SKYBAR MALABAR & CAFÉ JAKARTA | Amsterdam

It was time to finally give in to the lure of Batavia.

Given the executive-level view from my workspace of the Ij River and Java Island, always a treat to come to work to, it was too easy to imagine playing hooky and settling down to a nice cocktail in the still-shiny, relatively new Hotel Jakarta across the way. With the bright sun bouncing off it today like a beacon, it dawned on me yet again that life is too short for any kind of useless hesitation and so on this sunny Wednesday quick plans were made to leave work on time – for a change – and walk the short distance across the river for drinks and dinner. Not 15 minutes after work I was plopped down a comfortable chair eight floors up, facing the river and the nearby skyline, cradling a rather heavy Batavia in hand.

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The view from the Bar Malabar was stunning, and for a while it was all mine as no other customer was there. The quiet and solitude was a luxury and the cocktail of rum, liqueur, syrup, and juice was as satisfying as any holiday cocktail ever. After I was joined by Teko, we savored the view for a few more minutes then went down to the Cafe Jakarta in the lobby for some Indonesian food. The peace and quiet that was also there, and to a certain extent their version of nasi goreng, were just as satisfying. It was a hump day micro-holiday if ever there was one.

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