No need to travel far and wide for a spiked hot chocolate and hot tub. Dining après-ski-style is only a few avenues away.
Save for the fact that its patrons duck in from city streets rather than plowing through snow on sporting equipment, these four ski lodge–themed restaurants offer all the charm and warm respite as would a chalet up in some snow-capped mountain.
Tucked inside the Night Hotel Times Square, Aspen Social Club is a world removed from its city-center surrounds. Paneled with wood recycled from an old barn, lamps and a massive chandelier constructed from countless antlers, the restaurant and lounge feels straight out of the Rockies, the perfect place to tuck into rustic pub food like lobster rolls, potato and leek soup, or grilled trout. If that isn’t enough to warm you up, an easily navigable menu of reds, whites, drafts, and cocktails that list several types of margaritas are sure to do just so. (47th St. nr. Seventh Ave.)
For just a few months every winter, Celsius installs itself in Bryant Park as a glassy two-story, 7,000-square-foot wonderland of food and drink. Stop in after perusing the park’s Winter Village of artsy gift stalls or doing some laps around the Ice Rink to warm your hands on mugs of hot chocolate, also reimagined more decadently in the Heart Warmers section of the cocktail list as the Snowcap, infused with Absolut vanilla and Kahlua. Fare is classic comfort with playful twists giving nod to the season—Mini Parka-Dogs, Solstice Steak Frites—encompassing salads, sandwiches, and desserts. Beneath the gingerbread cheesecake lollipops, the menu rightfully asks, “How could you not?” (42nd St. at Sixth Ave.)
Rooftops may sound too chilly this time of year, but not when there are sheepskins padding the chairs and heat lamps radiating warmth. Such is the case at Conôsur, the restaurant, bar, and lounge atop Chelsea’s artsy Hotel Americano. Known as La Piscine during the summertime, the 10th-floor hot spot draws many a bathing beauty with its pool, which during the winter cranks up the temperature and becomes a hot tub. Mediterranean small plates are heavy with lentils and all things marinated, but the pots of cheese and meat fondue are not to be missed. Sip the Bahia whiskey cocktail with blood orange and allspice and feel very après-ski as you kick off your shoes and dip into the warm waters. (27th St. nr. Tenth Ave.)
A product of a power-pair—hotelier Ian Schrager and architect Philippe Starck—the Hudson Hotel is a feat of design throughout, never more so than in the winter months when its courtyard transforms into the luxurious lounge of a ski resort called Hudson Lodge. Guests are whisked up by the hotel’s green escalator into the space replete with moose heads on the wall, sheepskin pillows, candle-filled lanterns, and lots of wood. The food is on-board with the concept as well, with Mexican hot chocolate and salted caramel fondue, smoky chili, and an unforgettable s’mores grilled cheese—a gooey sandwich of Nutella, ricotta, gruyere, and cheddar. Cocktails come hot and cold, and bottle service is available as nights go on. (58th St. nr. Ninth Ave.)