Green space is a hot commodity in New York City. Ok, fine…scratch that. Just space in general is a hot commodity in New York City. Anyway, barring its major public parks, the greatest city in the world isn’t exactly overflowing with tranquil outdoor spaces where a person can breath in some fresh oxygen and be one with nature. To help combat this lack of greenery, hotel, apartment building and restaurant designers have been setting their sights skyward, creating some seriously sweet rooftop gardens for the Big Apple’s denizens to enjoy.
The Phillippe Starck designed rooftop at the 15 Broad Street apartment building is an Alice in Wonderland hideaway amongst the industrial gray buildings of the Financial District. The whimsical space has a pool with an oversized kitchen faucet feature perfect for cooling off on a hot day, large trees planted in large terra cotta pots, making them look like oversized potted plants and French cafe tables and chairs dotting the deck. It’s playful, functional and totally cool— perfect for those finance guys looking to impress their Chelsea girl(friends).
If you’re an out-of-towner looking to post up at the hippest hotel in NYC with a view or a life-long local in need of a relaxing staycation, the rooftop at the Standard Hotel in the Meatpacking District is your golden ticket to paradise. Le Bain is a super-exclusive, buzzy indoor/outdoor terrace and garden featuring a giant bathtub (hence the name), outdoor terrace covered in Astrotuf, a creperie, and of course some awe-inspiring views of the New York skyline.
And while the greenery at Le Bain may be faux, the ultra-chill vibe is completely real. Camp out on a lawn chair for a disco nap or head to the bath for a pre-dinner dip; Le Bain is cheeky and sexy in all the right ways.
Eating outdoors in the summertime is a beloved pastime for even the most jaded New Yorkers. There’s just something about dining al fresco that feels special— and that’s especially true when your surroundings are as gorgeous as they are at the 230 Fifth rooftop bar and restaurant.
The dark wood paneling, lush greenery (palm trees in New York!), vibrant flowers dripping down the front of the bar mixed with the industrial stacks and chimneys gives the space an eclectic, relaxed vibe that definitely makes you want to stay for another drink. It’s a small tropical oasis that stands firm in its urban roots. The restaurant stays open year round, unlike many other rooftop spaces, so you can enjoy those Empire State building views whenever you’d like!
For a little bit of LA cool in the 202, try the rooftop terrace and garden at the MiMA apartment building. Clocking in at a whopping 44,000 square feet, the outdoor space has a movie screen, barbecue pit, shower, and multiple green spaces for lounging. It’s got that minimalist organic vibe that the Left Coasters love so much and is a perfectly serene space for getting into that more relaxed headspace.
Gallows Green is a magical, lush rooftop bar and restaurant perched atop the McKittrick Hotel in Chelsea. To have a drink at Gallows Garden is to step back into time; the elegant green space is filled with old boxcars, train track pieces and glittering fairy lights. You can order rum punch by the copper bowl-ful and let the sounds of the jazz quartet playing in the corner lull you into a dream-like trance. It’s the kind of space you’d expect to see in Paris, with Toulouse Lautrec holding court at the bar, drunk on absinthe. Except instead, you’re in the middle of Manhattan.