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Top 10 London Restaurants with a View

Picture of Top 10 London Restaurants with a View

When it comes to choosing between the many restaurants in London with a view, the key to success is knowing what will impress your dining companion(s). There are lots of romantic restaurants in London with a view, for example, but if you’re courting new clients from abroad, perhaps all you need is a birds-eye view of the river Thames for your business lunch. Then again, if mergers and acquisitions are not the kind of business you’ve got in mind, then bring on the champagne, the blues skies, the twinkling lights, and the cosy window seats where nobody can see you smooching. No matter which London restaurants that have view potential, make sure you check out this top 10 before making that booking.

Image of The Yacht London

City of London
Bar / Restaurant
Modern European

This restaurant is not just a yacht, it's THE Yacht, and for good reason. The impressive views of London's beating heart, the South Bank, are directly opposite the restaurant. From here you can see the London Eye, The Shard and the OXO Tower along the river Thames, The chef - previously of Rosette-awarded restaurants - has created a fine dining experience but with a casual vibe. The classic British menu includes a weekend tasting menu, the traditional Sunday roast favourite, and, the epitome of Britishness, afternoon tea! If you really want to impress your family, friends or colleagues, book the Art Deco cocktail lounge for private dining and let them gasp at those killer London views.

Image of Gaucho Tower Bridge

London Bridge & Bermondsey
Bar / Restaurant
Steak House

The historic London icon, Tower Bridge, proudly spans the river and can be seen in all its majesty from the large glass windows of this elegant restaurant next to the river. This impressive view is best enjoyed with a delicious, Argentine, churrasco de lomo spiral cut steak marinated in garlic, parsley and olive oil, accompanied by a glass of something red and breathtaking. Located next to City Hall and across the river from the Tower of London, this classy, quintessential London experience is for the lovers and sinners. If your ethos is to live life to fullest, then this is the restaurant for you.

Image of Aqua Shard

London Bridge & Bermondsey
Bar / Restaurant
British

From the 31st level of The Shard, this is one of the best restaurants with a view of London. It's like a giant game of Where's Wally as you pick out your favourite London landmarks. Couples get cosy at window seats; groups settle in to plush leather horseshoe alcoves. This is a London restaurant you'll want to revisit as the amazing view changes throughout the day: try sunrise at morning breakfast (similar in price as a ticket to the top but with the same view and a full belly), and return again for a birds' eye, sunset dinner and romantic cocktail overlooking Tower Bridge. A truly unique London experience; even better if you're a man, sorry ladies (a trip to the loos will reveal why).

Image of Madison

City of London
Bar / Restaurant
European

London's dramatic landscape has been punctuated and admired by the impressive dome of St Paul's Cathedral for centuries. This restaurant and cocktail bar sits 6 floors above the City of London, providing ample viewing of the iconic building from one of the biggest all-weather roof terraces in Europe. The terrace bar has its own food menu, a variety of sharing drink options, plus a cigar list for the true rulers of their own destiny, lending itself to a group dynamic. For something more romantic, head inside where the view is the same but the menu is larger, and includes Josper grill favourites such as whole lobster and chateaubriand. Watch your Instagram followers increase after a visit.

Image of Hutong

London Bridge & Bermondsey
Bar / Restaurant
Chinese

Touting all the same brilliant vistas (pictured above) as Aqua Shard two floors below, this highly stylised Chinese restaurant is as far removed from slop-in-a-tray Chinese takeaway as it is feet above the ground. You are in for a real high-class treat, especially if someone else is paying. The dark wooden panelling, tiled tea brick wall, and traditional Chinese red lanterns provoke your imagination into feeling as though you've actually taken flight and landed in Northern China, where the spices are fiery and the sauces exotic. Top tip: always order from the signature menu, and don't leave without scribbling a note for the wishing tree.

Image of RS Hispaniola

West End
Bar / Restaurant
European

While some views of London are high up, looking down on the river, the panorama onboard this moored vessel is one that includes the rippling waters of the Thames just beneath your feet. The floating bar, restaurant and party venue on Victoria Embankment looks out over the London Eye, the Houses of Parliament and its famous clock. This is prime time come New Years Eve, if you can get a ticket, but the party starts well before then, with a variety of live music, comedy, cabaret and murder mystery dining options available throughout the year. Afternoon tea is also served, making this boat a real all-rounder on the London scene.

Image of OXO Tower Restaurant

South Bank & Bankside
Restaurant
British

This stunning restaurant and bar with a large outdoor terrace has been going strong for more than two decades. It is positioned right on the river Thames, just east of the buzzing South Bank, and it's worth eating here for the views of alone - you'll quickly lose count of the number of iconic London landmarks you can spot. As part of the Harvey Nichols family of restaurants, it serves a fine selection of the department store's wines, prosecco and champagne. One for those who are love a bit of culture, this is a beautiful setting for a pre- or post-theatre meal if you're popping along to the nearby National Theatre, Southbank Centre, BFI Southbank, Tate Modern or Shakespeare's Globe theatre.

Image of Galvin at Windows

Mayfair
Bar / Restaurant / Hotel
French

The Galvin brothers have a host of restaurants across the city, but there's none quite like Galvin at Windows restaurant and bar. On the top floor of the Hilton Hotel in Mayfair, slap bang in the middle of Park Lane, overlooking Hyde Park, Windows couldn't have a more enviable location. It's perhaps even more impressive by night, when you can fall in love with an awesome kaleidoscope of city lights. The French haute cuisine at the restaurant is certainly deserving of its Michelin star, and if you're lucky you may spot the resident celebrity, Fred Sirieix, of the TV show First Dates; he's the restaurant's general manager.

Image of Searcys | The Gherkin

City of London
Bar / Restaurant
Modern European

Ever looked up at The Gherkin in the City of London and pondered what a great location for James Bond's villainous nemesis to set up an HQ? Sadly, evil will have to wait because the glass-roof dome at the top houses a splendidly dramatic restaurant and bar. If you're loaded and engaged to be married, this is where you'll want to have your wedding reception. The views are wide-reaching and awe-inducing. Check the restaurant's Instagram feed; you'll see. Take note though: if you're not a member, you will have to wait until the restaurant hosts one of its open nights, when London plebs like us get a chance to take in one of the best restaurants with views of London.

Image of Roast

City of London
Bar / Restaurant
British

This moderately high restaurant near London Bridge is unique on the best views list because it doesn't involve a stunning vista looking far off into the distance. Although you can see St Paul's Cathedral and The Shard, the main window-seat action here is directly below you, in the bustling walkways of Borough Market (make sure you book for a market day). This is a distinctly London experience. Meat lovers, vegetarians, vegans, brunch munchers, kids, and sweet-tooth sugar-cravers are all catered for, each provided with their own menu, all with a British lean.

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