Several of the best rooftop lounges in Manhattan are open again, and although COVID-19 safety measures are in place, the fact that they are available to visit and enjoy provides a much-needed sense of normalcy. These unique venues are wonderful places where you can celebrate with friends or relax with someone special. Some have even shared the ingredients to their signature cocktail so that you can recreate it at home for your family and friends. Here is our list of the seven top rooftop lounges that are now open in Manhattan.
The Press Lounge (653 11th Ave. Open year round) is well known for its magnificent views of the city. Located on the 16th floor, above the Ink48 Hotel in Hell’s Kitchen/Midtown West, this is where you can enjoy seasonal drinks while admiring views of the Manhattan skyline and the Hudson River. The vibe is super chill and it is the perfect place to enjoy great company and conversation. There is also a large indoor area with big glass windows so you can admire the views in case the weather doesn’t cooperate. To ensure safety and social distancing, The Press Lounge is currently requiring reservations.
Featured cocktail: One of Press Lounge’s featured cocktails is the “Aren’t You Cuke”—made with refined cucumber vodka, heimat raspberry liquor, and St Germain.
230 Fifth Rooftop (230 Fifth Ave. Open year round) is known as the largest rooftop bar on the East Coast and is the perfect place to enjoy a few drinks and relax; in fact, the best feature of this rooftop bar is the causal vibe. The rooftop is open year-round and one of the highlights is going in the winter when they have their signature heated igloo domes where you can enjoy a warm cocktail while taking in the winter city views. 230 Fifth Rooftop is currently open, with outdoor seating available. In order to maintain safety for guests and employees, orders are taken over cell phones.
Featured cocktail: One of their popular signature cocktails in the summer is the Frose cocktail, which is a combination of Vodka and Rose wine—frozen to perfection. Frose is served in a plastic pouch so you don’t even need to worry about spills.
Upstairs at The Kimberly (145 E 50th St. Open year round). Located on the 30th floor of The Kimberly Hotel, a boutique hotel in the heart of Midtown East, Upstairs is a hidden gem offering incredible views of midtown, including great views of the Chrysler Building. Take the express elevator up and be transported to a breathtaking urban oasis thirty stories above Manhattan. This rooftop is open year-round and features a retractable glass ceiling and heated terrace with a fireplace.
Featured cocktail: Electrolyte
4 big chunks fresh watermelon- muddled
½ oz. pineapple juice
juice from half a lemon
1½ oz. vodka (non-flavored)
In a shaker glass, muddle the watermelon until all the water is extracted, add all other ingredients, shake vigorously, and strain over ice filled highball glass or pilsner glass. Garnish with a long, thin wedge of watermelon
Castell Rooftop Lounge (260 W 40th St. Open year round). Situated atop the AC Hotel Times Square, Castell Rooftop is known for its martini bar and cozy/classic atmosphere. After exiting the elevators from the lobby, visitors arrive in a space styled like a living room with a two-sided fireplace and arch walkway into the main bar area. The terrace is an extension of the interior and is perched above the city on the 21st floor of the hotel. Castell Rooftop Lounge is now open and also featuring open-air rooftop dining.
Featured cocktail: The Signature Gin Tonic 18, made with Hendricks Gin, Fever Tree, and Mediterranean Tonic.
Magic Hour Rooftop Bar and Lounge (485 7th Avenue at 36th St. Open year round). The indoor/outdoor rooftop lounge’s contemporary ambiance is a great place to have a few drinks, especially with the amazing views of the Empire State Building skyline. Located 18 floors above the city, Magic Hour boasts five distinct environments: the gallery-like entrance hall, the sexy urban-industrial lounge, the east terrace overlooking the Empire State Building, the west terrace themed like a carnival, and finally, the foreplay miniature putt-putt course. Magic Hour Rooftop Bar and Lounge is now open, and reservations are highly recommended.
Featured cocktail: Try their 18oz party pouch with grapefruit vodka, yuzu citrus, and a hint of pomegranate.
Le Bain Rooftop (444 West 13th St, Open year round). Located on the top floor of the trendy The Standard Hotel, right above The High Line, this is the place to be for amazing sunsets, food, and cocktails. There are spectacular views of lower Manhattan and the Hudson River, all the while making you feel like you are at a garden party as the rooftop is covered in faux grass. If you’re looking to have a good time, look no further as Le Bain is the place to see and and to be seen. It gets super busy in the evenings, especially on weekends, so get there early. The outdoor rooftop is open for guests in a new, seated-only environment. Reservations are recommended.
Featured cocktail: She’s Funny That Way
0.5 oz cinnamon syrup
0.75 oz lemon juice
1.5 oz Rye Whiskey
Combine ingredients, shake and strain. Top with sparkling pear cider and garnish with blueberries
Mr. Purple (180 Orchard St. Open year round). Positioned on the 15th floor of Hotel Indigo Lower East Side, Mr. Purple is known for capturing the vibrant and artistic spirit of the LES. It is often said that Mr. Purple feels like a Midtown/Meatpacking venue, but without the attitude. Up here you actually find two terraces: a smaller one perfect for intimate gatherings, and a large terrace with a little more vibrant feel and a rooftop pool.
Featured cocktail: LES Spritz
1/2 oz. lime juice
1 oz Greygoose Vodka
1 oz St. Germain
splash of soda
Top with Prosecco and garnish with mint sprig.
About The Author
Barry Hoy is a Canadian transplanted in New York City. He is also known as @asianmapleleaf, and is a travel, food, and lifestyle writer who showcases great destinations, their local experiences, and all of the must see (#bucketlist) places around the world. Travel is his passion, so he is always on the road or up in the air. If he’s not traveling, he’s most likely already planning his next trip. Follow along with his adventures via Instagram @asianmapleleaf or on his travel blog at www.asianmapleleaf.com.