Review: New "Princess Parlour" Bar In Singapore With Afternoon Tea, LV Trunk Decor, Pink Onyx Counter & More

Review: New "Princess Parlour" Bar In Singapore With Afternoon Tea, LV Trunk Decor, Pink Onyx Counter & More

Lifestyle Food
By Rachel on 12 Sep 2022
Senior Digital Editor

Think of a night out at a bar and what comes to mind is probably a dark and noisy setting. Even the swankier options in Singapore (like this loft cocktail bar!), which have a more grandiose air, often have brooding decor which still somewhat veers towards masculine.

That’s why the newly-opened Isabel Bar brings a breath of fresh air for ladies who wish to clink glasses in a more elegant environment. With cream-toned interiors, royal velvet armchairs, a glowing pink onyx bar counter, and even a bespoke Louis Vuitton trunk as decor, this stunning establishment resembles a princess parlour from olden England. Here’s our review.

P.S.: Check out our review on a gorgeous new book cafe with Beauty and the Beast vibes within the same building!

Isabel Bar Singapore reviewPhoto from Isabel Bar

Isabel Bar is located within Maxwell Reserve Hotel, which is also home to Cultivate Cafe and Indian fine-dining restaurant Shikar - all of which are also equally opulently decorated according to a colonial theme. The difference is that Isabel Bar was specially designed to appeal to women, and we must say that they’ve certainly nailed it in this aspect.

From the moment we stepped in, we couldn’t stop gushing in awe; It was truly as though we’d gone back in time and transformed into royals in an instant.

Isabel Bar Singapore reviewPhoto from Isabel Bar

The bar is split into 2 sections. The first is where the pink bar counter - their pride and joy - is situated. This is made from a marbled pink onyx material, which emits a soft luminosity when the counter lamps are switched on.

Isabel Bar Singapore reviewPhoto from GirlStyle Singapore

Hop onto one of the floral bar stools to get up close to the bartending action, or grab a round table and sink into the plush pouf seats and armchairs.

Isabel Bar Singapore reviewPhoto from Isabel Bar

Alternatively, there’s also ample space in the second section, a cushy carpeted lounge area with a velvety sofa booth spanning across an entire wall. Standing out against the cream-coloured floral wallpaper is a Louis Vuitton trunk sitting smack in the middle of the lounge. We learnt from this staff that this was crafted bespoke, specially for Isabel. If this isn't luxury at its finest, then we don’t know what is.

Isabel Bar Singapore reviewPhoto from GirlStyle Singapore

Isabel’s bar menu includes premium cocktails starting from $26. Some examples include French Kiss ($28), a romantic blend of dill-infused vodka with raspberry honey, campari, and soda, as well as Pink Lady ($26) and the Rosé Margarita ($28) - a rose-infused rendition of the tequila-based drink. Champagne starts from $36, while wines are priced from $26 for a glass of rosé.

Isabel Bar Singapore cocktailPhoto from Isabel Bar

While the drinks sounded tempting, we opted to visit in the afternoon for Isabel’s Afternoon Tea instead - a 3-tiered set of sweet and savoury items, as well as buttery scones served with jam and clotted cream. Each tiered set serves 1 person, while the scones come in a shared basket.

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Isabel Bar Singapore Afternoon Tea reviewPhoto from GirlStyle Singapore

This afternoon tea set is one that will appeal very much to those with sweet tooths, as it comprises significantly more cakes and pastries than savoury items. In fact, the only savoury items here are the assorted finger sandwiches which come with fillings such as smoked salmon and pickled cucumber; There are no savoury tartlets or other canapes that you’d usually encounter at other cafes and restaurants.

The sweet items range from cheesecakes to eclairs and assorted macarons, along with decadent mini brownies and other little nibbles. 

Wash that down with one choice of craft tea per person, with pretty-sounding names like Love Me, Purple Buds, and Darjeeling Princess. If you’re see-sawing between black and green tea, go for Number 5, which combines both with fragrant botanical floral elements like the may rose, ylang ylang, and neroli.

Isabel Bar Singapore Afternoon Tea review

One thing that had us puzzled was the fact that we were unable to fully match the items on our tray to what was listed on the menu. Upon asking the staff, we were told that whatever’s mentioned on the afternoon tea menu is simply for reference, so you can have an idea of what you can possibly expect, while what you actually receive would vary depending on which ingredients are available and freshest at your time of visit.

Essentially, only the scones are 100% fixed, so you can’t take their menu at face value and will have to be prepared for a surprise - which can be a good or bad thing, depending on whether you prefer structure or are okay with encountering the unexpected. In any case, do be sure to inform the staff ahead of your visit if you have any dietary restrictions or allergies so that they can plan accordingly.

Isabel Bar Singapore reviewPhoto from GirlStyle Singapore

Isabel Bar’s Afternoon Tea is on the pricier end at $89 per person, but that’s not a surprise considering that Maxwell Reserve Hotel and all its in-house eateries have a premium sort of branding to them.

Our verdict? Taste-wise, everything was more or less decent, but we found ourselves wishing for better variety, as some of the items were essentially different versions of the same thing. For example, a particular chocolate cake was repeated, and there were at least 4 mini cheesecakes per person in multiple flavours.

That said, there are no other bars in Singapore that have a similar ladies-geared concept that’ll have you feeling like British royalty as you sip on wine and nibble on dainty treats. If soaking in grand, exquisite ambience is your cup of tea, then Isabel Bar is certainly worth at least one visit - just so that you can dress up with your girlfriends and pretend to be noble women for a day.

We wouldn't mind coming back for a second visit to try some of their cocktails in the future, especially since they close late at 12am!

Isabel Bar Singapore caviarPhoto from Isabel Bar

Those who are in for full-on self-pampering can elevate the experience with Isabel Bar’s selection of Kaviari Caviar, farmed with a sustainable approach. This starts from $200 per tin, but can go up to an extravagant $1,400 for the Beluga Imperial Caviar 50g tin

Eco-conscious folk can try the plant-based Cavi-Art platter ($40), which includes seaweed- and wasabi-based “ikura” and “caviar” - served with vegan yogurt, yogurt-based coconut wasabi, and other creative condiments.

Isabel Bar
Address: 2 Cook Street, The Maxwell Reserve Hotel, Singapore 078857
Opening hours: 3pm - 12am daily
Telephone: 6914 1400 /  8866 0159 (WhatsApp)
Website

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