The Best Rooftop Bars In East London

The nights may be starting to draw in and the rain to sun ratio is heavily skewed in favour of drizzle, but there’s still life in the good old English summer yet. When it comes to outdoor bars, East London has an embarrassment of rooftop riches. Make the most of the sun before hibernating to underground bars for the autumn.

Smokin’ Gracielas Rooftop Bar | © Queen of Hoxton

Queen of Hoxton

Bar, Cocktail Bar, BBQ, $$$
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Queen of Hoxton bar and club in Shoreditch, London, UK
Queen of Hoxton bar and club in Shoreditch, London | © Nathaniel Noir / Alamy Stock Photo
One of the most famous venues on the London rooftop scene, Queen of Hoxton is known for inspired twice-yearly themes, and this summer is all about Cuba. Sip a dulce de leche cocktail, nibble on a Cubano, and indulge in a spot of dominoes while you listen to Cuban storytellers. Fame, however, has its downsides, and the place can be heaving on a warm night. Either go straight after work, or drop by later in the night to enjoy the Queen at her best.

Coq D’Argent

Bar, Restaurant, Cafe, French, $$$
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Rooftop Bar
Coq d’Argent’s rooftop garden is an oasis of greenery in the city | © Dalston Roof Park
A little closer to the heart of the city, and a million miles away from multi-purpose arts spaces in Hackney, Coq D’Argent is a classically elegant venue to reserve for just after payday. Prices may be mildly wince-inducing, but the surroundings are more than worth it. Head to the roof to discover sweeping lawns, topiary worthy of a French chateau, and views to inspire serious Instagram envy. If quirky pop-ups aren’t cutting it, Coq D’Argent is the real deal, with proper grass to prove it. Take the time to peruse the extremely comprehensive wine list.

Dalston Roof Park

Bar, British
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Far from being a standard rooftop bar, Dalston Roof Park also offers a stimulating, diverse programme of gigs, supper clubs, film screenings and yoga across the summer. The eclectic furniture and white picket fencing gives it the feel of a house party where everyone has collectively decided to drag everything up to the roof; drinks in plastic cups further cement that feeling. Choose from a relaxed area with seating, or kick things up a notch under the canopies where music is louder and people dance on the astroturf.

Netil360 at Netil House

Bar, Street Food, $$$
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Netil House is one of those studio/art gallery/co-working spaces that East London seems to do best, but it’s also host to a fine array of day parties courtesy of Netil360. Pared down decking sets this rooftop apart from its more colourful cousins, but that isn’t to say it’s not as fun. In fact, their events calendar is bursting at the seams. Drinks are well priced, views are striking, and there’s something for everyone – including hot tubs, a croquet lawn, and a cinema tent.

Nantucket Beach Club at SkyLounge

Bar, American
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Bringing New England warmth to East London, the Nantucket Beach Club pop-up at SkyLounge is perfect for those longing to be beside the seaside. Refreshing cocktails served in mason jars accompany buckets of lobster, followed by a highly authentic Boston cream pie. Enjoy the swing bench, observe the lighthouse, and enjoy a spot of rooftop bowling. The Cape Codder Ale — Snow Queen vodka, cranberry juice and ginger ale — comes highly recommended, as does the lobster mac and cheese.

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