So off I went to Mohamed Sultan Road, only to find that the once lively scene there has, how do I say, mellowed, compared to the days of my wild and free bachlorettedom. Gone is Madam Wongs, Next Page should now be called Half Page, and Cheeky Monkeys has even distanced itself, jauntily across the road with a fancy new look. Coyote Ugly, where I was as certain a fixture on the countertop as the tequila bottles were on the shelf, has certainly changed, the girl of yesteryear all hot shorts and too much rouge is now a classy lady in white Prada.
In it’s place, and bleached clean white is the Martini Firm day bed bar and I can certainly say that in Singapore, very few entertainment venues have as relaxing an atmosphere (is this what they mean when they say “The New Mohamed Sultan?”). I’m talking a lounge-esque cosy placewith approximately 800 square feet of sheer leg room… literally.
Wide beds, cleaned and bleached daily to perfection, comprise the ‘seating’ of this innovative space with pull out breakfast-in-bed tables. The decor is dominated by a nearly overwhelming white motif, making my short visit almost like Christmas in July.
Martini Firm operates as a bed martini lounge illuminated with LED mood lights skirting the walls that changed colour every thirty minutes. I almost could have done this entire review lying down… it was sheer comfort; the only thing missing was a bit of Moroccan perhaps, and my nice guy, or maybe a cute Moroccan guy… hmmm….
For a chill out bar/lounge, Martini Firm’s finger food was impressive; I was given a mouthwatering gourmet treat in the form of a Crispy Skin Duck Breast stuffed with dates, ginger and roasted garlic on baked potato-coriander cake in a Midena Balsamico sauce ($34.00).
The sliced mushrooms had a silky texture and enticed the palate while married with the savoury boneless duck slices, in very generous portions indeed. Needing someone to help share, I recruited the girl on the bed next to me, IS writer Ng Huixian, in order to finish. Speaking of portions, the serving size of the finger burgers (I spied on other tables) was enormous too.
As the suave owner Mychael Dean enthusiastically informed me “We emphasise on providing quality and quantity…” (note to self, was he trying to tempt me with food, or…)
He continued, “It’s all about providing the whole hospitality experience”. Indeed, the menu is available throughout the entire operating hours with all orders made to serve. Chef Brendan also recommended the whole rock Lobster ($38++). Michael was gazing at the duck I was devouring, but declined when I offered; the sharp angled American is a vegetarian?
Martini Firm daybed bar
He bought me a “Grey Goose Watermelon Martini” ($18) which was truly top shelf – it went down so easily that I was surprised there was vodka in it at all. I also had the chance to sample a “Bison Sour Apple” ($18) using 41% Polish Vodka. One should try out the special Day Bed Martini ($18) with Cointreau and chocolate in the mix!
The music policy is mostly chill-out house tunes with resident Jojo Dali on the decks, upping the tempo to a ‘more vibey’ funky/Latin /non-commercial house recipe on weekends. On Saturdays, it becomes “bed dance party,” they remove the Playpen (as Michael calls it) after 11pm to reveal a dance floor, and you can dance and party until 4am in the morning .
An exponent from Juliana’s of London, Jojo has been on the decks for well over 26 years, holding down a Europa residency for five with his truly versatile repertoire. I was rather impressed by his dark San Francisco material as I sat tapping my foot. “I think we (local deejays) are on par with foreign acts,” he boldy stated. I could only agree.
Being Michael’s fourth club in Singapore, the Martini Firm stands as his most specialised project following up on his successful earlier concepts such as ‘Hotbod’ and Body Shock’ in the mid to late 90s. “You gotta live it out…” he said, “the artsy clientele and business crowd doesn’t come overnight.” Martini Firm has already been making waves with insane experiments such as suspended Bongo players as well as a private Gala screening of Lucy Liu’s “3 Needles”. The upcoming Fashion TV party’s are expected to be a blast., and I’ll certainly be back for the Grand Opening on August 5th!