Our favorite museum bars in Europe
Europeans are spoiled for choice when it comes to galleries and museums, many of which also host some standout bars, cafés and restaurants.
Drinks, nibbles and art, all set inside a gorgeous setting? The perfect way to while away a chilly autumn day, if you ask us. Here are three of our favorites.
Monsieur Bleu & Bambini at the Palais de Tokyo, Paris
First up is a two-for-one at the imposing and ideally located Palais de Tokyo, one of Paris’s most renowned modern and contemporary art institutions, home to Monsieur Bleu and Bambini.
Chic, bright and airy, its plush velvet and green marble interior overlooking the quais de Seine right across from the Eiffel Tower, Monsieur Bleu is the ideal spot to have lunch or dinner in an elegant yet modern setting, catch up with friends over cocktails or bust some dance moves beneath the huge chandeliers hanging from the impressively high Art Deco ceilings. When the weather permits it, its stunning terrace – undoubtedly one of the most beautiful in Paris – offers an unrivaled, magical view of the Eiffel Tower.
For something more laid-back, head over to Bambini, one of Paris Society’s latest creations. Warm, vibrant and elegant, yet uncomplicated and fully joyful, this timeless and exquisitely decorated neo-cantina is a temple for festive evenings with friends, high-spirited family brunches and relaxed business lunches. Inside, sunny and generous Italy welcomes you with open arms and a striking design signature, with giant hanging chandeliers and high and low tables fit for both intimate and communal dining experiences — their shapes and curves worked to give an enveloping feel. Outside, the square in front of the Palais de Tokyo becomes the perfect stage for a sunny Italian aperitivo, complete with refreshing cocktails and delicious ciccheti.
LùBar at the Galleria d’Arte Moderna, Milan
In the courtyard of the Villa Reale, the palace that houses the Galleria d’Arte Moderna, sits LùBar, an elegant and oh-so-Instagrammable venue reminiscent of a Sicilian winter garden. Decorated in soft, natural tones of white, beige and green, with wrought iron tables set amidst an abundance of lush greenery, this gorgeous greenhouse is ensconced in large 18th-century windows, with massive marble columns accentuating the space and a beautiful marble work of art at its center. The Sicilian-inspired cuisine is expressed in all its freshness in light portions that are perfect to share, accompanied by a selection of excellent Sicilian wines and a rich offering of signature cocktails prepared with seasonal ingredients. Expect a bit of wait if you’re going on a weekend.
The Last Tuesday Society at the Viktor Wynd Museum of Curiosities, London
This London drinking den styles itself as “the World’s Most Curious Absinthe Parlour & Cocktail Bar”, and with good reason. Hidden inside the Viktor Wynd Museum of Curiosities, The Last Tuesday Society is a bar like no other, brimming with an eclectic mix of strange objects, bizarre artefacts and other unclassifiable treasures. “A drinker’s cabinet of wonder filled with unusual spirits, from the old world and new, together in one curious exhibition of extraordinary elixirs.” As for the clientele, it is as interesting as you would expect from a place like this. Tying everything together are the cocktails, of course, which feature rare and prohibited alcohols from around the world, opening new doors of perception…