Queenstown nightlife is next level and a must-do for anyone who enjoys a drink or three. And the Minus 5° Ice Bar in Queenstown is a bucket-list item for anyone who craves a unique and fun experience.
Minus 5° Ice Bar is basically a walk-in freezer with everything made from ice including the glasses you sip your cocktail out of.
This attraction is not like your normal bar or pub around Queenstown where you can park up for a couple of hours and enjoy a few drinks. The main reason is simply that it is so darn cold. -8.9°c cold to be exact.
While rocking up to the venue in shorts and t-shirts are not preferred, Minus 5° Ice Bar deck you out in massive antarctic-like, fur-trimmed jackets, gloves and ugg boots if you desire. Once you’re all geared up you look some what like an Eskimo.
Prices for Minus 5° Ice Bar are reasonable, considering the unique experience and drinks. Entry for adults with a mocktail included is $25, an extra $5 for an alcoholic cocktail and prices go up from there. Children are welcome in the Ice Bar too with kids entry and a mocktail totalling to $15. Family passes are available and include 4 drinks for $75.
You can often find discounts on entry fees and drinks for Minus 5° Ice Bar in tourist pamphlets or online.
Once you’re inside the bar is when the real fun begins. When you enter you are greeted by loads of ice sculptures from horses, to a traditional New Zealand tiki, a gorilla bin and a couch draped in animal hides. The bar is small, but still, has plenty of room for a largeish group of people to mill around.
Capturing photos inside of the Ice Bar is a rather difficult task. While the gloves provided do have special tips on them to help navigate your touch screen smart phone, more often than not for a clear photo you will have to remove your gloves and expose your digits to the below-freezing temperatures. The beautiful inter-changing mood lights can also prove difficult to help you set up for the perfect snap. Thankfully, Minus 5° Ice Bar has a roaming photographer taking photos of you on your experience and have the photos available for purchase after you’re done.
After half an hour or so, time is up and you asked to move on so the next group can enter. By this time though you are usually ready to exit the sub-zero temperatures and head to the next pub or restaurant to warm up in.