You know how Manhattan is surrounded by water? Yeah, we forget sometimes, too. What better way to enjoy a summer meal or a few drinks with friends than relaxing on the waterfront? No need to travel to a tropical locale, with all the waterways this city has to offer, there’s no shortage of great views. From fun dive bars to upscale exquisite dining, here are the seven best waterfront spots New York has to offer.
photo credit: businessinsider.com
Want to be able to shout “I’m on a boat!” without leaving the city? Fear not, T-Pain fans, Grand Banks is here (for its second season). Eat oysters and sip delicious cocktails aboard a historic wooden schooner on the Hudson in Tribeca. The Sherman Swicker, which –fun fact! — also happens to be the largest wooden vessel in New York, boasts stunning views across the river, including ol’ Lady Liberty herself. Treat yourself to sustainably produced oysters from the raw bar ($3-4), followed by Crab Claws ($13) and Ceviche ($17), and wash it down with The Painkiller (White Rum, Coconut Cream, Pineapple, and Orange for $16) to get the full maritime experience.
Pier 25, Hudson River Park
When it comes to waterfront scenery, Brooklyn one-ups Manhattan with its beautiful views of the city. il Fornetto is no exception. For some upscale dining, order an antipasti like Burrata ($14) followed by Truccioli con Salmone ($22). Or head upstairs to the garden lounge, Cafe Fornetto, for delicious wood-fired pizza ($13-16) and fun cocktails like Bellini-tini ($10). There’s even Sunday brunch!
2902 Emmons Ave.
The Water Table
You know you’ve always wanted to go on a cruise in New York Harbor. Now’s your chance to drink beer while doing it. “A New England tavern on the water,” The Water Table is a refurbished historic Yard Patrol boat built in 1944 for the U.S. Navy. Choose between a 2.5 hour cruise with a three-course meal ($75), and a 2 hour cruise with a two-course meal ($50).
FDR Dr., at 23rd St.
photo credit: uzonyc.com
There’s water surrounding upper Manhattan, too, you know. Just below the Cloisters in Dyckman Marina, and covering more than 75,000 square feet of Hudson River waterfront with a restaurant, lounge, and multiple bars, sits La Marina. Order a frozen cocktail on their sandy beach, reserve a private table in the lounge, or dine at the view-tastic restaurant. Make sure to get their specialty Chicken Lollipops ($11). Live music Wednesday and Thursday encourages samba and salsa dancing. There’s even a raw-bar boat named ‘Gepetto.’ What more could you want?
348 Dyckman St.
photo credit: pier66maritime.com
Get boozy in an old floating lighthouse this summer! Enjoy unparalleled views of the city on Pier 66 with a bucket of beer and a burger. Try the BBQ chicken basket ($17) and a Crabbie Patty cocktail (Crabbie’s ginger beer, Citron vodka & Sprite for $12). Fair warning: the place gets pretty packed, but it’s essentially a dive bar aboard a 1929 sunken lightship (it spent three years at the bottom of the Chesapeake), so… trust us, it’s worth it.
Pier 66 at W. 26th St.
Ruby’s Bar & Grill
photo credit: themanhattanfoodproject.com
After you’re done with the stomach-drops of Coney Island’s amusement park and the rolling surf of the Atlantic, head on over to Ruby’s Bar & Grill. Dating back to the 1930s, Ruby’s serves old-fashioned burgers and beer right on the boardwalk. Check out old-time photos and memorabilia from the 1920s, and sneak a peek into Coney Island’s history. Plus, it’s the only place where you can actually walk under the original boardwalk. Cue The Drifters.
1213 Riegelmann Boardwalk
Boat Basin Cafe
photo credit: timeout.com
For waterside fare that won’t break the bank, make your way to the Boat Basin Cafe on the Upper West Side. Makeshift tables, checkerboard tablecloths, and grills line the edge of the Hudson. You can order sandwiches, burgers, and beer, all of which are reasonably priced. Feel the breeze and check out that gorgeous view –and remember that the west side of Manhattan has the best view for sunsets!
W 79th St. and Hudson River/Riverside Park
So what are your favorite summery city spots?
Lauren is a New York based actor/singer/writer. She is a graduate of the American Repertory Theater/Moscow Art Theater School Institute for Advanced Theater Training at Harvard University as well as the College of the Holy Cross. She’s a fan of beer, pasta, and academic establishments with unnecessarily long titles. Find her on stage, or online– she’s there often.