The highest rooftop bar in Williamsburg is about to debut its stunning views to the public. Big guns Noho Hospitality Group open the doors on Westlight at the William Vale Hotel — aka, the spaceship building — on Friday, with food from Andrew Carmellini and cocktails from Anne Robinson. It’s the first time Noho will be opening a project in Brooklyn, and it’s a statement piece. Westlight sits 22 stories above the ground, with an indoor bar and lounge area surrounded by glass doors that keep the room’s focus on the view. Just outside the doors lies a terrace, dotted with lounge chairs, tables, viewfinders, and a clear railing, again to keep eyes on the cityscape.
"This is definitely a swanky, nighttime kind of thing," Carmellini says. "Honestly, if we were smarter, we would have just bought a really big margarita machine and served pita chips and some Sabra hummus and called it a day and made a lot more money. But we wanted to make it really nice."
Instead of a margarita machine, Robinson’s created a cocktail menu of classics, shandys, and riffs on classics. Most of them are pretty simple and intended to enjoy over a long period of time, with hopes that people will stick around to watch the sun set. "It’s playful, fun stuff," she says. "Nothing overly complicated." The food menu features bar food from chef Anthony Ricco, with options like crispy potato skins with caviar and yuzu hollandaise, tuna poke puffs, and a shrimp cocktail dumpling that Carmellini says he could binge eat.
They want people to have fun at Westlight. A DJ booth’s already set up in the main lounge room, and a fake lawn on a level above the main room may eventually be stocked with chairs and games for summer gatherings. Luckily, the selling point — the view — is unlikely to be hidden from newer towers. The developer bought the right air rights, Carmellini says, and another area of land in front of the building is supposed to become a park. "Every single night, you get to see a different weather pattern, the way the sun sets differently," Robinson says. "It’s never a boring view." Check out the menus and a Snapchat video from Westlight below, and stay tuned for more photos of the space and information on the group’s other William Vale project, Italian restaurant Leuca.