With interior design by Park Hyatt Los Angeles veterans, Studio Munge, Westlight, atop William Vale Hotel, crowns Williamsburg’s new skyline
by Evan Monroe • photos by Noah Fecks
Even occasional readers of this magazine will note that we have something of an obsession with high-altitude venues, and have been lobbying any and all developers within earshot to make rarefied oxygen and food and beverage service simultaneous conditions in as many places as possible. Even as we shake our fists at downtown’s profusion of tall buildings, yet just one rooftop venue (Kimoto Rooftop Bar & Lounge at 216 Duffield Street), we are cheered by Williamsburg and Greenpoint taking up the mantle, most recently in the form of Westlight, a 22nd-floor rooftop bar and restaurant atop the Augustopened William Vale Hotel. Courtesy of Chef Andrew Carmellini and NoHo Hospitality Group, and with head bartender Anne Robinson (of Evening Bar, PDT, and Booker + Dax) taking the cocktail helm, the results are not just sweeping four-compass-point views, but a dynamic menu of handcrafted cocktails, rare spirits, and beer and wine, served in a simply breathtaking space. Signature mixes include the refreshing Sling Sling, The Hospitality (a tropical take on a classic old fashioned), and The Crusher, a gin-based floral cocktail.
Carmellini and Executive Chef Anthony Ricco looked to global street food to inspire the cocktail bar’s playful fare, which includes dishes like Lobster Summer Rolls, Charred Octopus Skewers, Chicken-Fried Chicken Wings, and Duck Carnitas Tacos.
Floor-to-ceiling windows encircle the central bar and lounge. Designed by Studio Munge (Park Hyatt Los Angeles, Prohibition at the Rosewood Hotel), the interior features black-and-white tiled floors juxtaposed by yellow, royal blue, and grey-colored seating, brass accents, and a honed stone bar topped with metal mesh shelving. Behind the bar area, a wall of white oak wood panels with light and dark staining mimics the horizontal and vertical lines of the hotel’s exterior architecture. At the center of the room there are velveteen couches in mustard yellow, surround high-top tables, and additional lounge seats for up to 80. Seating for a further 100 occupies an impressive wraparound balcony, with views of the Manhattan, Brooklyn, and Queens skylines. Above Westlight, a 23rd-floor rooftop called Upstairs at Westlight offers the highest views of any hotel in Williamsburg, along with a grassy lawn area and additional lounge seating.
William Vale Hotel, 111 N 12th Street / 718.307.7100 / westlightnyc.com