Drinking and dining with the best views in town.
Kremlyovsky at the Rossiya hotel
Soviet kitsch meets minestrone soup would be one way to describe the Kremlyovsky restaurant on the 21st floor of the monstrous Rossiya hotel. It is also the restaurant with the best views of Moscow’s city center, especially Red Square, the entire Kremlin complex, the Moscow River and all the surrounding areas. You can do all your sightseeing from there, as the large windows allow almost a complete 180-degree perspective. The only thing lacking is a bar. You also get to see the inner courtyard of the Rossiya hotel and marvel at the sheer expanse of it. Always call ahead to book a table, or once you are in the hotel, dial 6176 from the phone in the lobby and someone should come to collect you.
Dinner for one without alcohol costs about $50.
Panorama at the Orlyonok hotel
“A slight nostalgia for Soviet times” is how the staff at Panorama describe their restaurant on the 20th floor of the Orlyonok hotel, which was built almost 30 years ago.
A noncentral location amid the lush parks of Sparrow Hills is one of Panorama’s assets. The view sweeps all the way from Park Pobedy and Moscow State University, past Luzhniki stadium to the Kremlin. You can follow the changing skyline more closely if you use one of two telescopes.
The menu features 13 types of shashlik amid other Caucasian and European dishes, and the “Lights of Moscow” (Ogni Moskvy) beer that is brewed especially for the restaurant (50 rubles for 0.5 liters.)
Assambleya at the President hotel
It’s tricky getting inside the hotel, and the giant Peter the Great statue stands with his back to the diners, but Assambleya’s 14th-floor location affords a truly spectacular view. Follow the bends of the Moscow river, count the bridges and look at historic Moscow down below and modern high-rises in the distance. The best views are from the giant outdoor balcony, where you can dine in the summer. While taking in the sights, sample one of 12 new dishes from the summer menu prepared by chef Andrei Chilikin. Always call ahead to reserve a table, otherwise you will be denied admission to the hotel grounds.
Somehow mojitos taste better when, in addition to rum, lime juice, club soda and mint, you can take in a sweeping view. Floor-to-ceiling windows looking out to the White House, Ulitsa Novy Arbat and beyond, plus yummy cocktails, a stylish interior and the chance to pee facing a transparent wall (in the men’s toilet only) draw in a steady flow of visitors to this tourist-friendly bar on the 27th floor of the Bashnya 2000 business center. Not a bad place to propose: Spectacular sunsets and fireworks on major holidays provide a magnificent backdrop for that life-changing moment.
Planeta Cosmos at the Cosmos hotel
Tell the guard you are going to Planeta Cosmos and he will take you to the elevators where another guard will ride with you to the 25th floor. At 99 meters above the ground, you won’t feel weightlessness, but a full view of the nearby TV tower, a soaring space rocket monument and the vast grounds of the All-Russian Exhibition Center are sure to compensate for any disappointment. Thankfully, the food doesn’t come in Mir space station-style rations: It would be pretty difficult to squeeze a selection of fish and venison dishes from a tube.
Panorama at the Golden Ring hotel
The Panorama restaurant runs almost a full circle around the 23rd floor of the Golden Ring hotel, so you can pretty much choose your own view: the Moscow River, Garden Ring, Moscow State University, the White House or the Ukraina hotel. The cuisine is mostly French — and it is difficult to imagine a place more romantic than when live music is playing here from 8pm to 10:45pm Tuesday to Friday. One floor below is the Winter Garden Italian restaurant with a good view of the Foreign Ministry building.
Conservatory Lounge and Bar at the Ararat Park Hyatt Moscow hotel
By Nathan Toohey
On a warm, sunny day, it’s hard to imagine a better place for basking in the sun than the Ararat Park Hyatt Moscow hotel’s Conservatory Lounge and Bar’s terrace. Perched 10 floors up overlooking the Kremlin and its surrounds, it’s a perfect summer haven for leisurely sipping a cocktail or an Armenian beer while gazing down at the hustle and bustle below. The service is impeccable and the menu refined — but for those on a budget, they even offer Russian beer. Sip away, munch on the complimentary chips, and count the onion domes or marvel at how close the Academy of Sciences tower looks from this height.
Kafe Terrasa and Rytsarsky Klub at Sparrow Hills
By Jennifer Chater
The viewing platform in front of Moscow State University at the top of Sparrow Hills has long been a favorite spot for surveying the city. An obligatory photo stop for tourist buses and wedding parties, it has all the fur-hat and matryoshka stalls you’d expect. Escape all this by heading straight to the Terrasa outdoor cafe a short distance down the path below, beside the chairlift and ski jump, and enjoy the same view while sipping on a cold beer and savoring khachapuri, shashliks and other Caucasian delicacies.
For a more refined experience, there’s the affiliated Rytsarsky Klub indoor Georgian restaurant down a flight of stairs next door, where you can expect higher prices, a more formal atmosphere and a view partly obscured by the treetops.
28 Ul. Kosygina (M. Vorobyovy Gori)
Golden Ring Hotel
Ararat Park Hyatt Moscow Hotel
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