Macao by night
By Julie Baxter | January 2016
When the sun goes down, Macao lights up … not for nothing is it known as one of the most vibrant and exciting cities in Asia. And although its casinos may dominate the headlines, there’s plenty more for night owls to do here than just the roll of the dice. So whether your clients want to indulge their taste buds with a Michelin-starred meal, take in a show, dance the night away or sip a cocktail from a rooftop bar as you take in Macao’s skyline, you’ll never be short of choices for a night to remember.
“With gourmet dining, spectacular shows, glitzy casinos and lively bars, Macao has everything your clients could want for a great night out”
Sue Whitehead, Macao Government Tourism Office
Bars and Clubs
Pulsing beats pumped out by world-renowned DJs, energetic clubs and cabarets are all part of the Macao nightlife experience. And there is no shortage of places to party. Meanwhile, like the city itself, Macao’s bars offer visitors a choice between the old and new.
To chill out in an al fresco setting, the intimate atmosphere of the charming Pousada de Sao Tiago, set in the remains of a 17th-century fortress, has a charming terrace overlooking the sea. Che Che, an intimate Portuguese-style lounge in the hills of the Macao peninsula also welcomes the mellow crowd. Or move on to one of the bars that make Macao a mecca for night owls. Impressive venues include the Lion’s Bar at MGM Macao, the hottest spot in town for great cocktails, live music and a chic and vibrant ambience for the discerning visitor. Macao’s latest import is Ibiza nightlife’s biggest name - Pacha – which has brought its electrifying party vibe to Studio City in the Cotai area. With an exterior patio and four private rooms, Pacha hosts resident DJs and special events with the world’s biggest names at the decks.
Macao’s glittering roster of theatre and live shows really sets the destination apart. The city is now firmly on the schedule for international artists from The Rolling Stones to Christina Aguilera and Madonna while Broadway Macao offers vibrant street entertainment and up-and-coming bands on its mobile stage. For something really unique, the breathtaking House of Dancing Water show at the City of Dreams is truly a “must see”.
Macao’s gaming scene has seen it become unofficially known as “the Las Vegas of the East” and the city’s extravagant casinos are home to well-known games such as roulette, blackjack and poker as well as local games such as Chinese fan-tan
With Macao’s reputation as one of the greatest food destinations in Asia, finding a restaurant for dinner is only a matter of choosing between the excellent Portuguese, Chinese, Macanese and international options. The destination’s dining scene has become so renowned, in fact, that Michelin has awarded its prestigious stars to sixteen of Macao’s most notable restaurants.
But there is plenty of choice aside from those recognised by Michelin, with a huge choice of rustic restaurants, intimate eateries and sizzling Chinese street stalls to satisfy all tastes and budgets in a melting pot of flavours.
When the Portuguese settlers arrived in the 16th century they brought food, not only from their home country, but from all their trading stops en-route to Macao, resulting in the unique local fusion cuisine that combines elements of Portuguese, Indian, South American, Malaysian and African influences with local Chinese traditions. Authentic Macanese cuisine can be found in restaurants all over Macao, many within easy reach of key historic sites as well as on the laid-back islands of Taipa and Coloane.
Macao is also home to some of the best Portuguese food outside Portugal, with authentic Portuguese specialities washed down with excellent Portuguese vintages. With a dominant Chinese population, Macao is also home to a wide range of Chinese restaurants offering delicious Cantonese cuisine. Dim sum is a time-honoured afternoon ritual in Macao, which has a reputation for offering some of the best in southern China. Finally, for those with more international tastes, visitors will find plenty of excellent restaurants serving Italian, French, American, Brazilian, Japanese, and Korean cuisine as well as dishes from all over Asia.
Rua da Cunha is known locally as “Food Street”, its winding streets brimming with local and international delicacies of all kinds while Broadway Macao is home to the city’s first hawker-style street market.
For more information about Macao, visit www.macaotourism.gov.mo
Night-out must do
House of Dancing Water Show: There is nothing like the spectacular resident show at the City of Dreams. The multi-million dollar “House of Dancing Water” show was developed by Franco Dragone, the man behind many of Cirque du Soleil’s most memorable shows, and features jaw-dropping high dive acrobatics, as well as high-wire stunts, fountain effects and even somersaulting motorcycles that will take your breath away.
The Night Sky: For eye-popping views of Macao’s dramatic skyline there’s no better place to enjoy an evening cocktail than one of the city’s rooftop bars. The ultra-stylish rooftop 38 Lounge bar on the 38th floor of the Altira Hotel has both indoor and outdoor seating, and live music from Wednesday to Monday. Another great option is Sky 21, located on the 21st floor of the AIA Tower and features a chic lounge bar, a dance floor with an alfresco deck and incredible views of the Macao Tower and Nam Van Lake.
Dance the Night Away: One of the highlights of Macao’s vibrant club scene is the 30,000 square foot Cubic club, which regularly welcomes DJ’s of international acclaim. It is one of the largest hotspots in Asia, set over two floors in the City of Dreams, where international live performances, laser projection facilities, a gothic-style bar and Asia’s first Perrier-Jouët Champagne Bar combine in a variety of dazzling effects to impress party-goers.
Michelin-star Dining: There are no less than sixteen Michelin-starred restaurants in Macao – boasting up to three prestigious stars – that rank amongst the best in Asia. For a real treat, head to the lotus-shaped Grand Lisboa Hotel, which is home to Macao’s two three-star Michelin restaurants. With magnificent views over Macao, Robuchon au Dome offers contemporary French cuisine together with a collection of over 7,000 wines. Meanwhile the lavish interior of The Eight is the place for exquisite Cantonese and Huaiyang cuisine and over 50 varieties of dim sum.
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