With its rich history, gorgeous architecture, and delicious cuisine, it’s no wonder Rome is called The Eternal City. A trip to Italy’s capital is a truly magical experience, whether you’re there to tour the ruins and museums, shop the boutiques on Via del Corso, or get your fill of cacio e pepe, Roman-style pizza, and carciofi alla Romana. Hotels are often the home base for travelers to the city, and there’s no shortage of accommodations that’ll have you living a life of luxury.
Thankfully, you don’t have to have an overflowing bank account to get a taste of the aforementioned grandeur. Even if you’re not staying at one of Rome’s most luxurious hotels, you can still experience the splendor by splurging on fabulous Italian cocktails in a decked out hotel bar. These eight luxury hotel bars are some of the best in the city, perfect for an early evening aperitivo or digestivo to punctuate a day of living la dolce vita.
1. Lumen Garden at The St. Regis Rome
The St. Regis is known for its impeccable service, opulent afternoon tea, and evening Champagne sabering. But the hotel is also known for its cocktails — the bloody mary was invented at the New York St. Regis location in 1934, after all. The St. Regis Rome is one of the city’s finest hotels, and its lush Lumen Garden is an oasis from the hustle and bustle of the ancient city. It’s known for its aperitivo and serves signature cocktails in bespoke glassware designed by contemporary artists. Try the atollo, a mix of Champagne, Italicus Bergamot Liqueur, Cocchi Americano, lemon juice, simple syrup, and gin, served in a shimmering coupe. Or go for the red admiral, the hotel’s bloody mary variation that’s prepared and served tableside.
2. Tiepolo Bar at Rome Cavalieri, A Waldorf Astoria Hotel
Even if you’re not resting your head at Rome Cavalieri, there are a few great ways to enjoy the property. You can book a spa treatment and experience the hotel’s stunning Roman baths, or spend your day lounging by the outdoor pool, which is surrounded by lush flora. But the best way to experience this grand hotel without booking a room is to settle in for a cocktail at Tiepolo Bar, where you’ll find a sumptuous lounge that features gilded details and a prized collection of Venetian artwork. Settle in for an evening negroni while resident pianist Jaffa fills the room with lively jazz, or head there for afternoon tea or a grapefruit collins on the terrace. Whatever you choose to do, Tiepolo Bar is a must-visit when in Rome.
3. The Court Bar at Palazzo Manfredi
Palazzo Manfredi is located a few meters from the remains of Ludus Magnus, a gladiator training school that primed fighters for their moment at the Colosseum. And there’s no better way to soak in that view than by sipping a libation at The Court Bar. Behind the stick is Matteo Zed, who wrote a book about amari and is known for his cocktails throughout the world. The Court Bar menu is vast, and the cocktails are divided into sections like fat washing and fermentation & clarification. Try the black mamba, a tropical mix of Appleton Reserve, Diplomatico Reserva Exclusiva, Underberg, salty peanut orgeat, tamarind, lime juice, and banana.
4. Hassler Bar at Hassler Roma
Hassler Roma overlooks the Spanish Steps, giving it both great views and great drinks, and is one of the most elegant locales in the city. Every corner of the property is lovely, but the cozy, clandestine Hassler Bar makes for a memorable evening. Outfitted in rich dark wood, red leather upholstery, and gilded details, the glamorous surroundings conjure the mood of a bygone era. If you’re looking for an aperitivo, Hassler Bar’s signature veruschka — a refreshing mix of pomegranate juice and Italian sparkling wine — is an excellent pre-dinner libation.
5. Stravinskij Bar at Hotel de Russie
Hotel de Russie is one of the most elegant enclaves in Rome, with its uniquely designed suites, luxurious saltwater hydropool, and tiered secret garden. At the center of it all is Stravinskij Bar, an award-winning cocktail destination surrounded by lush groves of pine and citrus trees. The cocktail menu has a drink for everyone, whether you’re in the mood for a spritz, martini, gin and tonic, or mocktail. Come for aperitivo hour and snack on stuzzichini like calamari with squash blossoms while you sip an expertly-made libation. A classic sbagliato or negroni will whet your appetite for dinner, while a signature drink like the little Italy—made with grappa, pineapple cordial, lemon, mint, and chamomile bitters—will give you a taste of the bar’s distinct style.
6. Il Giardino Bar at Hotel Eden
When Hotel Eden opened in 1889, it was the first hotel in Rome to feature an elevator, electricity, and running water. Now the property is known for its sophisticated accommodations, Michelin-starred restaurant, and collection of curated artwork. One of the rooms to especially take note of in the hotel is Il Giardino Bar, a sleek space with sweeping views of the city where you can watch the sunset while listening to live music. Stop by for aperitivo hour and grab a selection of cicchetti (Italian small plates) like fried and stuffed zucchini blossoms and bruschette with mozzarella and anchovies. Pair the salty snacks with la grande bellezza, a fiery hued cocktail made with tamarind-infused rosé vermouth, mandarin, and mezcal.
7. JKBar at J.K Place Roma
This luxury boutique hotel is set inside a Roman townhouse that’s part of the 17th century Palazzo Borghese, and it’s within walking distance of sights like Piazza di Spagna and the Trevi Fountain. Every corner of J.K. Place Roma is lovely, but JKBar is something special. Plush upholstery, dark wood paneling inspired by Tom Ford’s A Single Man, and shelves of hardback books set the tone for a cozy cocktail hour, complete with snacks like tomato and mozzarella suppli. The thoughtfully made and garnished cocktails are almost too pretty to drink. Try the signature J.K. sour that’s made with Disaronno, lemon, and passionfruit.
8. Acquaroof at The First Roma Arte
If visiting every art gallery in a destination is your idea of a great vacation, The First Roma Arte is the hotel for you. Guest rooms are adorned with contemporary Italian artwork, and suites come outfitted with touches like marble fireplaces and private jacuzzi terraces. But if you’re only stopping by for a drink, you’ll get some of the best panoramic views in the city at Acquaroof. Whether you visit for lunch, aperitivo, or indulge in a dinnertime tasting menu, the cocktails at this rooftop garden do not disappoint. If you’re in a martini mood, try the signature message in a bottle, which is mixed with Acquaroof’s homemade vermouth.