While rooftop bars might seem unequivocally tied to summer sunsets and Aperol spritzes, we’re making the case for indoor rooftops come wintertime. Allowing visitors to cosy up to a mulled wine and gaze over snow-capped rooftops, they offer that outdoor feeling without needing to freeze your fingers off.

Eight indoor rooftops perfect for enjoying wintry views over NYC

The Roof, PUBLIC Hotel

While Ian Schrager’s PUBLIC Hotel rooftop might be better known for its summertime rooftop parties, that doesn’t mean it’s not a fantastic place to come for cocktails with your pals during the colder months. The downtown views are showstopping, and if you can sneak out of work before 6pm, the earlier sunsets can be even more colourful than their July counterparts.

RH Rooftop Restaurant, Restoration Hardware

The leafy, chandelier-filled rooftop at Restoration Hardware in the Meatpacking District is one of the reasons that this furniture store has become a must-visit destination for foodies and fashionistas alike. The indoor-outdoor space is open all day long, so you can enjoy a farm-egg scramble with crème fraîche and chives while looking out at the roof garden to start the day, meet your crew for truffled grilled cheese sandwiches at lunch or enjoy a multi-course dinner as the World Trade Center glows in the distance.

The Fleur Room, Moxy Chelsea

One of NYC nightlife king Angelo Bianchi’s latest installations in his set of beloved drinking dens, The Fleur Room gained instantaneous renown among the city’s cool crowd after its grand opening, which hosted Victoria’s Secret angels as a major portion of its invitees. A Midtown gem, this 35th-floor indoor bar has some of the best views of the city, including an up-close look at the Empire State Building. With House of Hackney-esque florals decking out every seating area, it’s got a warm and sumptuous vibe that is extremely inviting on a cold, blustery evening.

Ophelia, Beekman Tower

Just off the East River, Ophelia is a “greenhouse” terrace offering 360-degree views of the city from a different vantage point than most rooftops. The cosy velvet nooks and stained glass behind the bar enhance its wintry atmosphere, and you’ll never be missing out on the view because the space remains indoors throughout all seasons. The menu makes this a perfect pre- or after-dinner spot, so opt for the hummus with pine nuts and naan or the truffle potato wedges for your table if you’re heading out afterwards, and get the dulce de leche churros if this is your last stop of the night. The hot toddy with winter spices and tea and the “New-groni” with chocolate bitters are dreamy cold-weather cocktails.

Westlight, The William Vale

Stacked on top of Williamsburg’s The William Vale hotel, Westlight’s swimming pool draws massive crowds in the summertime, and becomes a delightfully relaxing spot in which to enjoy a cocktail overlooking the Manhattan skyline in winter. The sleek space surrounded by floor-to-ceiling windows is perfect for a fun night out when you’ve grown tired of huddling in pubs or dark speakeasies. Warm up with the crispy potato skins topped with caviar and yuzu hollandaise, fried “filthy” green olives and an extra-dry martini as the city lights sparkle from across the river.

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Top of The Standard, The Standard High Line

As if straight out of a scene from an Austin Powers movie, the Top of The Standard is located, as expected, on top of The Standard in the Meatpacking District, and plays host to parties for the likes of Luca Guadagnino and Grace Coddington. On a weekday evening, it also becomes the perfect place to cluster around the groovy bar to people-watch and sip on G&Ts.

JIMMY at The James, New York

A favourite rooftop among the Soho crowd, 70s-style JIMMY at The James has a fireplace, wooden furniture and funky Arco lamps, which will make you feel as though you’ve stepped into a DJ’s living room rather than a bar. As for drinks, the menu changes seasonally – the “Legal in Vermont” cocktail, composed of bourbon, cinnamon and orange bitters, tastes seasonally appropriate. The team behind JIMMY at The James is well established in the NYC restaurant and bar scene, so know you’re in good hands.

Last Light, Sister City

The newest hotel on The Bowery, Sister City has a glass-encased rooftop that overlooks the storefronts of Nolita and Soho as well as the Hudson River beyond. With a chiller vibe than the party-hardy summer nights here, Last Light is the perfect place to stop by on your way home for a few drinks and snacks if you can’t be bothered to make another stop at a restaurant on a cold night. For some light bites to tide you over, we suggest the chicken satay with spicy peanut sauce and shrimp skewers with charred pineapple, while the Queen Anne’s revenge cocktail, made with benedictine, allspice, almond and ginger is our go-to tipple.

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