The Best Alfresco Bars in London

It only takes a marginal break in the clouds for Londoners to get straight on the "suns out, guns out" booze bandwagon. Ploughing through Pimm's, juggling pints and glugging rosé are as characteristic of British summertime as Wimbledon - so much so that finding an uncrowded spot for an early evening tipple can prove difficult. Make sure you're not left jostling for space on the edge of a pub pavement by hopping it to one of these SUITCASE-approved watering holes.

Our round-up of the city's best alfresco bars

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Frank’s Café

You haven't truly visited this rooftop right of passage unless you take a picture on the stairwell, which is London's version of LA's pink wall. Set atop a multi-storey car park in Peckham, expect cold craft beer and cocktails, ox-heart kebabs and brown-sugar hot wings. The dusk skyline views rival that of Manhattan, so get down early because this place has South London cool kids queuing round the block.

Address

F1-F6 Peckham Town Centre Carpark, 95A Rye Ln, London SE15 4ST

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Netil360

Shoreditch

A regular on the summer scene, Netil360 offers more than just a place to kick back with your friends. Adopt their blue-sky policy with a visit to their co-working space during the day; by night, get ready for heady beats, a hip crew and a revolving pizza menu. No bookings.

Address

1 Westgate St, Hackney, London E8 3RL

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Golden Bee

Shoreditch

When a bar as stylish as this one graces Shoreditch‘s Singer Street it’s bound to cause a stir. Subtle hints to its name come in the form of octagon-shaped mirrors and honey pots lining the walls – this is a hive where the hip and happening come to play. The setting sun burns the terrace amber then the outdoor fire pits are lit and DJs kick things off with house, R‘n’B and soul.

Address

Singer St, Old Street, London EC1V 9DD

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Ace Hotel

Shoreditch

A reliable fixture on the East London party circuit, stripped-back Scandi meets NY loft at Ace, attracting a young urban crowd. But it's not all about booze - the rooftop hosts sunrise yoga sessions and sundown dance classes, so get your exercise fix in before peering through their giant purple telescope and ordering an Old Fashioned while you wait for the DJs to start.

Address

100 Shoreditch High Street E1 6JQ

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Queen of Hoxton

Shoreditch

It's a bit of a slog up the stairwell but that doesn't stop lost boys and girls making their way to this Neverland hideaway, which is one of East London's most popular party spots. With rooftop cinema clubs, ukulele lessons and dance workouts, it's easy to abide by their "always up for it" motto.

Address

1 Curtain Road EC2A 3JX

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Dalston Roof Park

Dalston’s only rooftop club venue is not the place if you’re after a quiet one – whether it’s the strength of the cocktails, the thumping audio system or the chiselled hipsters, an evening here always ends in mischief. Originally a community allotment, the astroturf-clad venue has recently installed a retractable roof meaning you can pull up a deckchair and have a pint whatever the weather.

Address

The Print House, 18-22 Ashwin St, Dalston, London E8 3DL

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The Garden Gate

Hampstead

After Sunday strolls across Hampstead Heath, a pub lunch is always in order. This spacious beer garden conveniently backs onto the heath itself, offering Pimm's on tap and a huge selection of craft ales. If you don't own a dog, borrow one so you don't feel left out in this countryside-esque institution.

Address

14 S End Rd, Hampstead, London NW3 2QE

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Dalloway Terrace

London, United Kingdom

Named after Virginia Woolf's character, Mrs Dalloway, dreamy interiors channel all the elegance and charm that the eponymous character lacked. Perfect come rain or shine thanks to weather-protecting foliage and heaters, attentive staff ensure five-star service making it a pretty good spot for a breakfast meeting. Set in the literary heart of London, your parents would love it too.

Address

16-22 Great Russell Street Fitzrovia WC1B 3NN

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