strategically located on the doorstep of southeast asia, bangkok is a popular stopover for those headed for the many sun-drenched beaches elsewhere in the region. notoriously busy and continuously transforming, it's tough to navigate this sprawling city - unless you're armed with a bangkok superguide, but that's a slightly different story... - and both first-timers and veterans often overlook the really cool spots tucked away in side streets and alleyways. these provide the thai capital with a funkier and more sophisticated side than it's often credited for. one of the more interesting new establishments that have popped up is this bar + lounge in the hipster maze of thonglor, just off bustling thanon sukhumvit.
as its name and outdoor neon sign already indicate, apoteka thonglor features a setting that's loosely inspired by an early 19th-century european apothecary. although the furnishings are faux-vintage and the chairs are clad in pleather, one can see the great attention to detail. the apothecary props in the glass cabinets and the huge bottles used as light fixtures add a quirky kind of authenticity that totally works. apoteka thonglor is totally geared towards the savvy bar hopper, and its talented crew of bartenders can mix up any cocktail of choice or supply you with something more substantial. to keep the vibe playful and contemporary, the upper crust of bangkok's deejays regularly drop by to spin beats until the wee little hours. location: sukhumvit 55, thonglor 12 [sukhumvit].