May 29, 2016 / Leave a Comment
If there’s one thing I love in this life, it’s a good rooftop bar. Or really, a great rooftop bar. Turns out, rather unexpectedly, Skye Bar is one of them.
I say unexpectedly – well, first, have you visited Jakarta? It’s a crazy tangle of roads that exist in a constant state of gridlock, un-walkable sidewalks, smog that blocks the sun and metal detectors at every building entry. Am I selling it? Yeah…you get the picture. So I have to admit when embarking on a mission to cruise the capital’s bars-with-a-view, I didn’t have high hopes.
Situated in the BCA building in the central city, Skye Bar is the highest of the bunch and definitely has the pick of vistas. Once you make your way through the traffic, driveways and metal detectors, ascend to the 56th floor where you’ll need to guarantee a minimum spend for reservations, and for both walk-ins and reservations on weekends. Given that we were walk-ins on a Friday night, we had to buy ‘vouchers’ which were a pre-payment of 150,000 IDR redeemable against spend. Given that that’s one-and-a-bit cocktails, that’s not too bad a deal. But bear in mind that those who have reserved have usually snagged the prime seats with the best view in town. Literally. So if you’re planning to arrive later at night or are more than a party of two, booking would be a smart idea.
Entering the bar, I expected well, a dated fit out (sorry Jakarta!). Let’s just say, I was more than pleasantly surprised – I was amazed! Clearly the beneficiary of a recent refit, this bar is looking gooooood. Really good. This is a rooftop bar that looks as slick inside as out, and makes the most of the million dollar views it’s location affords it. Oh, there is one draw back of these views. You’ll have to put up with watching the photo-obsessed having picture after picture after picture taken of them in front of said view, then taking some more selfies for good measure. Sadly we watched one such photo session drag on for almost our entire time at the venue, but that’s the only downside – apart from that the view is magic! Oh, and the security guards like to stand right in front of the view too, to stop any crazy party goers from splashing in the shallow pool at the building’s edge (or scarily, going further – there weren’t any barriers in sight!).
The drinks were fab too – my cocktail was absolutely delicious, despite the first one biting the dust just as the bartender went to place it on the bar. A second one magically appeared at lighting speed! FYI they also have a great offer from 4-7 pm – buy two alcoholic drinks and get a free bar snack. Well worth planning to get there in advance of 7pm to take advantage of this! (The quesadilla we chose was fab BTW, and I hear the chef is a kiwi!)
When we visited (May) the sun set at 5:44 – so get in at 5 and enjoy the transition. And free bar snacks. Hang on, did I say sunset? Sorry, that’s just habit…there is no sunset in Jakarta sadly, in fact we only saw one faint glimmer of the sun struggling to break through the clouds/smog/fog during our whole trip. So no need to have ‘SSS’ or ‘Sunset Stress Syndrome’ as I have christened it – racing to the bar in time to watch the magical moment!
The music is pretty good too – so on the whole you have a freaking great venue that feels more like a really great bar transported to a spectacular venue, rather than a spectacularly located bar that relies solely on their view alone, taking every penny it can for that one drink before you depart disappointed (hello, Sky Bar Bangkok). This one’s a good’un – book with confidence and don’t forget to charge that camera battery.
Ambience & Decor: 8.5/10
Overall Rating: 8.7/10
Cocktails – around 120,000IDR
Beers – around 70,000IDR
View food menu