Hong Kong’s best new bars

Story highlights

A wave of new concept bars has opened in Hong Kong in recent months

Rockabilly is inspired by retro car repair shops and tattoo parlors

For views, bar Above overlooks Ocean Park's cable cars and playing fields of Wong Chuk Hang

Le Dome de Cristal, world's first Cristal-branded restaurant, now open in Hong Kong

CNN  — 

Concept bars have popped up like daisies in Hong Kong, where big spenders are plentiful but competition is ferocious.

Thus, fads (and rental budgets) quickly burn out in this ever-changing city.

In other words, that amazing bar you hit up on your last business trip might no longer exist.

Looking for a post-meeting pint or a wild night out before you hop on a plane to head home?

Here’s a list of the hottest new bars in Hong Kong – ambiance and creative drinks included.


For those feeling nostalgic about a time when guys with greased back hair and gals in swing skirts rocked to Elvis blasting on a jukebox, there’s Rockabilly, a ’50s American bar that stands out from the chaos of Lan Kwai Fong.

Fashioned after retro car repair shops and tattoo parlors, the bar meshes American cool with rockabilly chic.

The concrete and exposed brick walls are covered in bright neon signs, vintage fixtures and hand-drawn charcoal tattoo designs.

Rockabilly carries a selection of craft beers from South Africa to Hawaii.

The menu also features slushies.

The Pink Cadillac is tequila based while the Blue Moon is made with white rum.

Rockabilly’s excellent range of craft beer, Rock ‘n’ Roll classics play list and simple but great menu has built a loyal following that flocks to the two-story venue.

“At Rockabilly we stand firm with what we are doing, it’s about the way of life and the attitude,” says manager George Po.

The bar gets crowded on $10 Tuesdays, Rock-A-Betty Wednesdays and Draft Thursdays.

Signature drink: The craft beer tasting bucket for HK$350 (US$45) comes with six bottles.

Rockabilly, 12 Lan Kwai Fong, Central, Hong Kong; +852 2869 0099

Little L.A.B.: Traditional cocktails with a Chinese twist.
Little L.A.B.: Traditional cocktails with a Chinese twist.

Little L.A.B.

Located in Soho, Little L.A.B.’s hook is that it uses Chinese ingredients in its cocktails.

“Instead of being trend followers, we want to introduce Chinese elements to the classic recipes,” says project manager Alex Ng.

The laboratory concept encourages bartenders to be innovative in evoking authentic Hong Kong flavors in every drink.

Keeping with the bar’s lab vibe, Little L.A.B.’s interiors are reminiscent of a sleek and refined home kitchen.

Signature drinks: The Newborn is made with Bacardi Gold & Oakheart rum, homemade Chinese ginger stew, fresh lime juice, fever tree ginger beet and tiki bitters, dressed with a quail egg and sliced ginger.

HK Tea Time is a play on Dai Pai Dong milk tea.

Little L.A.B., G/F, No. 50 Staunton St., Central, Hong Kong; +852 2858 8580

The Black Star

Located right across from the Sheung Wan MTR station, The Black Star follows the tradition of London bars located near busy tube stations.

When founder Dan Findlay opened both The Black Star and The Blck Brd, he wanted to focus on long-term service and consistent quality to avoid falling victim to Hong Kong’s short-lived fads.

The Black Star differs from its sister bar, being a working neighborhood watering hole that serves gastro-pub style food (notably a 6-ounce prime beef burger and pulled pork sliders) and a streamlined drinks list.

The simple metal and brick venue is small but maintains a relaxed atmosphere where drinkers can enjoy conversation.

“It’s everything I like about pubs minus everything I dislike about pubs,” says Findlay.

Signature Drink: Oak barrel aged cocktails, specifically the Old Smokey, essentially an old fashioned with a big chunk of ice and a lemon twist.

The Black Star, G/F 81 Wing Lok St., Sheung Wan, Hong Kong; +852 2399 0004

MORE: Best Hong Kong beer purveyors

Guay! is nothing short of chill.


Guay, Spanish slang for “cool” or “fantastic,” offers a laid back Latin American vibe.

It’s rapidly gaining popularity as a hangout in the friendly neighborhood of Tai Hang.

Guay! was inspired by founders (and old friends) Stephanie and Candy’s love for drinking and chilling.

The duo has hands-on involvement in everything from interiors to food (including Stephanie’s mom’s homemade Peruvian cookies) to the beverage list.

Inspired by Stephanie’s ancestors’ long journey to Peru by wooden ship in the 20th century, the interior and exterior are clad with wood while tile and concrete walls give the space a contrasting industrial feel.

The drink list includes creative cocktails and international craft beers; there’s a small snack menu offering tasty bar bites.

Signature Drink: The fittingly named Graveyard may go down easy, but it packs a punch. It’s a mix of an Island base, Everclear, vodka, gin, rum, tequila and a splash of craft beer.

Guay!, 9A Sun Chun St., Tai Hang, Hong Kong; +852 2618 8782


Walking through the heavy doors of Stockton is like stepping into late Victorian era London, complete with a dimly lit alley-like entryway and a narrow wooden staircase.

Founders Malcolm Wood and Matt Reid’s eye for detail and fascination with the period is evident in every inch of space.

The bar is furnished with antique chairs/tables and vintage baccarat crystals, all obtained from Parisian flea markets.

Stockton offers award-winning cocktails, boutique champagne and more than 150 whiskies.

The drink menu is loaded with anecdotes surrounding the origins of each cocktail and a list of “house rules.”