Reformatted 01 2013

Archives     Archives
Bangkok's Night Scene In Review

Asoke Plaza Smashed Again

01 March 2005
William R. Morledge
13 Night Market Closes
"Nouveau" Door Art

"Poster-Signs" take off
Rumor Of The Month
March's Follies in review


This Page

''CLICK To CLOSE this Page.

         On 04 February 2005, twenty-five bar beers (new and under construction) at the newly relocated Asoke Plaza were destroyed by demolition teams in apparent defiance of Court findings which were reported to have said the current Land Lessee could remain until such time as they could have their "Day In Court".   This 'day in court' was deemed to be this coming March, or at the latest, April (2005).   This is the second time in less than two months that wrongful and apparent extra-judicial action by the landowner has crushed this Night Entertainment Area.

         The first raid on Asoke Plaza by the owner and his minions was on 14 December 2004.   The owner's operating company using a Court order (for the adjacent piece of land !), and backed up by Thonglor's Finest and an officer from the Legal Enforcement Office entered the front section of property (at Asoke & Sukhumvit Roads) and ordered the occupants to evacuate the premises immediately and to take all their personal property with them.

         The occupants (bar owners) that were there, or that could be rounded up quickly were busily attempting to remove their personal belongings and bar fixtures when the wrecking crews went to work.   Quite a lot, but far from all of the personal property was able to be relocated to the rear (then called Asoke Corner) area, thereby avoiding destruction.   All of the bar buildings (structures) -owned by the bar owners- went under the hammer.   (See our lead story in the 01 January 2005 issue of MIDNITE HOUR in our Archives page.)

         The first Dec 14 raid took place in spite of the fact that the Land Lessee had obtained a legal ruling that Court-appointed officials would come down to evaluate the situation and make final judgment within a week's time.   The raid which destroyed Asoke Plaza, incredibly, took place before the scheduled evaluation (less than 48 hours after the Court made this ruling).

         The Land Lessee immediately appealed, saying that the rear area should be opened up to allow items that were evacuated from the front section to be removed by their rightful owners.   She was also buying time, as the court was still intending to make their evaluation visit on the 18th of December.
During the second raid, the fence was strengthened with welded cross-members, and signs, painted on hoods of old automobiles were welded to the fence.

         The Court in fact did make that inspection visit, along with a fleet of squad cars from the Municipal Police.   The result being that, not only would the land be made available to the Land Lessee and bar owners for access to their personal property, the Land Lessee was also advised she had a free hand to utilize the rear section (then called Asoke Corner, but now renamed Asoke Plaza) for anything she wanted (her interpretation).   This 'window' of temporary use was to extend to late March or April of this year, at which time a 'final' Court date would be set - and the lessee's status would be finally decided.

         The Land Lessee wasted no time in encouraging the owners of the destroyed bars to set up their bars again in this back section (to honor her 'contracts' to these original bar owners, and, of course, to get the rent money flowing in once again).   By New Year's Day, there were more than a dozen bars in operation again, many of them operating under the open skies, with nothing but a refrigerator, a bar, barstools and a string of Christmas lights.
The DANGER sign reads, "Construction Area - Danger - Do Not Enter"

         A month later, tents were erected over the exposed bars, and several bars were moving into as-yet un-demolished semi-permanent structures (and in some cases, moving into partially demolished structures).   In addition, there were brand-new bars (not relocated bars) sprouting up all through the compound.   The word that land was available for bar beers spread quickly, and at least four bar owners from the soon-to-close 13 Night Market were making deals with the Land Lessee to move in by the first of March (today).

         However, that is as far as it went.   Four days later, 04 February, the owner, this time under a different operating company, sent in heavy equipment and welders, much as Chuwit's Marauders did at Sukhumvit Square two years ago.   As with the first plundering in December, wrecking crews again ignored a Court-ordered moratorium and entered the premises, destroying a vast amount of personal property.   They literally plowed up the foundations, crushed the plywood beer bars, and stacked barstools in heaps around the compound.   None of the bar owners was allowed inside the premises to retrieve his/ her property - having been physically restrained by both a private uniformed security force and Bangkok's Finest on a 24-hour shift.
The former 8-Pak was plowed under - literally.   Large chunks of it's foundation now litter the area.

         And the great curiosity here is that the Press didn't have a single word between them to say about this second, more brutal plundering.   In that the loss of personal property was greater this time around, we find this absolutely staggering.   MIDNITE HOUR has made a complete photographic record of this second decimation (as we did with the first) - several of these photographs appear together with this article.   Other photographs will -at a later time- appear in the final history of this Night Entertainment Area, and will appear in our Maps & History page.

         MIDNITE HOUR has been interviewing several people on "both sides of the fence" during the month of February, and we heard much discussion as to who violated which Court Order, which of Bangkok's Finest were rightly or wrongly involved, who had the necessary itthipon ("influence") --and who didn't, who made all their Court appearances (thereby retaining 'right'), and who owed back rent to whom.   The veracity of even a small part of all this (from either side) will probably never be ascertained.   As is quite often the case locally, two precepts will, or have already been applied :
1. "What's done is done" (a corollary of Mai Pen Rai)
2. Influence.
Add to that the almost universal local trait of extremely short attention-span, and a year from now, no one will know what you are talking about - although they will remember that there used to be some bar beers here once upon a time...   

         That which remains undeniable fact, however, is that both times wrecking crews came to demolish bar beers at Asoke Plaza, it was the private bar beer owner who paid the price, who suffered the loss of property, and whose rice bowl was broken - while the land owner and the Land Lessor stood off at a distance and danced the dance of money and influence.   But we are not surprised are we, dear reader, after all we know where we woke up this morning, right?
This photo, taken from the Asoke Subway Station, shows plowed earth where several new tent-covered bars were under construction.   The structure still standing at the center-right is Spanky's Bar 1, and the structure at the rear is the 4-pak - both structures avoided destruction, but reman, of course, closed for business.

         See a complete listing of the 25 Night Entertainment Venues that were closed down and destroyed on 04 Feb below in March's Follies, and watch for our new maps, to come out sometime this month showing the devastation of the two attacks.

         Baseless rumors aside, this Night Entertainment Area has met it's 'final solution', and is the fourth such "Opportunistic" bar area to disappear in the last two years.   The term "Opportunistic" is used in this instance by MIDNITE HOUR to mean those Nightspot Areas which took advantage of the lull in building construction following the Economic Collapse of 1997.   Entrepeneurial businessmen leased these properties destined for large construction projects on short-term renewable leases, knowing that eventually -sooner rather than later- they would have to give up their leased land, returning it to the prime constructors.   The other Night Entertainment Areas to disappear these last two years were Sukhumvit Square, and Clinton Plaza and Easy Square.   We note with interest that each of these areas was closed down in an atmosphere of legal haggling, threats and acrimony.   It looks as though 13 Night Market, due to close momentarily, will be the fifth Opportunistic Night Entertainment Areas to close, and the first of these to close out in an orderly, business-like manner.
Looking through the gateway into Asoke Plaza from Soi 23, we see a destroyed bar and metal building - the metal building being the old ladies' toilet.

 In Transition

13 Night Market Closes

In a departure from 'normal' Bangkok SOP, the 13 Night Market is being disassembled in an orderly and civil manner.   This photo, showing Beautiful Bar and Golden Eyes and Mic Chokdee in the forground, with Monica's in the background, was taken early on 01 March 2005.

            In reviewing Bangkok's Night Entertainment history, we note that only once in a blue moon will an entire Night Entertainment Area just cease to exist.   This last month of February saw two such Nitespot Areas go under.   The first, as described immediately above, was Asoke Plaza, which was destroyed under suspicious circumstances.   The second Night Entertainment Area to disappear last month was the 13 Night Market.   This closure was a well planned exercise - no surprises for anyone, and while many bar beer owners would have preferred to stay on, they knew of the closure months in advance.

            The original Thermae Massage Parlor / Coffee Shop /Barber Shop was opened in 1965. It's reputation soon became unparalleled in Thailand as an all-night Nightspot, and it enjoyed that reputation until it's closing in 1996. Not to be without employment, some of it's then current cast of waiters moved the Thermae down two doors into the basement of Ruam Chit Mansions, reopened and managed it themselves. It remains there today - admittedly without a lot of it's former glamour, but nevertheless a great nighttime meeting place.

            After the original Thermae's closure in 1996, the empty building remained for quite a long time before being demolished.   When it was finally demolished, there wasn't much to haul off, as the rubble from the building was simply allowed to fall into the basement area that was the Thermae Coffee Shop.   The area was finally leveled off and compacted flat, but by that time, the economic collapse had already engulfed Thailand - it looked like there would be no new construction there or anywhere else for a long time to come.

            After a while, this empty land that was the Thermae became a night market area, mostly kwei-tiew push carts and other food vendors, who would set up each evening, and pack up each morning.   But by 1998, certain vendors were 'obtaining' certain areas within the compound as their own, and the shops began to take on a certain semi-permanent look - the shops were locking up each night instead of packing up.

            By early 1999, a couple of these shops were 'sold' to others who opened a couple of bar beers within.   We at MIDNITE HOUR began to take notice, not because we thought it would reach critical mass on its own (and become a separate new Night Entertainment Area), but because we had heard the rumor that the wall between it and it's next door neighbor -the fledgling Clinton Plaza- would be knocked down, forming a very large Night Entertainment Area in the central Sukhumvit area. (A very large Night Entertainment Area did arise, but it happened directly across the street about a year later - and that new area would soon be called Sukhumvit Square.)
Monica's - the perpetual 'Good Sport', holds an 'all-are-welcome" farewell party - just as they did when being forced to leave Clinton Plaza in May of 2003.   May their fortunes grow.

            But we were wrong about the old Thermae compound becoming part of Clinton Plaza.   Nevertheless, the number of bar beers continued to increase, and we began to suspect that there just might eventually be enough Night Venues within to reach "critical mass" after all.   A note to historians: by this time, it was being called 13 Night Market, thus we reflected same in our notes.
One of the best unkept secrets was that this massage parlor at the rear of 13 Night Market was open 24-7, and offered the widest selection of services.

            But again we were wrong - the 13 Night Market continued to build up to a total of 7 Night Entertainment Venues by September of 1999, but then began to thin out again, until all the bar beers were gone by March 2000.    And while the 13 Night Market continued to thrive as tourist oriented shops selling all kinds of brick-a-brack, we gave up hope of it ever becoming a Night Entertainment Area.

            By early January 2003 we had seen the next door Clinton Plaza dwindle down to 3 bars, while across the road, Sukhumvit Square had "exploded" to 60 bars.   The center of gravity had once and forever shifted across Sukhumvit Road, and the adjoining complexes of 13 Night Market and Clinton Plaza were all but footnotes in history.

            And a third time we were wrong - on 26 January 2003, Sukhumvit Square was entirely demolished by Chuwit's Marauders in what would be one of Thailand's biggest, most embarrassing black eyes.

            By May, 2003, almost as if by conspiracy - and virtually overnight, 11 bar beers opened for business in the 13 Night Market - and they were instantaneously busy - crashing through the "critical mass' barrier in one swift stroke.   They continued to grow, and sell, and absorb their neighbor's loc until they became 15 medium sized bars (for the most part) instead of 11 tiny one-loc bar beers.   It wouldn't be surprising to learn that most of the bar beer owners were either from the then defunct Sukhumvit Square, or from the soon-to-close Asoke Corner.

            Business at 13 Night Market was much better than they let on to the Men In Tan, but by mid 2004, the rumors of closure were finally confirmed, and it looked like they would be closing by New Year's 2005.   There was (obviously) a little slippage - the last date for doing business was 28 February 2005.   And, yes, the rumors were confirmed that the 13 Night Market would become part of the Sofitel Hotel now under construction - the same development that devoured Clinton Plaza in June of 2003.

            This departure from the 'norm', this orderly close out of 13 Night Market made for better future planning all around.   Two of the bar owners have already opened new Night Entertainment Venues in Sukhumvit 1 Plaza (Chemo 01 and Sports Bar 2, which has recently changed it's name to Beaver's), with a third bar to follow (Mic Chokdee) if all goes well.   Another, the Sweet Home Bar has a new venue already up and running on Soi 22 - the Sweet Home Club.   Another bar (we are not at liberty to name just yet) is planning a move to Soi 7/1 (not confirmed).   And we hear that Golden Eyes will be opening in Soi 11 next month.   Lastly, and regrettably, we heard that four venues had already worked out all the financial details to move into the now-destroyed Asoke Corner.

            We will be keeping an historical marker out on as many of these bars as possible and advise of their new destinations as soon as we are advised .

01 March, 2004


Do you have any PHOTOS -old or fairly recent- of Bangkok's Nightlife ?

If so, please CLICK HERE and send to us for inclusion in our historical records of Bangkok's Nightlife, and (with your permission) for publication on this site .   

Many Thanks,
William R Morledge

"Rumor Of The Month"

Where there's  

      "Rumor" is defined as "no-fault confabulation, chain-reaction speculation...."    Nevertheless M IDNITE HOUR again presents the most outrageous / prevalent rumor to cross our desks this past month:

"Rainbow Group and Woodstock's Peter will finalize an agreement for the sale of Woodstock in early March.   Peter will retain use of the name as he plans to reopen Woodstock on Sukhumvit somewhere."

MIDNITE HOUR includes as part of our Rumor Of The Month an ongoing evaluation as to the accuracy of said rumors since the inception of the award.

As of 01 March 2005, the Rumor Accuracy Quotient remains at -

See our Archived Rumors at their worst : click HERE.

March's Follies
begin here

      MIDNITE HOUR presents the NEWS on the Bangkok Night Scene; - the 'history-in-the-making' for all major Night Entertainment Areas  - for the month ending  1 MARCH, 2005 :

  • PATPONG  I • .
         Opening almost on schedule in the old Tien Tien Restaurant is the indoor-outdoor music lounge with the unlikely name Twilo Live.   (This is the venue we have mentioned in previous issues that is the first of what will be a 'multiplex' of bars running from Patpong 1 back to Patpong II - the others are still under construction, 1st and 2nd floors.)   Contrary to previous rumors, the owner is the very same Frenchman who brought us Muzzik Cafι and Radio City, both on Patpong 1.   Most of the music, by the way, will be 'live', as with it's sister bars.   In need of mention, the new Twilo Live has some real influence on Patpong, either that, or a lot of money. (Or are we being redundant here?)   They have not only managed to chase the night-time soup kitchens out of Soi SuperStar, but they have got rid of all the rude vendors fronting along their bar on Patpong 1 itself.   May Fate continue to deal them aces and faces.    • PATPONG I • 

         The Pent House at the Silom end no longer has door touts holding up signs reading, "No Cover Charge".   Not coincidentally, their sign now reads, "Member Pent House".   For the uninitiated, this translates as "unspecified cover charge" or "show charge" or "first two drinks charge" or more than one of the above.   Those who feel they have to go up to see what's going on would be well advised to check on how much it will cost before sitting down.   As a precaution, you may also want to familiarize yourself with the procedure for reporting incidents to the Tourist Police...    • PATPONG I • 

  • PATPONG  II •  .
          King's Lounge A-Go-Go (previously reported closed in this column) is busily renovating for the umteenth time.   (When will it ever end?)   Like they really needed new wooden stairs?   We have no idea when they will open - but we doubt it will be this month.   We'll be laying down an historical marker on this one, and will give you a 'come back' next month.      • PATPONG II • 

          Bobby is renovating his Marco Polo restaurant lounge yet again.   The rear portion is shaping up to be a continuation of that well-appointed eatery (replacing his earlier Pool Bar).   It looks like they will be serving before the end of the month (note: he hasn't closed the front counter, which seems to continue to do a healthy trade despite the rear of the premises being torn up).   For you history buffs, yes, this is Bobby's original Aroy Dee location.   • PATPONG II • 

  • NANA  PLAZA •  .
          Closed for one month, the Hog's Breath Saloon has been at-once accused, brought up on charges, tried, and convicted in summary fashion by Lumpini's Men In Too-Tight Unforms.   Not being legal in the first place, these arbitrary dispensings of extra-judicial street justice cannot be appealed, so Hog's Breath will sit out their 30 day sentence just like all those before them.   Hog's Breath's intolerable infraction against society was the revealing of a couple of shades of pink more than is normally seen, except of course in all the local newspapers, where 'models' are allowed to 'demo' the latest bust development creams.   Our social comedy strides forth in unending self-parody...     • NANA  PLAZA • 

  • SOI  COWBOY • .


          In addition to their 'Hippy Art' main door, the New Crazy Cats have added this wild cat to their gallery.   • SOI  COWBOY • 

          The Five Star II putting a good spin on their upstairs pool bar - which most of us never knew existed until just recently.   • SOI  COWBOY • 

         Not quite signs, not quite posters, some of the bars on Soi Cowboy are putting up additional 'graphics' to catch the eye of passers-by.   With the proliferation of digital printing shops in Bangkok, and the dropping of prices for these colorful print-outs, some of the more creative Night Entertainment Venues on the Soi are already starting to take advantage.    The way of the future?   We'll see soon enough...

March 2004
  • SOI  COWBOY • 
New Art Nouveau, Newly
Soi Cowboy   March 2005
         Five Star II is MIDNITE HOUR's first choice for Door Art Of The Month this month - an attractive art-nouveau rendition of an A-Go-Go dancer on a pole - in this case the 'pole' is a straw in a long, cool one.   The artwork is rendered on a mirror just at the side of the entrance - here's looking at you.
  • Soi Cowboy • March 2005

         The Old Dutch has found an innovative way to keep the motorcycle louts away from the building.   (We at MIDNITE HOUR feel that would be Bangkok's Finest's job - but what do we know?)   They have also provided a wider outdoor seating area, as have a number of Night Entertainment Venues on the Soi.   By the way, have you tried their new Big Brit Breakfast?   It'll last you to dinner time.  • SOI COWBOY • 

         Cowboy 2 seems to be telling us it is "Happy Hour" all night long.   Competition must be getting tough.   Blue Ice is one of 2 locally produced San Miguel beers now available, the other is Red Horse.   (Note: not 'imported' as the sign implies.)      • SOI COWBOY • 
     • SOI COWBOY • 

           On 4 February 2005, Cowboy Annex - now known as Asoke Plaza Night Entertainment Area - was completely destroyed by the landowner (see story above).   The table below shows the 25 Night Entertainment Venues and their status at the time of the 04 February demolition (the second demolition).   Status covers those bars that had already relocated from the front area due to the owner-enforced demolition in December ("Destroyed"), and new bars that had been constructed in the last month ("New, just open"), and that were in the process of relocating ("Destroyed during relocation"), and that were brand-new bars-to-be ("Destroyed while being built").   Although there was much discussion about other bars coming into the area, most prominently from 13 Night Market, we were unable to reverify these - thus unable to include them in our count.   

Fantacy (sic)
Bar Bie Bar
'No Name' Bar
Ann Bar Beer
Angel (Mitr)
Friendly Bar
The Star
Friendly 2
Siam Smile
Spanky's 1
Ton Son
Bar Friday
Kill Bill
(Bar A)
(Bar B)
(Bar C)
(Bar D)
(Bar E)
(Bar F)
- Survived - now a Sidewalk Bar
- Destroyed
- Destroyed
- Destroyed
- Destroyed during relocation.
- Destroyed
- Destroyed
- Destroyed
- Destroyed - New, just open
- Destroyed - New, just open
- Destroyed - New, just open
- Closed
- Closed
- Closed
- Closed - New, just open
- Closed
- Destroyed - just reopened
- Destroyed during relocation
- Closed - New sidewalk bar.
- Destroyed while being built.
- Destroyed while being built.
- Destroyed while being built.
- Destroyed while being built.
- Destroyed while being built.
- Destroyed while being built.
           In the near future, we will be providing three maps -
Map A - Asoke Plaza at the time of the first demolition - 14 December 2004.

Map B - Asoke Plaza relocated to the Soi 23 side . 01 January 2005.

Map C - Asoke Plaza at the time of the second demolition - 04 February 2005.
           For the full story of the most recent demolition, and a brief history of this Night Entertainment Area, please see our story above.     • COWBOY  ANNEX  • 

            As can be seen from the table above, there was a sole survivor.   The Fantacy Bar, having become a Street Bar by virtue of being drug out onto the sidewalk in front of Asoke Plaza during the first demolition on 14 December, has quietly stayed put.   The Fantacy owner allows as how he has a good working relationship with the local Men In Tan who have told him to downplay his visibility as much as possible.   -And as long as he doesn't become anyone's eyesore, he can stay.   
         His nightly "operating procedure" is to wait until the giant billboard lights above him are doused (around 9:00 p.m.).   He then un-padlocks the bar and stools and sets up.   He has two ice chests, a battery operated bar light, and for the stereo he has a battery operated radio-cassette player.   He employs (again, low key) four hostesses/bartendees who will sit in the shadows and talk to customers.   
         He enjoys the same privileges as the other "Moonlight Mile" pushcarts and Sidewalk Bars that open up after hours between Soi 5 and Soi 15 (See our story, THE LONG THIN LINE in the September 2004 issue.)   The most significant of these privileges is he can stay open for as long as there are customers - his normal closing time is 4:00 a.m.   
         And get this: he says he has an "in" with the land owner of the now defunct Asoke Plaza, and that he will open his bar back inside (off the sidewalk) in a matter of a few months.   On the Pollyannaish side, but we can't help but wish him luck.      • COWBOY  ANNEX  • 

  • THERMΖ  & "13  NIGHT  MARKET"  • .
           As of midnight last night all of the bars in the 13 Night Market were to have closed their doors once and for all.   And with one exception (noted below) that was how it went down.   Below we will give a quick historical summary of each of the bars that survived until the final day, and if known, their future plans.   Nevertheless, we hope they all find things a little more to their liking, a little more permanent, a little further on down the road a piece.     • 13 NIGHT MARKET  • 

           The owner of Chemo 04 is best described as a survivor.   Chemo Bar and Chemo 02 perished under Sia Ang (Godfather Hot-Tub) Chuwit's iron boot in Sukhumvit Square two years ago.   Receiving no reimbursement for damages, she tried to make a go of it with Chemo 03 on Soi 10 adjacent to Sukhumvit Square, but without the crowds that Sukhumvit Square drew, it soon went out of business.   The owner then opened this Chemo 04 on May 2003.   Realizing early on that this area was destined for redevelopment, the owner then opened Chemo 01 in Sukhumvit 1 Plaza on Oct 2004. where she will be moving full-time starting tonight.   Whew! -we wonder if the United States of Amatrixa has anyone left with the equivalent entrepreneurial zeal....
    • 13 NIGHT MARKET  • 

           B.B. Bar Beer also came aboard in May 2003.   Nevertheless, they were the "last man standing", having kept their bar open on 1 March - free drinks for all those visiting them - all the while, neighbors tearing down just about everything in sight.   The big-hearted owner, Ms P says she will be working in an office - no more bar beers for her.   We wish her luck, but we can't help thinking that, just like Arnold, 'she'll be back'.
....feeling so "tsunami"

      I noticed the bar owner was glancing down at the big black Nikon, and after a couple of moments she asked, "Why did you bring the camera?"

      "I wanted to get a couple of last photos of the bar beers - because by tomorrow, they will all be gone, right?" I said by way of reply.

      "Oh, so you don't want to take a picture of me, then?" she said as an aside, as she handed me an icy beer.   "Here, here's a Sing.   ...It's OK, it's on the house," she added hastily as I started to take a hundred baht from my shirt pocket.

      "Thanks for the beer - but I'd better leave a tip for your bartendee though...   No, I just wanted to take a picture of some of the signs of the bars that are closing down,"   As an afterthought, I added, "Why?   Do you want me to take a picture of you, too?"

      "Oh, yes, OK, but don't show it to anybody, OK?"

      "Well...I could take your photo, but how would I give it to you - your bar will be gone tomorrow, right?"

      "Oh, just email it to me, here is my Yahoo," ...handing me a card.   And after a moment's pause, "Wait - don't take my picture yet!   My hair!" she blurted, as she took the rubber band off the pony tail, causing strands of hair to fall and twist in every direction.

      "Wait!" she said again, as she untied the long-sleeved sweater from around her neck and retied it around her waist.   "Oh, everything is so messy, I feel so tsunami..."   She hurriedly used the flat of her hands to press imagined wrinkles out of her dress, and pushed most of her hair out of her eyes, taking a quick look in the mirror behind her.

      "OK, now I am ready, you can take it now," she advised as she turned back.

      Well, we will soon enough know whether or not "tsunami" enters the local lexicon of slang, a-la 'Skylab'.   Oh, and I guess I'm not supposed to show the above picture to anyone, so don't look at it.

  01 March 2005        • 13 NIGHT MARKET  • 
    • 13 NIGHT MARKET  • 

           Monica's Bar & Pool is a survivor of the now defunct Clinton Plaza.   It is interesting to note that they had a grand going-away party when they shut down operations there and moved over here to the 13 Night Market - just as they partied late into the night a couple of nights ago, in yet another grand send-off for staff and customers alike.   Good on yer, mates - may the night-gods smile on you and your next venture, wherever that may be.     • 13 NIGHT MARKET  • 

           Sexy Bar, the Night Entertainment Area's only air conditioned bar, also opened in May of 2003.   While not technically a 'relocated' bar from the then recently destroyed Sukhumvit Square, it had it's origins in the Colorando Bar (which later reopened in the Rajah Hotel grounds on Soi 4).   Future plans unknown.     • 13 NIGHT MARKET  • 

           Tequila Bar, also opening in May of 2003, never had a sign, but apparently didn't need one.   It was one of the smallest bars ever to have turned a profit.   We honestly don't know how they did it.   We don't know their future plans.     • 13 NIGHT MARKET  • 

           Barber and Beauty Massage is the mollusk - it predates the "coming of age" of the 13 Night Market - before the time it hit "critical mass" in May of 2003 and after the Night Entertainment Area fizzled out the first time in February of 2000.   Going under several names while it was open, it had the reputation of being less than ambiguous, and quietly staying open 24 / 7 - somehow without detection by Bangkok's Finest.   Future plans not known.     • 13 NIGHT MARKET  • 

           The Today Airport Bar 2 opened in June of 2003, and was an offshoot of Asoke Corner's Today Airport Bar.   They, along with the many, had heard the sound of distant thunder on Asoke Corner/Asoke Plaza, and were looking for a fallback position.   This suited their needs nicely, although a little smaller than they had hoped for.   They also never put up a sign - seeing that business was good as it was.   Future unknown.     • 13 NIGHT MARKET  • 

           Sweet Home Bar, another survivor, was, originally, the seminal bar of Sukhumvit Square, having opened there a full year before it was even popular to do so.   Soon after the Mafia crushed their bar, along with over a hundred other shops and bars in Sukhumvit Square, they reopened here (just across the street) from their original bar in June 2003.   In anticipation of this closing, they have recently opened yet another venue - the Sweet Home Club on Soi 22, which seems to be doing well, after a somewhat slow start.     • 13 NIGHT MARKET  • 

           The Catch Up bar beer opened curbside in June 2003 with a total of 6 barstools hanging out into the sidewalk.   No one thought it would fly - it did a healthy business right up to the end.   No future plans.     • 13 NIGHT MARKET  • 

           Beautiful Bar was another of the "first of the second wave" - also opening in May of 2003.   We don't know where they came from, or where they are going.     • 13 NIGHT MARKET  • 

           The Sport Bar opened in July of 2003, taking over from the unsuccessful New Bar.   Having also seen the handwriting on the wall early on, they opened the successor The Sports Bar 2 in Sukhumvit 1 Plaza in October 2004.   Being the first to roll out the red carpet at Soi 1, should Sukhumvit 1 Plaza ever attain critical mass, the mantle of "seminal bar" will be passed to them.     • 13 NIGHT MARKET  • 

           Golden Eyes opened in August 2003, long running with neon reading "Golden EEys", finally got their neon straightened out and made it to the finish line.   They are talking of moving over to Soi 11, but nothing settled yet.     • 13 NIGHT MARKET  • 

           Red Dragon opened up in September 2003 next door to the Walker's Bar Pub & Pool.   (Walker's was another survivor from Sukhumvit Square, migrating to Asoke Corner, only to hear the tom-toms of eminent demise, and then moving on to this location.)   However Walker's never really got it going here, and was finally absorbed by the Red Dragon.   We don't know where the Red Dragon is heading, but we suspect it has something in mind - it took its rather spectacular neon down a couple of months ago to use - somewhere.     • 13 NIGHT MARKET  • 

           The Mic Chokdee Bar bought out the Thai Tattoo in March 2004, and finally got around to putting up it's sign.   Future plans -- they might end up (with a partner) in Sukhumvit 1 Plaza.   Wishing them prosperity.     • 13 NIGHT MARKET  • 

           The You & I bar opened up in the small corner location at the back, near the massage parlor in July 2004.   They made it to the finish line by providing lots of friendly service.   They never got ahead enough to buy some decent neon - their prospects are limited after leaving here.     • 13 NIGHT MARKET  • 

  • SOI  DEAD  ARTISTS  (Soi 33) • .
           Livingstone's has changed the name of their poolside lounge from Sahara Sports Bar to just plain Sports Lounge.   As neither iteration has, or had, any neon, all we really need to remember is that it is a pleasant -and quiet- place to have a drink.      • SOI DEAD ARTISTS  •   

           You & Me Club appears, for all the world, to be wrapped in it's parting shroud - however it also sports a new, hurriedly prepared rap samak sign advertising high paying positions available for pretty hostesses.   One of the advantages of paying attention to the Thai language signs - we can be pretty sure that when bars do this, they are only closed for the short term.   No indication, however, when they plan to reopen.      • SOI DEAD ARTISTS  •   

           The 33 Barber / Oil Massage / Drink is closing its doors at 10:30 p.m. - for no apparent reason.      • SOI DEAD ARTISTS  •   

           Club Ayano (Japanese) has added some new neon, and apparently two new floors of additional, inscrutable entertainment - 2nd, and now 3rd & 4th floors, Peep Inn Park.      • SOI DEAD ARTISTS  •   

  • " SOI  KATOEY " •  .
           Tapas Room Club, one of the older bars on the Soi, must have a license to print money.   They are now displaying -just outside the main entrance- a crisply printed little sign saying Entrance Fee 100 Baht.   The sign was in English - we didn't see any equivalent sign in Thai.   Nor did we see, after three separate revisits, any locals paying their way in.   MIDNITE HOUR is not a supporter of discrimination, and just coincidentally, if those acting in a discriminatory manner should rot in Hell, it wouldn't be our fault.     • SOI KATOEY • 

           Back at the end of July of last year, Sweetheart Bar nailed up a couple of brand-new neon shingles and promptly closed down a few days later (in early August).   We stopped by a couple of nights ago, and they had the party balloons up, along with a half dozen folding tables and chairs crowding out onto the footpath.   The rock-n-roll was pumping, and the beer was flowing - almost as if they hadn't just dropped off the edge of the planet for half a year.   Everything looked bright and shiny - keep on keeping on.     • QUEEN'S PARK PLAZA • 

          Last month, back in the far corner there were two The Corner lounges - the original, and the second newer one behind it that they built on spec, hoping to sell soonest (see our last month's MIDNITE HOUR).   This month, the new addition has assumed the name The Corner, while the original has changed their name to just Corner Bar.   We don't know if we see the logic in that, but it seems to work for them - both looked reasonably busy last Saturday night.   Let the good times roll.     • QUEEN'S PARK PLAZA • 

           The Prince Of Wales P & G was shrouded in ominous darkness when we last passed by.   This bar went waaaaaayyy back - and was one of the last places in the Square we would have expected to fall on it's sword.   While we hope this is only a temporary closure, it looks like they've already drifted off quietly into the night.        • WASHINGTON  SQUARE • 

  • TOBACCO  ROAD  •  .
           Honey Bar has opened up in the old The Linda Bar - Happy Joint digs.   (As you may remember, Linda closed two months ago).   The kindly new owner, showing all the enthusiasm of someone who has never owned a bar before, showed me her hand-printed sign - almost hidden behind all the opening night party balloons.   She asked if I knew where she might find a shop that could make some respectable neon for her.   Any ideas?   If so, drop on by and let her know, or e-mail me...   In the meantime, we welcome them to the sharkpool.     • TOBACCO  ROAD    (SOI  ZERO) • 

           Originally opening as Lucky Lukes (Aug 2000),, they quickly changed to Nui Lucky Bar, then back to Lucky Lukes again (Nov 2001), opening and closing as necessary to effect changes.   Last November, they closed yet again, seemingly for the last time.   Like a cat with nine lives, however, they have popped back up out of their crypt, this time as New Lucky Lukes.   We have, again, been assured that this New Lucky Lukes is no relation to it's namesake in Nana Plaza.   Welcome back to the catfight, and may you conquer all your personal demons this time around.     • TOBACCO  ROAD    (SOI  ZERO) • 

           The Sidetrack Beer Bar, one of the Soi's few air conditioned bars, has rung up it's last check-bin.   It's roller-shutters pulled down and padlocked, it sits camouflaged by the surrounding detritus and darkness.    It's as though it has been absorbed by the shadows around it; as though it never existed at all.   Greener pastures...     • TOBACCO  ROAD    (SOI  ZERO) • 


  • SUKHUMVIT    1    PLAZA  • 
           The Chemo 01 is closed - but it is only hibernating.   The owner, who also manages Chemo 04 at Thirteen Night Market, says they seem to be doing a land office business there these last days before 13 Night Market go under the redevelopers' hammer.   So, simply, as a business decision, she moved all her barmaids down there to work until the end of February.   Look for all to be status quo ante back here at the Chemo 01 starting tonight (01 March).     • SUKHUMVIT  1  PLAZA  • 

           Up one flight of stairs, the first bar to open it's doors on the 2nd floor is the Mini Bar.   As it's name suggests, it is tiny - and as it is open-fronted, surprisingly, air conditioned.   They are not very busy - no one knows they are up there.   --Which is something they need to work out with building management re: signs and advertising.   We welcome them as they cast their fate with the rest.   It is interesting to speculate -- a couple of successful bars in the upstairs floors could push Sukhumvit 1 Plaza over the critical mass threshhold....let's wait and see how this develops as they are anticipating an increase in walk-in trade from passing foot traffic next month when Nana Square commercial building opens (corner Soi 3 & Sukhumvit).     • SUKHUMVIT  1  PLAZA  • 

           The new rooftop seafood restaurant / lounge could open as early as tonight.   At any rate, we will give the full report next month.   We still don't have a name......?     • SUKHUMVIT  1  PLAZA  • 

           Last month we mentioned that the Mae Mai Kitchen & Karaoke barbecue pit facing onto the front sidewalk seemed never to be open.   Well, it is open, but only for the local lunch crowds that frequent that area each workday to eat and shop at the talat nat that blossoms with wairoon fashion items each morning.   We knew there had to be an the way they do a respectable amount of business each lunchtime- had it not been so busy, would have tried it myself.   The back Karaoke-Restaurant is still open every night.     • SUKHUMVIT  1  PLAZA  • 

  • EASY  SQUARE •  .
           A note to the remaining few Pollyannas - there is a large new sign right on the front property line at Easy Square that reads (when translated), "DANGEROUS AREA - THIS IS A HIGHRISE CONSTRUCTION SITE".   In this case, we have gone past the "handwriting on the wall" stage - those of you hoping against hope that new life will be breathed into this once-promising Night Entertainment Area need to go out and find new direction in your lives.   It's like the feller said, "When you drop your keys in molten lava, forget 'em, man - they're gone."     • EASY SQUARE • 

  • The No-News-Is- Good-News Department  • 
(No news)
  • Email me- Click Here

  •   --- Datzit Fernow
                   William R. Morledge
                 Copyright © 2005, BANGKOK EYES /

  for English Language Websites in Thailand
   A great Phuket site,
   and on Thailand
   in general

  One of the TOP
  GUIDES to the
  TOPS in info
  and discussion
  in Hua Hin

  Thai history, maps and visa
  requirements plus information
  on Bangkok, scuba diving,
  adventure travel, national
  parks and more.
  A Thailand
   Author Christopher
   G. Moore showcases
   his books, and more.

   The official site.
   *CLICK* and GO
  A good collection
  of Thailand's
  *CLICK* and GO  -
  A very useful SEARCH ENGINE
  for Thailand.

   The best of Yahoo
   Search Engine
   Nightlife Reviews
 Soi  22's TOP
 Bar - Restaurant

   A comprehensive resource containing a range
   of reviews and advice on holidays in
   Thailand plus news, entertainment
   and attractions guides.
  Welcome to
  Bangkok Bargirls
  The MSN
  Search Engine
  Nightlife TOPS
 good read
 on the Bangkok
  Come to Papa!
  TRINK    is
  still available ---
  covering the
  Bangkok Night
  Search GOOGLE
  for more Bangkok
  Nightlife Websites. 
    For More
 is  TOPS  in
. . 
   Read ALL of
   Back Issues

    *CLICK* To Return To TOP of Page.