We Googled “how to warm up a rooftop in winter.”
Thousands of matches.
Luckily, the people behind these brilliantly toasty winter rooftops and terraces have all taken a slightly more forthright approach, cozying up their spots with the likes of open fire pits, heaters, blankets, greenhouses, and – most essentially – hot cocktails. So allow us to introduce…
…London’s Best Winter Rooftops & Terraces for 2022.
Willows on the Roof
Remember when Tinie Tempah’s fried chicken place took over the rooftop of John Lewis this summer? Well, it’s now transformed into a wintry hideaway with liberal use of fairy-lights and Christmas trees, bars stocked with mulled cocktails, heated chalet cabins & igloos you can book for groups of up to 10… and Tinie Tempah’s fried chicken.
Details: Open daily, 12-10pm (9pm Sun) | 300 Oxford St, London W1C 1DX | Book here
The Culpeper | Spitalfields
The Culpeper’s dinky terrace is easily one of the cosiest winter rooftops in London, with signature cocktails, a garden supplying herbal tinctures for said cocktails, cosy blankets, a view of the City’s towering skyline, AND an intimate, 12 – 14 seater glass Greenhouse, for private dinners and lunches.
Details: Open Mon-Sat from 6pm | 40 Commercial Street, E1 6LP | More details here
OXO Tower | Southbank
The word iconic gets thrown around a lot these days, but the fact is that the OXO Tower is an iconic landmark, and its expansive heated 8th floor terrace looks out over other iconic landmarks in one magnificent bundle of emblematic architecture. And that’s just the building. Then there’s the terrace itself, which has been given a gloriously Christmassy makeover for the festive season, and the food which comes courtesy of Executive Head Chef Jeremy Bloor, whose brasserie creations using organic British ingredients are paired with a brilliantly curated list of wines.
Details: Open daily | Barge House Street, South Bank, SE1 9PH | Book here
The Trafalgar St. James | St James’s
After a multi, multi-million pound facelift a few years back, The Trafalgar added blankets and outdoor heaters to its rooftop space, so you can enjoy their cocktails, nibbles, and eye-level views of Admiral Nelson in the winter, too.
Details: Open daily | 2 Spring Gardens, Trafalgar Square, SW1A 2TS | Minimum spend £50pp, book here
Queen of the Slopes | Hoxton
Shoreditch’s palace of fun, The Queen of Hoxton, goes under a seasonal metamorphosis every few months, and for this winter she’s becoming Queen of the Slopes. The rooftop wigwam is masquerading as an Alpine chalet, lavishing you with poutine, seasonal cocktails, and fire pits where you can toast your own s’mores.
Details: Open Wed-Sat | The Queen of Hoxton, 1 Curtain Rd, EC2A 3JX | Book here
Pantechnicon | Belgravia
The Pantechnicon is a five-storey pantheon of Nordic & Japanese culture, and its crown is the roof garden sitting atop the whole thing. It’s got the look of a glamorous greenhouse, with a glass roof to peek up at the stars and a heated, covered terrace outside. The seats are draped in warming furs, and the menu has been designed with comfort in mind. That means slices of crispy pork belly cut through with sour cherry, and sided by rich parsnip; some braised Angus short rib with horseradish mash and cranberries; and plates of grilled celeriac with mulled pear & truffle. And to drink? You can get an array of interesting cocktails, craft beers, and even some sparkling birch sap wine…
Details: Open Mon-Sun | 19 Motcomb Street, London, SW1X 8LB | To make a booking, just head here
12th Knot | South Bank
What this balcony hugging the rooftop bar of the Sea Containers hotel lacks in size, it makes up for with… well, everything else. For the winter they’ve dressed the terrace with sheepskin rugs, twinkling Christmas trees and Icelandic vodka cocktails – and of course, those amazing views of St. Paul’s, the Thames and the City are still there…
Details: Open Tues-Sat 5pm-12.30am (terrace closes 10pm, check closures for private events here) | Sea Containers London, 20 Upper Ground, London SE1 9PD | No bookings, just turn up
Boundary | Shoreditch
By day, Boundary’s rooftop boasts a heated orangery filled with sparkly wintery trees, warming open-pit fireplaces and fur-lined seats, a menu of delicious Alpine dishes, and some wintry hot cocktails to wash them all down. By night, it’s the same, just darker.
Details: Open daily 12-11pm | 2-4 Boundary St, E2 7DD | Walk-in only for drinks, book an orangery table here
Skylight | Wapping
Skylight are taking things up a level once again. Not literally, of course, seeing as they’re already on the top floor of a carpark in Wapping. But metaphorically, because over the winter they enhance their unobstructed views of the London skyline with a real rooftop ice rink, raclette, mulled wine, DJs, and bookable private igloos…
Details: Open Thurs-Sun, 12-11pm | Penning St. Car Park, Wapping Lane, E1W 2SF | Book a table or igloo (min. spend £75) here
Pergola On The Piste | Paddington
Pergola Paddington are going all out for this year’s winter rooftop theme, Pergola on the Piste. Expect them to embrace unabashed the 80s après ski aesthetic, with shot-skis, live saxophonists, DJs and more. And why yes, they are holding a launch party with an open bar.
Details: Opens 10th November | Pergola Paddington, 5 Kingdom Street, London W2 6PY | Book here
Lodge d’Argent | Bank
If you’re looking for a winter rooftop in the city, this is one you can bank on. Coq d’Argent has kitted out its two rooftop chalets with faux furs, candles, cognac cocktails and a menu of après-ski fare featuring baked cheese and Alpine charcuterie.
Details: Dates TBC | No. 1 Poultry, EC2R 8EJ | Email [email protected]
Winter Rooftop Cinema | Baker Street
It is a truth universally acknowledged that a central London spot in possession of a good rooftop, must be in want of a festive cinema. So it makes sense that the Holmes Hotel’s bringing back its sky-high screenings for a second year, seating just eight audience members a night…
Details: Thurs-Sat, 17th November – 16th December | Kitchen at Holmes, 108, Baker Street, London, W1U 6LJ | £70 for film & dinner
God’s Garden | Marylebone
A pop-up winter terrace in the grounds of the Grade I listed Marylebone Church, which matches its jaw-dropping setting with hundreds of twinkling lights, Persian rugs, comfy furnishings, mulled Whispering Angel, Mexican street food… and nary a tempting serpent in sight.
Details: Open Wed-Sun | 1 Marylebone Road, Marylebone, NW1 4AQ
Hackney Bridge x Two Tribes | Hackney Wick
A big, twinkly pop-up beer garden brought to you from the guys from Two Tribes brewery. Expect warm and sheltered canal-side views, fresh beers on tap and hearty dishes fired up on an open-flame grill, like bavette steak and grilled plantain. Head down on Sunday and you can even get a flame-kissed roast. Remember: a BBQ’s for Christmas, not just for summer…
Details: Open Thursday – Sunday | Units 1-28, E Bay Lane, Hackney, East London, E15 2SJ
Isla at The Standard | King’s Cross
The Standard hotel’s ground floor terrace restaurant is really anything but standard. The place looks like the cosy lair of a Bond villain who decided to throw it all in and enjoy the finer things in life, with a retro hanging-flue fireplace; sheepskin rugs; and a crowd-pleasing menu that will inevitably end with cinnamon-dusted doughnuts with espresso sorbet.
Details: Open daily 7am-11pm | The Standard, 10 Argyle Street, London, WC1H 8EG | Book here
Electric Winter at Between The Bridges | Southbank
This one’s pretty self-explanatory. The Bridges: Hungerford and Westminster, next to the Southbank Centre. The Between: a raucous, covered, 4,000sq ft terrace packed with street food vendors, bars, live music, DJs, karaoke, drag brunches, World Cup screenings and massaoke.
Details: Open Tues – Sun until 23rd December | Queen’s Walk, South Bank, SE1 7PB | Free entry, book here
Coppa Club Igloos | Tower Bridge
They’re back. The original dining igloos have pitched up again on the riverside terrace behind Coppa Club, overlooking a twinkling skyline of Tower Bridge and the Shard. Inside the pods, you’ll find candles, blankets, and, thankfully, a heater, while hearty brasserie fare is delivered directly to you.
Details: From 16th November | Coppa Club, 3 Three Quays Walk, Lower Thames Street, EC3R 6AH | Book HERE
Jimmy’s Fire & Fromage | Southbank
How much raclette is it humanly possible to consume? What happens when you add hot chocolate sauce to white chocolate ice cream? Is it wise to order a Hot Gin and Cider Smash? Find out the answer to these and many other questions at this year’s offering from pop-up king Jimmy Garcia, who’s hosting private dining igloos and an unlimited raclette bar on the Southbank.
Details: Until 7th January | Southbank Centre, Belvedere Road, SE1 8XX | Book HERE
Still need to warm up? Get moving on London’s best ice rinks
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