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AUTUMN 2009I sea& iI35 topfive CLOUD 9, GRAND HYATT SHANGHAI, SHANGHAI, CHINA Enjoying an elevated reputation as one of the highest bars in the world, Cloud 9 is aptly named. Occupying the apex of the Grand Hyatt, the bar has been imaginatively designed amid steel girders and columns in the Art Deco crown of the hotel's tower, from where it enjoys 360- degree views of Shanghai. You can travel up to the skies ( or the 87th floor) of the Jin Mao Tower in the heart of Pudong to sit and sip Champagne, sparkling wines and cocktails as you gaze out of the vast windows and point out the sights you visited that day; or tempt yourself with which ones to visit on days to come - a particularly magical pastime at night when this dynamic city lights up in all its neon splendour. Before or after your sky- high drinks, why not adjourn to one of the Grand Hyatt's restaurants? Take your pick from seafood and prime cuts at The Grill; sushi, sashimi and yakitori at Kobachi; or authentic Shanghainese at private Club Jin Mao, which is also blessed with fantastic city views through floor- to-ceiling windows. Based as it is in Pudong - Shanghai's financial and business district - the Grand Hyatt is exceptionally well placed for all the city's amenities. For more information, visit www. shanghai. grand. hyatt. com ? TallOrders sky- high bars Cocktails should always be a fancy affair, so the next time your glass is raised ensure your expectations and location are just as high. sea& iscales five top sky bars ByKate Rigby

36Isea& iIAUTUMN 2009 SKY BAR AT SIROCCO, LEBUA AT STATE TOWER, BANGKOK, THAILAND Perched atop the 63rd floor of Lebua at State Tower hotel, Sirocco is one of the world's highest open- air restaurants, and its adjoining Sky Bar stakes the heady claim of being the most spacious rooftop bar in Asia. It is also, undoubtedly, one of the most dramatic. Guests scale the dizzying heights of the State Tower to emerge at the loftyrestaurant - the open- air element ( you are literally floating in the sky) adding to the vertiginous experience. From here, a glamorous deck extends out to linger in the air above the dramatic vista of the Thai capital and the Chao Phraya river. After catching your breath at the setting, you'll descend to the deck where a gloriously illuminated stairway leads to the neon- lit Sky Bar in one corner of the restaurant. Here, the fun begins. The dynamic city of Bangkok pulsates far below but up at the Sky Bar peace and space reign supreme. That's not to say there is no atmosphere - quite the contrary - but it is a great place to escape the heaving bustle of street- level life. With an escalating list of awards to its name, live jazz bands and a dazzling menu of cocktails, fine vintages and appetisers, Sky Bar at Sirocco has to be one of the most intoxicating cocktail venues in the world. For more information, visit www. lebua. com/ bangkok ORBIT LOUNGE BAR, SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA Bold, vibrant and innovative, Sydney hits visitors with a feast of attractions, and one of the best places to view the finest of them is 47 floors up at the Orbit Lounge Bar. Located in the revolving Summit restaurant ( which hasn't stood still for 40 years), the Orbit Lounge Bar will certainly spin your mind. Its dynamic cocktail menu, quirky design and enticing atmosphere all enhance one of the most spectacular views to be had in Australia's capital city, including bird's eye shots of the Harbour Bridge and Opera House. A great tapas menu vies for attention with the drinks menu, the latter of which abounds with martinis, muddles and mocktails made by expert mixologists who use the finest spirits, fresh seasonal produce and very large measures of creative genius. Favourites include the tarte au chocolatwith caraibe, frangelico, café bohemeliquor, double cream and nut praline. Or try D'lux which blends puréed lychee shaken with grand marnier and Grey Goose orange vodka. But for all- out extravagance, the Peri- Gold- Fashion commands top dollar. Perigord truffle aromas and 23 carat gold dust swirl with the world's most prestigious spirit - Cognac - along with dried white grapes and a hint of l'Heraud Fine Champagne, vintage 1900. No wonder it's listed under the ' Opulence' section of the cocktail menu. For more information, visit www. summitrestaurant. com. au