Skip to main content

Singapore’s Jazz Age-Inspired Atlas Bar May House the World’s Largest Gin Library

Historically speaking, England is the undisputed birthplace of gin. True connoisseurs of the spirit, however, might consider a trip halfway around the world to Singapore. Here, one of the city’s most striking and mysterious buildings is home to Atlas — a surprising, destination-worthy bar that may house the world’s most extensive gin library.

Image used with permission by copyright holder

Locals refer to Parkview Square as the “Batman building” or “Gotham Square.” They’re fitting nicknames given the 472-foot skyscraper’s grandiose and imposing architecture that makes it one of the most recognizable in Singapore. That it’s among the swankiest, most expensive addresses in the city — its tenants include the Honorary Consulate of Oman and numerous foreign embassies from Austria to the United Arab Emirates — only lends it a unique nobility and panache.

Image used with permission by copyright holder

The building’s stunning, well-preserved Art Deco architecture makes it a destination in its own right. But, for cocktail connoisseurs, it’s what’s just inside the lobby that makes a visit here truly bucket-list-worthy. After two full years of remodeling and renovation, Atlas opened in 2017. The Art Deco design is a textbook example of the elegance and opulence that defined the Gilded Age. Beneath a massive painted ceiling, tufted leather banquets, a sea of gold accents, and plush crimson carpeting reclines an open, three-story space that feels purpose-built for Gatsby and 200 of his richest acquaintances.

Image used with permission by copyright holder

At the heart of Atlas is a grand, 26-foot-tall tower that’s home to what many believe is the world’s largest gin library. Guinness doesn’t keep official records of such things, so it’s impossible to say for sure, but the bar’s owners spent two full years carefully building and curating the selection. Today, there are more than 1,300 varieties on offer. Beyond the sheer number, it’s the quality and diversity of the library that make it one of the world’s best. Visitors can sample gins from every corner of the globe — from Japan to Bolivia to Belgium to, of course, England. Some date back more than a century. For those who like their high-society Jazz Age celebrating with decidedly less gin, Atlas also offers a respectable list of more than 250 labels of Champagne.

Image used with permission by copyright holder

Before reopening as Atlas, the space was home to a one-of-a-kind wine bar with a towering selection of vino inside the three-story tower. Elaborately dressed as fairies, bartenders would ascend the tower via a trapeze-style wire and pulley system. The unabashed gimmick was a nod to the glitz and glamour prevalent in Singapore during the Art Deco revolution. While remnants of the era remain throughout the island city-state, few are as noteworthy and “spirited” as Atlas bar.

If you’re more of a whiskey fellah, head to Israel where the selection at Whiskey Bar & Museum in Tel Aviv runs more 1,000 bottles deep.

Mike Richard
Mike Richard has traveled the world since 2008. He's kayaked in Antarctica, tracked endangered African wild dogs in South…
Making sense of vodka terms: Your complete guide
You'll finally learn everything you wanted to know about vodka
vodka

If you’re a vodka drinker, there’s a good chance you’ve enjoyed a vodka-based cocktail, a few shots, and maybe even a sip or two neat or on the rocks over the years. But what do you know about vodka? This seemingly flavorless, simple, mixable spirit is much more complicated than you think.

In the most basic sense, vodka is a clear, neutral spirit that’s un-aged and has very little aroma or flavor. And while distillers do their best to make vodka as neutral, flavorless, and smooth as possible, it does carry some flavors based on the ingredients it’s made from.

Read more
Royal Salute’s trio of whiskies inspired by the 62 Gun Salute
Three Scotch whiskies inspired by a tradition from the Tower of London
royal salute 62 gun collection ezgif 4 71cb556c72

High end whisky brand Royal Salute is extending its 62 Gun Salute offering into a collection, featuring two new blends as part of the 62 Gun Salute Collection. Joining other whisky offerings from Chivas Brothers, the Peated Reserve and American Oak Reserve are the pinnacle of luxury whiskies from the brand.

The Original Reserve in the 62 Gun Salute series, named for the ceremonial tradition held at the Tower of London to honor events like births, accessions, and coronations of the royal family, is a blend of 50 Scottish malt and grain whiskies with notes of plum and sherry sweetness. The Peated Reserve is also a blend of 50 whiskies but focuses more on smokey flavors with notes of tangy citrus, while the American Oak Reserve is aged in American Oak casks to develop a depth of flavor and to enhance the tropical fruit flavors.

Read more
Celebrate soccer season with these Euros cocktails
Cocktails for watching the semis or the finals this week
euros cocktail recipes drink old fashioned glass amaretto distilled beverage alcoholic 1621134 pxhere com

As Europe gears up for the last few matches of the UEFA European Championship and we head into the last weeks of Copa América, soccer fever is sweeping the globe. If you're planning a watch party for the Euros semis or finals this week, then whisky enthusiast and England fan Daniel Ufland from The Whisky Masters has created a selection of cocktails for you to toast your favorite team -- whether you're waiting for France to clinch it once again, you enjoy watching the always entertaining antics of Spain, or whether you're an eternal optimist holding out hope that England could win it for once.
British Bramble

Gin
Lemon juice
Simple syrup
crème de mure

Read more