Tuesday 30 November 2021

Nine secret rooftop bars and terraces in London that are ready for Christmas

 These pretty hideaways have been transformed into winter wonderlands for the holidays

Tilly Alexander

Posted 9h ago

(Image: INSTAGRAM/pergolalondon)

Headed to the capital for a wintery weekend this Christmas and keen to get your dose of views? Or maybe you’re a Londoner looking for a festive drinks spot? 

Whatever your reasoning for needing a Christmassy cocktail venue, 2Chill has got you more than covered. 

From Marylebone to Mayfair, we’ve scoured London for all of the best secret rooftop bars, terraces and gardens that have decked the halls ready for the holidays. And your arrival, of course. 

Think outdoor areas strewn with mistletoe, holly and fairy lights, and kept cosy with heaters and (faux) furs. 

Whether you’re after views of Tower Bridge atop sheepskin rugs, sky-high ‘party pods’ lit with fairy lights to drink through the night or even a wintery rooftop where you can watch ‘Home Alone’ with wine, this list has got it all. 

Here are nine restaurants and bars to head to for an EXTRA festive drink

Le Pont De La Tour, Southwark 

(Image: Thomas Alexander Photography) 

Riverside French restaurant Le Pont De La Tour is an upmarket former tea warehouse with views of Tower Bridge and a waterfront terrace right on the banks of the Thames. 

And luckily for Londoners, the glamourous venue is turning its outdoor area into a cosy Jardin D’Hiver , or winter garden, as of Monday, November 22.

Inspired by French winter gardens, this scenic terrace will feature dainty lights, plus blankets and furs. 

Guests at this wintery space, which doubles as a ‘Champagne and Caviar Terrace’, will be able to enjoy a bespoke menu of Laurent Perrier Champagnes alongside other indulgent treats. 

Find more information here

Pergola, Paddington 

(Image: INSTAGRAM/pergolalondon)

Paddington’s best known rooftop bar is back with a new winter look just in time for the holidays. 

Featuring twinkling lights, snow-dusted pine trees and tons of festive garlands, the ‘Deck the Halls’ décor is Christmassy to the max. 

As well as a number of eight-person ‘Christmas Chalets’ and an ‘Alpine Hall’, there’s also a charming ‘Winter Forest’ that you can wander through. 

Drinks includes hot Bourbon toddies, traditional mulled wine and spicy hot apple cider. 

As for food, expect a feast of bratwurst and currywurst sausages alongside après ski-inspired snacks like camembert croquettes, raclette, boozy cheese fondue and even candy cane s’mores.

It’s open 5pm to 11pm Monday through Thursday, plus 12pm to 11pm on Fridays and Saturdays.

Sunday hours are 12pm to 10.30pm. 

More information here

Westwood Bar, Shepherd’s Bush 


Those in the market for quirky Christmas-themed cocktails and sweet or savoury fondues can head to Westwood Bar.  

The ETM Group venue in Westfield London has been turned into a magical winter wonderland with festive outdoor igloos and exclusive cocktails from award-winning premium gin, Slingsby Gin.

Reminiscent of alpine lodges, these see-through mini chalets offer 360-degree views of Westfield Square and come complete with a selection of board games and a Bluetooth speaker so guests can choose their music. 

The private igloos can be hired as part of a festive package which costs £55 per person and includes a glass of fizz and three-course meal, along with a festive Slingsby gin cocktail. 

There’s homemade garlic sourdough to start, followed by a choice of black cow cheese or Belgian milk chocolate fondue, plus mulled gin and mince pies to finish. 

As for drinks, Apple Pie Sours and Chocolate Orange Martinis are just some of the exciting festive beverages on offer. 

Chalets are available for groups of two to six, and can be reserved for a two-hour session. 

Find out more here

Café Biltmore and Terrace, Mayfair 

(Image: Niall Clutton) 

As of Wednesday, December 1, Londoners looking for a festive drink or treat can also head to the Café Biltmore and Terrace. 

The secret outdoor courtyard, which is practically a garden thanks to its foliage-covered walls, will be transformed into a magical wonderland with Christmassy decorations, mood lighting and more. 

Expect heaters and cushioned seating to keep you warm and cosy, too. 

READ MORE: The boujie three-course bottomless brunch in London with melt-in-your-mouth pancakes and SERIOUS ‘free flowing bubbles’

Guests at the Mayfair venue can also indulge in a number of limited time-only seasonal offerings while there, from a special Christmas menu designed by Michelin-starred chef Jason Atherton to a Ballerina Festive Afternoon Tea. 

Café Biltmore and Terrace is located at Grosvenor Square. 

It’s open from 7am to 11am, Monday to Sunday, as well as 12pm to 10pm on all days except Monday and Tuesday. 

More information here

London Bridge Rooftop, Southwark 

(Image: London Bridge Rooftop)

London Bridge Rooftop is a buzzy roof terrace in the middle of the City that’s perched on top of a 70s style six-storey office block. 

Don’t be deceived by the grey concrete exterior – it’s home to sheltered benches, DJs, burgers from local Borough Market supplier The Ginger Pig and all-round great vibes. 

As of Thursday, November 11, it’s also had a seasonal makeover. 

Expect Christmas trees, lights, mistletoe, hot boozy beverages like hot Irish coffee and mulled cider alongside the usual views of the Shard. 

From December, it will also be serving ‘the best hot dogs in town’. 

December bookings are now open with £5 reservation fees per person depending on the day and time of booking. 

London Bridge Rooftop is table service and only accepts card payments. 

It’s open from midday until 11pm from Sunday to Thursday, or midday until midnight, Friday to Saturday. 

To book or find out more here

Dalloway Terrace, The Bloomsbury, Bloomsbury 

(Image: Rebecca Hope) 

Elegant venue Dalloway Terrace is a charming al fresco spot within The Bloomsbury Hotel, on Great Russell Street, right within the literary hub of Bloomsbury. 

Named after Virginia Woolf’s most famous fictional character, Mrs Dalloway, the hidden gem of a terrace is as well known for its stunning seasonal makeovers as it is for its literary links, so it should come as no surprise that a winter costume change is coming. 

According to the team, the picturesque terrace will be undergoing a ‘festive sprucing’ very soon. 

Keep an eye on the restaurant’s Instagram account, @dallowayterrace. 

Last year’s re-costuming involved tons of white sheepskin rugs, green and white flowers and twinkling lights, for reference. 

More information and to book here

Bar Elba, Waterloo

(Image: Bar Elba)

Popular Waterloo food and drinks hub Bar Elba is back with a bang this winter. 

As well as new Christmassy décor, there’s also a line-up of special events, a festive drinks packages featuring the likes of mulled wine and Prosecco, and yummy Christmas food staples – think mustard-glazed pigs in blankets or deep fried mac and cheese bites with chilli and cranberry relish.

A statement on the website reads: “Join Napoleon BornToParty and his fave reindeer Marengo for booze, food and epic views this Christmas season. 

“If you thought Bar Elba was a vibe in the Summer, we’re turning this rooftop into the best Winter terrace in London. 

“We’ll be well and truly decking the halls and pimping out the rooftop with all the jingle bells and whistles.” 

It’s much-loved ‘party pods’, which offer a 360 degree view of the city as well as privacy and rain protection, are also set to stay put through the holidays. 

These are full of fairy lights and heated, of course. 

More information or to book here

St James’ Court, A Taj Hotel, Westminster 

(Image: St James’ Court, A Taj Hotel)

Taj hotel St James’ Court is also inviting Londoners to indulge in a festive experience at its newly renovated courtyard. 

From Wednesday, December 8, the secret garden spot will be home to several winter chalets, as well as an illuminated Shakespearean frieze which wraps around the courtyard walls. 

Nestled alongside the hotel’s central fountain, the chalets will serve a number of winter-themed goodies, from indulgent hot chocolate to warming festive drinks such as mulled wine and cider. 

The space will also be decked out with outdoor furniture and heaters so guests can sit back and enjoy their treats. 

Just a stone’s throw from Buckingham Palace, St James’ Park and landmark sites like Big Ben or Trafalgar Square, this hidden mini winter wonderland promises to be an ideal spot to spend a weekend afternoon or evening with the whole family. 

Get more information about St James’ Court here

Holmes Hotel and Kitchen at Holmes, Marylebone

(Image: Matthew Shaw)

Swanky central London venue the Holmes Hotel has pulled out all the stops in anticipation of the festive season. 

As of mid-November, the Baker Street staycation spot has turned its outdoor terrace into a Narnia-inspired winter wonderland complete with four cosy arbours decked out with blankets and faux furs. 

There’s also faux snow, fairy lights and Christmas trees galore. 

Best of all, though, the secret hideaway is also hosting special movie nights every Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday until Christmas.

Visitors can expect to see classics such as ‘Home Alone’, ‘The Holiday’, ‘Elf’, ‘A Christmas Carol’ and ‘White Christmas’ screened atop the Marylebone roof terrace as part of a unique festive package, costing £65.00 per person. 

Guests who opt for the movie night deal get a complimentary glass of Perrier Jouët Grand Brut Champagne and exclusive seasonal winter tasting menu at Kitchen at Holmes, plus movie snacks – namely, popcorn flavoured with parmesan, lemon and spices. 

More information and to book here