Christopher Muther/Globe Staff
Atop the Newbury Hotel is one of the city’s newer gastronomic attractions: Contessa. This glitzy rooftop restaurant serves Northern Italian cuisine with views of Boston’s Back Bay and Public Garden, and features a glass roof with retractable panels for sunny days. Reservations can be hard to come by, so book yours in advance. (In my experience, reservations should be made about a week in advance.)
1 Newbury Street, Boston. 888-974-3948, thenewburyboston.com
JOHN BELLENI’S PHOTOGRAPHY
Also new to the area’s dining scene is Blue Owl, one of Cambridge’s only rooftop bars and bars. Located on the rooftop of the 907 Main Hotel in Central Square, Blue Owl offers a lounge atmosphere and an impressive cocktail menu. Have you ever tried Baijiu or Aquavit? This is the place for it.
main street 907, Cambridge. 617-349-2967, blueowlcentralsq.com
Observation roof and bar
Trendy, busy, and centrally located, the Lookout Rooftop and Bar at the Envoy Hotel in the Seaport is a magnet for downtown workers and thirsty millennials. With views of Boston Harbor and the city skyline, it’s hard not to pull out your phone and snap a picture at this spot. I don’t care how many times you’ve been.
70 Sleeper St., Boston (seaport). 617-530-1538, theenvoyhotel.com
Also relatively new is Lexington, a Cambridge Crossing venue that opened in October 2020. The bar-restaurant has a rooftop terrace connected to its dining room and is a popular destination for after-work drinks and evening gatherings. With an accessible menu of quick bites and appetizers, Lexington is another stylish, breezy rooftop recommendation.
100 N First Street, Cambridge. 617-945-1349, thelexingtoncx.com
If you’ve ever been to Harvard Square Felipe’s, you know it has it all: casual Mexican fare, great margaritas, and plenty of space for the reliable crowd this restaurant attracts — including a lively rooftop bar. Enjoy the view while washing down these Baja-style burritos and tacos.
21 Brattle Street, Cambridge. 617-354-9944, felipesboston.com
Legal Sea Foods has many locations, but the view from the three-story building on Boston’s Liberty Wharf is unparalleled. Those visiting the Promenade Deck on the third floor will enjoy a four-season rooftop lounge with retractable glass roof and walls.
270 Northern Ave., Boston (Seaport). 617-477-2900, legalseafoods.com
Earl’s Kitchen & Bar
The Earls Prudential Center rooftop lounge serves a globally inspired menu of craft cocktails and offers a three-season outdoor terrace for guests to enjoy views of this vibrant part of the city. The 3,200 square foot convertible indoor/outdoor rooftop features lush planting, patio heaters and chic decor.
Earls at the Prudential Center, 800 Boylston St., Boston (Back Bay). 857-957-0949, earlsrestaurants.com
A rarity in Boston’s North End, Ristorante Fiore offers seasonal rooftop seating where classic, home-cooked Italian fare is served. Dine on everything from fresh, artisan breads and pastas to classic, old-world Italian and seafood dishes.
250 Hanover St., Boston. 617-371-1176, ristorantefiore.com
Christopher Muther/Globe Staff
Located on the roof of the Cambria Hotel in south Boston, Six West clinks often. Crowds tend to linger here longer because the views are stunning. It attracts a diverse crowd of professionals and skews slightly to the swankier side. There’s a full bar and plenty of imaginative cocktails.
6 West Broadway, Boston. 617-752-6681, sixwestbroad.com
Brittany Bowker can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow her on Twitter @brittbowker and Instagram @brittbowker.