See inside ABOVE Newcastle’s newest rooftop bar as it opens its doors

Take a tour of Newcastle’s newest rooftop bar, Above at the Vermont Hotel.

By Will Foxx

Newcastle’s newest bar has finally opened its rooftop doors, after two long years of meticulous planning and unexpected delays.

From Friday August 20, members of the public will be able to ascend the twelve floors to the top of Newcastle’s Vermont Hotel via a private elevator accessed on Lower Dean Street (beside Gainford Group’s other cocktail bar, Livello).

The lift carries customers up to the newly-built, indoor lounge filled with luxurious comfy sofas, panoramic views and a carefully crafted menu of cocktails and nibbles.

Gainford Group Director, Imran Khaliq, told us that he was relieved to see launch day finally arrive.

Originally, the bar was scheduled to open back in 2020, but with issues caused by the pandemic, work was put on hold as builders working on the project were forced to isolate, and materials needed were in short supply. When restrictions eased, work was able to resume and the new launch date was secured.

So what is Above all about?

Imran describes the venue as “an all-rounder, it’s one of our ‘early’ venues where you can come during the day, enjoy some afternoon-tea and cocktails”.

As the hotel group has a number of other late-night venues in the city, Above has been designed as somewhere to ‘start the night’ Imran says.

Open-air rooftop terraces on both sides take in spectacular views of the river Tyne and its bridges from one side and Newcastle’s Castle and city skyline including the St Nicholas Cathedral, St James’ Park and Newcastle’s tallest building Hadrian’s Tower.

What they say about it:

“It’s a bit surreal” says Gainford Group Director, Imran Khaliq.

“I’ve been dreaming about this day for a long, long time since we bought the hotel. It’s a bit of a relief at the same time because we have been through a very turbulent time.”

What’s on the menu at ABOVE rooftop bar in Newcastle

A crafted menu offers classic and original cocktails, such as their signature blue ‘Above The Clouds’ cocktail as well as an extensive wine and champagne menu.

The food dishes are mostly designed as share platters, offering sushi, tacos and miniature burgers.