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  1. #1
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    peterpan's Avatar
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    What makes a good bar ?

    A bar usually sells one product although here in Thailand, more often than not its two. Pussy as well as beer. So what characteristics make a popular bar? Why for instance is the Dubliner usually packed when over the road the Robin Hood has only a smattering of customers?
    One of the best examples I can think of are two bars in Suk Soi 20.

    One is called the Rolling stone (I think) anyway it has a Stones theme with the wet lips logo all over it. Its A/C with quite a lot of room available, 2 pool tables, a bevy of young girls to attract the punters.
    Most of the ingrediants of a popular bar.

    Right next door is the sportsman bar,a small cramped, non AC bar with a collection of what could be called more mature bar ladies. No pool tables, no room, in fact in the evening hard to find a seat and when you do its alongside a smoky concrete truck providing the materials for another building site in Soi 20.

    So which bar is by far the most popular ?
    The small cramped, uncomfortable sports bar. I believe the reason for this is that the small bar is owned by a diminutive and pleasant Septic man who has attracted a loyal following of regulars who work or live in the Soi. So when you walk past the Stones bar, take a look through the windows, it looks dead and empty despite the young girls standing outside with signs to try and atttract you in. Desperation measures I think.

    Wheras the sports bar is usually heaving, not difficult as it can probably only accomodate maybe 30 customers. Although next door, they would be lucky to have 2/3 punters.
    There canít be good living where there is not good drinking

  2. #2
    I am in Jail
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    One of my favorite bars is in the Livingstone hotel on soi 33.
    Lots of girls and a foosball table....swimming pool!
    A bar has to have a foosball table IMHO!
    You can even charge the bar fine to your room!

  3. #3
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    No people, no loud music, no television, western toilet (with bum gun) and a server who serves when needed and doesn't pester the patrons.

    Perfect

  4. #4
    The Pikey Hunter
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    Quote Originally Posted by mrsquirrel View Post
    No people, no loud music, no television, western toilet (with bum gun) and a server who serves when needed and doesn't pester the patrons.

    Perfect

    So, staying home sounds like a good option.

  5. #5
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    No accounting for taste, but the thing that drives me away from a bar or any other establishment, with other variables being equal, is the owner announcing to the whole street that he has superspeakers.

    Went to a regular a while back about an hour before closing, we were the only customers and of course the gals know me, music on full volume, the two remaining girls waiting to close shop shouting at each other from opposite sides of a table just to be heard, I asked them verbally and by gesture to turn the music down, one gets up, turns it down, asks if I don't like that music, I repeat it's ok but too loud, she says no it isn't, turns it up again, goes back to the table and they continue shouting at each other.

    Needless to say we left without my usual green tip and didn't return, but did catch up with bossman a while later who asked where I'd been, told him what happened with the natural rider that the girls don't get beheaded because they're goats in disguise and need the job, which he agreed, and from the next day they were instructed to play classical music on demand and at background volume for the last hour before closing if as usual he's not around and also as usual there are less than 5 customers.

  6. #6
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    My local bar is 200m away and on the corner of a busy small junction that goes up to the local night clubs.

    Great for knicker spotting

  7. #7
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    i reckon that the one factor that either attracts or repels ppl is the staff and management.

    at the end of the day teh reason u go into a bar is people, to talk, to play pool, to listen to irratatingly loud music, to watch go-go girls dance naked, to play foosball, all of these are secondary and for every type of customer there will be a bar that offers your choice....

    but the people serving you or the owner need to make you feel welcome, long chat or no talk - that up to you. good service. each and every time.

    simple idea, fuckn hard to get right.

  8. #8
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    Cold air con and cold beer is no 1
    Music not to loud is no 2


    Other stuff that is important for me is offering something to do if you are by yourself. That could be in the way of newspapers to read, TV turned on, but also the bar being in a position to people watch is a must.
    News is what someone, somewhere is trying to suppress - everything else is just advertising.

  9. #9
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    Staff, management and ambiance can make the difference.

    I've seen bars generally packed for years go south and be closed in a matter of months when there was major turnover in staff. Generally due to management.

    I've seen brandy new shiny brass and glass places that never did have a customer base.

    I've seen shacks that were wall-to-wall any time you went by.

    Keeping the 'magic' is work and not just happenstance.

    Bars are like women, everyone has a different taste and sometimes that taste changes for one reason or another.

    A haircut, make-up change and a woman looks different, may even act different due to self-confidence etc. Same with a bar subtle changes impact a lot.

    To each his own style and companionship.

    E. G.
    "If you can't stand the answer --
    Don't ask the question!"

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by MeMock View Post
    Cold air con and cold beer is no 1
    Music not to loud is no 2


    Other stuff that is important for me is offering something to do if you are by yourself. That could be in the way of newspapers to read, TV turned on, but also the bar being in a position to people watch is a must.
    as i said some ppl like aircon, some ppl like an open air beer bar, some ppl like sports, some ppl like loud musik.

    i still think it comes down to good service - friendly ppl.

  11. #11
    I am in Jail
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    No tourists
    No English teachers
    No Thai boys
    40 baht beers

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by kingwillyhggtb View Post
    i reckon that the one factor that either attracts or repels ppl is the staff and management.

    at the end of the day teh reason u go into a bar is people, to talk, to play pool, to listen to irratatingly loud music, to watch go-go girls dance naked, to play foosball, all of these are secondary and for every type of customer there will be a bar that offers your choice....

    but the people serving you or the owner need to make you feel welcome, long chat or no talk - that up to you. good service. each and every time.

    simple idea, fuckn hard to get right
    .
    Spot on IMO.

  13. #13
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    A friendly boss & staff.

    A good crowd of customers.

    Imported beer.

    Comfy chairs.

    Decent music.

    South African satellite.

  14. #14
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    ^ So, how often do you frequent the Dubliner?

    E. G.

  15. #15
    Thailand Expat
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    Quote Originally Posted by El Gibbon View Post
    ^ So, how often do you frequent the Dubliner?

    E. G.
    Every couple of months.

    The main reson I don't go there more often is because one of my mates is from Northern Ireland and he objected to their IRA connections.

  16. #16
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    First I'd heard of that....

    Go regularly when in town... next trip is probablly the 25th.

    Sundays are great fun.

    E. G.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr Earl
    One of my favorite bars is in the Livingstone hotel on soi 33. Lots of girls and a foosball table....swimming pool! A bar has to have a foosball table IMHO! You can even charge the bar fine to your room!
    that's a good example of having everything but the place is still empty...walk across the road to Wall St and you get a tiny bar...a one-eyed publican ...hand basin that drenches you if you have the temerity to wash your hands after you pee...and the bar is chocker most nights...
    Quote Originally Posted by keda
    without my usual green tip
    Im sure they felt your 20 baht tip was not worth adjusting the music to your particular taste!..

    one of my favourite spots has a brass plaque on the wall which says "Non-Members Only"...

    Last edited by klongmaster; 18-02-2007 at 04:59 PM.

  18. #18
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    Could be, though 20 each time from a regular amounts to something.

    Bottom line though for a bar is to feel good when you leave, whether this is down to the girls, decor, music, booze, attitude or company, and preferably all.

  19. #19
    Thailand Expat
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    Quote Originally Posted by klongmaster
    one of my favourite spots has a brass plaque on the wall which says "Non-Members Only"...
    Mine too!

  20. #20
    Northern Hermit
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    Establishments where flesh is on display for sale, rent or loan should never be confused with "bars." Although they may have a bar in them, they are entertainment venues providing alcohol to loosen mens morals and their wallets. Fine establishments, to be sure, but hardly worthy of the designation, "Bar."

    Some interesting people to shoot the shit with even if it is just the barkeep or an intelligent waitress can make, or break, the bar. A good bar should have an attentive, all but invisible, staff that know when to be interesting and when not to be.

    Good, simple food should be available for order; crisp fish & chips, a burger, couple of sandwiches, some finger foods; maybe a steak, served simply.

    The beer should be fresh and cold (after all; it can be allowed to warm up a bit, if it's good enough), the drinks generous and fairly priced. Plenty of room at the bar, a sturdy bar - one that you can rest your elbows on, with a foot rail!

    The music should be loud enough to recognize the songs, but quiet enough for normal conversation. maybe a television in a corner where folks can watch the news or a game, no movies or series please!

    A pool table.

    Some young ladies to ogle is always a bonus, not ones that ask, "you buy me drink?" or, "You pay bar for me?" Men should not be allowed to work in bars.

    Although blank walls are boring and antiseptic, to be avoided at all cost, decor is really unimportant; cleanliness and comfort are all that's needed. Give me a bar where I can sip my suds in anonymity or join in a discussion, as is my wont. Just a beer or a whiskey, perhaps a bite and some pleasant conversation. I can sit in a place like that all day.
    When the people fear their government, there is tyranny; when the government fears the people, there is liberty -- T. Jefferson


  21. #21
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    FF. That pretty well sums it up for me too. I am in Udon now and while there are plenty of bars available.
    None have hit it for me so my usual drinking spot is at home.

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by friscofrankie
    Men should not be allowed to work in bars.
    Great observation ff...

  23. #23
    ding ding ding
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    Bars are shit.
    I would rather visit friends for a BBQ or stay at home.

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by Helicopter
    Bars are shit.
    another gross generalisation...

  25. #25
    ding ding ding
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    Quote Originally Posted by klongmaster
    another gross generalisation...
    Are you a TV mod?

    You sound like one
    Last edited by Spin; 19-02-2007 at 10:16 AM.

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