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Restaurant on LIC-Sunnyside border offers fusion of Mexican and Japanese food with a great view of the city

Lighthouse Rooftop Bar (Photo provided by Lighthouse)

Jan. 30, 2024 By Jessica Militello

Nestled on the border of Sunnyside and Long Island City, Lighthouse Rooftop has taken the area by storm since it opened late last year. Offering a stunning view of the Manhattan skyline and a swanky, upscale atmosphere, it’s become a hot spot.

From bottomless brunch extravaganzas to captivating live performances, Lighthouse Rooftop, located at 45-15 37th St., has quickly become a must-visit spot for both intimate date nights and lively gatherings with friends.

Owner Jhony Alam, a Queens native and seasoned restaurateur with five successful establishments under his belt, has transformed this expansive space into a chic oasis. His vision was to create a destination where locals could revel in the allure of New York City without venturing far from home.

“A lot of people describe the place as like Miami, but in New York,” Alam said. “My idea for this place is that you don’t have to go to the city anymore. You can be in Queens and have the view of the city, there’s parking, and we’re constantly figuring out what customers want and how to make them happy.”

Lighthouse Rooftop boasts high ceilings adorned with elegant chandeliers, sleek and inviting furnishings, and a mezzanine for larger celebrations. During warmer months, the courtyard, which is wrapped around the venue, offers al fresco dining.

Alam plans to use the space to host weddings in the future.

(Photo provided by Lighthouse)

Adding to the allure, Lighthouse has become a hub for live performances, including samba, belly dancing and even acrobatics from the ceiling. Alam envisions a summer filled with an array of performances, creating a lively and diverse atmosphere for patrons.

(Photo provided by Lighthouse)

The culinary experience at Lighthouse is unique, featuring a fusion of Mexican and Japanese cuisines. Its dishes blend Mexican flavors with Japanese ingredients, resulting in a menu that showcases innovation and creativity.

Standout dishes include its refreshing tiradito with red snapper filet, chile sesame oil, ponzu, ginger, and serrano chiles, and the unique lump crab gyoza shell taco served cold with spicy sesame aioli, Meyers lemon, and fresh cilantro. For entrees, indulge in delights like the lobster linguini and the pan-seared Chilean sea bass in miso broth with toasted garlic, bok choy, cilantro, and yuzu foam.

(Photo provided by Lighthouse)

The drink menu at Lighthouse is equally inventive, infusing classic cocktails with Japanese and Mexican influences.

“There’s a lot of Japanese influences within it and Mexican [influences] kind of like melded together,” Alam said. “We take your classic cocktail and put a little twist on it.”

Alam said he takes pride in contributing to the development of the area. He noted that he plans to create a garden-like setting in the outdoor courtyard for the warmer months, and that he brings a touch of Manhattan magic to Queens.

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