At the end of a long day of exploring a new city, the only thing better than putting your feet up with a great cocktail is enjoying your sip with a stunning sunset to match. Whether you’re visiting Venice, Paris or Dubrovnik, a glorious explosion of orange and fuchsia on the horizon will be forever etched into you memory.
We’ve scoped out five bars and restaurants around Europe where excellent sundowners pair well with epic sunsets.
A striking skyscraper designed by Italian architect Renzo Piano, the 95-story Shard is akin to a vertical city — full of high-end accommodations, restaurants, bars and the worthwhile Champagne Experience at View from the Shard, London’s highest observation deck.
We’d also recommend a visit to Forbes Travel Guide Four-Star Shangri-La Hotel, At The Shard, London, where you’ll find Gŏng on the 52nd floor, making it the highest bar in the city. Champagne is the order of the day at this vertiginous perch, where you’ll marvel at views of the Tower of London, the Thames and HMS Belfast come sundown.
Sitting pretty on the Grand Canal, Aman Venice feels more like a palace than a hotel — and rightly so. Built in the 16th century, the Palazzo Papadopoli belonged to the Arrivabene family of Italian nobles. Following an extensive renovation, the structure retains its classic Venetian atmosphere, with original frescoes by Italian painter Giovanni Battista Tiepolo, antique furniture and dazzling chandeliers.
But one of the most beautiful corners of the property is actually a contemporary addition — the rooftop terrace. Accessible only by hotel guests, the pretty alfresco space features a few lounge chairs and panoramic views of the sun setting over the city’s orange-tiled rooftops. There’s no dedicated bar service on the rooftop, but you are welcome to order room service or grab a bottle of bubbly from the complimentary mini-bar and toast to the skyline.
On prestigious Passeig de Gràcia, Five-Star Mandarin Oriental, Barcelona spoils you with world-class dining, a rooftop pool and gorgeous architecture — not surprising, considering the building’s regal history as a bank. Amid the buffet of experiences, we highly recommend securing a sunset table at Terrat, the hotel’s seasonal rooftop restaurant that will reopen in April.
Created by celebrated chef Gastón Acurio, the Peruvian menu features elevated classics such as scallop ceviche, tiradito (Peruvian raw fish) and Pisco sour cocktails.
There’s much to love about this posh alfresco spot: excellent cuisine, a secret garden setting and 360-degree sunset views overlooking Gaudí’s La Sagrada Familia and the surrounding mountains.
Built into a cliff just outside Dubrovnik Old Town, the entrance to this super-luxe Croatian abode feels like a secret James Bond lair. On street level, a single white elevator zips you down to Villa Dubrovnik’s sleek lobby, where picture windows overlook gin-clear water, a terrace restaurant, a pool and sun loungers on the rocks below.
Come evening, the best viewing spot in the house is at the Prosciutto & Wine Bar rooftop lounge. Awash in soft purple and warm wood hues, the address boasts commanding views of the Adriatic Sea, lush Lokrum Island, the stone walls of Old Town and glorious pink and orange skies on the horizon. Order a glass of bubbly and a generous prosciutto platter while you savor the vista.
Passing through Paris? At Forbes Travel Guide Recommended Hotel Raphael, you’ll find classic Belle Epoque interiors with French hospitality to match and the seventh-floor La Terrasse — a romantic rooftop setting complete with hanging gardens and 360-degree cityscape views.
Open during the spring and summer, the restaurant serves creative vegetarian cuisine and an impressive wine list of mostly organic and biodynamic sips from independent French producers.
If you’re not ready to commit to a full sit-down dinner, stop by for a glass of wine at sundown, when the Eiffel Tower and Arc de Triomphe seem to glow brighter than your Dom Pérignon Brut rosé. Better yet, book the signature Arc de Triomphe Suite to enjoy sunset views from your own personal balcony.