Relaxing on a rooftop as the world ebbs and flows beneath you is always a special kind of experience – even better if you have a glass of something delectable in hand. Let’s go sky-high and enjoy the view
Lead image: La Terrazza, Florence
By Cheryl Caira
230 FIFTH, New York
The Empire City’s largest rooftop bar gives ample opportunity for Manhattan skyline-gazing 365 days a year. From April to October, the roof deck becomes a tropical haven with the addition of around 60 petunia-covered palm trees, while during the winter guests are given complimentary red robes to stay snug, alongside toasty heating just to make sure.
La Terrazza, Florence
The roof terrace at Hotel Continentale in Florence is a dreamy spot for a sunset aperitif. Located in the historical centre atop the boutique hotel’s medieval Consorti Tower, the open air lounge offers views of the Arno River and an array of beautiful Florentine masterpieces, including Ponte Vecchio, Brunelleschi’s dome and Giotto’s bell tower.
Aer Bar, Mumbai
Aer is the highest bar in India’s commercial capital, with unparalleled views out to sea and over the city skyline. Covering the entire roof of the five-star Four Seasons Hotel, the open air venue is perched on the 34th floor, boasting a 360-degree panorama. Sunset hour is the big draw – and watching the city float into night, with the multitude of lights glimmering below.
The Rooftop at The Trafalgar, London
The Rooftop offers an escape from one of the capital’s busiest areas to a relaxed oasis with striking views of Nelson’s Column, the London Eye, and other city landmarks dotting the horizon. Nibble something from the European-inspired menu, pick out a cocktail and peruse the thrum of the city from above.
La Dolce Vitae, Barcelona
This classic Barcelona venue looks out over the best of the city’s splendour. The impressive hilltop peak of Montjuic and the evolving architectural joy that is La Sagrada Família make up just a small, beautiful part of the view from the roof terrace of the upmarket Passeig de Gràcia’s Majestic Hotel. A bossa nova and jazz background complement modernist décor and mural-splashed walls, while fans of Barcelona’s summer nights can enjoy champagne and cocktails poolside.
Sevva, Hong Kong
The 25th floor of Hong Kong’s Prince’s Building is the location for Sevva, a truly gorgeous penthouse venue with a heart-stopping view over the city’s harbour. The glowing opulence of the interior of the terrace basks in the shimmering surroundings of Hong Kong’s high-rise buildings, neoclassical monuments and generally tremendous cityscape.
On the top floor of the historic Misir building, this award-winning, 360° rooftop venue more than lives up to its name, providing grand views of Turkey’s vibrant cosmopolitan heart. The sweeping skyline sights of the spire of St. Antoine church, Topkapi Palace and Sultanahmet are all laid out for your perusal, as are the glistening stretches of the Bosphorus Strait and the Sea of Marmara.
The Rooftop Bar at Terrass Hotel, Paris
Head to Montmartre for a picture-perfect view of the French capital up high, with views from the 7th floor of the Terrass across the Seine and the ever-romantic Parisian skyline. Visitors to the terrace can drink in the beauty of a panoramic Paris with the Eiffel Tower rising beyond, while sipping something equally delightful on the bar’s comfy sofas.
Rock Bar, Bali
Not strictly on a roof – more on an elevated terrace – The AYANA Resort and Spa’s cliffside-located bar is simply sublime, affording 360-degree views over the sparkling waves of the Indian Ocean. Two timber platforms beneath the rocky outcrop of AYANA’s Kisik Beach offer sofas with prime viewing, with access through a natural cave that reaches a ‘secret’ garden over the beach. Soak up the Indonesian sunset and the signature cocktails.