A wise man once said, “To steal ideas from one person is plagiarism; to steal from many is research.” The axiom holds true to several of the hip joints found across (the south of) Bali where innumerable clubs, beach clubs, vegan cafes, coffee shops and secret speakeasy bars compete for space and attention so we aim to separate some of the Cool Cats from the Copy Cats for you!

40 Thieves set the stage on the secret bar front. Nestled on top of a ramen restaurant, the modestly-sized and dimly-lit bar is always packed but somehow never seems to be too packed, which we like. It’s like a home session at your well-heeled friend’s house where he/she invites all the cool people, including the disco-loving budding DJ to (wo)man the booth.

For live music, The Orchard Bali is the place to hang for a lively night. It’s a quaint-looking pub that offers their stage for seasoned and budding musicians from all genres (even folk!) to perform. Any musician on the island is welcome at their Orchard Jam Session, and their Marmalade Sessions Saturday night is definitely one to savor.

Got an incurable sweet tooth? Well, you better make room for Room for Dessert, world-famous chef Will Goldfard’s labor of love who transplants his brand from New York to Ubud. It’s a fine dining-style dessert only establishment using local and in-season ingredients that should definitely be on your must-visit list if you’re up in Ubud.

The new—sporty—kid on the block, Shooters Bali turn the theme of a sports bar on its head, no TV sports here but various drink in hand activities to keep you fit (well, sort of!) there’s a mini-golf course, basketball hoops, lawn bowls among other things. It’s a shoot and a hoot!

For the islands dog lovers, Paws & Play offers a great experience for you and your furry friend(s). In collaboration with Mission Pawsible and Yayasan Seva Bhuana, you can book a “dinner” with your dog with the meals provided by Kin Dog Food. A pawfect treat for your Bali broods.

For a dance music fix with a different twist and shout then Disko Afrika is one of those breath-of-fresh-air happenings that you don’t know you need until you are on the receiving end. Crisp and lively afro inspired beats make a nice change from the island staple of house and disco to bring out the hakuna matata in you giving a nice alternative for you to get your twerk on.

Meanwhile, on the responsible sustainability hospitality front, we tip our hat to Potato Head who lead the way in designing an eco-friendly operation. Their new seafood resto, Ijen, is zero-waste and source their food from responsible fisheries. They separate their waste: the organic elements goes to feed pig farms and the non-organic are delivered to their recycling lab, from which they built eco-bricks that they plan to use for future construction. Isn’t being green sexy?

They say nothing new is under the sun, and that might be especially true under the tropical Bali sun but we applaud those who at least try to offer something novel. So if you haven’t already, and you fancy something a little bit different from the orginal thinkers on the islans then head on down to these great little spots when you get the chance!