A View From The Top: The 8 Best NYC Rooftop Bars
There's never really a bad time to get a drink or three at one of New York City's dozens of terrific rooftop bars (weather permitting, of course), whether you're out with the office crew, or as a can't-miss date spot, or just an relaxing way to entertain and impress out-of-town visitors. Thing is, like everything else fun these days, over the past few years there's been an explosion of rooftop bars opening all over town, and some, of course, are substantially better than others. Here then, are some of our personal favorite 8 Best NYC Rooftop Bars, all within a reasonable distance from one of Glenwood's luxury rental apartment buildings.
Although this place has probably the most wince-worthy name of any establishment in the city, Loopy Doopy sits atop the Conrad Hotel in Battery Park City, which means 1. the design of the place is really cool; and 2. you get spectacular New York Harbor/Statue of Liberty views. Another unique feature of Loopy Doopy–and an excellent ice-breaker, so to speak–is the bar's Prosecco and Icepop "cocktail" which is a glass of wine with a booze-infused popsicle stuck in head first, via the folks at People's Pops. Loopy Doopy is located at 102 North End Avenue.
The actual views here are no great shakes, but for a rooftop bar with personality and general sexiness, you can't beat Gallow Green, atop the McKittrick Hotel, home to the smash, interactive theatrical hit, loosely based on Macbeth, Sleep No More. This feels like another world from the one down there on the streets, with its vintage decor (including a battered rail car, which is by the way best seat in the house), lush greenery, and live old-time jazz. Gallow Green is located at 542 West 27th Street.
This one is cheating a bit, as there is no real rooftop involved (unless you sneak your drink up to the excellent sun deck that makes up the top level of Pier 15… or just head up there after downing a few and catch some of those cool river breezes), but the outdoor seating at Watermark Bar might as well be a rooftop, given the dramatic views of Brooklyn and the far-from-the-street vibe. Bonus: it's still a bit of an undiscovered gem, so it never gets too crowded, and the cheeseburger is first rate. Watermark Bar is located at 78 South Street, Pier 15.
Here's a great idea for your post-Whitney art-going. Because late at night, and especially on weekends, Le Bain and the Rooftop Bar at the Standard Highline attracts the sort of crowd you would expect from a Meatpacking District hotspot, but if you go for an afternoon or early evening refreshment, the scene is chill, the people-watching pleasant, and the view of downtown Manhattan with New Jersey across the way is among the best in town. Le Bain is located at 848 Washington Street (it's the one that straddles the High Line at 13th Street).
Met Roof Garden Cafe and Martini Bar
I haven't yet been to the Met's lovely rooftop gallery/bar Martini Bar this year, so have no opinion yet about the new commission by Pierre Huyghe–though I have heard that it involves prehistoric "aquatic species", a floating rock, and ripped-up paving stones–BUT I definitely do know that sipping a martini or flute of champagne up here (as is pictured at top) as the sun sets over Central Park is always a winner of an idea. Martini Bar is located at 1000 Fifth Avenue.
The Hudson Hotel has two worth-it outdoor spaces. First there's the Hudson Bar right off the lobby on the second floor which, although lacking in expansive views, makes up for it with its endearingly goofy design: the giant-sized watering can, the outdoor foosball, the beds-as-chairs, all of it. But for some hardcore outdoor lounging, Hudson's Sky Terrace up on the 15th floor is the way to go, with (among many other boozy things), ten specialty sangrias and long, unobstructed views of the Hudson all the way down to the Statue of Liberty. Hudson Bar is located at 356 West 58th Street.
On top of the funky (for the Upper West Side) NYLO Hotel NYC is the neighborhood's newest rooftop-drinking destination, the LOCL View. Opened just last year, this pretty spot features live music most evenings (the LOCL doesn't party all night; hours are 5:00 to 9:00, and the music is acoustic guitar, so nothing too crazy) and lovely views of the Museum of Natural History, Central Park and, going the other way, the Hudson River. NYLO (and LOCL) is in the same building as the great Red Farm, so after knocking back a few, maybe head on downstairs for some Pac-Man dumplings? LOCL View is located at 2178 Broadway.
The Terrace at Yotel
High above the farther reaches of 42nd Street is the largest outdoor space of any hotel in New York City, the massive, 7,000-square-foot Terrace at the trendy (at least design-wise) Yotel. Open all day and well into the night, the Terrace offers skyline views (which, personally, I think can be more interesting than river vistas), specialty cocktails (maybe try the Smokin' Banana Peels?), and a lively crowd of local and guests alike. The Terrace at Yotel is located at 570 10th Avenue.
Posted in Downtown, manhattan living, Midtown West, NYC Dining, Top Picks, Upper East Side, Westside | Tagged Gallow Green • Hudson hotel • Le Bain • LOCL View • Loopy Doopy • Martini Bar • Rooftop Bars • The Terrace • Watermark Bar • Yotel