Skip the hangover: Here are the best hotel bars with alcohol-free options
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The alcohol-free, zero-proof cocktail culture has grown leaps and bounds, with many people cutting back on booze for health and wellness reasons or abstaining long term. Hotel bars are taking note: Many now offer a greater selection of high-quality, innovative mocktails as well as buzz-free beer and wine.
A 2021 Nielsen survey revealed that nonalcoholic beverage sales increased by 33% over the previous year, and beverage analysts see more growth to come in the $400 million industry. Attendees of the 2022 National Restaurant Association show in Chicago reported zero-proof alcohol was a major trend at the event.
As the availability of low-ABV (alcohol by volume) and nonalcoholic spirits increases, picking more sober options while traveling will become less challenging. Here are five swanky hotel bars — some in places you’d least suspect — where you can enjoy a delicious concoction and skip the hangover.
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Forget the Singapore Sling. Since the 440-room Regent Singapore’s swanky, gilded-age bar Manhattan opened in 2014, its drink menu has revolved around high-quality ingredients, potent flavors and its stunning appearance. Many options come without the buzz. Head bartender Sophia Kang has always put emphasis on exciting mocktails where something other than liquor is the star.
Related: 3 ways to do Singapore on points
The tipples on Manhattan’s menu feature fresh-pressed juices, steeped infusions and rare teas that bring unique flavor and balance to these mocktails.
“As bartenders, we firmly believe in everyone’s right to a celebratory drink — alcoholic or not,” Kang said.
The New Element, which combines Lyre’s coffee, banana cordial, sparkling coconut water and chocolate bitters, is a guest favorite. Manhattan is ranked 15th on the list of the World’s 50 Best Bars and sixth on the list of Asia’s 50 Best Bars.
Room rates at the hotel start at $248 per night for a King Classic room. IHG One Rewards members can book rooms starting at 19,000 points per night.
Ette Hotel, Orlando
You won’t find so much as a drop of alcohol on any of the bar menus at this new, wellness-focused luxury boutique hotel in Orlando. Instead, bar consultant Jarl De Vries, also known as The Cocktail Professor, has devised high-quality mocktail menus. These drinks are served at signature restaurant Salt & The Cellar and at the sixth-floor rooftop bar LIPA.
Keep a “steady hand and clear head” while sipping these Insta-worthy, booze-free beverages. Some highlights include the lavender-hued Dragon’s Tail, which is served in a glass with jellyfish-like tentacles, and the verdant Into The Woods, which is served in a vial nestled among foliage and mosses. The Queen Bee, where slices of dehydrated pear serve as the bee’s “wings” on the glass vessel, is another favorite.
Rates at the hotel start at $669 per night for a King room. Members of I Prefer Rewards through Preferred Hotels & Resorts are eligible for a discounted rate, room upgrade, free Wi-Fi and early check-in.
Less than a mile from Penn Station and a two-minute walk from the Walters Art Museum, Revival Baltimore — part of the JdV Hyatt family — is a 107-room, newly renovated boutique hotel rich in history and culture. It’s nestled in the Mount Vernon neighborhood.
The rooftop restaurant, Topside, features a menu with four interesting ZPZJ (zero-proof, zero-judgment) cocktails. It also offers two beers with less than 0.5% ABV, including the Run Wild IPA from the Connecticut-based, alcohol-free Athletic Brewing Company. The Dorothy in the Daytime cocktail features a gin alternative, elderflower tonic, lime and ginger beer. Meanwhile, the Yellow Balloons drink features a tequila alternative, cinnamon-infused ginger turmeric tea, pineapple shrub and grapefruit bitters.
Room rates start at $159 per night, and World of Hyatt members can book rooms from 8,000 points for a Category 2 standard room.
Ernest Hemingway would have passed on the new mocktail menu at the Ritz Bar’s dimly-lit, circular counter, but that doesn’t mean you should. One-quarter of the bespoke cocktails at the bar are alcohol-free, and bar director Romain de Courcy estimates that about 1 in 5 guests orders a zero-proof cocktail when they visit.
The Feuille combines mint, patchouli, black currant, aloe vera and a pinch of spirulina for a stunning aqua-colored cocktail. The Fleur features rose, hibiscus, geranium propolis and aromatic litchi flower honey with a blush-colored rose petal garnish to match the drink.
Don’t expect zero-proof pricing, though. This is still Paris, and it’s still the Ritz. Each of these alcohol-free sips skirts the $30 mark.
Room rates start at $1,714 per night plus taxes for a Superior Room, with a two-night minimum.
The Merrion, Dublin
Ireland’s capital might not be the first place you’d expect to find alcohol-free options, but the zero-proof revolution has taken over the Emerald Isle, too. This 142-room hotel, a member of Leading Hotels of the World, is home to the Michelin two-starred Restaurant Patrick Guilbaud as well as the intimate No. 23 Cocktail Bar and the Garden Room, which offers a selection of floral-inspired alcohol-free cocktails overlooking the hotel’s courtyard.
Last summer, the hotel began production of its own non-alcoholic Irish spirit called “Artonical.” It’s a distilled zero-proof gin made from botanicals like juniper, angelica root, lemon, orange and grapefruit. The signature “NoLo” mocktail menu showcases the private label spirit in a variety of colorful, chilled concoctions.
Rates start at $423 per night for a Merrion Queen room, including tax.
Featured photo courtesy of Merrion Hotel Dublin/Facebook.
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