Drinking like an Eskimo at Absolut Ice Bar on Koh Samui
Absolut Ice Bar, Koh Samui: Breaking the Ice
In a country as red hot as Thailand, sometimes you need to cool off. If you’re waiting for a refreshing breeze on a Thai beach then you might be waiting a while but don’t worry, there’s a chilled place in Koh Samui that will fit the bill nicely. Absolut Ice Bar is the perfect place to do exactly that!
The awesome Subzero Ice Bar is a freezing cold place to sink a few drinks and make some new friends. Chilled down to minus 7 degrees Celsius, this is almost certainly the coldest place in Thailand. For an extra level of drunken relaxation, go on one of the many gorgeous hikes in Koh Samui by day and hit up Absolut Ice Bar in the evening. Let those muscles relax and kick back with some vodka!
Entering the Freezer
The temperature outside might be in the mid-30’s, but at Subzero Ice Bar it’s in minus figures all day, every day. Passing through the airlock doors can be something of a shock- there can be up to 40 degrees difference in temperature between the bar and the open air!
The whole complex is made up of three different sections that are heated differently, so if the Ice Bar itself gets a bit chilly then you can pop outside into the (normally) air-conditioned bar, or even outside to the beer garden to bring your core temperature up again. This place is all about enjoyment, not suffering after all!
Have fun with the ice sculpted furniture!
It’s not just the air that’s cold at the Ice Bar; the whole place is made of ice. The walls are made of glistening ice bricks and the bar is carved from stacked sheets of ice with lights shining through the layers.
If you’re on the hunt for a good photo op then the ice throne or the ice tuk tuk will fit the bill nicely. It will probably be the most relaxing time you’ll ever spend in a Thai vehicle!
Won’t I get shivering cold?
You might think this all sounds like an endurance event, but just wait until you see the warm winter ponchos that are on offer to borrow. Thick and cosy, you can sling one of these over your shorts and t-shirt and keep hypothermia at bay. If you’re in the mood then there’s even some winter fancy dress to try out!
Thick, fleecy hats and gloves are also available for bar-goers and if all else fails, make some new friends and hug them instead. This is a social place so you should always find someone willing to share body heat!
Is the Absolut Ice Bar more than a gimmick?
It might sound like the Ice Bar is all style and no substance, but the drinks menu here is extensive and they have the biggest selection of flavored vodkas on the island. Shots (190 baht, $6) are served in glasses carved from ice (remember to grab those free gloves!) and the cocktail list (220 baht, $7) is as good as you’ll find in the main bars on Chaweng Beach. If you just want a beer then you can grab one for 120 baht (£3.50), but you can do that anywhere- we recommend making like a Russian and hitting the Absolut shots!
“Alright, so where is Absolut Ice Bar? I’m sold!”
The Subzero Ice Bar is part of The Palms Samui hotel, near Chaweng Beach. Head for Soi Green Mango and ask around if you get lost. Entry normally costs $10 per person but try and visit on a Wednesday, when the hotel runs a regular beer pong tournament where you can win free entry into the Ice Bar. Yep, all those hours practicing beer pong at Bodega were all worth it!
Ice Bar is open from 5pm until 2am and is a great way to have a night that’s a little bit different. Grab a camera, sling on a poncho and go grab those shots!