Situated on a side road running parallel to Yen Phu, it’d be easy not to notice the neon sign among the industrial surroundings of Hanoi’s latest watering hole. Once inside, Zone 17 gives a gritty first impression, but sit up at the bar and you’ll be greeted by open and friendly staff, ready to provide relaxed and comfortable service.
At Zone 17, a nice drink doesn’t make you resent your bank balance — ask for a margarita and you’ll wait as long as it takes to make a good margarita, and it’ll only set you back VND70,000 — the same price as a standard spirit and mixer. The beers come in at sober prices too; a glass of Larue costs VND30,000, and they’re not shy about advertising promotions for all your favourite poison.
From Dusk ‘Til Dawn Via Spy Bar
With the weekend taking the brunt of the business, the dance-floor is big enough to cater to a Saturday night crowd. Regular events keep the calendar busy; anyone who was present for their St. Patrick's Day party can testify that they know how to get the place going. In May, UK hip-hop pioneer Jam Baxter has chosen the venue to film the video to an upcoming single from his latest album. If weekdays are more suited to you then you have the option to choose your own music and take bets on the pool table in a more down-tempo atmosphere.
The sound system will leave your ears ringing after a night of deep house and old-school tunes, and on weekends before the 5am atxi home the late-night barbeque will fill the hole in your gut before heading to bed.
On the word of taxis, if you find yourself outside Spy Bar in the Old Quarter around 11pm, you might notice some stragglers excitedly boarding a bus — Zone 17 have arranged for buses to ferry weekend troopers from Hoan Kiem to their doorstep, for free, and have been known to set your night off with a free drink on boarding.
The team at Zone 17 have big ideas for the future as well, with plans to expand the venue and open a new room, as well as continue to bring in bigger and better names to grace their stage. Certainly something to keep an eye on, this once vacant side alley off Yen Phu could be the sleeping dragon waiting to ignite a new chapter in Hanoi’s nightlife.
Zone 17 is located at 17 Hong Ha, Ba Dinh, Ha Noi, parallel to Yen Phu