Karaoke is officially cool again. That means you no longer have to trek to the outskirts to make a total fool of yourself in front of your friends singing ‘90s hits you used to secretly dance to in your bedroom. Here are the absolute best karaoke bars in central Bangkok.
You've probably passed this half open-air, local-style bar surrounded by trees and wooden furniture at the front of Benjakiti Park in Asoke. Little did we know that you can sing there! Throw in an icy cold Leo for only B105 and some deep fried sour pork ribs with herbs (B100) and this is looking like a much better idea than that jog you had planned.
Rate: B1,200 gets you the smallest room (up to 10 people) from opening till closing time.
Songs: Mostly Thai with the big English hits.
Why you’d come here: You live around Asoke and want to try something a little different than the usual Sukhumvit bars.
20 Ratchadaphisek Rd., 02-229-5900. Open 6pm-1am.
This karaoke-slash-punch bar located in 72 Courtyard takes over what was once the swanky cocktail bar, Uncle. Now it sees two-storeys filled with karaoke rooms, where patrons sip on punch bowls and sing their hearts out—a small bowl for four people starts at B1,250.
Rate: There are no room rates but the minimum spend for their smallest room (up to 15 people) is B3,000 for three hours, or B5,000 for the whole night. Head there on weekdays from 7-9pm to take advantage of their 50-percent off promotion, which takes the minimum spend down to B1,500.
Songs: 60,000 Japanese, Chinese, Thai and English songs.
Why you’d come here: If you like drinking in places like Rabbit Hole but want to belt out some Destiny’s Child at the same time, this is for you.
1-2/F, 72 Courtyard, 72 Sukhumvit Soi 55 (Thonglor), 02-392-7636. Open daily 6pm-2am.
Ekkamai’s new Japanese superstore Don Don Donki has brought with it one of Japan’s largest major karaoke chains. They are family-friendly and welcoming of all ages, but leave the kids at home so you can make the most of their current promo: 50-percent off Chang beer all day and all night (from B90 to B45).
Rate: From B188/person for two hours (Mon-Thu 11am-4pm)/ B306 from 4-8pm/ B356 for evenings and weekends. The smallest room can host up to four people.
Songs: Almost 200,000 English, Thai, Japanese, Korean, Vietnamese, Malaysian, Indonesian and Chinese songs.
Why you’d come here: No other karaoke bar in Bangkok offers this much language variety.
Don Don Donki, 107 Sukhumvit Soi 63, 02-301-0905. Open 11am-3am.
A spin-off from Yes! R&B but without the crazy themed rooms. All three branches come at the same price, with room sizes ranging from five to a whopping 80-people—perfect for a company outing. They also offer a big menu of Thai dishes like deep fried chicken knuckles (B139) and spicy seafood salad (B179), as well as beer (B160/large Singha) and spirits (B1,790/JW Red Label).
Rate: B300/hour on Sunday-Thursday, or B400 on Friday and Saturday for a small room (one to five people).
Songs: 200,000 English and Thai songs (including lookthung).
Why you’d come here: If you ask any of your Thai friends where to go to sing karaoke, they’ll most likely recommend here.
1124/2 Narathiwas Soi 9, 02-675-4224. Open daily 6pm-1am
58/1 Sukhumvit Soi 42, 02-675-4224. Open daily 6pm-1am
78 Rama 6 Rd., 02-675-4224. Open daily 6pm-1am
Shakariki 432 Thonglor
Although there are, like, 7,289 branches of Shakariki around Bangkok, only the Thonglor one offers karaoke. Throw in a load of booze (Singha, B130) and Japanese drinking food, and this place really hits the spot.
Rate: B300/hour Mon-Thu or B400/hour Fri-Sun for a 10-person room.
Songs: Mostly Japanese songs with some typical classic English singalongs.
Why you’d come here: If you have a good knowledge of Japanese music, then this place is for you.
440/10 Sukhumvit Soi 55 (Thonglor), 02-381-8432. Open daily 11-3am.
This Ekkamai institution has been around since 2005. The entire place is decorated with antique and vintage bric-a-brac and furnishings, all which is for sale. Their Italian and Thai menu ranges from B100-400—the laab moo tod (B190) makes for a great drinking snack—while signature cocktails are B250.
Rate: B2,500 gets you a 15-20-person room from opening till closing.
Songs: All the top chart songs, both Thai and English, and the playlist gets updated monthly.
Why you’d come here: It opens at 11am, making it the perfect daytime hangout spot.
34 Ekkamai Soi 21, 02-711-5500; 086-994-4448. Open daily 11am-2am.
The karaoke dive bar to end all karaoke dive bars is cropping up all over town. The setup is basic: raucous bar downstairs (Asahi B120), karaoke rooms upstairs—where you can snare a pretty affordable, three-hour all-you-can-drink and all-you-can-sing deal. We’d plump for the original venue on the corner of Sukhumvit Soi 53, where in our experience they’re most accommodating.
Rate: B80/person per hour for a big room full of strangers, or B600/person for a VIP room (minimum five people) for three hours, which includes free-flow booze.
Songs: Over 200,000 Japanese, Chinese, Korean and English songs.
Why you’d come here: B600 for unlimited singing and booze? Say no more.
2 Sukhumvit Soi 53, 02-662-4549. Open 6pm-2am. BTS Thong Lo.
2/F, 58/14, Soi Thaniya, Silom Rd., 02-652-4936. BTS Sala Daeng.
595/15 Sukhumvit Soi 33/1, 08-9001-8532. BTS Phrom Phong.
Arena 10 is not all about Demo or Sway. This hidden gem has been open for almost nine years and it will make you forget everything you thought you knew about karaoke. There are 30 rooms, each with a different theme—and that includes costumes. You could be singing in a barber shop, a prison, or a fairytale-theme room. Food and drinks ranging from B100-B400.
Rate: B400/hour for the 'S’ size room (up to six people) on Fri and Sat, or B500 the rest of the week.
Songs: 100,000 English and Thai (including luk thung) songs that get updated weekly.
Why you’d come here: What could be a better than karaoke, alcohol and dressing up while sitting in a themed room?
Arena 10, Thonglor Soi 10, 02-392-3774. Open daily 6pm-1am.
This hidden dive bar in Surarak throws a kick-ass karaoke party once a month called Bathroom Singing. Select any song you want from Youtube and belt it like you’re singing in the shower. There’s no entry fee and cocktails are B150-200—get the Long Island Ice Tea.
41 Charoen Rat Soi 1, 089-889-8059. Open Tue-Sun 6pm-midnight.