Here at The Handbook, it is always summer, even when the rain attempts to tell us otherwise. Rain or shine, London boast a not-so-secret plethora of places to enjoy the sun – namely rooftop terraces. Our pals over at BarChick have come up with this great list of their best bars to kick back with a cocktail and enjoy the best rooftops this city has to offer.
Occupying the roof terrace of One New Change in the slick surrounds of the city, you’ll find Madison. This bar is both panoramic and guys in suits central, so if you’ve got a penchant for either then get up here. Order Champagne and take in the views over this incredible city; St Paul’s is so close you can almost cheers it. On sunny days and during the after work slot it can get seriously busy, but squeeze on in and eat your heart out. When the sun goes down move inside for a three course dinner or some snacks in the tapas bar.
The Kensington Roof Gardens
An oldie but a goodie, these guys put roof terraces on the map. This roof top is bright, luscious, spacious, herbaceous… whatever you want it to be it will be just that. It’s like some kind of hidden oasis of hedonism complete with flowing streams and fish, trees, numerous gardens and even resident flamingos. There’s also a restaurant and a club, so see where the night takes you as there’s really no need to come back down again before the early hours. The ultimate roof top that has been keeping people blissfully happy for decades.
Looking to escape the marching masses of shoppers on Oxford Street? Aqua will refresh you instantly, just don’t be put off by the ground floor club like entrance. Once out of the lift it’s a big place with lots of options. We’re all about Aqua Kyoto, the slightly less obvious roof terrace which you’ll find if you hang a left at the big black bull. Cocktails are king out here and DJs are on hand to get the party started. Head inside for some sushi and only return down to Oxford Street when the shops have closed and it’s safe to do so.
Finished cruising the National Gallery and in need of a drink? Vista at Trafalgar is one hell of a roof terrace, and you can still watch the swarms of tourists climbing on the lions, just from a safe distance and with a cocktail in hand. These guys are givers; they’ll give you blankets if it’s cold, food if you’re hungry and a whole load of cocktails to keep you there – but you will be charged a entrance fee for the privilege (get there early to avoid). Plus with a sparkling floor, flashing lights and music, even the lift up is a party.
Perched on the roof of No.1 Poultry is Coq D’Argent – the ultimate place to long out a lunch meeting / date / sundowner / birthday – hell anything! Head up here and enjoy classic and delicious French cooking while taking in the awesome views of all of London’s most iconic buildings, there’s a huge terrace and an outdoor kitchen. Unlike most City joints this one is open on Saturday night and Sunday lunchtime for the ultimate sky high roast. We like to think of it as our Champagne picnic ground, but that’s just us.