Are you a mustachioed Ari hipster with a mason jar of pale ale or a Soi 11 club kid with a B52?
Now that nightlife is back and Bangkok is swinging again, we thought we’d have a little lampoon of Bangkok’s barhoppers—and ourselves.
Ari: Before it Was Cool
What’s the point of being a hipster if you’re trying to be a hipster? The Ari class of corduroyed faux bohemian can be spotted mid-trilby tip at bars serving craft beer so thick you can eat it with a comb—served from a mason jar of course.
Thonglor: Money For Nothing
Are you nouveau riche or aspiring nouveau riche? Well, this is the hood for the luxe but lacking party kitten with daddy’s credit card and Mercedez. Sure, you’ll find a few pilot fish swimming around the dive bars, but this is the natural habitat of the Gucci bag sharks. But, the fun they can’t find is tucked into the dive bars who can barely afford the rent.
Sukhumvit Soi 11: The Same DJs
Club kids on a budget call Soi 11 home. The area was just starting to pick up before the pandemic hit—with Hemingway’s and (the late) Find The Photo Booth—and once again the beautiful are getting their techno fix on this Soi among the north Nana foreigner crowd who think they’re getting a taste of “real Thailand.”
Charoenkrung: Witness Me!
Years ago, it was Thonglor, now it’s Charoenkrung. What’s the point of drinking if no one’s looking? Put on the designer Hawaiian shirt that makes you look effortless while you dance at Tropic City like nobody's watching—even though you lowkey want everyone to be watching.
Langsuan: Wallet is Willing, but the Flesh is Weak
Amongst the galaxy of stars from the high-end hotels on Langsuan, the style here makes the Thonglor bar hoppers feel like hillbillies. The drinks are expensive and the views are high, but is anyone actually having any fun?
Khaosan: The New Brew
After the refresh and the Covid-19 apocalypse, nowadays it’s for Thai university students chugging cheap drinks out of a bucket—think plastic chairs and gap glaem. It’s still for partying on the cheap, but with new places like Bar Darn and Mischa Cheap, who knows what will become of it next.
Sukhumvit Soi 4: Not in Kansas Anymore
Millions of column inches have been written on the pot-bellied right-wing sex criminals that infest Soi 4. But there is a perennially funny class here: The foreign couple who wanted a central, cheap hotel because flights are so unbelievably expensive but instead got…Soi 4. You’ll find them staring into their drinks aghast—because they dare not look elsewhere.