London restaurants with the best views

Great food and magnificent views - we seek out the capital's best high-rise restaurants

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What better way to absorb the sights and sounds of the capital than from one of the many London restaurants with views? Do you agree with the choices? Use the comments box below or tweet your suggestions.

Towpath

  • Rated as: 5/5
  • Price band: 1/4
  • Critics choice

This simple operation on Regent’s Canal towpath (near the Whitmore Bridge) was a novelty when it opened in 2010 in three shallow units. Three years later, it has expanded into four units, and continues to lure in passing walkers and cyclists with its original setting and enticing food and drink. Wing a table in the sunshine on a summer’s day, and you might end up staying for hours. Relaxed entertainment is provided by families of swans, coots tending their nests, and passing

  1. Regent's Canal towpath, between Whitmore Bridge and Kingsland Road Bridge, N1 5SB
  2. Main courses £3-£8
More info

The Gun

  • Rated as: 4/5
  • Price band: 2/4
  • Critics choice

Typical of the ETM chain, the Gun is an attractively spruced-up pub, with attentive staff and stiff prices. The focus is on making both diners and drinkers feel at home. The restaurant menu is available throughout – not just in the smartly dressed dining space – and there’s a standalone bar menu too. The handsome bar counter is lined with real ales (Adnams bitter is a regular, and there’s always a guest ale), but also offers cocktails and a global wine list. Cooking is

  1. 27 Coldharbour, E14 9NS
  2. Main courses £12.50-£28
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Hutong

  • Rated as: 4/5

The Shard you already know. Hutong, half way up the Shard, needs more than just a ni hao of introduction. The original Hutong in Hong Kong is a glitzy, high-end Chinese restaurant with magnificent views, mainly patronised by expats and tourists. And this London branch of Hutong is exactly the same. The same Sichuan and northern Chinese menu, the same mix of plate glass and ersatz Old Beijing decor, the same hard chairs – even some of the staff are the same, brought over to help

  1. Level 33, 31 St. Thomas Street, SE1 9RY
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Coq d'Argent

  • Rated as: 3/5
  • Price band: 3/4
  • Critics choice
  • Offer

Coq d’Argent is accessed via a private lift, which speedily delivers City suits to a verdant rooftop garden, complete with its own lawn, trailing vines and ringed walkway. In summer, it’s a great choice for alfresco dining, and the location offers striking skyline views across London. Indoor attractions include a circular bar, brasserie and corporate-styled restaurant. Expect regional French cooking, occasionally inspired by forays further afield. A first course of

  1. No.1 Poultry, EC2R 8EJ
  2. Main courses £19-£37.50. Set lunch (Sun) £25...
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The Crabtree

  • Rated as: 4/5
  • Price band: 2/4

Situated on a fine stretch of the riverbank between Hammersmith and Putney bridges, this vast Victorian venue is within shouting distance of Craven Cottage, the homely home of Fulham Football Club. It's been given a grandiose, gastro-tastic going over, and is the latest feather in the bow of posh boozer specialist Realpubs. We've also been mightily impressed by two of their other venues recently, The Queen Adelaide in Shepherd's Bush and The Pembroke in Earl's Court. Housed

  1. Rainville Road, W6 9HA
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Plateau

  • Rated as: 5/5
  • Price band: 3/4
  • Offer

The aptly named Plateau sits on the fourth floor of Canada Place, with sensational views of Canary Wharf from its huge glass and metal façade. The interior aims to impress with iconic contemporary furniture – marble-topped white Eero Saarinen Tulip tables and matching chairs, and Arco floor lamps – but the restaurant isn’t just a designer showroom for the moneyed classes; the beautifully presented cuisine is testament to the fact that head chef Allan Pickett takes his job

  1. Canada Place, Canada Square, E14 5ER
  2. Main courses £14-£29.50. Set meal £22 2...
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Blueprint Café

  • Rated as: 4/5
  • Price band: 2/4
  • Offer

A long-time favourite, the Blueprint Café would be destination for the setting alone: wall-to-ceiling windows look on to a stunning view of the Thames and Tower Bridge, and a retractable canopy gives a great inside/outside feeling. Head chef Mark Jarvis’s seasonal menus are short and to the point – dishes are beautiful but in no way twee. Begin, perhaps, with just-seared yellowfin tuna with kalamata olives and a delicate salad niçoise, or a tender artichoke salad with a

  1. Design Museum, 28 Shad Thames, SE1 2YD
  2. Main courses £12.50-£21. Set lunch £15 2...
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On the Roof with Q

  • Rated as: 3/5
  • Price band: 2/4

There’s no James Bond genius on this roof, masterminding his weaponry and gadgets. But there is an element of stealth and intrigue to this summer spin-off from Camden’s Q Grill. It’s reached by an express lift to the eighth floor from a discreet entrance opposite a Selfridges’ perfume counter. You’re whisked high above Oxford Street to a lair that would be the envy of Ian Fleming’s hero. The flags of many nations fly along the parapet; beautiful people cluster around

  1. Selfridges Roof Top, 400 Oxford Street, W1H 6HB
Book online

Duck & Waffle

  • Rated as: 3/5
  • Price band: 2/4

There’s a dedicated entrance for the restaurants in Heron Tower, from where a glass lift will whizz you in seconds up to Duck & Waffle on the 40th floor, or its glitzier sibling Sushisamba two floors below. The views are, as you might expect, stunning – if you’re pointed in the right direction and, preferably, sitting at a window table (many of which are for two diners only). Alternatively, linger in the entrance bar, where you can press your nose against the glass and gawp

  1. 40th Floor, Heron Tower, 110 Bishopsgate, EC2N 4AY
  2. Dishes £17-£38
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City Social

  • Rated as: 4/5

‘Visitor bag search’, the sign read. Next to it was a walk-through metal detector and a burly security guard. He had a glint in his eye, the kind that says, ‘I’ve got a box of latex gloves here, and if I find so much as a nail file in your purse, I won’t be afraid to use them.’ So we approached the receptionist instead. ‘Is this the way to City Social?’ ‘No,’ she sighed, ‘this is the main entrance, you’ll need the side door, opposite Wagamama.’ Happily,

  1. 25 Old Broad Street, EC2N 1HQ
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Oblix

  • Rated as: 3/5
  • Price band: 4/4

By Guy Dimond Nearly halfway up the Shard, Oblix is the first of a few bars and restaurants to open in Western Europe’s tallest building (the others being Aqua Shard Hutong, and Shard 35). Nando’s and McDonald’s didn’t get a look-in at this glimmering landmark; the Shard is reserved for platinum-card restaurateurs such as Rainer Becker. He’s best-known for his outstanding modern Japanese restaurants, Zuma and Roka. His new venture, by contrast, is more West than

  1. Level 32, The Shard, 31 St Thomas Street, SE1 9SY
  2. Main courses £16-£54
More info

Paramount

  • Rated as: 3/5
  • Offer

Completed in the year England won the World Cup, Centre Point is now home to the kind of restaurant where you might hope to spot premiership footballers. The 360-degree viewing gallery and cocktail bar on the 33rd floor is dramatic, and the restaurant (plus additional bar space) one floor below buzzes with chatter and a sense of occasion. Cooking is ambitious, with a lot of combinations per plate; seared scallop with crab tortellini, curry oil, green apple salad, carrot and

  1. 101-103 New Oxford Street, WC1A 1DD
  2. Main courses £14.50-£25.50. Set lunch...
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Oxo Tower Restaurant, Bar & Brasserie

  • Rated as: 3/5
  • Price band: 3/4
  • Critics choice

The Oxo Tower is a London landmark, and its restaurants – a dining room and brasserie, and a bar too – emanate a sense of occasion. A glass frontage makes the most of river views, but the brasserie terrace on a summer night was the ideal vantage point (or should have been, but the ferocious air-conditioning seemed to permeate outside). Cooking has an adventurous global slant. Take beef carpaccio, here teamed with teriyaki onions, shimeji mushrooms and wasabi mayonnaise. Other

  1. 8th floor, Oxo Tower Wharf, Barge House Street, SE1 9PH
  2. Main courses £22-£35. Set lunch £36.50 3 courses
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Le Pont de la Tour

  • Rated as: 4/5
  • Price band: 3/4
  • Offer

The long riverside dining room is elegant if a little soulless, but the setting is picture-perfect: dining on the outside terrace with a view of Tower Bridge feels like posing for a London tourist brochure. Cynics might expect the food to disappoint. It didn’t. The lunch and dinner menu du jour offers great bang for buck, with many dishes lifted from the carte. Vegetables cost extra. New potatoes were an unnecessary addition to a lovely crisp-skinned bream with courgettes,

  1. Butlers Wharf Building, 36D Shad Thames, SE1 2YE
  2. Main courses £22-£45. Set lunch £24.50 2...
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Skylon

  • Rated as: 3/5
  • Price band: 3/4

Skylon can’t really fail: its setting on the first floor of the Royal Festival Hall, with lofty ceilings and superb Thames views from soaring windows, is always spectacular, by day or night, and adds wow factor to any meal. The chic cocktail bar, amid sofas in the centre of the space, also offers a dose of metropolitan pzazz. Dining areas are split between the brasserie-style Grill on one side of the bar and the Restaurant, with a more fine-dining menu, on the other. A new head

  1. Royal Festival Hall, Belvedere Road, SE1 8XX
  2. Set lunch (Mon-Sat) £25 2 courses, £29 3...
More info
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Users say

5 comments
Tanielle Lobo
Tanielle Lobo

Paramount at Tottenham Court Road is amazing for the views and the food

Stacy
Stacy

Min Jiang in Royal Garden Hotel has a view over entire Hyde Park! Gorgeous!

stacey
stacey

The River Terrace at Riverside Studios in Hammersmith has an excellent view of the Bridge, beautiful at sunset and a mean fish and chips, still a bit of a hidden gem

Jay
Jay

What about Le Pont de la Tour??

Dan
Dan

What about Galvin at Windows or The Battery, two of Londons most amazing restaurants with a view. Do you actually carry out any research or do you just go with whatevers on your list, maybe its a close your eyes and stab a pencil on the globe technique! Time Out is sinking rapidly, I mean who wants to read about outdoor sex and the drug habits of Londoners. Stick to what you're meant to be good at reviewing London and the entertainment it has to offer.