2/F Chater House, 8 Connaught Road, Central. Tel: 3583 2828. The 5,000-sq-ft terrace is the star of the show at the sister bar to Armani/Aqua restaurant; take in the views from cosy, candlelit seating. Not so impressed by the signature cocktails, the classy wine and spirits selection more than compensated. Recommended: Dom Perignon Oenotheque 1996 (HK$5,200 a bottle).
Biergarten German Bar and Restaurant
G/F, 5 Hanoi Road, Tsim Sha Tsui. Tel: 2721 2302. This convivial, raucous institution has an inviting if kitschy atmosphere. Stick to the German beers and usual cocktails. The sausages are pretty good. Recommended: the Thai sunrise (HK$68), a twist on the tequila sunrise.
1/F Wo On Building, 8-12 Wo On Lane, Central. Tel: 2525 3599. An atmospheric, whimsical place with eccentric touches. The lounge's drinks list is extensive, with a champagne selection that stretches to a HK$17,800 bottle of Veuve Clicquot. Recommended: the G6 (HK$90), a blend of raspberries, vodka, Chambord and pineapple puree.
28/F Crowne Plaza Hotel, 8 Leighton Road, Causeway Bay. Tel: 3980 3300. The vibe: this rooftop bar is sleek, stylish and far from understated. Inside it's bright and glitzy, with a circular bar and glass windows on either side, one of which leads to the venue's real gem - a wood-decked terrace. Recommended: the J-Cube cocktail, made with vodka and crushed strawberries.
The Excelsior, 281 Gloucester Road, Causeway Bay. Tel: 2837 6782. This unpretentious English-style sports bar with unobtrusive TV sets is a great if noisy place for chatter, drinks and food. Recommended: the Peachy Ice tea is a potent trip round the top shelf of the bar.
G/F, 48 Wyndham St, Central. Tel: 2522 8318. A breezy, inviting space in neutral and beige tones that feels intimate, the bar has a wine-heavy, girly-cocktail dominated drinks list balanced by a few heavy duty drinks. Recommended: Lambloch Estate's South Australian Shiraz (HK$52).
G/F, 24-30 Ice House Street, Central. Tel: 2810 9902. A sleek interior, bass-heavy sounds and eye-catching visual effects make for a serious clubbing experience but also mean spending serious money. The small number of beers is made up for by the ever-changing range of premium spirits and home-infused vodka based cocktails. Recommended: the Sawaadini lemon grass and kaffir lime vodka with ginger and chilli.
2 Lower Albert Rd, Central. Tel: 2521 7251. The ground-floor bar is a hip hangout for the city's arty crowd, regularly offering great live music, while the roof bar is a bit rough around the edges but offers a casual alternative for those wanting to enjoy the nighttime sky. Recommended: the evening tapas menu offering chorizo, Thai fish cakes and braised wings.
Garley Building, 45-53 Graham Street, Central. Tel: 2543 1941. The Globe is a smart English pub, with one of the widest and best selections of beers in Hong Kong, as well as excellent pub fare. Recommended: Typhoon T8, which is brewed on Lantau Island.
13-15, G/F Lan Fong Road, Causeway Bay. Tel: 2577 7981. Made internationally famous by its role in a Wong Kar-wai film, it has been serving Hong Kong-style diner classics since 1962. It has kept its charms and provision of privacy in comfortable booths for all that time. Recommended: any of the classic cocktails at HK$39 each.
29/F QRE Plaza, 202 Queen's Road East, Wan Chai. Tel: 2907 0888. Habitat Lounge tries (too) hard to please but can be a romantic spot for a date. More than 100 cocktails, many of them fresh and fruity. Recommended: Richito (HK$70), made with light rum, lychee liqueur and Yakult.
Shop A, 101/F International Commerce Centre, 1 Austin Road West, Kowloon. Tel: 2972 2666. Once found, this quiet bar with glorious views is a tranquil spot for conversation. Recommended: the blend of ice wine, Yoichi whisky, cranberry juice and lemon called a Maple Route.
G/F, 2 Gleanealy, Central. Tel: 2537 2281. This chill-out bar away from the hubbub of nearby Lan Kwai Fong and Wyndham Street offers a casual place to unwind. Recommended: the impressive molecular cocktails such as the Mr Grey (HK$110), a refreshing martini made of crushed cucumber, apple juice, Earl Grey tea, gin and elderflower syrup.
2-3/F Lyndhurst Tower, 1 Lyndhurst Terrace, Central. Tel: 2522 2608. Spread over two floors, this New York loft-style venue incorporates a lounge, club and terraces spread over 12,000 sq ft. Classy but unpretentious. Recommended: the vintage Macallan whisky.
Inn Side Out
Sunning Plaza, 10 Hysan Avenue, Causeway Bay. Tel: 2895 2900. The peanut husk-strewn floor and throngs of regulars make for a relaxed atmosphere in a crowded beer hall with an extensive outdoor seating area. Come for a wide range of great, relatively cheap beer and great drinking food to match. Recommended: Trappist Westmalle Tripel Belgian beer (HK$42).
6/F LKF Tower, 33 Wyndham St, Central. Tel: 2810 6166. This slice of old-school cool comes courtesy of the people who brought us Volar and Halo. Recommended: the Elderflower Paloma, combining tequila, lime, grapefruit and soda water infused with elderflower.
The Living Room
6/F W Hotel, Kowloon Station. Tel: 3717 2222. It's easy to kick back and feel right at home in this sprawling, beautifully designed bar complete with board games and bookcases - just help yourself. Recommended: the awesome lychee martinis.
G/F The Landmark Mandarin Oriental, 15 Queen's Road Central. Tel: 2132 0077. This hangout spread over two levels offers some impressive signature cocktails. Recommended: the Asian Mind MOtini, with premium gin, muddled ginger, pink grapefruit and fresh lime juice.
1/F, 30-32 Wyndham Street, Central. Tel: 2868 6102. This deliciously decadent addition to the Wyndham Street scene is all comfortable relaxed hues, while the Central nightlife bursts into life around you. Recommended: the lemon drops (HK$76) and the Long Beach Iced Tea (HK$102).
M88, 7/F, 2-8 Wellington Street, Central. Tel: 2868 3762. An East Village-style pool bar, this members' club remains the coolest place in town to shoot a few balls. Recommended: when in a Manhattan-style bar, one must order the Manhattan.
25/F Prince's Building, 10 Chater Road, Central. Tel: 2537 1388. Indoor and (spacious) outdoor seating gives Sevva a nice edge, particularly given the incredible skyscraper views. Recommended: at Sevva it's the desserts which will steal your heart.
3-4/F L Place, 139 Queen's Road Central. Tel: 2915 1638. Spread over two floors, Shore showcases an interesting dual-concept theme: upstairs is the Onshore fine-dining area, downstairs is the Offshore bar with a 1,800-sq-ft terrace that exudes warmth and originality. Recommended: put your choice in the hands of mixologists with the Surprise Me! (HK$90) cocktail.
18/F Sheraton Hong Kong Hotel & Towers, 20 Nathan Road, Tsim Sha Tsui. Tel: 2369 1111. A welcome relief from the bustle below, the bar has a glamorous 1950s feel and is an elegant eyrie. Recommended: the kiwi martini ((HK$95), a show-stopping blend of vodka, kiwi liqueur and kiwifruit syrup.
G/F, 52 Wyndham Street, Central. Tel: 6768 5252. Our favourite bar on Wyndham Street has just undergone a minor revamp and is as chic and sophisticated as ever, as long as you stick to spirits and cocktails and don't bother with the wines and beers. Aside from the signature and Grey Goose-based cocktails, stand outs include Patron Anejo tequila. Recommended: the W Spice, a buttery concoction of butterscotch schnapps, vanilla vodka, pineapple juice and freshly ground black pepper (HK$98).