Located in north-central Switzerland, Zürich is the most important cultural hub in the country. Once dominated by industry and factories, Zürich’s Kreis 5 district has transformed into the hippest part of the city and its edgy bar scene attracts a trendy crowd. We have ventured into Kreis 5 and taken a look at the top bars.
There is no better place to enjoy a drink overlooking the city of Zürich than Clouds Bar. Situated on the 36th floor of the Prime Tower, visitors can soar up to the scenic heights via the elevator and kick back on one of the elegant sofas. The stylish design is in perfect unison with the bar’s classic theme and the numerous, quality drinks will leave nothing to be desired. Whether you are looking to marvel at the dazzling views or enjoy a sophisticated evening, Clouds is the place to be. Note, however, that visitors need to be a minimum of 25 years old.
Basilica is a truly novel bar, located in the heart of Zürich-West. Opened in 2002, the bar quickly established itself as one of the cities trendiest venues. Elegant red walls, shiny sofas and marble statues remind the visitor of Roman architecture and the mixture of antique and oriental accents creates an elegant flair. Every night sees a different theme from Soul and Funk to after work parties and Cosmic Night. The extensive menu features drinks from all over the world, as well as a selection of culinary delights. The Basilica Bar’s effortless elegance and romantic setting have earned it a well-deserved place among Kreis 5’s best bars.
The casual I.Q Bar is popular with a diverse crowd over the age of 25 and the ideal hangout for a relaxed evening. The bar is renowned for its extensive drinks menu featuring numerous whiskeys and gins and a good list of cocktails. Additionally visitors can indulge in a variety of small snacks and antipasti. The brick walls and wooden furniture give this place a cosy atmosphere and allow you to lean back with a glass of wine and enjoy the setting. Ideal for an intimate night out or a reunion with friends.
Located in the same tower as Zürich‘s scenic Clouds bar, Hotel Rivington and Sons Bar is decorated in a New York style and serves quality beverages throughout the day. The old-fashioned yet elegant design creates a particularly charming atmosphere, taking the visitor back to a more sophisticated era. Located on two levels, the 80-year-old wooden bar offers classy drinks and snacks. With its attention to detail and highly trained personal, the bar provides an exclusive, yet relaxed flair and welcomes a variety of different visitors.
Situated between a car wash and a theatre, Exil has adapted its style to the industrial setting. The club’s minimalist interior is dominated by a gigantic, glittering disco ball, throwing its flickering lights over the dance floor, and the artistic bar, jumbled together out of piled-up wooden beams. Exil is all about live music and offers performances of every genre from rock to reggae and rap. If you are looking to get a break from the action, venture to the cosy lounge or outside area while enjoying one of the bar’s tasty drinks.
Sphères described itself as an urban oasis in Zürich West and the eclectic bar truly deserves a special mention. Not only does Sphères serve refreshing drinks, but it also functions as a book shop and features a gallery on the third level. In the simplistic interior, visitors can enjoy numerous drinks or tapas while inspecting the shelves and tables laden with books. The first Monday of the month turns the bar into a stage with various musical and literary performances. The enchanting Sphères is the ideal spot to get away from the stresses of the city and retreat with a quality glass of wine.
Located in a side street of the famous Langstrasse, lies Acapulco, one of the most fashionable meeting places in Zürich. It has earned a reputation for its brilliant Karaoke nights, which take place every Sunday. The modern, yet snug interior give the bar a relaxed feel and make it the ideal place to enjoy their selected drinks menu. If you are looking for more action, you can venture into the cellar for a round of table soccer. Acapulco is an absolute staple in the city’s bar scene and truly a place to remember.
The stylish Nietturm is worth the visit for its architectural elegance alone and is situated in a glass cube above a former shipyard. The bar offers an excellent panorama over the city and the floor to ceiling windows are a particularly striking feature. Two levels are dominated by a smart, yet modern design, featuring the main bar and a cosy lounge. Nietturm’s drinks menu covers an excellent range of spirits, wines and cocktails, satisfying a variety of tastes. The venue is an excellent spot for drinks for any occasion, whether you seek to take in the dazzling views or enjoy animated conversations. A sophisticated retreat within Zürich’s industrial Kreis 5.
Bar, Market, Restaurant, Beer, European, Swiss, $$$
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Frau Gerold’s Garten is one of the city’s most charming open air bars and additionally features a restaurant, a market and an urban gardening project. The quirky garden is a must for any trendy visitors and is frequented by a youthful, yet diverse crowd. On rainy days you can take shelter under the tent or in the cosy winter pavilion. Old shipping containers house fashion labels and ingredients for Frau Gerold’s tasty dishes are partly grown on site. The bar is the prime example for the innovative development of Kreis 5 and is truly one of Zürich’s hippest spots.
This alternative bar, close to Hardbrücke train station, is a particularly renowned spot for live music with many Swiss and international bands providing quality performances. The quirky bar relies on a minimalist atmosphere and, considering it used to be a garage, the setting works perfectly. The uncomplicated bar serves a great range of drinks in a completely laid-back environment. Don’t expect to encounter suits and ties here, instead mingle with the open-minded, trendy audience and enjoy a beer or two, or even a little dance.