Some boast open air pools, others are perfectly designed to capture the elusive summer breeze on stifling hot nights in the capital. There's only one place to be this summer, and it's high above the city streets.
Where: Calle Imperial 9, Madrid (Sol/La Latina)
Vibe: Don´t let the fact it is on top of a hostel put you off, HAT is the hippest rooftop bar in Madrid, where the waiters are tattooed and your cocktails come in jam jars. Nestled on a side street just off the Plaza Mayor, the recently opened roof terrace is beautifully designed and has a good choice of tapas and cocktails. It's one of the smaller terraces on our list which actually adds to its charm, making it cosy and intimate.
View: More enclosed than some of the other rooftops, one side of the terrace looks out over La Latina, home to Madrid’s best tapas bars and the famous tapas street, Cava Baja, as well as the impressive domes of the barrio's churches.
Where: Calle de Augusto Figueroa, 24 (Chueca)
Vibe: This roof terrace has the added bonus of being located on the top floor of one of Madrid’s best gourmet indoor markets, so you can enjoy some delicious bites before kicking back with a drink on the roof. With a mix of low, comfy chairs and sofas and high tables and stools, this roof terrace has a chilled vibe that is perfect for an afternoon tipple or an early evening drink. Plus the drinks are reasonable. Win-win!
View: The narrow streets of Chueca, one of Madrid’s coolest neighbourhoods and home to the city’s thriving gay scene.
Where: Plaza de Santa Ana 14 (Sol/Las Letras)
Vibe: One of Madrid’s most exclusive terraces, The Roof is achingly hip with low lighting, waitresses who resemble supermodels and a strict door policy. If you want to feel a cut above the rest, see and be seen and sample some of the capital’s most expensive cocktails, The Roof is the place for you.
View: The hotel is on Plaza Santa Ana, one of Madrid’s most beautiful squares, opposite the Teatro Real, or Royal Theatre.
Where: Alcalá 42/Marqués de Casa Riera, 2 (Banco de España)
Vibe: It costs €3 to go up to this cultural institution’s rooftop bar to take in the view, so why not hang around and enjoy a drink while stepping back in time as you gaze out over surely one of Madrid’s most breathtaking views.
View: One of the most iconic views in Madrid, gaze over Madrid’s Gran Vía, it’s famous Metropolis sign and the beautiful Beaux Arts and Art Deco rooftops, this is our pick for the rooftop bar view in Madrid.
Where: Calle del Marqués de Casa Riera 4 (Banco de España)
Vibe: This hidden away gem is for where those in the know head when the queues for the neighbouring terrace at Bellas Artes are stretching out the door and down the street. No entrance fee and far less crowded, the view may not be as impressive as those next door, but the likelihood of finding a corner to snuggle in as the sun goes down more than makes up for it.
View: True, you can't see much of the Gran Via and it's iconic skyline from here but instead enjoy wide vistas of the Palacio Cibeles and the green of the Retiro park beyond and the jumble of the picturesque terracotta rooftops of the Barrio de las Letras stretching to the south.
Where: Plaza Vázquez de Mella, 12 (Chueca)
Vibe: If you’re looking for luxury then Hotel Oscar, with its white floor cushions and Bauhaus style, is most definitely for you. Recline among some of Madrid’s most fashionable by the rooftop pool in this urban oasis, right in the heart of the city.
Views: Excellent views over the rooftops of Gran Vía, including the iconic Telefonica building, which when it was built, in 1929 was one of Europe’s first skyscrapers.
Where: Plaza de la Cebada, 11 (La Latina)
Vibe: El Viajero is the perfect place to enjoy a few nibbles and one of their specialities: a mojito among the laid back atmosphere and very green (the place is covered in plants) background.
View: The rooftops of La Latina are some of Madrid’s oldest and most beautiful, from El Viajero you can watch the sun go down over the domes of the churches of San Francisco and San Andreas, definitely one of our top picks for the best rooftop views in the city.
Where: Cuesta San Vicente 16 (Opera)
Vibe: A secret rooftop overlooking some of Madrid’s most famous sites and named after the famous Sabatini gardens. Sit back and relax on the terrace’s oval sofas and enjoy some tapas and drinks as you take in the incredible view.
View: Gaze out over the Royal Palace, the Sabatini gardens and the stunning Egyptian Debod Temple.
Where: Carrera de San Jerónimo, 34 (Sol/Las Letras)
Vibe: Located at the top of the five star, art deco-inspired Hotel Urban, the roof terrace is elegant and the perfect option for a stylish summer evening cocktail.
View: Located right at the centre of the city, close to the Spanish parliament and a stone’s throw from Sol, soak up the views of Madrid’s beating heart.
Where: Plaza Callao, 2. Ninth floor.
The vibe: The Gourmet Experience at the top of El Corte Ingles (one of Spain’s most famous department stores) is a great place to stop for a coffee or drink if you’re hitting the shops on Gran Vía. With a variety of stalls, all selling delicious bites, you are bound to find something to tickle your taste buds.
The view: Marvel at one of Madrid’s most iconic views: the capitol building with its giant Schweppes sign. Located just off the Gran Vía, you get a bird’s eye view of some of the most impressive early 20th century architecture in Spain.
Where: Calle de la Luna, 2 (Gran Via, Santo Domingo)
The vibe: This rooftop has quickly become one of the hipped to be seen in Madrid. Lounge in the hammocks in the Ibiza-style chillout zone which boasts an infinity pool and cocktail bar atop fake grass.
The view: Stunning views across Madrid with the bustling Gran Via to the south and the winding streets of Chueca and Malasaña stretching out below. There is a restaurant downstairs, as well as a hotel, a shopping area, a gym and a theater.
Mirador Madrid at Centro Centro
Photo: Pablo Andrés Rivero / Flickr
Where: Plaza de Cibeles 1 (Banco de España)
The vibe: Have a drink atop one of Madrid's most iconic buildings. What used to be the Post Office is now the City Hall complete with exhibition space and a "Refugees Welcome" banner boldly hanging across the facade.
The view: This terrace boasts one of the best views of the city, rivalling that of the nearby Bellas Artes. Gaze over a vista stretching up the Castallana to the north taking in the Cibeles fountain below and across to the impressive Banco de España.
This is an updated version of list written by Jessica Jones and first published in 2015.