With its sparkling cityscape, mesmerising harbour views, an abundance of skyscrapers (more than any other city in the world) and raucous nightlife, if there's one thing that Hong Kong does well, it's rooftop bars. Here's our pick of the ones not to miss.
The Sky Terrace at Cardinal Point
Located above the swanky Landmark Mall in Central, Hong Kong's latest high-end rooftop hangout is home to cyberpunk panoramas of the city and harbour, spanning three sides of the building. Watch the Star Ferry crisscrossing the water next to a rainbow light show (should you tire of the view) and dual bars.
Our drink of choice is the Larry Bird, a white negroni made with Plantation pineapple stiggins', suze gentian, bitter bianco and pineapple skin. The Sky Terrace is open for lunch, dinner and late-night snacking (think lamb kofta, wagyu sliders and 'bumps' of Kristal caviar), with DJs spinning tracks at the weekend.
Forty-Five, Gloucester Tower, Landmark
IMAX views of the futuristic Sir Norman Foster-designed HSBC building, the sky-piercing Bank of China (designed by I.M. Pei), Victoria Harbour and Victoria Peak come as standard at The Murray's huge rooftop bar and restaurant, Popinjays. The restaurant serves European fine dining amid interiors inspired by the hotel's mid-century architecture, while classic cocktails, rare spirits and bar snacks are served outdoors on the lengthy terrace.
While there's a buzz every night of the week, Wednesdays are a particular draw, with three hours of free-flow cocktails on offer between 5–8pm, including Negronis, Aperol spritz and Popinjay's paloma for a snip of £40 each.
Forty-Five, Gloucester Tower, Landmark
This dainty al fresco wine bar sits pretty atop the H Queen's Building in Central (above several of Hong Kong's best art galleries). Coming from the group behind the two-Michelin-star French restaurant Écriture assures the quality of the food and drink on offer.
Make a long leisurely lunch out of it with a one, two or three-course prix fixe menu, including dishes such Prat-Ar-Coum oysters with shallot vinegar, bread and salted butter; line-caught turbot beurre blanc; and a madeleine for dessert with caramel and chocolate sauce. A skilfully curated wine list covers a whopping 21 pages, or you could just ask the all-knowing sommelier.
Rooftop, 80 Queen’s Rd Central, H Queen’s, Central
The stylish wraparound terrace at Sevva has been the place to see and be seen since this bar and restaurant opened in 2008, seemingly attracting every socialite and celebrity who has hit town since. Featuring spectacular views of old and new Hong Kong, take in the domed colonial-era Supreme Court, Statue Square, a sentry of international banks and Victoria Harbour from the chic space.
Owned and designed by the former director of Chanel Asia Pacific, Bonnae Gokson, the interiors pack plenty of wow factor as well, from a ceiling installation made from 100,000 silk flowers to 36 twinkling chandeliers to an exquisite art collection including works by German photographer Candida Höfer and wall-size drawings by fashion illustrator Gladys Perint Palmer.
25/F, Landmark Prince’s, 10 Chater Rd, Central
Make your way 27 floors above the frenetic Causeway Bay shopping district to the top of the Pullman Park Lane hotel for showstopping views of the old harbourside typhoon shelter and Victoria Park, the starting point for many of the 2019 pro-democracy protests.
Skye looks futuristic, bathed in neon blue with a glowing circular bar at its centre. It's extremely popular with locals as well as visitors, so it pays to book a table in advance. The drinks menu has nine different types of champagne, dozens of whiskies (from Scotland, Ireland, Japan and Taiwan), and signature cocktails based on your astrological sign.
27/F, 310 Gloucester Rd, Causeway Bay
One of Hong Kong's best-loved bars with a view recently migrated a few blocks along the Tsim Sha Tsui waterfront to the 17th floor of the H Zentre building. If anything, the harbour and skyline views are even better than before, plus there's the added bonus of not one but two breezy outdoor decks.
The cocktails are pretty impressive, too, often featuring suitably tropical ingredients, such as the Matcha Point, made with matcha pisco, yuzu, umeshu and ginger syrup. Contemporary Italian-Japanese fusion food is served at the restaurant indoors, and the Saturday weekend brunch is a blast, with accommodating wait staff ensuring your glass never sits empty).
17/F, H Zentre, 15 Middle Rd, Tsim Sha Tsui
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