There’s a certain style of dingy, dark dart bars that nest along the Shenzhen side of the Hong Kong border – the type of place where Hong Kong dollars are used to pay for canned beers, which come served in a metal bucket by a woman who will try to chat you up in Cantonese. Crazy Darts is not that.
Set in a complex near Chegongmiao Station, Crazy Darts shares a building with restaurants and at least one club – all of which have all been polished to a practiced, corporate sheen. Crazy Darts follows that commercially refined formula with KTV-style floors that reflect violently colorful neon lights that spiderweb overhead.
Service is prompt, friendly and operates mostly by hand gestures, as not much can be heard over the scream of recent club hits – that is, until a musician takes to the modest stage.
The music fades, and a fashionable, guitar-bearing fellow begins singing below a big screen TV looping a Victoria’s Secret promo. Though less windswept than the models pictured above, he sets into the first of five Chinese-language love songs with a pair of lungs that turns heads.
Shenzhen’s smoking ban hasn’t affected the inside of Crazy Darts, but no matter. The huge sliding doors are open on our visit, giving a view of the outside seating and plenty of airflow.
We didn’t have our hopes set very high for the drinks – the place striking us more as a green tea and whiskey venue – but the ‘maraget’ (read margarita, RMB68) was competently made, if light on the triple sec.
We followed that tipple with something labeled ‘For the drunk’ (RMB70) – apparently a screwdriver decorated by an orange peel and mint leaves. As for the specific ingredients, the waitstaff weren’t sure.
The bathrooms are separate, small rooms with reflective walls – the perfect place for some mid-date primping.
Finally, good news about the 14 electronic darts machines: customers play for free, though the plastic tipped projectiles may be a turn off for purists.
Who’s going: groups interested in their cellphones, casual dart players
Good for: a conversation-lite start to the night
Nearest metro: Chegongmiao (Exit B), 10 minutes