Bars & Pubs

Another Round, Buddhist Monk
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San Francisco, London and Dubai are among the surprisingly large number of cities that have a drinking establishment named the “Buddha Bar.” But there’s only one pub we know of where all the bartenders are full-fledged Buddhist monks—Vow’s Bar in Tokyo.

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5 Cool Caribbean Beach Bars

The Caribbean is one of the best regions in the world for beaches, and one of the best for cool bars. So it would make sense that two superlatives would meet up often.

Below are five great Caribbean beach bars. Our list includes one selection that is among Spot Cool Stuff’s favorite bars of any sort in the world . . .

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The Caribbean’s Cavern Restaurants

Quiz question: What’s the difference between a cave and a cavern?

In common usage the two terms are mostly interchangeable. But, technically, there’s a difference. Pretty much any underground chamber qualifies as a cave. To be a cavern a cave must 1) have formed naturally out of rock; and 2) be able to produce speleothems, which are those icicle-shaped mineral deposits created by dripping water.

There are several bars and restaurants around the world that are in caves. There are only two on the planet that are in caverns. Both of them are in the Caribbean:

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Hamburg’s Man-dergarten

Did you really learn all your really need to know in kindergarten? If not, you can try learning it at a Maennergarten.

At least you can if you are an adult male in Northern Germany

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The Orlando ICEBAR

You may before have ordered a vodka on the rocks. Well, how about a vodka in the rocks? That’s on offer at what’s literally the coolest drinking establishment in Orlando: the ICEBAR.

Long time readers of the Spot Cool Stuff travel blog already know of the Orlando ICEBAR—we reviewed this bar with the overly-capitalized name in our article about ice bars located in warm places. Inside the ICEBAR 50 tons of ice are carved into counters, lounge chairs and, yes, even the glasses patrons drink out of.

Before and since our visit there we’ve heard mixed reports about it from readers. And so here’s some advice to those considering knocking back a cold one at the ICEBAR when in Orlando.

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The NYC Bar Where Prices Fluctuate Like Stocks

As politicians and international monetary officials work on reforms of financial institutions there’s a key commodities market they are failing to address—beer.

Case in point: The Exchange Bar & Grill, in the Gramercy Park neighborhood of New York City. At the Exchange Bar the price of beer constantly fluctuates depending on market forces within the bar.

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Waiter, There’s a Cold War Airplane in my Soup

Spot Cool Stuff loves when retired aircraft are put to creative (and environmentally friendly) uses. There’s the Boeing 747 that’s now a hotel in Stockholm. The helicopter B&B in Connecticut. And the former Russian aircraft that takes a Swiss bar and restaurant complex to new heights.

Said Swiss bar and restaurant complex is Runway 34, located adjacent to Zurich International Airport.

Said Russian aircraft is a lyushin-14T, used by the Soviet Union’s Air Force for transporting scientists and cosmonauts-in-training between Moscow and a secret military training facility during the Cold War. (It is rumored that the aircraft was personally used by Stalin, which would have been quite the feat for the former Soviet strongmen seeing how he died in 1953 and the lyushin-14T wasn’t built until 1957.)

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Monkey See, Monkey Wait Tables

Each monkey is limited to working a maximum of two hours a day; the Monkey-Waiter Union is powerful like that.

Tweleve-year-old Yat-chan learned how to wait tables by spending time watching the staff at a sushi restaurant.

That would not be an especially noteworthy feat except for this: Yat-chan is a monkey, one of three who tend to customers at the Kayabukiya Tavern in Utsunomiya, Japan.

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