with a Californian twist. Mayita serves brunch, lunch, and dinner with an extensive tequila and wine list. For an explosion of flavour, try the garlic jalapeno quesadillas, or pair your quesadillas or tacos with a margarita made any way you like: on the rocks, frozen, classic, or flavoured for only 58 RMB. If you want to make your night extra special, step back into China and have your server bring you a China’s own, Baijiu (10-20 RMB).
The Mayita is a location for those who love unique views, mouthwatering Mexican food, and stellar margaritas. It is the norm to see people from around the world of all ages having a blast, without a care in the world.
Phnom Penh, CAMBODIA
Only a tuk tuk ride away from both the Royal Palace and the riverfront, G Mekong Hotel, welcomes guest with smiles and an ambiance that lures you in to unwind and relax. Plan to pause a few times when you walk in and enjoy the show-stopping artwork and decor. If you find it is a bit too hot outside, head to the roof where you will be met with a pool overlooking the city and a bar ready to serve you food and drinks at your convenience.
The hotel has a list of cocktails that are sure to meet every travellers’ needs. The showstopper for us is the Rose Martini, by far. This picture-worthy beverage is served beautifully with a stacked colour effect and topped with a sprig of mint and a cherry. The first sip is like heaven and every sip thereafter will help you forget all your troubles. Expect to pay about $10 to $15 USD for this baby, but it is worth it. If martinis aren’t your thing, opt for a glass of Cambodia’s Sombai ($5 to 10 USD), which is Khmer for: “some rice, please.”
Enjoying a Rose Martini at the rooftop pool is purely magical. The G Mekong Hotel is intimate and ideal for those seeking serenity. Business travellers, parents looking to get away, and couples will find this cosy spot a satisfying hideaway.
No matter what your travel style or budget, Asia has something for you: make merry in Thailand, spice things up in China, de-stress in Cambodia and toast to great drinks, great company, and great Asian drink spots.