New Year’s Eve in London is a beautiful (but sometimes stressful) affair, so we’ve tried to make it a little easier for you by picking some of the BEST bars for fireworks spotting as the clock strikes 12. Be warned though: these places are throwing their own parties, so be sure to book your tickets or table in advance.
1. Duck & Waffle
Worth a visit just for a ride in the lift, this 40th floor haunt is surrounded by windows giving you a pretty good look over London’s skyline. And with bang-on food, kooky cocktails (that also taste great), as well as a 24-hour license — there’s nothing stopping you from swinging by.
2. Galvin at Windows
Ever had a panoramic experience of London? Perched up on the 28th floor of the Park Lane Hilton, this is one of the ultimate spots to slink into a soft sofa and overlook the city’s glittering skyline.
3. OXO Tower
South Bank’s iconic OXO Towers offers cocktails to suit the stunning Thames-side views. So nab yourself one of their originals, like the After Hours Cosmo, and toast your drinking buddies while you take in the fireworks in style.
4. City Social
Socialising is darker, sexier and a whole lot higher here. Sitting pretty on the 24th floor of Tower 42, Jason Atherton’s skryise outpost is more art deco than the rest. You’ll feel like you’re in 1980s New York City — fireworks here we go!
5. Radio Rooftop Bar and Restaurant
The wraparound terrace on the 10th floor of the ME Hotel is panoramic penthouse perfection. Order yourself some fancy shmancy cocktails while you take in some of London’s greatest views — could be worse, right?
6. Shanghai Bar at The Shard
The Shard’s 33rd floor is given over to Northern Chinese restaurant Hutong, which has its own bird’s nest of a bar. At Shanghai Bar, drinks take abstract inspiration from ancient Chinese medicinal practices.
7. Winter Viking Bar (Valhalla Vodka Bar) at Skylounge
With fireworks setting off in the city, rooftop space is prime real estate — and Skylounge has a good swathe of it. With two long terraces jutting out like parallel catwalks, their two rooftop bars will be perfect for catching a glimpse of the sparkling night sky (just shimmy next to a heater). Plus it’s Viking themed … yes, Viking.
8. The Boundary Rooftop Bar
Set on a lower floor than some of the others on this list, you’re in with a chance for fireworks spotting as east London buildings still sit a bit lower than the City’s.
— Sasha Filimonov, @SashaSips