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Chiang Mai Nightlife

Moonmuang Road
Chiang Mai
Tel: 66 53 277 447

Just inside the old-city limits, this hangar-sized space south of Thapae Gate is your entr¿e into kitsch-tastic Thai nightlife. Bring a sense of humor to this contemporary warehouse space with its towering ceilings, limited seating, and a sound system with amplifiers that go to 11. Forget about striking up a conversation; the thunderous volume of the live music swallows everything but text messages. The house band cranks out an endless stream of cheesy covers while the rotating Thai vocalists try their hand at everything from Shakira to hip hop to power ballads. Be forewarned, foreigners must pay inflated cover charges, usually nearly triple what locals are charged. Take care in the restrooms, where overzealous attendants descend to massage your back and calves—and to flush your urinal. Awkward.

9.11 Charoenrat Road
Chiang Mai
Thailand 50000
Tel: 66 53 243 239

The east bank of the Ping River running north of the Narawat Bridge claims one of the best sunset views in town, so it's no surprise the shore is lined with restaurants and bars. The Riverside is its anchor tenant, with well over 100 tables in a rambling, refurbished wooden house. Riverside's menu lists an enormous number of homogenized Asian and Western dishes, but the house specialty is really live music. Jazz and piano serenade diners, but as night descends, the restaurant morphs into a popular honky-tonk. Thai cover bands play until 1 a.m. on stages at both ends of the building; the mixed crowd and the music are more raucous at the north-side platform. Next door, the shed-like Good View serves up better Thai food and live music in a sit-down atmosphere (13 Charoenrat Rd.; 66 53 241 866;

Open daily 10 pm to 1 am.

Hotel Photo
Terrace Bar
The Chedi, Chiang Mai
123 Charoenprathet Road
Chiang Mai
Thailand 50100
Tel: 66 53 253 333

The tall rooms and broad verandas of the former British Consulate, a splendid slice of colonial design on the grounds of the Chedi hotel, now hold an atmospheric restaurant and bar that are ideal for sundowners. Take your gin and tonic on a second-floor daybed (hookah-puffing is optional), or chill on the breezy deck beneath sacred, centuries-old bodhi trees overlooking the Ping River. For no-brainer nibbles, there are Asian-themed tapas with wine pairings: A generous pour of '04 Terra Mater, a silky Maipo Valley shiraz, and a dozen spicy murgh pakora chicken croquettes with mint-yogurt chutney costs about $12. Mosquito repellent, in a stylish Chedi spritzer, is complimentary.

Open daily 5 pm to 1 am.

Warm Up Café
40 Nimmarnhaemin Road
Chiang Mai
Tel: 66 53 400 676

This popular dance bar fills up before 9 p.m., stays loud, and skews young, owing to its location near Chiang Mai University. There's live music on weekends, and in true Thai nightclub style, booze is sold by the bottle. The gay-friendly Glass Onion, a quieter wine bar with a piano, scarlet shag carpets, and chandeliers, is just opposite (61 Nimmanheamin Rd; 66 53 218 479).

Information may have changed since the date of publication. Please confirm details with individual establishments before planning your trip.