King Cole Bar at the St. Regis

At Untapped New York, we’re dedicated to bringing you the best of New York’s cultural life and nightlife. Previously, we shared our picks for the best hidden bars in the City. Now we’re bringing your our list of the best bars in NYC where artists have left their mark, from Upper East Side institutions like Bemelmans Bar and the King Cole Bar in the St. Regis to the trendy Ace Hotel, with a collage by street artist Michael Anderson. Though a couple of cocktails at some of these bars might be a bit of a splurge, we think it’s worth it for the chance to soak up the atmosphere in these one-of-a-kind places. After all, you won’t find these works of art anywhere else in the world.

1. Bemelmans Bar

Bemelmans Bar at the Carlyle Hotel

In exchange for one and a half years of room and board for himself and his family, Ludwig Bemelmans painted the walls at the Carlyle Hotel Bar in 1947. As a result, the bar was renamed Bemelmans Bar. The murals depict Central Park throughout the seasons with a cameo by the character from Bemelmans’ popular children’s books, Madeline.

Bemelman’s Bar is located at  35 East 76th Street in the Carlyle, a Rosewood Hotel.. Every evening, a pianist plays live music, enhancing the bar’s old New York vibe. Bemelmans also serves one of the best Martinis in the city. Whether you are going to Bemelman’s Bar to see jazz or to have a cocktail, you will be rewarded with Ludwig Bemelman’s only public work of art.