The streets of Thailand’s capital, Bangkok, can be a hectic place. That’s why, after a day spent haggling for the cheapest Singha singlet possible, you should kick back and enjoy a drink at one of Bangkok’s best rooftop bars. Drink menus are inventive and varied – it’s not uncommon for a cocktail to incorporate local ingredients like rice spirits, pandan or salmon. Yep, salmon. Somehow it all works – trust us.
Char Rooftop Bar
Ride the elevator up to the 26th floor of Hotel Indigo, and you’ll step out on to Char Rooftop Bar. Take a seat in one of the ‘infinity booths’ – glass walled seating areas that look out onto the Bangkok skyline.
Rooftop bars are notoriously expensive, but Char is an exception. You’ll fork out less than 200 Baht for a beer. The beers here are good, but the food might be even better. Go for the homemade pork crackling with Chiang Mai dip.
The hotel itself is one of the newest in Bangkok. Rooms are splashed with colour, and take their design inspiration from the surrounding neighbourhood. The 24th floor infinity pool is another hotel highlight.
Drink pick: Pandora’s Box – Chivas Extra, angostura, sugar and bourbon smoke, encased in a glass dome.
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Pathumwan Princess Hotel
Vista Bar Terrace
Organic cocktails and experimental shooters are on the menu here. Drink names are as creative as the drinks themselves – sip on a Shirley Temple or throw back a Monkey Brain. While rooftop bars are great, they aren’t so good at withstanding rain. In adverse weather, head inside to Studio Bar, a specialty cocktail bar.
Hotel rooms of the Pathumwan Princess are light and airy, incorporating natural timbers and feature walls decorated with Thai motifs. For the ultimate in luxury, opt for the Pathumwan Horizon Terrace Suite. The 70-square-metre suite is encompassed by an even bigger, 80-square-metre garden on the 29th floor of the hotel.
Drink Pick: The 1L Tequila Fizz – Pepe Lopez Tequila, triple sec, lime juice, syrup and soda water in a giant cocktail glass.
Millennium Hilton Bangkok
Yes, it is the Hilton, but don’t be scared off immediately. Drink prices at ThreeSixty Lounge are comparable to most other rooftop bars in Bangkok, and it’s not as crowded as you might expect.
The bar is made up of two separate areas – the more impressive being the 360-degree dome area looking out to Bangkok’s entire skyline. It might go without saying, but be sure to visit at sunset for one of the best views over Bangkok.
Drink Pick: Visit for Sunday Brunch and take advantage of the complimentary drinks between 11am and 12noon (we won’t judge).
Looking for a longer visit?
Bangkok Marriott Hotel Sukhumvit
Octave Rooftop Lounge & Bar
Step off the main tourist drag, onto Sukhumvit Road and take the elevator up to the 45th floor of the Marriott Hotel Sukhumvit. Trust us, you’re in for a good surprise when the doors of the lift open.
Taking its design cues from a New York terrace apartment, the hotel’s bar, Octave does well at blending the inside with the outside. Glass walls give way to 360-degree views of Bangkok, while vertical gardens create the sense of nature creeping into the building.
The bar’s location off the beaten tourist track serves as a plus – finding a table is (usually) easy. Dining choices are on par with the extensive drinks menu. Seafood features heavily among the food offerings. Platters or individual tapas dishes of oysters, sushi and sashimi are ripe for sharing.
Drink pick: Mango Sticky Rice – Kristal Thai rice spirit shaken with mango, coconut milk and pandan.
Lebua at State Tower
Sky Bar claims to be one of the highest rooftop bars in the world, and at 63 floors above ground, we’re not going to dispute this. The bar is located in Lebua at State Tower – the hotel that was home to the cast of The Hangover II while filming in Bangkok. The novelty hasn’t been lost at Sky Bar, where cocktails come with names like ‘The Hangovertini’.
Hotel suites are just as luxurious as the rooftop bar. Rooms look out over the Chao Phraya River – arguably some of the best hotel room views in the city. Go all out with the State Room, a regal suite with 360-degree panoramic views from the 67th floor.
Drink pick: The Hangovertini – Burroughs’s Reserve Gin mixed with house-made tonic and cucumber ice cubes.
Speakeasy Rooftop Bar
Split over two levels, the Art Deco-designed bar is everything the name suggests. Three different themed areas: The Lawn, The Blind Pig Cigar Lounge and The Terrace Bar, are split between the 24th and 25th floors of the M Gallery brand hotel.
Regularly holding prohibition-themed nights, the speakeasy brings an element of 1920s America to Bangkok. Local DJs also add to the vibe most Saturday nights.
Boutique hotel rooms mix European stylings with Asian architecture to create a unique atmosphere. Rooms are inspired by Buddhist cosmology, with names like Jatu, Dowadueng and Paranim.
Drink pick: Wasabi Martini – Green tea infused gin, shaken with elderflower syrup, wasabi, lime and salmon (yes, you read correctly, salmon).