London’s top 20 alfresco terraces and rooftop bars
Rooftop bars and alfresco terraces have always been summer treat in London. But never more than now, after months of hard home drinking and inexperienced cocktail mixing, have we been grateful for them. You’re hard pressed to enjoy London more than sipping cocktail on a glorious roof top or with a glass of rose on one of the many delightful terraces that spill over into the city streets after a day of home working.
We have rounded up 20 of London’s finest rooftop establishments and delightful alfresco terraces water for you to choose from when the sun is shining or heck, even if it’s raining. Make sure you call to book in advance especially if you’re planning an alfresco date, as many places are still restricted by social distancing rules and may fill up quickly.
Coppa Club, Tower Hill
Coppa Club’s famous riverside igloos have reopened and ready for spring, and tropical new Paradise Pods are in. Each super-Instagrammable pod will be kitted out with palm trees and hanging lanterns, forming part of a tropical beach resort with an outdoor bar that you enter via a bamboo walkway. The pods, which offer knock-out views of London’s iconic Tower Bridge, HMS Belfast and The Shard, are open for breakfast, lunch and dinner, and are perfect for a lazy weekend brunch.
Coppa Club, 3 Three Quays Walk, Lower Thames Street EC3R 6AH; coppaclub.co.uk
Aqua Nueva, Soho
The sunny rooftop at contemporary Spanish restaurant aqua nueva is a hidden santory from marauding crowds of Regents Street and Oxford Circus. With a live DJ, bottomless brunches and cool laid back interior, you would be forgiven if you forgot you were in London and not basking in the Balearics. Advance booking is advised, with a min spend of £50 per table.
5th Floor, 240 Regent Street (entrance 30 Argyll Street) W1B 3BR; aquanueva.co.uk
Serpentine Bar and Kitchen, Hyde Park
When the sun comes out, Londoners take to the parks. The Serpentine Bar and Kitchen is in the middle of Hyde Park, right next to the Serpentine Lake and the views are spectacular. Not only does it offer clear views the swans and boats, but it is also a great spot for people watching – picnic makers, rollerbladers and dog walkers alike. There’s a Gin Bar, great cocktails a hot dog BBQ, a wood fire pizza oven and a whole range of British classics to tuck into.
Serpentine Road, Hyde Park W2 2UH; benugo.com
SushiSamba, the City
One of the coolest restaurants in town, SushiSamba offers a unique blend of Japanese, Brazilian and Peruvian cuisine, music and design. Located on the 38th and 39th floors of the Heron Tower, it has one of the highest outdoor dining terraces in Europe, offering unparalleled 360-degree views of the City. The indoor-outdoor elements featured throughout the space, most notably, the designed structural orange tree on the west terrace.
110 Bishopsgate EC2N 4AY; sushisamba.com
Alto by San Carlo & the Peroni Ambra Roof Terrace at Selfridges
Shopping and cocktail are a winning combination in anyone’s book. San Carlo, bringing their world-renowned Italian style to the roof of Selfridges on Oxford Street. Once again Alto by San Carlo will offer a day-to-night menu of seasonal Italian dishes made using only the finest ingredients. Expect spectacular seafood and an expertly curated wine list in a stunning Italian garden setting. If you just fancy a drink, check out the Selfridges Peroni Ambra Roof Terrace. Enter via the express lift in Fragrance on G.
400 Oxford Street W1A 1AB; selfridges.com
The Prince Fulham
The perfect casual alfresco watering hole, has reopened and is available for walk-ins as well as bookings. Never before has an entire street been transformed into an epicurean avenue, dedicated to some of London’s most exciting food, drink and social experiences, until NOW… There’s no better place to while away a warm spring/summers day or night ~ eat, drink and party with us in London’s largest pub garden.
Pergola’s have sprung up all over London, so if it’s roof top drinks your after there will be a Pergola near you! These secret hideaways in the heart London’s busiest district, adorned with heavy green foliage are a fun setting for after work drinks. Set against the backdrop of Paddington’s urban surrounds, the two floors of this vibrant space will be carefully curated for summer, creating a botanical alfresco dining destination . Open Wednesday to Sunday, lounge around on one of their giant day beds, sip on bespoke cocktails or eat from one of the best independent eateries. This summer, the food line-up will see the return of burger legends Patty & Bun and Mexican fast food specialists DF Mexico, as well as new additions including shredded duck restaurant Canard and Vietnamese barbecue masters MAM.
5 Kingdom Street, Paddington Central W2 6PY; pergolalondon.com
Never Land Fulham
Immersing guests in London’s ultimate beach club concept. Escape to London’s beach club paradise, Fulham Beach Club transports guests to distant shores with its stylish indoor/outdoor Thameside beach venue. Enjoy lounging on day beds with a group of friends, book your own beach hut, or reserve your exclusive cabana on the beach! Choose from two bars, Jimmy Garcia’s BBQ Club pop-up restaurant, Pineapple Pizza and chill with live Dj’s plus a variety of weekly events, to . Games include Shuffleboard, Ping Pong, Beer Pong & Croquet for those more competitive spirits!
Maddison St. Pauls
Step out of the lift onto the top floor of One New Change into the world of Madison. With several rooftop terraces offering supreme views across the City of London skyline, the space can be enjoyed year round with our umbrellas and heaters. The Bar at Madison is a destination in its own right with spectacular city views, a wide range of cocktails and delicious bar snacks.
Darcie & May Green Paddington
Situated directly outside Paddington Station on the Grand Union Canal are floating pieces of art, designed exclusively by the ‘godfather’ of British pop art, Sir Peter Blake. May Green opens from the early hours of the morning (perfectly executed flat whites and banana bread) to the late hours of the evening (buzzing bar with nine local craft beers on tap and live music).Darcie Green provides the perfect setting for canal side dining, serving Aussie brunch, healthy lunch and relaxing dinners. With an Antipodean-inspired menu, dishes are bold, fresh and comforting. The two boats share a combined 50 meter upper deck overlooking the Grand Union Canal, perfect for the summer months
Frank’s Cafe, Peckham
Frank’s Café is the hottest spot south of the river come summer. Coming back for Summer 2018, its the country’s coolest multi-storey car park with cocktails (make it a Negroni or Aperol Spritz) and excellent sharing plates like buffalo chicken wings with blue cheese crème fraiche and smoked paprika and parmesan-roasted corn on the cob. The whole of Shoreditch tends to descend on this place so the bar queue is usually huge.
Peckham multi-storey car park, 95a Rye Lane, Peckham SE15 4ST; frankscafe.org.uk
Midsummer Terrace at Sea Containers
Another champagne-centric pop-up from Laurent-Perrier, who are this time partnering with Mondrian London for a floral terrace wrapped around the Thames-side Sea Containers restaurant. Heady midsummer meadows have influenced the look of the pop-up – dusky pink furniture and pink wildflowers make the space ultra-Instagrammable – and there is a new à la carte menu spanning seafood (strawberry- and champagne-cured sea bass) to summer veg (courgettes stuffed with ricotta, pink pepper and baked lemon purée). The Southbank spot is open to guests as well as members of the public, with the three-flute champagne flight the proper way to experience the setting.. Open till late September for lunch and dinner. The Champagne Bar will be open Thursday, Friday and Saturday
20 Upper Ground, South Bank SE1 9PD; seacontainersrestaurant.com
Pop Brixton has shed its winter roof ready for the summer season. South London’s go-to alfresco drinking and dining destination has an ever-growing selection of street food vendors and bars serving everything from gyoza to jerk chicken, the venue is perfect to while away the summertime. Look out for special events, from yoga brunches to vintage kilo sales, film clubs, family discos and big music nights.
49 Brixton Station Road, Brixton SW9 8PQ; popbrixton.org
The Lido Café, Herne Hill
The Lido Café in Brockwell Park is one of our favourite spots in south London when the sun is out. A good-sized terrace faces the swimmers and the park’s leafy trees beyond, transporting you away from London and into a more rural environment. Modern-British food is served all-day, making this a great spot for breakfast, lunch or dinner.
Dulwich Road, Brockwell Lido, Herne Hill SE24 0PA; thelidocafe.co.uk
Dalston Roof Park
Dalston’s only rooftop bar and music venue, brought to you by the Bootstrap Charity, where all profits go back into empowering young people and businesses. Expect Roof Park’s events – film screenings, music, street food and more. Its Facebook page will keep you up to date with what it’s got planned. You can’t book for drinks as it operates a purly walk in policy so arrive early on a sunny day.
The Print House, 18-22 Ashwin Street E8 3DL; bootstrapcompany.co.uk
Boisdale Garden Terrace, Canary Wharf
Overlooking Cabot Square in Canary Wharf, Boisdale terrace has opened for spring and has a cracking happy hour. Impress a date with a bottle of Champagne, A Bottle of Veuve Clicquot Yellow Label NVWas £89.50 Now £49.50
Cabot Place, Canary Wharf E14 4QT; boisdale.co.uk
Stratford is cool now. The Olympics have packed up and moved on, the sporting legacy is questionable, but the canals and outdoor spaces speak for themselves. Pitch on Bridge Terrace off Stratford High Street is openefor business and offering some of London’s best street food (gourmet hot dogs, souvlaki, Venezuelan food, vegan dishes), colourful, design-led (and weather-proofed!) spaces to hang out in, a craft-focused bar, Sunday DJ brunches, plus a schedule of activities and events from themed outdoor film screenings to evening classes and party nights, too. Open from Fri-Sun in April, Thu-Sun in May and every day in June and July. Open till autumn.
2 Bridge Terrace, Stratford E15 3FF; pitchstratford.com
Savage Garden at DoubleTree by Hilton Tower of London
Savage Garden is a new dramatic sky-high destination bar opening in the City in June. Sitting 12 storeys above the city below, the all-day bar and cocktail lounge, located atop the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel London – Tower of London, boasts 360-degree views over the City of London, taking in The Shard, Tower of London, The Gherkin and St Paul’s Cathedral. Inside, the interiors are brutal yet sultry with savaged surfaces contrasting with plush velvet finishes. Outside, a large all-weather north-facing terrace is set-up for all seasons, from lunching alfresco and sundowner cocktails in the summer to hot toddies and fireworks come autumn, courtesy of Savage Garden’s retractable roof. A second south gin terrace is the perfect place to while away warmer days. Hard liquor meets savage tinctures in captivating cocktails, as well as a menu of small plates for lunch and dinner.
7 Pepys Street EC3N 4AF; doubletree3.hilton.com
Dalloway Terrace, Bloomsbury
Every influencer worth their salts has snapped a glossy image at the stunning Dalloway Terrace. Undoubtedly one of London’s top alfresco terraces, since reopening post lockdown they have opted for a glorious spring aesthetic, with London florist McQueens Flowers transforming the stunning terrace to capture the theme of the rolling hills of the British countryside. Canopies of corn flowers, delightful daisies, dried wheat, and pampas grass fill the terrace. This is an alfresco terrace certain to impress.
16-22 Great Russell St, Bloomsbury WC1B 3NN; dallowayterrace.com
SKYLIGHT ROOFTOP BAR AT TOBACCO DOCK, WAPPING
Londoners adore sipping cocktails on carpark rooftops; first Frank’s, now Skylight at the Tobacco Dock in Wapping. Three floors of heady, plastic filled pitchers and trendy pallet seating are home to incredible views of the city’s skyline and cool bar areas. Expect day time yoga classes, DJ residencies and Greek style pitas with halloumi and chicken from Yiro to accompany your cocktails. Games such as croquet and pétanque courts with more tables should return from Friday 21 May 2021. Until then, we suggest booking a table.
Address: Skylight Rooftop Bar, Pennington St. Car Park Entrance
Wapping, London E1W 2SF
Open: Monday 12 April 2021