5 Rooftop Bars in Soho To Visit Now
Sky-high terraces in London's liveliest district
While Soho is renowned for its bar scene, rooftops are somewhat few and far between. The majority of the neighbourhood’s hotspots are nestled within its narrow streets, spilling out onto the pavement, or hidden in basements – but there are a few towering high above. Here we highlight the best rooftop bars in and near Soho, from an Italian garden at the top of Selfridges to a glitzy terrace serving theatrical cocktails.
Best Rooftop Bars In Soho
Seek refuge from bustling Oxford Street at Aqua Spirit, the sky-high bar perched beside two restaurants from the Aqua group: Aqua Kyoto and Aqua Nueva. Housed on the fifth floor of the former Dickens & Jones building, the terrace draws on elements of both restaurants, offering a mix of Japanese and Spanish bites – think wild mushroom croquettes, spicy fried chicken and padron peppers. Drinks also draw on flavours from both cuisines: the Japanese Garden is a blend of Tanqueray gin, wasabi and elderflower cordial, while the Besos Españo mixes Tanqueray Seville gin, Licor 43, passion fruit and Cava. Pop in to refuel after an afternoon of shopping.
5th Floor 240 Regent Street (Entrance, 30 Argyll St, London W1B 3BR, aquaspirit.co.uk
Alto by San Carlo at Selfridges
The Italian rooftop restaurant at the top of Selfridges is fittingly chic. A project from the famed San Carlo group, it comprises a restaurant with a retractable roof, plus an al fresco terrace and bar area, making it a lovely spot to visit year-round. The main dining room is a light-filled space set beneath a canopy of flowers, while the terrace offers skyline views. Amid this idyllic setting you can sip Aperol Spritzes and feast on Italian-inspired sharing plates like beef carpaccio, arancini and fried calamari. A taste of la dolce vita, bang in the middle of London.
400 Oxford St, London W1A 1AB, sancarlo.co.uk
Manchester-born Chinese restaurant group Tattu recently made its first foray into London, opening a restaurant on the sixth floor of the Outernet building next to Tottenham Court Road station. It’s a cool, sultry spot inspired by a traditional Chinese ‘Courtyard House’, complete with aesthetic interiors and, crucially, a roof terrace. From here you can order equally photogenic sharing plates and cocktails, such as the popular Skull Candy, a sweet vodka tipples served in a skull-shaped vehicle and arriving amid a cloud of smoke. There’s also the Cherry Blossom Negroni, which comes with its own little pink tree, or the Jade Flower, a refreshing mix of vodka, lychee and sour cucumber.
The Now Building Rooftop, Outernet, Denmark St, London WC2H 0LA, tattu.co.uk
The Nest at Treehouse Hotel London
With its botanical design and jaw-dropping views, The Nest at the top of London’s Treehouse Hotel wins the award for the neighbourhood’s most Instagrammable rooftop bar. It’s decked out with green foliage and hanging lamps, with floor-to-ceiling windows and a wrap-around terrace overlooking the city. In-keeping with the nature vibe, cocktails are seasonal and low-waste, with the spring menu focused around six flavour profiles: lemon balm, nettles, rhubarb, rosemary, radish and strawberry. These inspire drinks like Nettles in the Sky, a blend of Sapling vodka, nettle tea, citrus, blue curacao and egg white; and a rhubarb-infused margarita.
14-15 Langham Pl, London W1B 2QS, treehousehotels.com
Soho Sky Terrace
This rooftop spot is something of a hidden gem, found at the top of the Courthouse Hotel on Soho’s Carnaby Street. A fun drinks menu includes cocktails like watermelon martinis and malbec sangria, plus buckets of beer, spirits and wine. Food-wise there are sharing nibbles, pizzas and wraps. It’s a popular venue for private events, with capacity for up to 80 people standing or 60 seated – though you can book for smaller groups, but be aware there may be a minimum spend.
16 Great Marlborough St, London W1F 7HS, courthouse-hotel.com
Featured image: Tattu London
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