UNIQUE is a word over used but it is totally justified in the case of the Sora sky bar at the new Malmaison hotel in York.

The hotel, which opened today, boasts a roof-top restaurant and cocktail bar, Sora, which specialises in Asian tapas dishes such as sushi and skewers.

But the real star of the show has to be the view.

From the roof top of the former Aviva insurance building in Rougier Street, Sora provides a panorama over the city which we have never seen before.

Not even the Big Wheel of York lifted us high enough to see as far as the White Horse of Kilburn.

The Northern Echo: Press reporter Maxine Gordon and Malmaison general manager Craig Robson on the roof at the Sora barPress reporter Maxine Gordon and Malmaison general manager Craig Robson on the roof at the Sora bar

As you exit the elevator to the roof top, you take a sharp right and are met with a bird's-eye view of York Minster.

From the outdoor terrace, working anti-clockwise you can see the Nestle buildings, the railway station and miles and miles of green open land. Incredible.

Modern design is part of the Malmaison make-up and the new interiors at York do not disappoint.

From the hanging glass chandelier in the reception hall to the sliding art screen that covers the flatscreen TV, every detail has been attended to.

General manager Craig Robson said the aim was for Malmaison to stand out from the crowd.

He told The Press: "We want Malmaison to have a different offer in the city. It is cool, quirky, sexy and cheeky, but great quality and very comfortable."

The Northern Echo: Stylish bedroom at Malmaison in YorkStylish bedroom at Malmaison in York

Besides the Sora sky bar, the hotel has a brasserie, Chez Mal, as well as gym, treatment spa, conference room for 200 and business centre with work pods.

There is a Starbucks too with outside terrace facing the city walls.