You’ve got your speakeasies, hidden art galleries and secret museums, now it’s time to skip the mainstream nightlife venues and go straight to where the coolest parties are at: underground clubs. Lucky for all you creatures of the night, Singapore’s nightlife scene jams on with live DJ sets, exclusive performances, and a whole lotta drinking. Whether it’s in a basement or tucked in an unexpected location, these subterranean spots are hot for a whole new party vibe and a night of euphoria.
Nightlife institution The Council knows just how to turn mundane spaces into epic rave fests. Cheekily named Tuff Club (we'd like to think it's a homage to the good ol' days of primary school TAF club), the pop-up nightclub is held twice every week. Follow its website and socials for first dibs on its next rager featuring guest DJs and their unmissable lineup of club bangers.
Housed in a dingy space that’s set with laser lights and a cage behind which the likes of Eric Duncan, Kaiser Souzai and Mat.Joe have spun, Headquarters by The Council plays host to its signature parties from Wednesdays to Sundays. Get your booze fix in the standing bar tucked in one corner of the venue while grooving to all manner of techno, house and disco, whether from guest DJs or residents Julien Brochard, KFC, Yadin and Eileen Chan (Cats on Crack) – who also happens to be one half of The Council.
Creative space by day, a super turnt club by night. Expect the space to be a beautifully quirky one where artists are invited to showcase their music and art, as well as a spot for creative minds and party-goers to mix. Music-wise, resident DJs helm the decks at Canvas to bring an avant-garde spin on the sounds of nu disco, house and techno – aiming for a cross between mainstream and indie – to the dancefloor. Look out for themed parties and regular anchor nights, plus a striking audiovisual experience here.
Kilo Lounge moved from its ulu, former home in Kallang Riverside Park – where alfresco sister restaurant Kilo Kallang still sits – to Tanjong Pagar where its entrance only accessible by a graffiti-smeared back alley. Meander a jungle-like walkway and a winding concrete tunnel as thumping beats pulsate, then step in for a night of hip-hop, techno, reggae, dancehall or dub. Much of its original charm has been retained, with unfussy concrete finishings and comfortable loungers adjacent to the bar and dancefloor, plus a unisex toilet for amusing – if cheeky – encounters.
Jazz things up at Cool Cats, the NCO Club's live entertainment lounge, which sees a rotation of international acts gracing its stage. Pass through the heavy wooden doors and lay eyes on the secretive speakeasy that exudes the enigmatic charm of the prohibition era mixed with contemporary chic. The theme of old meets new spills into the bar's offerings as well. Signature cocktails include a mezcal negroni and The White Lady, classic cocktails that are given a slight update by using better quality syrups and ingredients.
The newly launched Mao brings urban beats back to the underground space that was previously Kyō in the CBD. Let yourself go with its heady soundtrack of disco, garage, funk and soul, fused in with a dose of techno, trip-hop and broken beats. The venue hosts club nights Thursday to Saturday, including ‘Basement Soul’ house music every Friday. If that’s not enough subterranean drinking for you, unwind after the workday with happy hour all evening and live music specials. The kitchen serves fresh oysters, if that's your method of seduction.
As its name suggests, D'Underground is located at in the basement of the International Building at Orchard Road. Acting as both a bar and a nightclub, the low-key space hosts live band performances, DJ sets, and even drinking games to keep the night young. Stay 'till midnight when the party kicks in with surround-sound club bangers, stunning lighting effects, and light bites to keep you party animals energised throughout the night.
There’s no doubt that this nightlife hotspot is – dare we say – on fleek. Dedicated to all things hip-hop and R&B, this hole-in-the-wall Clarke Quay niterie opens its neon-lit dancefloor four days a week for bodies craving a dance fix. Down those $10 Jagerbombs, and catch resident DJs Cherish, Raw and Pandemic Duo helm the decks to bring you the freshest beats and bars in this wild space. Follow its Facebook page to be in the know of its next hip-hop jamboree.