CABANA AT THE MARITIME HOTEL
88 Ninth St.
In a city whose bars are mostly dark and underground, a bright, open rooftop represents the ultimate escapeóideally, to a warmer, less-crowded, more laid-back place. Of all the red-hot cocktail aeries that have opened in the past few years (Plunge at Hotel Gansevoort, A60 at 60 Thompson), Cabana at the Maritime fulfills the fantasy best. In the summer, it feels like a trendy L.A. nightclub: heat lamps, leafy plants, strappy sandals, and halter tops. After a few cocktails, the tan and trim lounging on deep blue cushions and melding into the tropical wallpaper could actually be actors, and quite often, they are. Last summer, Sean Penn, Sam Rockwell, and the sisters Hilton were regulars.