Up in the Air


With the summer heat settling over the city, these are the al fresco bars Hong Kong’s gents in the know will be visiting to toast our favourite season.




Michelin-starred Chinese restaurant Duddell’s offers a full cultural experience with a stylish space, delicious fare, and art-gallery-like setting, but the real draw here is the sprawling outdoor terrace which feels like an Alice in Wonderland-inspired secret garden, complete with leafy greenery and whimsical furnishing. Escape the urban crush and settle in to drink classic cocktails given a Hong Kong makeover, like the Victoria Sling and the Special Administrative Sazerac House.

3-4/F, Shanghai Tang Mansion,
Duddell Street,
+852 2525 9191;




The food at the adjacent restaurant might be uninspiring, but the alfresco terrace at Sevva offers incomparable views over Kowloon, Victoria Harbour, Admiralty and Central, along with sleek, sexy décor and a drinks list composed of good wines and better cocktails, making it hugely popular after-hours joint for the black suit crowd. Whether you’re celebrating a boardroom victory, winding down after a long day, or just stopping by for an aperitif, sink into one of the well-padded couches and soak in the ambiance. Score bonus points with your femme du jour by letting her live out her Sex and the City fantasies through cocktails specially created by cocktail guru Joseph Boroski, the TV series’ mixologist.

25/F Prince’s Building,
10 Chater Road,
+852 2537 1388;




From its position atop The Hennessy building in Wanchai, Wooloomooloo offers a great wine list, savvy cocktails and spectacular views over the bustling streets and neon lights of Hong Kong – and if you’re lucky, you might even catch a view of the gee gees over at the Happy Valley racecourse. On these hot summer nights, the rooftop is perfect for pre-dinner sundowners - accompanied by tunes spun by a resident DJ - before a man-friendly dinner in the main restaurant below.

The Hennessy,
256 Hennessy Road,
+852 2893 6960;




Sure, you might go to Armani Privé to see and be seen, but here’s the dirty little secret – this is a rooftop bar actually worth visiting. Located in Chater House – aka the Armani building – this elegant alfresco spot offers views of Central, and thanks to its very open-to-the-elements setting, spectacular views of the night sky (stars obviously not included). Best of all, the drinks list offers all manner of tipple, including creative, well-made cocktails by Charles Joly, while a substantial cigar list boasts Cohibas, Montecristos, and selections from Davidoff. All of this can be enjoyed from comfy chairs and couches perfectly arranged to encourage intimate tête-a-têtes.

Chater House,
8 Connaught Road,
+852 3583 2828;




Situated 300 feet above sea level on the 32nd floor of the EAST Hotel, Sugar more than makes up for its out-of-the-way location in Taikoo Shing with stunning skyline and harbour views. Enjoy a sleek, breezy setting decked out with comfortable day beds and couches as you join the well-dressed, sophisticated crowd in ordering from Sugar’s signature drinks menu, which comes in four sections: Sparkling for Prosecco-based drinks; Up for a host of martinis and margaritas; Mocktail for fruity, refreshing tipples that won’t leave you with a hangover; and Bar, for unique concoctions invented by and named for resident bartenders.

EAST Hotel,
29 Taikoo Shing Road,
Taikoo Shing;
+852 3968 3738;




Located in Kowloon’s The Mira Hotel, Vibes is a classy yet casual venue sporting the same simple, design-savvy aesthetics as the hotel it’s housed in. The courtyard bar boasts a chilled-out ambiance that makes visitors feel like they’ve entered a secret garden miles away from the heaving crowds on Nathan Road beyond. From its fifth-floor spot, Vibes offers a cosy, relaxing experience complete with open fires, comfy sofas and private cabanas. On offer every night are DJ-spun beats, a wide selection of drinks, shisha and some sinful bar bites, but drop in on Thursday when the space transforms into a Arabic lounge with belly dancers and mezze platters.

The Mira Hong Kong,
118 Nathan Road,
Tsim Sha Tsui;
+852 2368 1111;




No list of rooftop spots in Hong Kong would be complete with Red Bar, the super popular rooftop space atop the IFC mall. Another favourite of city slickers working in Central, Red offers superb views of Victoria Harbour and Kowloon, and is ideal for catching the nightly Symphony of Lights show. On week nights you’ll find office dwellers taking the edge off a long day with buckets of beer, but come the weekend, the crowd becomes a bit more eclectic – probably thanks to the fact that most of the rooftop is actually open public space where people can enjoy their own BYO drinks. From Red Bar itself, you can expect a decent – if somewhat unimaginative – drinks list, as well as moreish bar bites catered by the Red Restaurant located next door.

IFC Mall,
8 Finance Street,
+852 2537 5037;




Mario Batali brought a little New York city to Hong Kong with the opening of Lupa several years ago, and while the restaurant isn’t all that its alfresco La Terrazza is still a choice spot from which to enjoy the long summer nights. Shielded by surrounding buildings, the open terrace is a hidden gem in the city’s urban jungle, complete with walls lined with greenery, shaded booths, and a central bar dishing up a good selection of wines, beers, cocktails and spirits. It’s very easy to while away a few hours here over drinks and plates of pizza and fritti – fried bites – before making your way up the hill to Soho.

LHT Tower,
31 Queen’s Road Central;
+852 2796 6500;




A recent addition to Hong Kong’s rooftop offerings, 270 Degrees Rooftop Bar by Harlan Goldstein offers respite from the insanity of Causeway Bay from its perch atop Soundwill Plaza II, above Goldstein’s Penthouse and Sushi To restaurants. The city takes precedence here, with views over streets of Causeway Bay sweeping down towards the harbour. Guests can soak in the atmosphere from modern lounge furniture while enjoying a range of drinks and signature cocktails from the discreet bar in the corner. A self-respecting urbane gent may be tempted to order the Lady Killer, but skip the somewhat girly looking cocktail in favour of the more masculine Hot-Fire Ball “Ya Baby”, a concoction of Fireball whisky, bitters, apple and lime juice that’s spicy, refreshing, and packs a punch.

Soundwill Plaza II,
1-29 Tang Lung Street,
Causeway Bay;
+852 2970 0828;




Located in the elegant - if tiny - Pottinger hotel, The Envoy enter link to previous pulsit is a stylish bar boasting a surprisingly expansive and relaxed terrace overlooking Queen’s Road Central. But don’t be fooled by the casual space: Hong Kong mixologist Antonio Lai – the one behind some of the city’s hottest cocktail divans, including Quinary and Angel’s Share – has joined forces with fellow mixologist Amanda Wan to create a selection of innovatively made and creatively presented cocktails – think egg-shaped glasses, blood bags, pigeon glasses and first aid kits. Prepare your Instagram because you’re going to want to boast about the vampire-inspired cocktails like the award-winning True Blood #2 Blood Bag, inspired by Bram Stroker’s Dracula, and the adult version of the Milo Dinosaur, a mix of Absolut Elyx vodka, Godiva chocolate liqueur, fresh milk, Milo powder and a Milo ice ball, served up in a dinosaur egg cup.

3/F The Pottinger,
74 Queen’s Road Central;
+852 2169 3311;



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