The arrival of summer is an especially enticing proposition in Barcelona. The warm weather combines with just the right amount of soothing, cooling breeze in order to make outdoor socialising the most popular activity in town. Savvy hotels took this knowledge and turned their ‘guests only’ rooftop terraces into magnificent meeting and greeting venues for all to enjoy. Whether looking for a quiet break following a day of sightseeing, a cocktail after work or simply a unique place to gather with friends, Barcelona delivers exactly what you need.
Here is a sampling of some of the city’s best hotel terraces.
Decorated with natural wood furnishings, earth-toned cushions and a generous collection of exotic plants, visitors feel more like they are entering a friend’s private terrace garden than a 4-star hotel venue. The bar is stocked with the usual summer cocktails but wine by the glass is also available – drinks start at a reasonable 5 euros and are served with complementary chips. Add to the mix live acoustic performances on Wednesdays, international DJs on weekends and the fact there’s a convenient 5-minute walk to Plaça Catalunya, and you’ve found the perfect place to meet up before hitting the clubs.
As one of the most celebrated hotels in the city, the 5-star Hotel Arts is noted for creating unique experiences for its guests. Fortunately for the rest of us, it has graciously opened to the public the contemporary Arola terrace – adjacent to the fine dining restaurant of the same name – featuring cozy sofas and an extensive cocktail list for international travelers and guests alike. Enjoy a privileged view of the sea, the hotel’s exquisite gardens and Frank Ghery´s iconic fish sculpture while listening to modern lounge music and sipping on sinful concoctions. As of 21 June, Arola terrace adds another reason to visit – live music sessions on Thursday nights till 1:30am.
Even with its gorgeous views of many of Barcelona’s most iconic landmarks and a glass-sided rectangular pool providing a stunning centerpiece, the design and intimate daybeds of this urban, cool terrace give you the impression of being a VIP at an upscale New York nightclub. By day the pool is only open to hotel guests but come 6pm everyone is welcome to come and enjoy some cava (starting at 5 euros a glass!) – or assorted cocktails and snacks – while listening to mood-setting lounge music sessions until 1am.
This elegant terrace bar is an unexpected delight. Terracotta colored-walls, monochromic furnishings and romantic lighting provide an inviting location in which to unwind day or night. Although located in an unassuming residential area close to Gran Via, the best reason to come is for the intimate feeling of being on your own terrace with close friends. Open every day until 11pm, Villa Emilia complements its daily ‘chill-out’ music sessions with light meal options and occasional live performances.
As the name suggests, this spacious modernista terrace features dramatic blue lighting (often from ultra-modern round or cube-shaped structures on the floor) that makes a visit on a warm summer night particularly memorable. The 360° view offers a stunning perspective of the fashionable Passeig de Gràcia as well as other popular landmarks including the Sagrada Familia and the Tibidabo Castle. Open to the public from 4pm until 2am on weekends (closes an hour earlier on weekdays) and providing drinks and snacks, Blue View is an excellent option for those seeking a relaxing evening in style.