Wandering down a poorly lit street lined with high-rise buildings, we huddled around my iPhone, meticulously studying Google Maps. The entrance to Kuala Lumpur’s Heli Lounge Bar was supposed to be around here somewhere, but all we could see were office buildings that looked pretty shut down for the night.
We’d taken a short walk from our hotel, the KL Journal, to where the bar was supposed to be, checking left and right for any kind of sign that we were in the right place. Having gone past Google’s dot on the map, I was beginning to lose hope and decided to give up and start heading back, but wanted one last search when we got to the supposed ‘spot’.
Hard to Find
Standing right where the bar was supposed to be was a tall office block, with low lighting in reception that implied no one was home. But then I saw movement – a security guard maybe? I pushed Justin forward to see if this guy could help us, and reluctantly J went off to see what he could find out.
A short moment later her returned with a smile on his face. “This is the place,” he laughed. So in we went, feeling like we were trespassing on business property, firstly heading to the wrong set of lifts, before working on the set on the right were the express lifts to the top floors. I got a little nervous when I went to walk into one of the lifts I discovered was an empty lift shaft, looking in a rather bad state of repair. “Are you sure this a good idea?” I asked, but now we were here, he was determined we should power on.
A Hidden Party Spot!
Heading up to the 34th floor, as the lift doors opened it was like we’d been transported to somewhere completely different. We were greeted with a long, black reception area where two smartly dressed women asked if we were visiting the restaurant or bar.
We were told we were welcome to visit but as it was just after 9pm a dress code was now in place and J couldn’t wear his shorts. However, they kindly gave him some loose fitting cloth trousers to wear over them so after he’d got suitably attired we headed through the doors to a completely different world.
Gone was the silence of the empty office block where your footsteps loudly echoed off the walls. This was replaced with pumping tunes and disco lights galore as we headed into the large inside lounge space with funky sofa seats, and Formica white tall tables with stools. On one side of the black and white chequered floor stood the bar, with a model helicopter hanging above it, so we grabbed a drinks menu and headed to a table to decide what to do.
Unsurprisingly, as such an exclusive location, the drinks weren’t cheap here, but we’d been prepared for that. I ordered a refreshing fruit punch while Justin went for a cold pint. Together these came to around £11.50. Once the waiter brought these over we asked if we could take our drinks outside and he pointed us in the direction of the stairs.
The magic was broken as we stepped through the doors – again we were back in that dodgy office block, with a dingy metal staircase that took us up the two final floors to the entrance to the helipad. This is its purpose during working hours, but after the sun goes down staff bring out the tables, chairs and sound systems and the helipad turns into the city’s bar with the best 360 degree views of Kuala Lumpur. And so the magic returned!
Enjoying Amazing Views at the Heli Lounge Bar
For safety reasons you can’t, of course, go right up to the edge, but the helipad ‘proper’ is encircled with ‘red carpet’ rope, and then you have your pick of stools with high tables, mini sofas and coffee tables or round wicker chairs and tables.
These can be reserved, so getting a good seat can be hit or miss, but thankfully we managed to blag a spot on the outer circle closest to the awesome Petronas Towers. Here we spent a good hour enjoying our drinks, caressed by a refreshing evening breeze and devouring the amazing KL night-time skyline.
Of course the twin towers stood out above everything else, but turning 180 degrees I was also entranced by the Menara Kuala Lumpur’s evening light show, as every evening it’s lit up in a rainbow of colours. I never got bored of watching the city around me and I can imagine it’s easy to while away a whole evening here if you chose.
Although we only stayed for a couple of drinks, I did discover you can enjoy a meal here, as I eye’d up a lovely looking tray of burger sliders as we made our way out.
I hear there are many amazing bars offering great views across the city of Kuala Lumpur from the their top floors, but I can’t imagine any as spectacular as enjoying a drink on a helipad. I totally recommend anyone take the time to hunt out this special spot as not only is it an experience being there, it’s also an adventure getting there!
The Heli Lounge Bar can be found on the 34th Floor of Menara KH, Jalan Sultan Ismail, 50250, Kuala Lumpur.
At the time of writing it is open from 5pm-12am Monday-Wednesday, 5pm-2am Thursday, 5pm-3am Friday-Saturday and 6pm-12am on Sunday. ‘Happy hour’ is daily from 6-9pm.
Pin for later!
*Images credit: the Heli Lounge Bar Facebook page