Half of the time someone in NYC says their apartment has a roof, they’re referring to a naked building top with one rusted metal chair and a sign that says “no roof access.” So if you’ve decided you’re looking for more of a scene (with better drinks), here are five new and newly-reopened rooftop bars where you can hang out this summer.
The Ready Rooftop Bar
At the very end of April, The Moxy East Village opened a brand new year-round rooftop bar with retractable glass walls and ceilings. The Ready is operated by the Tao Group - the team behind infamous party spots where it’s not uncommon to eat lobster pad thai in what feels like a Vegas nightclub. Expect darty energy fueled by locally-produced beer and frozen cocktails, with beer pong tables and all, a taco stand, and tiered amphitheater seating.
The rooftop bar at the Arlo Nomad Hotel is back open for the season with its usual views of the Empire State Building, cocktails, and mezze plates. For all the former Six Flag kids looking for a rush, they have a “sky walk” area where you can see 31 stories beneath you through a glass floor. This is an ideal meeting place for a few friends coming from all sorts of directions in and out of the city.
The rooftop at Modernhaus SoHo hotel in Soho reopened their big indoor area with a fireplace, hardwood floors, and modular sofas, as well as the big patio with a view of lower Manhattan and a pool that could fit roughly one pickup truck. Reservations are available here, and the pool will be available to non-hotel guests starting on May 22nd 5pm Monday through Friday, and on weekends after 3pm. In the past this place has felt slightly less “shots shots shots” than other downtown rooftops like Mr. Purple and Make Believe, and more like a lounge for beautiful people to lounge and be beautiful. Do with that information what you will.
This LES party rooftop reopened in the spring of 2021 with its typical disco-ball-DJ-booth-Lower-Manhattan feel. Historically this rooftop bar at the Sixty LES hotel has had at least one birthday or bachelorette party at any given moment. Which is to say it’s a fun spot that gets very loud and very busy.
This Gramercy rooftop bar reopened at the beginning of April, and we especially like it because it doesn’t feel like a nightclub. Instead, walking into Broken Shaker is sort of like entering a 1960s tropical-themed lounge that happens to be on top of a building (the Freehand Hotel). There’s a big indoor space filled with potted plants and wicker furniture, as well as a wraparound patio with lots of tables. The only catch is (at least, in the past), you might have to wait to get in. We’d recommend making a reservation first.