Pasar Rumput is a great place to visit during the day if you are a tourist or an expat. It is close from the city center, and only 5 minutes away from Jalan Sudirman or Jalan Rasuna Said.
It is one of the biggest traditional markets in the center of Jakarta, and I don't think it will be long before new towers and buildings replace it. It is a bit dark, but still, you can see some very colourful stalls and people will be quite amused to see you wandering in its alleys. Great place to take photos as well:
Surprisingly, it is also a famous area for low-end nightlife, along with nearby Pasar Manggis and the Manggarai Railroad. You will never see an expat in there, nor a colleague, but maybe your ojek driver or your gardener. In Pasar Rumput, you will find everything there can be, just like in Kota's biggest one stop entertainment (except for the spa): Massage Parlours, Karaoke, Discos, Bars, etc.. Prices are extremely low: Rp. 50,000 for a massage, Rp 25,000 for a large beer. I had the chance to meet with the security guards of this night club called Pantura Bar, a venue for dancing and listening to dangdut. It has opened only a few months ago and it is the biggest in Pasar Rumput. It is very basic but not that dirty. I'm sure any night out starting out ending here will be great fun...
One floor under is where dozens of massage parlours and beauty salon can be found. Apparently most of the tenants are gays and/or ladyboys, which is not surprising since Pasar Rumput is very close for Jakarta's "bencong" district (ladyboy) in Taman Lawang. I don't know what kind of service is provided in the little massage room, but judging from the look of the masseuse I talked to, I would say it is most likely a plus-plus..
I was already surprised to see that the famous "Happy Karaoke", to which I paid a visit a few years ago is still there, as strong as a Viking ship: