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3Bars @ Chinese Swimming Club

11:55 AM , , 0 Comments


3Bars at Chinese Swimming Club has been around for so long, I actually forgot about its existence till the hip parents decided to check it out with us one night.

Housed in the second wing, it is considered "inconvenient" to walk over from the main building despite being just opposite.


Complimentary nibbles fresh out of a party pack.


Packed with baby boomers. The crowd was clearly laidback - dressed in comfy tees and bermudas with an occasional jeans wearer. While the ambiance was considered casual, it was boisterous enough for interaction between the resident band and listeners.

song dedication

It's Tiger Time, once upon a time Tiger Beer had an annoying yet immensely successful media campaign that had the young and cold pulling off cold jokes like

"What time is it?"
"It's TIGER time."

And I digress. Just seeing these song dedication slips brought back figments of memories. So then we made reasonable song dedications that stretched across generations to have a rough gauge of the band's capability.

The thing about song dedication is it is an indication of the band's abilities and for someone who does not like being thrown adhoc requests, I find it stressful (not that I have played in a band!). I try to be less demanding as a customer, try is the key. Afterall, the basic expectation is to get to listen to genres of music that I am familiar with which makes the price paid for that drink worthwhile.

We made three requests for songs:

What makes you beautiful by One Direction
I've never been to me by Charlene
Uptown Girl by Billy Joel

A fair enough medley that spans across generations? I truly would forgive if the first title was beyond their repertoire.

Well no, apparently since it all got ignored.

The lead singer decides to be friendly during the break, heads over with a drink in hand and tries to placate the situation - kudos to him for trying really.

"How about I play Bruno Mars?"
I was silently hoping for enough guts to mention Daniel Powter's "Bad Day" as a retort.
"Sure...That's the way you are?"
"Yeah, acoustic version though..."

I deadpan already. He explained that he was working on "Uptown Girl" and may try it out with the crowd next weekend. By this time, I was planning never to return.

Fair enough that he tried, that the crowd seemed to lap up the limited medley that the band was capable of. I seemed to enjoy the tunes played over the sound system instead during the breaks, for once any tune from Mariah Carey or Backstreet Boys would be hugely modern.

There you have it, the tale of dissatisfaction over music.


Latte that was too watery, passable cafe art and the glass made the portion look generous.

singapore sling

My Singapore Sling ($7) that was too cheap for comprehension when Long Bar at Raffles Hotel slaps on a $30 price tag. I had every mind to abscond to 3 Bars if it were as delicious - granted people have slammed Long Bar's version as straight out of a can and topped with a slice of pineapple or paper brolly.

It already looks different, like a washed out version of the crimson hued cocktail. It continues to tastes out of the world funny, like a bitter medicinal soda without any of the tropical-ness of a pineapple infused cocktail.


The manager then weakly waves it off as "recipe" and "portions used". I got it waived off subsequently but a cosmopolitan martini that I usually shun actually tastes way better than this.


Gunner ($7) which was a smarter option. Fizzy and sweet, just the way it should be.

ginger ale 

Arguably the smartest choice of the night - Ginger Ale ($5), straight from a can, completely hassle free.

The night with the hippy parents ended on a dumbfounding note - we were not impressed one bit. Even at rock bottom prices, sub par mixtures and a disappointing band that tries to impress. Premiums are paid elsewhere for quality and I still stand by it.

Never again, I'm afraid.

Chinese Swimming Club

A foodie born to eat, shop and travel. Forced to work.

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