There are two kinds of people that emerge around the holidays: people that love spending time with our extended family, and those of us who would rather skip town. And if you’re looking for a proper luxury getaway, a world-class hotel bar is a good place to start. Here, some of the best hotel bars that are worth checking into this holiday season.
The Rooftop at The Cape, a Thompson Hotel – Cabo, Mexico
If you’re in need of something warm and luxurious, The Cape in Cabo, Mexico is definitely someplace to consider. It’s a fresh and vibrant take on the Los Cabos scene that boasts pristine views of the Pacific Ocean from a chic rooftop bar, as of El Arco and the Bahía San Lucas horizon. You’ll find delicious drinks at one of their four bars with food by chef Enrique Olvera to pair. The hotel’s mezcal expert will help guide you through Mexico’s famed artisanal spirit–a genuine luxury for any drinks enthusiast. Book here.
Avecita at Kimpton Seafire Resort + Spa – Grand Cayman
Ever since it opened in 2106, the Kimpton Seafire Resort + Spa in Grand Cayman boasts state-of-the-art hotel accommodations with, arguably, the best cocktail bar on the island in its Avecita restaurant. The cocktail program utilizes the freshest juices in constructing thought-provoking cocktails. If a French 75 and Piña Colada had a baby, it would be their signature Escape, which, with their fresh coconut-infused rum and pineapple juice, makes the perfect, effervescent sipper. Book here.
Alpina Lounge & Bar at The Alpina Gstaad – Gstaad, Switzerland
Rated one of the world’s best hotel bars in 2019 by Forbes, this alpine getaway kicks the typical ski-inspired hotel up a notch. While their creative cocktails are ones to note, this hotel bar’s wine program is unlike any other. Wine Spectator recently named Restaurant Sommet’s wine list as one of the best in the world—there are 1,700 wines in the cellar and a very extensive list of Swiss wines. More wine always means more fun, right? To top it off, both of the restaurants on the property, Sommet and Megu, both have Michelin stars. Book here.
The Aviary NYC at Mandarin Oriental – NYC
The Mandarin Oriental’s experimental, high-tech cocktail bar, The Aviary NYC, is a truly elevated drinking experience.
It is difficult to keep up with the level of innovation that they bring to the table, but this bar is unlike any other. It is all table service and interactive. From cocktails like In the Rocks, which is an Old Fashioned in a large sphere that you need to break open to drink, to all sorts of custom ice from their expansive ice program, it’s definitely not your typical hotel bar. Book here.
Coral Reef Bar at Four Seasons Resort The Biltmore Santa Barbara – Santa Barbara
The Coral Reef Bar has arguably the best aesthetic of any of the bars on this list with a 270-gallon saltwater-aquarium serving as the bar, and it overlooks the Pacific Ocean to make sure you can sip on the finest of craft cocktails without missing the views. Their selection of vibrant, tropical-in-nature cocktails and premier California wine make this stay a no-brainer. Book here.
Pulitzer’s Bar at Hotel Pulitzer – Amsterdam
While Amsterdam is a city of vice, it’s also a city that’s rich with culture, expression and timelessness—and Pulitzer’s bar is the perfect embodiment of this. The atmosphere is reminiscent of a millionaire’s study with leather chairs, voguish light fixtures, and other mindful stylings. The bar serves up expertly executed classics, as well as thoughtful innovations by some of Amsterdam’s best bartenders. Whether you want a stiff Old-Fashioned, or one of their original libations, such as The Gangster (mezcal, Cognac, cacao, banana, wine), you really can’t go wrong. Book here.
Mandarin Bar & Bistrot at Mandarin Oriental – Milan
Milan’s Mandarin Oriental is home to one of the chicest and sexiest bars in this sultry Italian city. Described as “the beating heart of the hotel,” it offers a mix of bespoke cocktails, contemporary music, and bites to keep you going. Innovative cocktails such as the Nuova Colada—Bacardi 8, rice, coconut, pineapple, coriander, vanilla and spice—are just the tip of the iceberg in terms of flavorful tipples to expect from the beverage program. If you stick around long enough, the bar morphs into one of the city’s most exclusive nightclubs. Book here.
MO Bar + Lounge at Mandarin Oriental – Miami
The MO Bar + Lounge at Miami’s Mandarin Oriental is lavish, vibrant, and showcases panoramic skyline and water views to make the ambiance as alluring as they come.
Every night the bar offers a social hour menu (essentially happy hour) of select cocktails and wine which gives guests, and visitors, a place to get their night started. MO Bar + Lounge also hosts lively entertainment on Friday and Saturday nights, so it can also keep the party going. Book here.
701 West at Times Square Edition – NYC
The newly-opened Times Square Edition is one of midtown’s chicest hotels and is home to four separate bars, but the elegant 701 West is the head-turner here that you won’t want to miss. Craft cocktails by bar director Salvatore Tafuri and a wine list by sommelier Amy Racine make for a robust beverage program that includes an Old-Fashioned variation with shiitake mushroom-infused bourbon and a truffled peach garnish dubbed Foreign Affairs, and a global wine list exceeding 500 bottles. Book here.
NoMad Las Vegas at Park MGM – Las Vegas
The NoMad is a hotel within a hotel, occupying the top four floors of the Park MGM. It’s only been open for about a year, the beverage program at this Sin City watering hole is overseen by award-winning mixologist Leo Robitschek. His cocktail list consists of re-invented classics, like their Blue Hawaiian, and NoMad originals, like the revitalizing Hot Lips cocktail—an elevated take on a Margarita. The European design adds for a romantic ambiance that makes this a great spot to take someone special for a truly memorable cocktail experience. Book here.