Friday, February 27, 2009

After Six Chillout @ Sanctuary Bar

Sanctuary Bar is one of the place I frequent most for drinking (and clubbing). The name Sanctuary is pretty apt as it provides an avenue for people to relax, destress and have a good time after a tough week at work or school.

Sanctuary Bar establish itself with a concept of '1 Place, 4 Themes' or in coffee terms, we'll call it the '4-in-1' mix. Many clubs and bars are following suit, most recently Quattro @ Avenue K which plays around the 4 seasons- Winter, Spring, Summer and Autumn.

The 4 concepts that builds around Sanctuary Bar, the umbrella name for the whole premise in The Curve creates a complete F&B outlet,
  • 'Sutra', the Thai restaurant;
  • 'Bar Cocoon', the clubbing floor;
  • 'Bar Papillon', the al fresco bar;
  • 'Ice Bar', a -15 degrees bar.

My friends and I would normally be at Bar Cocoon, for a night of intoxication and exercise but we didn't feel like getting high and sweaty that Valentine's evening (also because Laundry Bar was full). We went to the next and closest bar, which would be the al fresco side of Sanctuary, Bar Papillon.

Bar Papillon offers the usual mix of cocktails, wines, and selection of liquors. Prices are pretty standard as well, ranging from the cheapest about RM25 for a cocktail to a few hundred for a bottle of liquor and wine. Plus, the size of the drinks were pretty generous. I was on an alcohol abstinence that night (in fact I still am, haven't had a drop of alcohol after the free flow at Pernod Ricard's dinner), so I opted for the much cheaper and healthier option of Fruit Punch (RM10).

The ambience was ok. We were seated at the walkway to the club, so we could see and observe quite alot. It's interesting to just observe the crowd, from the way they dress to the people around them, level of drunkenness, behaviour, level of good looking-ness etc. There was an incident that we witnessed and we found it so appaling and I have to blog about it.

It was about 1am that night, there were still many hanging around the dance floor and outside the walkway when we spotted a family of mid aged aunties (really aunty kinda aunties), an ang moh man and 3 kids (look less than 8 yrs old) arriving outside the club, maybe just after a romantic Valentine's family dinner. Then the aunties and ang moh proceeded to the club leaving the 3 kids at the guidance of 2 other adults. About an hour later (2am), the aunties came out and the couple looking after the 3 kids left, bringing 2 of the kids along, leaving a little girl behind, no more than 6 yrs old. Aunties United and Mr Ang Moh then was seen puffing in front of said little girl hesitating whether to bring the little girl into the club.

/cue for WTF in unison

It seemed everybody wants to have fun and nobody wants to take responsibility of the little girl. Later we saw Aunties United negotiating with the bouncers to bring in the girl to the club. Bouncers initially said no but later gave the ok sign, much to the dismay of another stranger patron who protested the move. Plan failed and later one of the aunties stayed behind while Aunties United and Mr Ang Moh went in to continue having fun. By now all of us watching the whole scene were already WTF-ing. Poor little girl was yawning and looked so lost, and it was already wayyyy past her bedtime.

Eh, but I digressed. The above is Bar Cocoon. And that distinctive head is Param, my night out kaki who left me for Tasmania. Hello Param! :DDDDDD

To get into Bar Cocoon, there's no cover charge but you'll have to open a bottle to get yourselves a table or just buy drinks. Since there's no way the bouncers can identify paying and non-paying patrons, one can always try to sneak in when it's crowded!

The Ice Bar, if I'm not mistaken is the first of its kind in Malaysia. It is tied up with Smirnoff Vodka, with the tagline of "Bringing Russia to You". I read that there are a few ice bars like this (only bigger, better and colder) in Russia, and some European countries. I've always wanted to pay a visit here and I did! In fact, I've been in the Ice Bar twice :)

To enter the Ice Bar, you'll have to purchase either a neat shot (comes in test tube form, RM20 per shot) which will entitle you 10 minutes in the bar or open a bottle which entitles you for 40 mins. A bottle can also admit 4 other friends with you. Smoking is obviously not allowed. And the club provides winter jacket but trust me it's just as cold. Brrrrrr...

The Ice Bar claims to be have a temperature of -15 degrees. I felt like a piece of ais krim potong after 5 minutes. The shot of vodka didn't help at all!

As you can see from the pictures, everything is made out from ice. It's so cool (pun intended). But I feel the bar should provide those hot water packs to keep your hands warm because after 5 minutes my fingers were freezing no matter where you try to hide them!

Overall, I think Sanctuary is a valued place to go if you're too lazy to go all the way to KL and/or looking for an after party place to hang out. What I really like about Bar Cocoon is the DJ spinning pop and R&B genre. Also, drinks at Bar Papillon come in big glasses. The Ice Bar provides that unique icy experience for most of us who dream of drinking in a winter environment.

The only area we have not been to would be the restaurant, Sutra. I promise I'll make a visit there soon and update on this review.


The Sanctuary
Lot 151 & 151A,
1st Floor, The Curve,
Mutiara Damansara.

[disclaimer: Live to Eat or Eat to Live does not promote heavy drinking and regular night outs. If everyone knows their limits and have some sense of responsibility, the night scene would be a much safer place for all. Party hard but drink responsibly, kthxbye!]
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