Wirld.com wizzes though a Gay Guide to Singapore
Singapore is a tropical island of Thailand and Malaysia and a popular stop of point on the way to Australia. It’s a swanky shiny 21'st century city with a very international vibe and well worth a visit. Wirld.com had a couple of stops here on the way to and from Australia for the Sydney Mardi Gras. So what does Singapore have to offer the gay traveller ?.
What to see in Singapore
It hosts some amazing gardens that are well worth the time and offer a great mix between the busy hot city and a calmer cooler green oasis. The famous ‘Gardens by the bay’ are huge and a massive tourist draw so its best to beat the crowds and get in early.(www.gardensbythebay.com) The Singapore Botanical garden with the worlds largest orchid collection is just stunning. If you like "flowery things" you will do well not to wet yourself with excitement, honestly its that good !.
The bay area boasts 5- star roof top bars with fantastic city views and Singapore is well known as a shopping mecca. All this on a tropical island that has to be one of the cleanest and downright best looking cities in Asia. The Marina Bay Sands Hotel is right next to Gardens By The Bay and worth a stop. Best time to visit is sunset for amazing views.
Obviously ‘when in Rome ‘ it would be a crime not to try the legendary ‘Singapore sling ‘in its native surroundings in the Raffles hotel. Touristy but all good fun !. The famous ‘Long Bar’ is the bar it originated in but the whole hotel is currently closed for refurbishment and is due to reopen in September 2019.(www.raffleshotel.com)
Hopefully, your visit will be better than the last tiger that visited, he was shot under the billiards table !. But these days stumbling from the bar after too many Singapore slings will be your biggest challenge, not tigers.
Best rooftop Bar Views in Singapore
The Marina Bay Sands above is a fab spot to enjoy a cocktail whilst waiting for the sun to set. Only residents can use the pool but the views from the bar definitely make it worth a stop. Although everyone raves about the Marina Bay Sands we found an even better bar in the adjoining tower, LAVO Bar in tower two. marinabaysands.com Lavo Italian restaurant and rooftop bar.
Lavo is in the tower next to the Marina Bay Sands Hotel ,tower two. They had a brilliant "buy one get one free" on cocktails when we stopped by. It was a miracle we managed to get back to the airport !. The view is simply stunning and one of the best in the world and definitely the best in Singapore and really not that expensive.
Above is the view from one side of the LAVO rooftop bar. Below is the view from the opposite side. Get in early to catch a table by the bar then wait for the sunset and the amazing view at night whilst slurping cocktails. Great Fun !.
Lantern is stylish classy and not cheap but wow the view . Located on the 6th floor at the five star Fullerton Bay Hotel, by the waterfront and opposite the Marina Bay Sands complex.
CÈ LA VI At Marina Bay Sands, Southbridge: Find Southbridge by looking for the big white Ballon above the bar. Just remember that the entrance is not on Boat Quay, but behind the building, from South Bridge Road, after 7-Eleven. Great views and brilliant cocktails.
What you need to know in Singapore
So before you unleash yourself on the unsuspecting citizens of Singapore its best to mention at this point that one of your favourite hobbies is actually illegal here. No not line dancing, homosexuality!
So what's the deal? Well in practice it means Singapore has gay bars, clubs, and saunas that seem to operate without to much trouble. But ultimately it's technically illegal so be mindful. There's currently a legal challenge against this by the Dj ‘Big Kid’ with some civil legal experts saying he has a chance , but recent polls show 55% of Singaporeans still supporting the current ‘ban’.
Gay Bars in Singapore
Most of the gay bars and clubs in Singapore are focused around the famous Neil Street (Chinatown, walking distance from Outram MRT). Just rock up here after the sun goes down and you’ll find several gay-friendly venues. Singapore also hosts regular gay parties, but again, these come and go so ask around, they are a friendly bunch so it won't be a problem. We stopped off for a ‘quick’ drink in a nearby karaoke bar and left 4 hours later. We were practically held hostage until we sang a few tunes whilst being bought drink after drink. Fun sociable bunch the Singaporean's and very decent not to mention our tone- deaf attempts !.
Tantric Bar / May Wong’s Cafe / Backstage Bar
78 Neil Street. Tantric Bar
The most popular gay bar in Singapore. Tantric gets very busy on Friday and Saturday nights with party boys who down a few cocktails before heading to Taboo.
The great combination of reasonably-priced drinks (e.g. double-shot house pour for SGD10/glass) makes the open-air courtyard and indoor bar a great place to start your night out.
145 Neil Street
An LGBT-friendly bar that sits above The Populus Coffee & Food Co, a cafe.
SuperNrml serves signature cocktails and classic cocktails and food from The Populus Cafe. Enjoy happy hours 6pm till late and weekly promotions.
Dorothy's (formerly Backstage) is another gay gem in the Chinatown area at 13A Trengganu Street.
Dorothy's has an all you can drink evening for SG$50 (£23/$36) on Friday and Saturday evenings. We enjoyed perhaps one too many Singapore Slings at Dorothy'.
43 Neil Street
Nice gay bar in Singapore which is close to other options. Friendly and helpful staff who pointed us in the right direction when we were looking for other options. Locals drink Jugs of spirits with mixers. Avoid buying wine anywhere in Singapore as it is very expensive!
LAVO rooftop bar Sinapore