63 Haji Lane
+65 6297 9197
Decent dive bars are hard to come by in Singapore but Going Om ticks all the criteria in a free and easy way.
There is a whiff of student dorm about this place – or an owner who’s not quite let go of the hippie lifestyle. Thai pillows and kaftans are strewn over wooden benches beneath clouds of scented smoke from sheesha pipes. A sign in the toilet says: “You are a spiritual being having a physical experience”. It’s backpacker-hangout-meets-Asian-café, with a soundtrack of ambient sounds. All very charming in a semi-ramshackle way.
Drink prices are pretty standard, but there is a daily happy hour; from 5pm to 9pm, house pours go for $8. There’s also an all-day special of five beers for $35.
Going Om seems to be something of a spiritual haven for an eclectic mix of street performers and spiritualists. Every time I’ve been there, though, it’s been to sit out on the pavement, drink a cold one, smoke some apple-mint tobacco ($20 for a pipe) and people-watch the various fashionistas, hipsters and b-boys promenading along Haji Lane.