Rooftops are a New Yorker’s secret haven. They’re a welcome refuge, a place to take a break from crowded streets and enjoy the view of the city's skyline. The city has so many tall buildings that even the sky itself might be a rare and treasured sight from your apartment or office window. Although summer may seem like the only rooftop season, colder weather months offer several ways to go out and up.
Chelsea: The Lodge at Gallow Green
As the crown of Chelsea’s McKittrick Hotel, the whimsical garden lounge Gallow Green transforms into a trendy mountain retreat for winter. A rough-hewn ski lodge offers a cozy hideaway filled with comfy seating, plush rugs, and blankets. Outside, an impromptu pine forest surrounds a welcoming fire pit to make even a cold day seem like a warm visit.
Garment District: Refinery Rooftop
Perched atop the Refinery Hotel, Refinery Rooftop offers unobstructed views of the Empire State Building. Its 3,500-square foot open space is covered with a retractable glass roof. In winter, a fireplace and candlelight cast a romantic glow on the exposed, rustic looking brick walls of the all-seasons dining space.
Midtown East: 230 Fifth Rooftop
The vast open-sky rooftop at 230 Fifth, is one of the largest public spots of this sort in the city. During the winter it transforms into its own winter wonderland. Transparent geodesic igloos warmed with heat lamps and steaming beverages set the scene for taking in the brilliance of the winter sky. Dress well to stay warm.
Williamsburg, Brooklyn: Westlight
Standing 22 stories above Williamsburg, atop the hip William Vale Hotel, Westlight‘s greenhouse-like space is open year-round. Here you can sample a creative globally-inspired cuisine and take in the exceptional 360-degree panorama of the Manhattan skyline and beyond.
Create it yourself: making personal outdoor space
To make your own rooftop deck, balcony, terrace, or back garden usable year-round think of your outdoor space as a four-season garden. Plant evergreens and other flora that bloom all year so you’ll always have something new to see. Add string lighting to evergreens and railings. Put glossy thick magnolia leaves, decorative white branches, and red berries in planters. In winter you can view them from the warmth indoors.