Siqar

Siqar is a relaxing lounge located no more than 5 minutes from Nguyen Hue Street.

Siqar Lounge Outside

 

Here you can enjoy a glass of wine or beer as well as cigars from their extensive selection of Cuban as well as Non-Cuban cigars.

Siqar Lounge Wine Beer

You may also bring your own. Open from breakfast til evening.

Siqar Bar Cubar Cigars

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Air 360 Sky Lounge

Not far across from its sister club, Chill SkyBar, the Air 360 Sky Lounge is the newest addition to the Capella Entertainment family. More adult and more business than Chill, Air 360 centers around a multi-level, lounge-like space with plenty of seating and a 360 degree view of the city. In a nutshell, Chill entertains, Air 360 helps unwind.

Ambiance

The venue is split into roughly four levels, starting from the Sky Pool, where guests can reserve a private event space with a swimming pool. The Sky Deck and indoor area sit on the next level, offering an outdoor bar similar to Chill’s but with a bit more space to sit and lounge around. The Sky Gallery is the walkway between the upper level and the Sky Deck. Finally, the upper level offers a higher vantage and a more private space for intimate groups to chat. The Sky Pool runs “Dining by the Pool” from 5:30 p.m. to 10:30 p.m. with modern Vietnamese cuisine that focuses on fresh seafood, meat and vegetables.

Air 360 Skybar

Not as crowded or noisy as its sister venue, those who prefer Chill’s indoor area and generally an environment suitable for after-work mingling will enjoy Air 360’s multi-level options. Those who prefer indoor area will find a classy, quiet lounge to dine and wine in. The crowd consists of professionals, more mature couples, artists and creatives, and more; a more adult audience in general.

Air 360 Skybar Saigon

Service

Service can be expected to be on par with Chill, albeit more accommodating for those who simply want a drink and a view, and not an all-night bottle session. There is little pressure to purchase anything and staff is smiley and accommodating.

Air 360 Skybar

Drinks

Like its sister venue, Air 360 features a number of custom cocktails that incorporate elements of Vietnam with Western spirit practices. During our time we tried three signatures, recommended by the head bartender:

Air 360 Skybar HCMC Drink

White Night

Gin, cucumber, ginger, sugar, lime and port wine make up the White Night, one of Air 360’s infusions of Western and Eastern ingredients. The gin and cucumber make for a fresh, cooling palate, and the lime and port make for sour-sweetish element that give this drink an added kick. Gin lovers will be pleased.

Chocolate Martini

There is no vermouth, vodka or gin in this martini – but as this is Vietnam, regular naming conventions may not apply. Instead, you get a nice mix of dark rum, cacao liqueur and a chocolate liqueur, resulting in a Black Russian of sorts, a bit creamy and sweet.

Sexy Bar

A tropical blend, fruit juice lovers will find this up their alley with its well-masked alcohol. Rum, mango juice, orange juice, coconut, vanilla syrup and lime juice create a more-sweet-than-sour blend that goes down easy. It may be too sweet for some, but those who like fruity cocktails will enjoy the Sexy Bar.

What Can Be Improved

The signature drinks are more on the sweet and sour end. Those who prefer old fashioned, less-saccharine options will not find as many choices.

What People Say

With a little over 20 reviews at the time of writing, Air 360 Sky Lounge has a solid four bubble rating, with many people praising the experience, atmosphere and service. The 360 degree view seems to be a consistent favorite.

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Level 23 Wine Bar

Perched on the 23rd floor of Sheraton Saigon, Level 23 Wine Bar enjoys a comfortable spot among the popular rooftop bars in Ho Chi Minh City. Technically not a wine bar, Level 23 however has a more than adequate wine cellar.

View Level 23

You can catch the awesome Saigon sunset in a quiet, unpacked environment on weekday evenings. If the pinnacle of nightlife in Saigon for you is a great sunset view, a quite atmosphere and some smooth cocktails, then Level 23 should be on your must-visit checklist in Ho Chi Minh City.

Scenic view

The daytime view is quite a sight – the positioning of the bar ensures views of all the prettiest skyscrapers and a good chunk of the Saigon River, along with the many little colourful apartment blocks scattered everywhere. If you sit just right, the bar’s pillars should provide enough glare protection.

From 8 p.m. onwards, Tuesday to Sunday, Level 23 Nightspot opens its door to let the DJ music from the indoor lounge flow into the al fresco area. For those preferring a more sedate evening, Mondays are recommended.

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Atrium Lounge

Step into this comfortable setting, unwind and escape from the sights and sounds of the city. Offering an innovative assortment of signature cocktails and upscale food, located in the heart of downtown, it’s an ideal spot to meet up with friends or co-workers after a long day of work.

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GEM Lounge

With its sophisticated and relaxed setting located at the exquisite GEM Center, this modern lounge has something for everyone. From the decorations to the menu, all aspects of the GEM Lounge are centered around the creation of a warm and inviting ambience. Whether stopping by for a quick coffee on the way to work, for a lunch break, an afternoon tea or as a meetup spot after work, the GEM Lounge caters to all interests. The carefully crafted food, juices and drink options bring together a diverse group of seasonal favourites. Unwind from a day’s work, indulge in a delicious drink and relish in the live piano music from 7pm to 10pm everyday.

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East West Brewing Co.

The first thing you’ll notice entering East West Brewing Co. is the gleaming machinery towering overhead.

As the doors close behind you, shutting off the din of downtown District 1 and Ly Tu Trong street, your ears will be greeted with the cavernous acoustics of something like to a museum. The floor plan is open permitting a clear view of the Ho Chi Minh City brewer’s pièce de résistance: the mammoth gleaming tanks on two floors that make up the beer maker’s in-house brewery.

east west brewing

Show, Don’t Tell

In response to why the brewhouse was built to be a public-facing operation, East West Brewing Co.’s founders explained that craft beer’s relative newness and novelty in Vietnam created an opportunity for them to present the drink in a more intimate way.

At the time of writing, East West remains the only place in Saigon where the city’s thirsty can drink a craft beer made on site. Brewery spokeswoman Mimi Truong said that explaining the broader motivation of craft beer—the process, the reasons behind making it and drinking it versus a Tiger or Heineken— is a bit like telling a story.

east west brewing

Like all stories, it benefits from a visual aid.

Mimi used an analogy to explain. “Let’s say you’re eating street food outside. There’s some kind of relationship when you visually see them cooking and the hard work that goes into that process.”

“If we didn’t show the general public upfront what craft beer was about, then the understanding wouldn’t be there”, Head Brewer Sean Thommen said. “That’s the biggest challenge that we have as a country that doesn’t really have a craft beer culture behind it.”

“We could just be brewing the beer elsewhere and using the location as a taproom”, Mimi said. But “to actually have it laid down in front of you ... it introduces the concept of real brewers brewing real quality beer. It creates this relationship that’s more personal.”

“It’s one thing to tell you, it’s another to show you”, Mimi said.

How It’s Made

The untrained eye might get lost in the chromy gleam of the open brewery. The four tanks at the top are seated on another five polished 1,500 litre tanks at the ground floor.

It’s like looking at the engine of a car: the industrial beauty is enhanced by the mystery of how the Rube Goldberg machine-like invention works.

East West Brewing Co. offers tours of its brewery to learn more about how they make the beers.

During the tour, you might learn that the brewery is not just a two-storey machine, but also contains a third at the very top. It’s here that the recipe begins, crushing the grain in preparation for the mash.

From there, the malt moves to the second “hot” floor where the ingredients are combined with boiling water and cooked to specification. Then the liquid is moved to the kettle and boiled. This is where one of the most important steps for perfecting flavour happens: adding the hops.

east west brewing

Unfinished beers leaving the second floor are sent to the bottom to cool and condition in the 1,500 litre tanks standing at attention adjacent to the dining room floor. Depending on the style of beer, the unfinished brew could be in fermentation for a long time—the malty, pronounced Independence Stout calls for a resting period of a month and a half—or a short one, like the Summer Hefeweizen, which is ready for kegging and bottling in just over two weeks.

The brewery is built in levels like this to have gravity do the work of moving the tremendous liquid volumes from the top to the ground floor where the beers enter the fermentation stage, the last step in becoming drinkable, finished brews.

Changing Tastes

As Saigon’s beer lovers are getting to know East West Brewing Co., the brewer is also getting to know it’s audience and it’s shifting preferences better.

For example, when the microbrewery opened a year ago, the top seller was the Saigon Rosé. The light, fruity raspberry wheat beer was a popular first foray into craft beer for the local drinkers, a crowd typically doused with light lagers like Tiger and 333 at other places.

Then, “in just six months the palette changed so quickly”, Mimi said.

Nowadays, the brewery is now equally known and renowned for the Summer Hefeweizen, a citrusy, zesty take on the classic German wheat ale recipe, as well as their Far East IPA, and its flagship East West Pale Ale, a polished, hoppy beer that acts as ”a nice bridge” out of the land of industrial scale lagers, Mimi said.

east west brewing

The beer that carries the brewery’s name is an abridged reimagining of the company’s story. The East West Pale Ale combines hops from the US with hops in New Zealand. Similarly, East West Brewing Co. is the lovechild of a marriage between craft beer—a western convention—to a vision formulated by a US-raised Vietnamese entrepreneur Loc Truong and Sean Thommen, a US native leading the brewing operation.

“If they can come in and see it, smell it … they can understand why it’s not just a product”, Thommen said. “We have to show them that it’s … an experience, there’s a science behind it.”

Most importantly, he added “it’s fun.”

Your meal prep routine will forgive you if you head to East West Brewing Co. for lunch. With a wide selection of Saigon & San Diego based dishes ranging from VND50,000 to VND175,000+, your wallet won’t likely mind either. Choose from a menu that includes appetizers like the Lotus Root Palm Heart Salad or Steak Watercress Salad and a main course, like the Spicy Garlic Tiger Prawn Tacos, California Burrito, or Teriyaki Salmon.

Come back on Saturday and Sunday morning for brunch. For VND750,000+, you can indulge in the brewery’s Kegs N’ Eggs Weekend Brunch package, which includes free flow craft beer as well as creme brulee french toast, california eggs benedict, and carne asada steak tacos.

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