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Get High on 5 of the Best Hotel Rooftop Bars in America

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Staying at a hotel sometimes affords us the opportunity to pretend we have a posh cocktail bar in our own resident building — and if we’re lucky, that dream bar comes with a heck of a view. To help you indulge this fantasy, TPG Contributor Kelsy Chauvin highlights some of the best rooftop hotel bars in America that will, um… elevate your stay.

Note: Only a couple of these properties have their own co-branded credit cards, so be sure to see the bottom of this post for advice on which cards will enable you to pack the most points-earning punch for your room and drinks. Cheers!

San Francisco's Marriott Marquis delivers The View
San Francisco’s Marriott Marquis really delivers The View. Photo courtesy of the hotel.

The View — Marriott Marquis San Francisco

The Marriott Marquis San Francisco did not understate things when it named this 39th-floor lounge The View. Its massive arched window offers a vertigo-inducing vantage point for taking in the City by the Bay — it’s so sweeping that you may not even notice the somewhat humdrum décor. Along with the stellar vistas of downtown, you can enjoy deliciously named cocktails like the rum-based Skyline Punch and gin-and-St. Germain Fog City Collins. Arrive well before sunset to catch a table by the window.

Rooms at this Marriott Rewards Category 8 property start at $179 or 40,000 points per night. Pay for your room with the Marriott Rewards Premier Credit Card or the Ritz-Carlton Rewards Credit Cardand you’ll earn 5x Marriott Rewards for each dollar you spend here.

Start spreading the news at Supernova at the Novotel Times Square
Start spreading the news … at Supernova, the rooftop bar at the Novotel Times Square. Photo courtesy of Novotel.

Supernova — Hotel Novotel Times Square, New York

Cue Sinatra’s classic song, “New York, New York” when you step onto the rooftop patio of Supernova. Perched on the seventh floor of the Hotel Novotel Times Square, Supernova has one of the most impressive views in NYC, looking down Broadway toward Times Square. You can take in the Midtown sights and sounds (and occasionally smells) from the open-air deck, or head inside to throw back well-crafted Manhattans.

Rooms at this Accorhotels property start at $170 per night in the low season, and if you’re a member of the Le Club loyalty program (and book via the following means), you’ll earn points for both your stay and your bar spend based on your elite status.

The Hotel Lincoln affords presidential views from The J. Parker. Photo courtesy of The J. Parker on Facebook.
The Hotel Lincoln affords presidential views from The J. Parker. Photo courtesy of The J. Parker on Facebook.

The J. Parker — Hotel Lincoln, Chicago

Whether it’s Chicago’s architecture or the serene waters of Lake Michigan that most appeal to you, you’re all kinds of set at The J. Parker. Year-round, this 13th-floor lounge at the Hotel Lincoln is a great place to soak up the best Chi-town has to offer your eyeballs — complete with a retractable roof for those more blustery months. Along with its cocktails, enjoy some quirky history: The bar’s namesake is one J. Parker, the heavy-drinking policeman who should have been guarding President Lincoln’s theater box the night of his assassination.

At this Joie de Vivre property, room rates start at $129 during low season and $199 in high season. The Joy of Life Club rewards members with points that can be used toward room discounts, eco-friendly carbon-offset credits, spa treatments and more.

The W's POV lounge has a great perspective on Washington D.C.
The W’s POV lounge has a great perspective on Washington, DC. Photo courtesy of W Washington DC.

POV — W Washington DC

The W Washington DC (where TPG himself stayed in 2013) calls its POV 11th-floor bar a “destination lounge,” probably because sipping booze while peering at the White House can feel like a full night all by itself. This swanky bar draws its share of white-collar politicos who liquidate their stress with some bottle service, but hey — you’re here for a well-made cocktail with a view, and no amount of partisanship should keep you from it.

At this Starwood Category 5 hotel, rooms start at $269 or 12,000 Starpoints per night. (FYI, there’s currently many a good deal to be had on the hotel’s website — including bonus nights, upgrades and discounts.) If you’re an SPG member and use either the Starwood Preferred Guest Credit Card from American Express and/or its business version here, you’ll earn 5x on your entire hotel stay — including those tasty cocktails.

Check out Brooklyn's view over Manhattan at the Wythe's Ides Bar
Check out the view of Manhattan from the Wythe’s Ides Bar. Photo courtesy of the hotel.

The Ides Bar — Wythe Hotel, Brooklyn

New York has no shortage of killer skyline views, but many believe the best way to take in Manhattan is from the outside looking in. (Or rather at.) The dreamy sixth-floor deck of the Ides Bar at Brooklyn’s Wythe Hotel is a great place to behold the city’s sexy skyscrapers from across the rive. The cocktails are smashing; the bartenders will dazzle; and even if you’re meh on great views, there’s always plenty of Brooklyn-chic eye candy to ogle within. At this independently owned hotel, bunk-bed rooms start at $265, and “baby queen” rooms start at $325.

The Best Credit Cards to Use

Even when a hotel doesn’t have its own co-branded credit cards — or you don’t have the hotel’s card — you have lots of options for maximizing both your stay and your bar tab. When you charge your room and/or your cocktails to your Chase Sapphire Preferred or the no-fee Barclaycard Arrival, you’ll earn 2x points for both imbibing dining and hotels.

Alternatively, use either the Citi ThankYou Premier Card or the premium Citi Prestige Card to earn 3x on your total hotel bill, or 2x on the cocktails alone. If you’re just visiting the bar, also consider the Citi ThankYou Preferred Card, which earns 2x points on your drinks, as well as the American Express Gold Card or American Express Premier Rewards Gold Card, either of which will earn you 2x Membership Rewards points for your bar tab. For more on this subject, see How Credit Card Issuers Classify Travel and Dining Purchases.

What are your own favorite rooftop hotel bars in America? Please share them with us in the comments below!

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