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Few things are as romantic as a meal under the stars, surrounded by a stunning view. Here are a few places in town that offer fantastic views of the cityscape to go with your al fresco meals. Here, you will have a tough time concentrating on the food.
Blue and Beyond, the rooftop resto bar of the Lindsay Hotel in the bustling New Market Area, is a pretty al fresco dining destination with an elaborate multicuisine menu. The best part about this place is the stunning, panoramic views of the Kolkata skyline. You could even spot the Vidyasagar Setu in the distance. Go on a Sunday evening to enjoy some live music under the stars.
What’s Up, another resto-lounge on Southern Avenue, has a small al fresco seating area that packs in a foot jacuzzi, a faux-grass floor, swing seats and funky elevated cycle seats overlooking the sprawling, verdant stretch surrounding the famous lakes. The music could be a little too loud for conversation, but it is a fantastic place to sit back and relax over a few cocktails and sheesha.
Or head to OTT – Over The Top, the rooftop, al fresco lounge bar at The Myx (named after the nightclub in the same building) off Park Street. This place does not offer much in terms of view (except you can watch The 42, the city’s newest residential skyscraper in the making), but it is a pretty setting, and strategically placed fans make you comfortable even if the weather in not apt for an outdoor meal. Settle down with a long island iced tea and a mezze platter (they make a good one).
Urban Desi, a swanky restaurant on the ninth floor of the Fort Knox building on Camac Street, has an open-air section called Victoria, aptly christened since it offers dazzling views of the Victoria Memorial and the lush gardens around it. This is a perfect place for a romantic candlelight dinner.
Smoke Shack, the huge al fresco bar and restaurant at the Park Plaza Hotel in Gariahat, is easily another good-looking drink-and-dine destination, designed to replicate a Goan shack. There is an infinity pool surrounded by comfy loungers and a neon-lit bar along with fantastic views of the surrounding skyline. Come weekends, as things get quite groovy around here.
Splash, the sprawling poolside sky lounge at Swissotel Kolkata, is easily the best-looking rooftop destination in the city. With chic cabanas, pretty lily pools, wooden walkways and palm trees, the setting is dreamy. The cherry on the cake is the infinity pool looking out on the suburban Rajarhat landscape. However, it is open only during winters, when the weather is perfect for a live barbecue session outdoors. And that is what you can expect here – along with alcohol, of course.
Finally, here is one with a view of the Hooghly. The Bridge, the multicuisine restaurant at The Floatel Hotel (the city’s only floating hotel that replicates a ship) has an open-air section right on the river, with stunning views of the Vidyasagar Setu and Howrah Bridge on either side and, of course, the rippling waters of the Ganges. On winter evenings, this is one of the best spots in the city.
An independent journalist based out of Calcutta and a dedicated food enthusiast, she writes mostly about food and travel, and has worked and written for publications India Today, The Telegraph, Live Mint as also Lonely Planet India’s website. She also loves to experiment in her kitchen and runs a food blog – allthatsdelicious.com. But mostly she eats, frets about how much she eats and then eats some more.