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© Michaela Pointon | Michaela Pointon

The 10 Best Rooftop Bars In Manhattan, New York City

Picture of Caitrin Sneed
Updated: 8 June 2017
New York City can be a crazy roller coaster experience, so for the moments when you want to take to the skies and celebrate or when you need some external help to feel on top of the world, here are the best rooftop bars in Manhattan.

Top of the Strand

At the top of The Strand Hotel, you’ll find a breathtaking view of the Empire State Building. While you’re there you might as well have one (or three) of their expertly crafted specialty cocktails. The seating, a mix of bamboo lined padded benches, small tables and a string of barstools looking directly out at Manhattan, maintains an intimate vibe while also being open and energized. With its convenient location and retractable glass roof that allows the bar to be open in any season, Top of the Strand is the perfect place for a date or after dinner drinks (and a top-notch Instagram picture) with friends.

The Strand Hotel, 33 West 37th Street, New York, NY +1 646 368 6426

The Top of The Standard/Le Bain

The Standard is not your average hotel and The Standard’s rooftop lounge is no exception. The Top of The Standard provides tea and drinks in the afternoon but turns into a cocktail party and supper lounge in the evening, complete with live jazz and a small-plate menu (cocktail attire is required). After 10pm get ready for Le Bain, the nightclub that opens on top of The Standard Hotel. Le Bain centers around a large jacuzzi during warm weather months. Expect to wait at the door and go home with a crazy story.

The Standard Hotel, 848 Washington at 13th Street New York, NY +1 212 645 4646


Beer List at Tavern 29 | © Caitrin Sneed
Beer List at Tavern 29 | © Caitrin Sneed

Tavern 29

This multi-level tavern has a constantly updated beer list along with some excellent whiskey options. Tavern 29’s rooftop beer garden is perfect for anyone who prefers watching the game to staring at the Empire State Building. Its also ideal for those who want great food options to go with their libations and doesn’t want to break the bank for a drink. The chill atmosphere is made even better by the bartenders and regular customers. Whether it’s for a couple of beers on a Friday night or a burger on your lunch hour, be sure to try Tavern 29.

Tavern 29, 47 East 29th Street, New York, NY, +1 212 685 4422

Jimmy at the James

JIMMY is the epitome of New York glamor. This rooftop bar in Soho with a 360-degree view of the Manhattan skyline, indoor and outdoor seating and a pool has a highly cultivated ambiance (with an exclusive door policy to match). With specialty cocktails and a top-notch wine list, the average drink at JIMMY is far above average in both quality and price. For those who aren’t frightened by the potential bar tab, JIMMY at the James is the place to go for an unforgettable night.

The James New York, 15 Thompson Street, New York, NY +1 212 201 9118


The Met’s Roof Garden Cafe and Martini Bar

For a sprawling view of Central Park, a day drinking spot your Mom will love and an innovative rooftop art exhibit check out The Roof Garden Cafe and Martini Bar at The Metropolitan Museum of Art. Prices at the bar can initially seem high, especially after paying admission to the museum, but the atmosphere and art are worth the steep martini prices. Besides, haven’t you always wanted to call people ‘old sport’ while drinking martinis, talking about art and surveying the Manhattan skyline.

The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1000 Fifth Avenue, New York, NY +1 212 535 7710

Bookmarks Rooftop Lounge at the Library Hotel

With its literary-inspired cocktails and quiet areas perfect for reading and writing, Bookmarks is a refuge in midtown for writers and book-lovers alike. In addition to its impressive hospitality and drink menu, this rooftop lounge also features an outdoor seating area kept warm with heat lamps, decorated with plant life and subtly scored by the distant sounds of the New York City streets.

The Library Hotel, 299 Madison Avenue, New York, NY, +1 212 980 9476


230 Fifth Rooftop Bar

With its big umbrellas and benches on the outdoor roof deck and comfortable seating in the indoor penthouse space, 230 Fifth is a perfect place to bring a large group. As a bonus, brunch is served buffet-style on weekends for those who want to enjoy the stunning view of Manhattan during daylight hours.

230 Fifth Avenue Rooftop Bar, 230 Fifth Avenue, New York, NY +1 212 725 4300

Bar 13

Bar 13 is without a doubt one of the cheapest, most college-crowd friendly places but that doesn’t mean its not worth going to. For college students and those with a tighter budget who want to enjoy the Manhattan rooftop experience, this is the place to go. Conveniently located in Union Square, Bar 13 is a great option if you are looking to dance, take advantage of happy hour specials and then climb your way up to the roof for some fresh air and a view of the stars.

Bar 13, 35 East 13th Street, New York, NY, +1 212 979 6677


Upstairs | © Kimberly Hotel
Upstairs | © Kimberly Hotel

Upstairs at the Kimberly

The view of the Chrysler building, their to-die-for Fig Jam Bruschetta (or Coffee Brownie) and solid drinks list would all individually earn Upstairs a solid reputation. Put those all together and Upstairs becomes a must-hit spot on any New Yorkers list. With specialty cocktails priced at $18 a drink, it can get pricey but it is worth it. Unless you are stopping by for brunch, don’t expect to have a full meal here, but do plan on ordering at least one of their richly flavored small-plate options.

The Kimberly Hotel/Penthouse Level, 145 East 50th Street, New York, NY +1 212 702 1600

The Press Lounge

The Press Lounge at the Ink 48 hotel has one of the most spectacular views of Manhattan and the Hudson River. Located above its sister venue PRINT Restaurant, The Press Lounge is a chic haven of fine dining, drinks and relaxation perfect for after work.

the Press Lounge, 653 11th Avenue, 16th Floor, New York, NY, +1 212 757 2224