A Shot in the Sky
A roundup of bars hosting happy hour on top of the world
FLAIR RESTAURANT AND BAR, SHANGHAI
At the 58th level of The Ritz-Carlton Shanghai, Flair shares The Ritz’s illustrious reputation and stands as the highest al fresco wining and dining point in all of China. The Great Wall may boast sweeping landscapes, yet atop Flair, another sleepless country altogether can be seen: The Bund’s multiple architectural styles, the iconic Oriental Pearl TV Tower, and both banks of the Huangpu River. Flair’s drinking spread includes signature cocktails and wines alongside 40 types of vodka and fashionable, small-distillery rums. For traveling romantics, there’s also their infamous “Propose Corner” that has reportedly witnessed more than 70 proposals in the last six years—possibly the work of the wine or the romance-inducing view of the Shanghai skyline.
SKY GARDEN, LONDON
Atop London’s “Walkie Talkie” skyscraper, the Sky Garden presents an ambitious conflation of differing concepts: expansive interiors housing greenery and tropical trees, coupled with rigid glass-steel framework outlining London. The Sky Garden is as much a display of London’s landmarks as it is a parade of architectural design. With a shot of their signature vodkas, gins, and rums, guests can trade in the city’s usual drinking holes for the Sky Garden’s enormous glass dome.
POD 39 ROOFTOP BAR, NEW YORK
Think soaring terracotta columns, arches framing the midtown skyline, and stringed lights festooned all over. The Pod 39 Rooftop Bar provides a touch of romantic kitsch to the Big Apple’s concrete machinery. Perched 17 floors high, this two-story open space presents panoramic views of New York’s Freedom Tower, the Chrysler Building, and the Empire State Building—backdrops to revelers sipping Mexican-inspired fare and specialty tequila.
OZONE, WEST KOWLOON
Of the many glittering bars crowning the Ritz-Carlton hotels, Ozone is possibly the closest we can get to drinking and dining among the stars. The bar is perched on the impressive 118th floor of Hong Kong’s The Ritz, officially recognized as the highest bar in the world. At this particular hypnotic summit, approaching the main bar area feels like watching the future through a neon haze. Stretching across the bar are geometric lines combined with marble and honeycomb patterns, and framed glass windows and terraces present Hong Kong’s impressive views: Victoria Bay and Hong Kong Island, the multi-colored lights of Kowloon, and high-rises that give way to views of distant mountains. Cap these off with Asian tapas and innovative cocktails.
L’OISEAU BLANC RESTAURANT AND BAR, PARIS
Perched atop the towering grandeur of Paris’ Peninsula Hotel, L’Oiseau Blanc is the stuff of romantic revelries. It’s a more relaxed counterpart to the world’s raucous rooftop restaurants, as this aviation-themed bar lets guests enjoy their wines and champagnes with a 360-degree view of the French capital. L’Oiseau Blanc is an elegant ode to Charles Nungesser and François Coli who attempted to cross the Atlantic in 1927 from Le Bourget. There’s even a biplane hovering above the courtyard, seemingly en route to the Eiffel Tower.