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Record My Mind: Banal Records of a Pedestrian Life

Suffering and evil overwhelm me and I stew in my own juice. 

Tuesday, March 15, 2005

3/15/2005 11:51:00 pm - New Place In Town: Eski Bar

Via email, Chris alerted me today to a new interesting-sounding nightspot in Singapore:

Cold Bar Shiver as you drink at new ice-cold bar in steamy Singapore


Not only the drinks are ice cold at the Eski Bar, a new nightspot in tropical Singapore. The room

temperature is so cold that staff wear heavy coats and ski caps, and patrons get a 10 percent discount if they show up in winter wear.

The bar contains a decorated, industrial strength freezer, with the mercury ranging from minus two degrees Celsius (28
degrees Fahrenheit) to just above zero (32 degrees F). The goal is to attract thirsty clientele who need a break from the round-the-clock, sweltering, Southeast Asian heat.

So far, the gimmick is working. The directors of Eski Bar, which officially opened this month near Singapore's
Chinatown, plan to open another, larger outlet next month. 

It's a very clean look. They get a lot of women coming in groups,‘ said Violet Oon, a public relations consultant to
the bar project.

It's not a traditional idea of a night place. Everything is white and ice blue. If you go inside, it's like an igloo.

There's wraparound upholstery. Perhaps it's psychological, they feel cocooned from the world.‘

Eski Bar features a freezer‘ room with glass mosaic tiles on the bar counter, an alternative to a stainless steel
surface that might be sticky and painful for patrons' elbows. There's also a chiller‘ room, where the temperature is a more normal 18 degrees C (64 degrees F), and an outdoor area for those who can't stand the cold.

The decor features ceiling and wall lights shaped like melting ice cubes, as well as a transparent plastic curtain at
the entrance to keep out the heat. Beer and white spirits such as vodka are served ice cold, and one cocktail is called Sleeping Polar Bear.

Those involved in the project include Andy Lim, a former building contractor, and Andrea Teo, a television producer
This Singaporean blogger has pictures of how Eski Bar looks like. Sounds like a great place for people like me, who perspire too easily and too profusely.

Another news article from Today on Eski Bar:

TODAY - 3 March 2005
By Jeanine Tan

THERE'S a nightspot that brings new meaning to the term ''chill-out joint''.

The Eski Bar at Tanjong Pagar Road, which opened three weeks ago, is the first bar in Singapore to operate in subzero temperatures.

The bar is divided into two areas. The non-smoking Freezer area, where the temperature can drop below zero degrees Celsius, leads into the Chiller area, where smoking is allowed and the temperature is that of a very cold air-conditioned room.

While the idea of such cold bars is nothing new, it's a novelty in tropical Singapore. Indeed, you experience a bit of a culture shock when you're greeted by a blast of chilly air as soon as you step into the 750 sq feet bar from the muggy weather outside.

The bar plays chill-out tunes and can accommodate about 40 people. The good news? It has no cover charge.

The $120,000 Eski Bar is the brainchild of Elaine Teh, the executive director of Octopus Holdings, which also owns about 30 other small nightspots. She conceived the idea of a ''cold bar'' about two years ago, but it was only recently, after meetings with the innovation team of Asia Pacific Breweries, that the idea came into fruition.

''If two people have the same idea, it should be something good,'' said group managing director of Octopus Holdings, Andy Lim.

For Teh, vanity was her motivation in setting up the place. The self-confessed lover of hats and winter wear noted that many women own winter clothing, but rarely have the chance to wear them in Singapore. ''I've seen a lot of people come in with their coats. Even if customers don't have winter wear, we have spare ones for them. Women like this place because their skin won't get sticky,'' she said.

It's not only the fashion lovers who will get extra mileage out of the place. An incentive for drinkers is that beer stays chilly here. It also apparently isn't as easy to get drunk here.

''I'm not much of a drinker, but here I can have six martinis and won't get drunk. It must be the temperature,'' said Lim.

As cool as the bar looks — the all-white Chiller area is designed to look like the interior of an igloo — a whole lot of effort was put into designing it. For example, it was impossible to use steel for the bar top counter, because if customers placed their arms against the counter, their skin might freeze against the steel. Special heaters had to be installed so that the water wouldn't be too cold for the bartenders.

But it's certainly been worth it — what was meant to be a prototype has proven so successful that a second, bigger outlet will open in Circular Road next month.

Blogger C. said...

hey, thanks for putting it up. this Eski bar sounds very interesting. I definitely wanna visit it soon.  

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