Our local picks 07 hidden bars in Saigon

Settled in small alleys or old apartments and buildings, hidden bars in Saigon certainly surprise customers with their unexpected attraction and mind-blowing creativity in mixology.

Photo by Ash Edmonds / Unsplash

Similar to any modern urban area in the world, Ho Chi Minh City (some would like to call it Saigon) owns a vibrant nightlife you cannot miss.

Settled in small alleys or old apartments and buildings, hidden bars in Saigon certainly surprise customers with their unexpected attraction and mind-blowing creativity in mixology. Here are some recommendations favored and advocated by local patrons, which always guarantee good times, whether with friends or loved ones.

Layla - Eatery & Bar

The Classic Saigonese retro corridor in an old apartment block leads to a different world for Layla. Photo by Layla Eatery & Bar Facebook Page

Located in an old building in Ho Chi Minh City, Layla aims to share their simple pleasures of life - the passion for food and the love for drinks. The bar is classy-designed with a vast collection of wine and spirits. The bartenders are well-trained, friendly, and have the know-how to offer matching glasses for customers. Speaking of cocktails, you should try "The Porn Star Martini"; let's keep it a mystery until you experience it.

Layla Eatery & Bar is an unexpected, vibrant bar hidden in the heart of Saigon, helping you escape a busy world outside and enjoy the night to the fullest. The place is strongly recommended by both locals and foreigners. Don't forget the happy hour in-the-mix from 5:00p.m to 8:00p. m Monday to Saturday.

  • 📍 2nd floor, 63 Đông Du Street, Bến Nghé Ward, District 1, HCMC
  • ⏱ 4:00 PM - 1:00 AM

Saigon Cocktails

The laid-back vibe at Saigon Cocktails. Photo by Saigon Cocktails Facebook Page.

If you are not a regular, it's difficult to notice a small alley on Lê Thánh Tôn Street leading to a local casual bar named Saigon Cocktails. Saigon Cocktails was established by a famous guitarist from a Vietnamese nu-metal rock band (Microwave). The bar brings a vibe of free spirits, just like its founder. Besides the desire for delicious cocktails, customers love to spend time at Saigon Cocktails to relax, talk, or sit silently and enjoy music on their own till midnight. This place also displays impressive paintings created by famous local artists.

Regarding cocktails, Saigon Cocktails is a perfect place for true cocktail lovers who crave bold flavor and long-lasting aroma lingering in their mouths. If you are not so good at drinking, feel free to talk to the bartenders so that they can adjust to your preference. Sin City and Manhattan are two popular drinks you should try at Saigon Cocktails.

  • 📍 200 Lê Thánh Tôn Street, Bến Thành Street, District 1, HCMC
  • ⏱  6:00 PM - 1:00 AM

To-hidden cocktails bar

The bar has a wide range of garnishes to ensure the uniqueness of every drink they make. Photo by hungjourney27

To-hidden cocktails bar is a new name among hidden bars in Saigon. The owner of To bar is a young man who was inspired by Japanese culture. Instead of selling drinks, he aims to market the experience through every cocktail he creates. The bar brings an easy and friendly ambiance right when you enter the place. You are always welcomed with warmth by the wholehearted owner and the staff; they always check on customers to make sure the drinks are suitable.

The bar's signature is Nadeshiko, made with Japanese-crafted Gin combined with green tea, edible flowers, and herb to create a light aroma of spring. Besides their regular drinks on the menu, To's owner usually makes new and unique recipes that require your courage to try. Have you ever imagined trying a durian cocktail? You can challenge yourself with Dorianguni, a unique combination of Vodka and durian, bringing a whole new experience. Their selection of garnishes is also handmade to ensure quality.

  • 📍 2nd Floor, 02 Lê Thánh Tôn Street, Bến Nghé Ward, District 1, HCMC (the 1st Floor is a GS25 convenience store)
  • ⏱ 6:00 PM - 1:00 AM

NOMU Izakaya

A great combination of fine dining and drinking at NOMU Izakaya. Photo by NOMU Izakaya Facebook Page.

The feature of NOMU is a consolidation of fine dining restaurants and bars. Inspired by Izakaya style - a Japanese after-work casual bar type, NOMU provides a nice place to hang out, relax, and have good food and drink. What makes NOMU different is a selective yoshoku menu (Western-influenced culinary style) which is delightful and mouthwatering. The must-try item on the menu is Foie Gras & Unagi Toast; the light sweet Unagi topped on crunchy toast and wasabi sauce will melt your heart.

Speaking of drinks, one of the best sellers at NOMU is Juicy Gimlet, a Japanese craft Gin mixed with fruits, light and easy. If you are a fan of truffles, you can not miss Gin & truffle. White truffle oil is sophisticatedly blended in Irish Gin, touched with apple juice, green tea, and citrus will blow your mouth.

  • 📍152 Nguyễn Công Trứ Street, Nguyễn Thái Bình Ward, District 1, HCMC
  • ⏱ 5:00 PM - 11:45 PM

52/3 Kitchen & Bar

"A sense of nostalgia" at 52/3 Kitchen & Bar. Photo by 52/3 Kitchen & Bar Facebook Page.

52/3 Kitchen & Bar is one of Saigon's best-known Bespoke Cocktails Bars. The place is centrally located in District 1, yet it's tricky to find. It would help if you walked down alley no. 52 to look for a dark exterior door leading to the bar.

52/3 Kitchen & Bar provides a comfortable seating arrangement and cozy atmosphere for patrons. The site can treat you well if you want to bond with friends or just need a place to drink and reflect. Live Jazz also plays a vital role in setting the vibe at this bar.

The bartenders at 52/3 Kitchen & Bar display extraordinary professionalism, excellent command of English, and great conversation-making. Since it's a Bespoke Cocktails Bar, communication between the bartenders and customers is essential to inspire and create suitable drinks. This is a cocktail place you shouldn't miss whenever you visit the center of Ho Chi Minh City.

  • 📍 52/3 Đông Du Street, Bến Nghé Ward, District 1, HCMC
  • ⏱ 5:00 PM - 2:00 AM

Rabbit Hole

Live music at Rabbit Hole. Photo by Rabbit Hole Facebook Page

Rabbit Hole is an avant-garde classic cocktails bar in Saigon. The bar is inspired by the concept of Alice in Wonderland, hiding in the basement of a restaurant in the heart of Saigon. Walking over the black door, you will enter a spacious room with a comfortable seating arrangement. The colors and decorations remind you of modern American bars. You can find a relaxing atmosphere at Rabbit Hole, escaping from noisy streets, having a good cocktail, and listening to live Jazz.

Save your note for some helpful information:

  • 🍻 Happy Hour: 6:00 - 8:00 PM, with 30% off on all cocktails.
  • 🥃 Spirit Day: Every Tuesday - 30% off on selected types of liquors.
  • 🎺 Jazz Performance: 8:00 - 11 PM - Every Monday, Wednesday, and Sunday.
  • 📍 The underground of No.138 Nam Kỳ Khởi Nghĩa Street, Bến Nghé Ward, District 1, HCMC
  • ⏱ 6:00 PM - 2:00 AM

Telephone bar

You must pass through the telephone booth to enter the bar—photo by internet.

Telephone bar is a Speakeasy bar in Saigon, established in 2019. There's no signboard or signal to help you realize this is a cocktail bar. The room is cozy and well-decorated, suitable for either dating or individuals. Despite the Kingsman look, the Telephone bar bartenders are friendly and helpful. They always try to communicate with customers while making drinks. This bar is fitting for fans of classic cocktails and whisky base.

  • 📍 41 Nguyễn Văn Tráng Street, Phạm Ngũ Lão Ward, District 1, HCMC
  • ⏱ 6:00p.m - 0:00a.m