The Best Christmas Cafés in New York City

Christmas Cafés in NYC: Papillon Bistro

One great thing about the festive season is New York City? It is the occasion to check out the best Christmas cafés the city has to offer. And there are quite a few! You know New York, things are always happening, new venues always coming and going. But back to the topic on hand. I have been to quite a few of those festive restaurants even when they did not don their holiday decorations. They are worth a look all year round. In any case, here is a short list of my favorite Christmas cafés in the Big Apple – which may get longer as I explore more!

1. Lillie’s Victorian Establishment

I love Lillie’s Victorian Establishment! I have been there multiple times and I have seen the decor change with the season: cherry blossoms for spring, Alice’s Wonderland for summer, spooky for Halloween, festive for Christmas. That venue is incredible! The afternoon tea is fine and reasonably priced compared to others, although the quality could be improved. Looking at the brunch food, I’d say it’s average but always good. However, beyond the amazing decorations, the main reason you should go to Lillie’s is the cocktails! They are sensational!

Address: 13 E 17th St, New York, NY 10003, United States

Hours: Mon-Wed 1pm – 1am, Thu-Fri 1pm – 2am, Sat-Sun 11:30am – 1am

Price: $$

How to get there: Take the 4, 5, 6, L, N, Q, R, W trains to Union Square – 14th St, and walk West to 17th St.

 
 
 
 
 
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2. Papillon Bistro & Bar

Papillon Bistro & Bar is one of my favorite Christmas cafés in New York City. I have been twice, once for brunch and once for cocktails – and had a blast each time. Although, I do have to say, I preferred the brunch experience. The cocktails are phenomenal though and the decorations will get you in the festive mood instantly! It is also pretty close to 5th Ave, St Patrick’s Cathedral and other Christmas displays in Midtown!

Address: 22 E 54th St, New York, NY 10022, United States

Hours: 11:30am – 1pm

Price: $$

How to get there: Take the E, M trains to 5 Av/53rd St and walk towards Madison Av, then to 54th St; or 6 train to 51st St, then walk north on Lexington Av until 54st St, then go West.

For a full review of Papillon Bistro, click here.

 
 
 
 
 
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3. Oscar Wilde

Oscar Wilde is a sister bar to Lillie’s and Papillon. Therefore, the decorations are always on point all year round, but even more so for Halloween and Christmas! The vibe and food offering is similar to the previously mentioned Christmas cafés in New York City, but once again, it is really the cocktails that are worth your while!

Address: 45 W 27th St, New York, NY 10001, United States

Hours: Mon-Wed 2pm – 1am, Thur-Fri 2pm – 2am, Sat 11am – 2am, Sun 11am – 1am

Price: $$

How to get there: Take the R, W trains to 28th St, and then walk to 27th St; take the 1 train to 28th St, and walk east on 27th St; take the F, M trains to 23rd St, and walk to 27th St.

 
 
 
 
 
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4. Magic Hour

If you’re into beautiful views, rooftop vibes and stunning pinkmas decorations, then Magic Hour is your Christmas café of choice. I have been to this rooftop on many occasions: in the winter, in the summer, before going to watch the Barbie movie, in the fall. While the decorations always change, one common theme remains: pink. Brunch has some fun food options such as a bit stack of pink pancakes topped with pink cotton candy. The venue has amazing cocktails and the infamous carousel. Walk-ins are rarely available and you can ask to be seated on the carousel upon arrival.

Address: 485 7th Ave 18th floor, New York, NY 10018, United States

Hours: Mon-Wed 3pm – 12am, Thur 3pm – 2am, Fri 3pm – 4am, Sat 11:30am – 4pm, Sun 11:30am – 12am

Price: $$

How to get there: Take the 1, 2, 3 trains to 34th St-Penn Station and walk north on 7th Ave; take the B, D, F, M, N, Q, R, W trains to 34th St-Herald Square and walk north on Broadway then west on 36th St until 7th Ave; take A, C, E trains to 34th St-Penn Station and walk north on 8th Ave, then east on 36th until 7th Ave.

 
 
 
 
 
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5. SERRA by Birreria

While I have not been to SERRA by Birreria at Christmas time, I have seen the beautiful decorations of that season. However, I can still vouch for the place as one of the greatest Christmas cafés in New York City, or just a place to get dinner, as I have been a few times already. If you love Italian food, you will love SERRA by Birreria, perched atop the Eataly Flatiron rooftop. The cocktails up there and wine selection are fantastic. Plus, the beautiful decor is always the perfect occasion of a nice picture!

Address: 200 5th Ave, New York, NY 10010, United States

Hours: 11:30am – 10:30pm

Price: $$$

How to get there: Take the R, W, 6 trains to 23rd St and walk to Eataly Flatiron.

 
 
 
 
 
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6. Loreley Beer Garden

I went to Loreley Beer Garden back in 2022 during the Christmas season. The venue was beautifully decorated with a lot of holiday lights, Christmas trees and ornaments. Thus it truly deserves its place on this list of the best Christmas cafés in New York City. Loreley has both an indoor and outdoor space which is like a little beer garden. It is heated so you can sit there even in the summer. The venue serves German-style food as well as a large selection of beer and cocktails including spiked hot chocolate. Here too, decorations change for each season or holiday.

Address: 7 Rivington St, New York, NY 10002, United States

Hours: Mon-Tue 5pm – 2am; Wed 5pm – 1am; Thu 5pm – 2am; Fri-Sat 12pm – 4am; Sun 12pm – 12am.

Price: $$

How to get there: Take the F train to 2nd Av and walk South on Christie St then make a right on Rivington St; Take the J, Z trains to Bowery or B, D trains to Grand St and walk north on Christie St then make a light on Rivington St. 

 
 
 
 
 
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7. La Grande Boucherie

There are several Boucherie restaurants in New York City and all of them have beautiful venues in a French bistro style with a vintage twist. However, the most spectacular of all branches is La Grande Boucherie. It sports beautiful holiday decorations and a giant Christmas tree during the festive season, and offer delicious food. It is on the pricier side but it is amazing! I recommend it all year round!

Address: 145 W 53rd St, New York, NY 10019, United States

Hours: Mon-Fri 8am – 12am; Sat-Sun 9am – 12am.

Price: $$$

How to get there: Take the E, B, D trains to 7th Ave; the F train to 57th St and walk south on 6th Ave to make a right on 53rd St; Take the 1 train to 50th St or the N, R, W trains to 49th St and walk north on 7th Ave to make a left on 53rd St;

 
 
 
 
 
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What do you think of all those Christmas cafés? Have you been to any? Or did you hear of any more? New York is a big city and always has new festive cafés popping up or new beautiful venues opening!

Thanks a lot for stopping by. I hope you liked this post.

See you soon,
Love,
Corinne.

 

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