New York: Rooftop Bars for Today’s Game of Hooky
In case you haven’t noticed, it’s not snowing today. Why are you at work? Join the rest of Manhattan, feign pink eye, and sidle up to one of these rooftop bars prime for drinking through your afternoon. So maybe a couple are located in the slice of purgatory known as Murray Hill. One may even be inspired to take an expedition all the way up to the uncharted territory of “The Heights.” The interesting locales make for a simulated weekend get-away. But really, the pickings are slim, as many outdoor restos and bars await a more stable spring climate to roll out their cabana boys. These easily accessible, non-members-only outdoor oases are confirmed to be fully functioning today, just in time to help out with your Saturday morning hangover.
● Sushi Samba 7 (West Village) – It’s too late to jet down to Rio for the weekend, and this Latin American/Japanese fusion restaurant won’t make you feel like you’re there either. But it does have a spacious roof deck with views of the West Village, bountiful caipirinhas, and a good-looking crowd. Not to mention a staff of roofdeck enthusiasts; upon confirming their deck would be in full swing today, the hostess squealed with excitement and said she couldn’t wait to dance up top. Indeed.
● Rare View at the Shelburne Hotel (Kips Bay) Perfect happy hour spot to hop to on your way home. Perhaps by the 4:30 p.m. opening, you’ll be too blurry to notice the young Murrays talk about internships and diet tricks. Worth your time just to enjoy the view, which boasts both the Empire State and Chrysler buildings. ● 230 Fifth (Union Square) – Go as early as you can, so you can leave just as early. The roofdeck offers expansive views and will certainly take your mind off of the i-bankers doing blow in the bathroom. After sunset, things just get weird. ● The Heights Bar & Grill (Upper West Side) – Nothing will have you feeling like a college kid skipping class more than this margarita haven. Nothing will have you thanking your lucky stars that you are no longer a college kid skipping school more than this Columbia rooftop either. Retractable roof and tequila might make the jaunt uptown worth your while. ● Mé Bar (Garment District) – For those not into status, the 14th-floor roofdeck of the Garment District’s La Quinta Inn offers amazing Empire State Building views; the rickety old terrace brings the boardwalk to mind, giving us another way to think about La Quinta besides sleazy trysts. ● Bookmarks (Midtown East) – Skip the book-in-Central Park gimmick and go straight for the booze. At the very least you can feel bookish as you sip literary cocktails like Hemmingway’s Papa. ● Salon de Ning (Midtown West) – Daybeds for watching the sunset, lychee liqueur for forgetting about it later. Thirties Shanghai accents will have you feeling as if you’ve taken that trip out East you’ve been talking about. Midtown corporate types chatting you up about wealth management and the Mets will bring you back to reality. ● Red Sky Bar & Lounge (Murray Hill) – The real draw is the drunken girls who flock in throngs to the year-round rooftop every Thursday for ladies night. But, like this list confirms, the pickings are slim, and this rooftop will do just fine for an outdoor Bud or cosmo.