The following is a guest post written and photographed exclusively for Spain Savvy by travel journalist Fiona Flores Watson
As the heat hits Seville, come April or May, so the savvy Seville resident and visitor heads up to the city’s hotel rooftop terrace bars.
Why? Two reasons: fabulous views of the Giralda and cathedral (Seville is such a small city that you can see them from most of these bars); the river; Metropol Parasol; tiled church domes. Secondly, heavenly night breezes – up on the roof, you get a welcome respite from the soaring street-level temperatures.
Please be aware that only children under 16 years who are guests at the hotel are allowed in most hotel rooftop terrace bars (and even then, often not at night). The opening times listed are for the warmer months (May to October); other hours may vary. Also, most get very busy at weekends during this period, so entry to non-hotel guests may be limited.
Puravida Terrace, Fontecruz Seises
This roof terrace bar close to the cathedral has a number of deal-closing advantages. Giralda view, tick. Entertainment (live flamenco on Sunday nights), tick. Separate zones offering different vibes (cosy shaded booths with packing-crate seats; tables with chairs to watch the show; more private corner with sofas), tick. Food to order (jamon iberico, cheese, salad and tacos), tick. Public access to the pool (limited spaces, so get there early), tick. Our cocktail of choice: tamarind mojito.
- Glass of wine €4, G&T €8-1
- Open 3-10pm Sunday to Thursday, 3pm-1am Friday and Saturday
- Calle Segovia 6, 954 229 495
Premier Bar Zenit
Head over the river to Triana, former sailors’ and gypsies’ quarter, for the newest roof terrace bar on the Seville scene. Recently refurbished with wooden floors and chic-yet-comfortable furniture, the Zenit Hotel’s rooftop bar is run by Premier, which also has gin, sherry and cocktail bars around the city. This terrace covers a huge area, looking onto the next-door 17th century San Jacinto church with its mighty terracotta façade – grab a hip mid-century-style chair order a Marinero cocktail – appropriately, “Sailor” (rum – naturally, triple sec, coconut and lemon).
- Glass of wine €2.50, G&T €7-10
- Open 11am-12 midnight Sunday to Thursday, 11am-2am Friday and Saturday
- Pages del Corro 90, 954 347 434
Rooftop, The Corner House
For a hipper, more boho scene, head to this bar in the Alameda at the trendy ethnic-chic Corner House hotel. With a pérgola covered in trailing plants, plus brilliant pink bougainvillea, its delightfully relaxed secret garden feel, high above the hip Alameda with its buzzing scene, is perfect for chilling out with friends – try a craft beer.
- Glass of wine €4, G&T €7-9
- Open Thursday and Friday 4pm-1/2am, Saturday and Sunday 2pm-1/2am (At other times you can order a drink at the downstairs restaurant and take it up to the roof terrace)
- Alameda de Hercules 31, 954 913 262
La Terraza, Doña Maria
If you want the best views of the 900-year-old Moorish Giralda (formerly a minaret, now a church tower), surrounded by pretty murals of orange trees, head to this friendly bar. Flex your tastebuds with exotic cocktails – Al Rico Petit Sui has cachaça, coconut, lime and strawberry.
- Glass of wine €4, G&T €9.50-12
- Open 12 midday to 1.30am
- Calle Don Remondo 19, 954 224 990
La Terraza, Inglaterra
This roof terrace bar, in a majestic spot looking onto Plaza Nueva, has an open, spacious feel. A small shaded area with sofas is perfect for sunny daytime, while the larger unshaded part (great to catch night breezes) offers high square tables (bonus: handy power points for phone-charging) with black and white moulded plastic furniture. You can order the award-winning Manilva cocktail (whisky, martini rosso, orange liqueur and lime), as well as snacks from the excellent Seis restaurant downstairs (croquettes and burgers).
- Glass of wine €5, G&T €9-15
- Open 3pm-1am
- Plaza Nueva 7, 954 224 970
La Terraza-Bar EME
By far the most expensive of the city’s rooftop bars, this place has unparalleled views of the cathedral’s flying buttresses opposite. Yes, the Moroccan hanging lamps are pretty, and the atmosphere is lively with DJs every day, but the two bar spaces are quite small and the décor a little tired – they’re currently being revamped, so let’s hope the high prices will now be justified. Treat yourself to a Royal Mojito (rum, champagne, mint and lime).
- Glass of wine €7, €G&T €14-16.50
- Open 1pm to 1am Sunday to Thursday, 12 midday to 3am Friday and Saturday
- Calle Alemanes 27, 954 560 000
Terraza Fulton, Palacio Alcazar
If you want a quiet, intimate drink, with no big groups, this small terrace next to the Alcazar is your best option. Sit next to the candy-pink oleander and take in the panorama of the palace fortress’ walls and the Cathedral. You can order dishes such as pasta, salad or tuna stew, paired with a glass of dry Tio Pepe sherry.
- Glass of wine €4, G&T €8.50-11
- Open 8am-11.30pm
- Plaza Alianza, 807 317 090
Terraza Atalaya, Eurostars Torre Seville
In Seville (and Andalucia)’s tallest building at 180 metres -that’s 590 feet – you get outstanding bird’s-eye views from its panoramic 360-degree terrace. From the Aljarafe – towns on higher ground to the west of the city – to the Expo site and La Cartuja monastery, Plaza de Armas, the cathedral, the river and Triana, you can see the entire city spread out before you. Absorb the mesmerising vistas with a Japanese martini. Note that although the bar is large, they limit numbers at busier times, ie weekends.
- Glass of wine €6-8, G&T €12-16
- Open 5-11pm Sunday to Thursday, 5pm-1am Saturday and Sunday
- Calle Gonzalo Jimenez de Quesada 2, 913 342 196
Some hotel roof terrace bars are exclusively for guests, so if you choose to stay at one of these, you can expect great views and a calmer vibe.
Roof, Casa Romana
Formerly one of the city’s most popular roof terrace bars, this has a sheltered area with sofas under an awning – Metropol Parasol looks amazing at night, illuminated in colour. Previously there were two higher-level areas, which were more open to cooling breezes, but these are currently closed for refurbishments.
A new hotel which opened last month (April 2019), this is next to the river Guadalquivir, so you get a stunning night-time time view of the bridges lit up.
Casa de Indias
Bang next to Metropol Parasol, the largest wooden structure in the world, this new terrace (due to open in May) will have a small plunge pool and a large open area.