Top 10 Spots In Europe For Alfresco Dining

Top Picks

Whilst Europe and some of its magnificent hotels are starting to reopen again this summer after the coronavirus outbreak, some of you may still feel a little weary when it comes to dining with others inside. There is supposed to be less risk of transmission of the virus outside, so alfresco dining really does sound entirely attractive at the present moment.

From fine dining restaurants overlooking Lugano Paradiso to an enchanting piazza surrounded by tumbling greenery in the heart of Rome, discover some of our favourite hotel restaurants in Europe that make the most of their open-air space. Not only is this currently a safer dining option, but with the warmer weather, it’s far too inviting to pass up anyway!

Hotel de Russie - Rome, Italy

If you’re looking for a taste of fine Italian cuisine, look no further than Le Jardin de Russie. It’s located at the foot of the famous Pincio promenade and the enchanting Piazza del Popolo. Graced by astonishing dishes created by celebrity Chef Fulvio Pierangelini and his team, Hotel de Russie and its marvellous Mediterranean-tiered secret garden is the perfect secret-garden-esque space for a spot of al fresco dining. Imagine being surrounded by rose bushes, orange trees, twinkling lights, lush greenery and the sounds of mini waterfalls whilst you indulge in the true feeling of Roman living… relax, you really are in heaven.

Pierangelini’s gourmet à la carte menu showcases a mouthwatering array of incredible local dishes combined with a true Roman influence; from their tantalising ‘cacio e pepe’ ravioli, to their ‘Catalan-style’ grilled lobster, it’s spectacular enough that you won’t want to ever leave! We can already smell those fresh citrus fragrances.

Please note: Social distancing regulations will be in place within all public/communal areas around the hotel and restaurant.

"The simpler the food, the more we have to pay attention because margins of error increase. Simplicity in the kitchen is an arrival point not a starting one. You need courage for simple cooking." Celebrity Chef Fulvio Pierangelini

Palazzo Radomiri - Montenegro

When it comes to open air dining, visitors at the charming Palazzo Radomiri are spoilt for choice. Set right in the heart of Montenegro’s Boka Bay, this restored 18th-century mansion embodies its Venetian elegance and welcomes you with open arms to revel in its picturesque beauty. Whether it's a romantic dinner for two on the jetty overlooking the bay, a cosy lunch surrounded by lush vegetation in the front garden, or drinks within the charming setting of the Morrocan-style terrace, Radomiri grants whatever your heart desires.

Invigorate your senses with the Mediterranean-inspired dishes at Restaurant Palazzo. From the Montenegro platter; including local prosciutto and cheese from Njegusi, fresh tomatoes and olives, to ‘under sač’ octopus complemented with slow cooked vegetables, there’s no better place to indulge in the true local cuisine of Montenegro than here.

Explore the extensive wine list with tasty bottles from Croatia, Serbia, Italy, and France as well as local wines from Montenegro, tantalise your tastebuds with seasonal dishes and allow the awe-inspiring views of Boka Kotorska Bay from the waterfront captivate you with its scenic beauty.

Please note: Social distancing between tables and chairs will be in place throughout the hotel.

Pegasus Suites & Spa - Santorini, Greece

Santorini is calling and I must go...

A destination is best uncovered through its food, and there’s no better place to taste the delicious local cuisine of Santorini than at the Pegasus Suites & Spa restaurant, ‘Under the Stars’. Offering incredible views over the village of Imerovigli, also known as the “balcony of the Aegean”, the romantic setting of the surrounding blue waters in this open-air environment will leave you feeling truly inspired.

Fish, tomatoes, extra virgin olive oil and even ouzo — the tasty local produce at Pegasus provides its guests with the perfect blend of noble, balanced cuisine and high nutritional value. Sample a glass of wine selected from some of the best winemakers in the world, taste the delicious flavours of Greece through their creative dishes and take in that fresh Aegean air as you watch the sunset gleam behind the caldera.

Villa Lena - Tuscany, Italy

Nestled within the enchanting Tuscan hills, the elegant and charming Villa Lena awaits your arrival. Just 45-minutes away from Pisa and approximately an hour’s drive from Florence, this remote, slow-living atmosphere that graces this 500-acre estate allows visitors to truly immerse themselves.

This summer, Villa Lena is introducing a new and very exciting dining experience, Wild Dining. From the farm-to-table menus created with seasonal produce in their San Michele Restaurant, to the Tuscan wines from local, family-run wineries, Villa Lena is offering guests an exquisite outdoor dining experience. Imagine being surrounded by beautiful vineyards and olive groves whilst enjoying the tasty ingredients picked directly from their organic ortos? This is heaven. The menu consists of an appetiser of rosemary focaccia with a wild-style cheese and fruit platter, accompanied with a delicious Villa Lena Spritz; tapas-style chianina beef or prawn carpaccio served with crispy potato skins on a pine bark and baked goats cheese with lavender wrapped in fig leaves for starters; a beef and horseradish or tomato and steamed lobster risotto for mains; and last but not least, an indulgent tart with seasonal fruit coulis for dessert — not to mention, this is all accompanied with the classic Villa Lena sparkling rosé and Villa Lena red wine! For more information, please click here.

A creative menu taking a new and exciting approach to Italian culinary heritage and panoramic, picture-perfect sunsets? Where do we sign up?!

Cowley Manor - Cotswolds, United Kingdom

Looking for both a staycation in the UK and a place to indulge yourself in a quintessentially English afternoon? Look no further than the enchanting 18th-century Grade II listed villa of Cowley Manor. Nestled within an enchanting landscape in Gloucestershire, there’s no better place to indulge in some delicious alfresco dining than at The Terrace. With direct access to the hotel’s gardens, surrounding woodland and lakes, enjoy a relaxing dinner whilst you tantalise your tastebuds with their exclusive Garden Supper menu. From locally-sourced cheese platters and artisan-cured meats, to stonebaked sourdough pizzas and Cotswold ale and beef pie, this is the perfect menu for all you sundowners.

If you’re looking for something a little more socially distanced, Cowley Manor invites its guests to try their ‘Cowley Picnic’ experience. Available every lunchtime between 12pm to 3pm, build your own hamper with some tasty treats including hummus with rye bread croutons, pork, apple and sage scotch eggs, or even some traditional scones with jam and clotted cream, then head off into the glorious surrounding gardens. Be sure to discover one of their bell tents for a true alfresco dining experience — not to mention, they’re hosting their first socially distanced ‘Outdoor Cinema’ event this summer!

Please note: Following the strict COVID-19 safety guidelines, all your food and drinks will need to be ordered from their Curious App. Social distancing between tables and chairs (as well as the rest of the hotel) has also been put in place, to ensure both guests and staff remain safe.

The Serras - Barcelona, Spain

As Spain has begun to reopen its borders to visitors this summer, the trendy city of Barcelona awaits with its charming gothic quarter where you’ll be able to witness the majestic fusion of history and art. At The Serras, discover al fresco dining and cocktails galore at its exclusive roof terrace, El Sueño, for a quintessentially cool Spanish afternoon or evening.

With panoramic views overlooking the Mediterranean Sea and Port Vell Marina, tantalise your tastebuds with an array of delicious Catalan culinary delights prepared by the incredible, Michelin-starred Chef Marc Gascons. Their ‘Informal’ menu is the perfect way to indulge in the true meaning of Catalan food. From salted anchovies from L’Escala with extra virgin olive oil and homemade Jabugo ham croquettes, to roasted monkfish and traditional Catalan rice with cuttlefish, asparagus, squid and aioli sauce — our mouths are already watering!

Relax on the roof with a cocktail in hand, listen to the chilled sounds from a carefully curated DJ set, dreamily watch the luxurious yachts dock at the harbour, and soak up the warm sunset colours from the pool. Here at The Serras’ El Sueño, you’ll experience the true meaning and exhilaration of open air dining.

Please note: Social distancing, including distanced tables and chairs will be in place throughout the restaurants.

THE VIEW Lugano - Lugano Paradiso, Switzerland

If you’re looking for the finest alfresco dining experience, the restaurants at the enchanting VIEW Lugano in Switzerland will certainly cater. Nestled within the hills overlooking Lake Lugano, where elegance and nature collide, Chef Mauro Grandi’s tantalising array of dishes are just one of the many reasons to visit this charming place.

Using the freshest ingredients, the Mediterranean dishes here at The Restaurant feature an exclusive twist of oriental fusions that compliment the range of seafood and meat delicacies. Choose a table on the terrace, enjoy a glass or two of some of their delicious, carefully selected French, Italian and Swiss wines, and be prepared to experience sheer luxury and serenity here at THE VIEW Lugano.

Looking for something a little more highly individual? Their TreCinqueZero Terrace is ideal for those looking for new culinary experiences. Chef Mauro Grandi has created a more traditional yet creative menu with a newly-introduced Pommery Club menu available for guests. From the exclusive Antonius caviar dishes to the TreCinqueZero sautéed seafood special with seabass, scallops, lobster, scampi and turbot, there’s no better way to indulge in the true exclusivity of THE VIEW Lugano than through its distinctive dishes.

Venissa Wine Resort - Venice, Italy

If true Venetian alfresco dining is what you’re searching for, Venetian alfresco dining is what you will get, especially at Venissa.

Escape to the lesser-known island of Mazzorbo and discover the Michelin-starred wine retreat of Venissa. This charming old manor house is surrounded by two hectares of vineyards, lucious gardens and an energetic dose of vibrancy — there’s no better place to experience the true ‘native’ feeling of Venice than here.

Nominated as best female chef in 2019, the exquisite and consistently creative dishes created by Chiara Pavan are complemented by the tranquil and informal atmosphere of the enchanting in-house Osteria Contemporanea. Here you will find a host of traditional culinary delights paired with the unique wines of Venissa, whilst surrounded by the serene atmosphere of Venice’s winding lagoons — not to mention, their vineyard is the only one in the world to produce the indigenous dorona di Venezia grape variety which has now been recovered and thrives in the local area!

From it’s exquisite wines filled with over 22 aromatic herbs to its local fish straight from the lagoon, why not experience a more exclusive open-air dining experience whilst you enjoy some of the tasty produce from their gardens deep in their vineyards? Imagine tantalising your tastebuds with tasty local produce deep within the vineyards whilst you watch the sunset behind the lagoon? Yes, that is possible at the Venissa Wine Resort.

Please note: Social distancing including distanced tables and chairs have been put in place throughout the restaurants.

The Van Cleef - Bruges, Belgium

Considered to be one of the most beautiful terraces in Bruges, discover the luxury boutique The Van Cleef Hotel. This cosy, yet unconditionally trendy hotel is perfectly nestled on the canal in the Sint-Anna district, just five minutes walk from all the popular city sites. Whilst there’s no in-house restaurant in the hotel, their exclusive Green Room and stylish St Petersburg Bar allows you to experience the remarkable hidden atmosphere of Bruges whilst you savour your morning breakfast, indulge in some afternoon tea and enjoy a cocktail or two in the evening on their stunning canalside terrace (weather permitting, of course!).

Think freshly squeezed juices, freshly baked Belgian waffles, Danish rolls and pastries, a Chef special of Eggs Benedict with smoked salmon and more at breakfast; finger sandwiches, pastries and homemade scones paired with a selection of teas at afternoon tea; and an exclusive menu filled with tasty cocktails, champagnes and wines from the bar, with a selection of appetisers prepared by the in-house Chef — all this whilst you watch the serene canal boats sail down the glittering waterway.

Please note: The terrace is for guests only. Social distancing including distanced tables and chairs have been put in place throughout the restaurants.

Art Hotel Riposo - Ascona, Switzerland

Nestled on Switzerland’s enchanting Lake Maggiore, discover the dream chocolate box escape at the elegant, Art Hotel Riposo. Located within the pretty town of Ascona, there’s no better way to indulge in some hearty Swiss food whilst looking over the beautiful mountain and lake backdrop than here.

Riposo’s elegant, fine dining restaurant, Cortile dei Beati, is the perfect place to enjoy a romantic dinner. Whether you decide to lounge at their charming courtyard surrounded by lush greenery, or on their terrace which overlooks the lake, here at Art Hotel Riposo you are spoilt for choice for relaxing, open air dining. Prepare your taste buds to be taken on a tantalising journey. From local vineyard wines paired with some heavenly Swiss cheese, to a tasty selection of Italian and Mediterranean cuisines, the candlelight and sunset setting behind the lake makes for the perfect end to an evening — not to mention, they host special Jazz & Dine dinner events a couple of times a week for their guests to enjoy!

recommended HIP Hotels

Explore Hotel de Russie Rome
Explore Cowley Manor Experimental Gloucestershire
Explore Pegasus Suites & Spa Santorini
Explore Art Hotel Riposo Ascona
Explore The Van Cleef Bruges
Explore THE VIEW Lugano Lugano Paradiso
Explore Palazzo Radomiri Dobrota
Explore The Serras Barcelona
Explore Venissa Wine Resort Venice
Explore Villa Lena Tuscany