5 Cities with Spectacular Rooftop Bars
Elevate your nightlife with these rooftop hot spots.
Whether you’re looking for good food or good views, rooftop restaurants and bars are popping up all over the country. High spirits are, literally, in the air and these warm-weather sanctuaries are calling! We’ve selected five cities whose sky-high venues are getting noticed.
Whether you’re looking for a poolside drink or picturesque landscape, Austin delivers. Come for the food and cocktails and stay for the sunset view over Lady Bird Lake at Boiler Nine Bar + Grill. Its rooftop, Deck Nine Observatory Bar, serves up cocktails with spirits or wines and al fresco dishes.
For those long, hot summer days, enjoy the views, a “sunset sip” or a dip in the pool at Azul Rooftop Bar at the Westin. The hotel offers public hours and boasts the best view of downtown Austin as the city’s tallest hotel rooftop bar and lounge.
There’s no shortage of Instagram-worthy photo opportunities at Chicago’s rooftop bars and restaurants. From popular neighborhood stops to gorgeous skyline views, the city has a great mix of rooftop atmospheres for locals and tourists alike. What Aire – the rooftop at the Hyatt Centric on Monroe – lacks with a small menu, it makes up for with its views. Situated in the heart of the Chicago Loop, you’ll enjoy a 360-degree view of some of Chicago’s most impressive skyscrapers.
If you’re a park-view person, stop by Cindy’s atop the Chicago Athletic Association hotel. Both its ample indoor dining and large open-air terrace provide panoramic views of Millennium Park, Grant Park and Lake Michigan. Would you also believe that Portillo’s, the famous hot dog joint, has a beautiful rooftop space at its South Loop location? Only its second location in Chicago’s city limits, the restaurant also has a drink menu that features local brews.
Take in the Queen City with a cocktail fit for royalty at one of downtown Cincinnati’s popular rooftop bars. Top of the Park, The Phelps Hotel’s two-level rooftop bar, offers spectacular views of the riverfront and Great American Ballpark, home of the Cincinnati Reds. Cocktail Terrace, on the 11th floor of the 21c Museum Hotel, offers stellar views of downtown Cincinnati and unique cocktail menus. Adult slushie, anyone?
Another scenic spot is Rhinegeist, one of Cincinnati’s famous craft breweries in Over-The-Rhine. This venue’s hip and trendy rooftop bar sits atop an important slice of Cincinnati history as it’s built within the skeleton of an old Moerlein bottling plant from 1895.
Nashville’s honky tonks on Lower Broadway offer an abundance of rooftop bars from which to choose. For the ultimate tourist stop, check out Tootsies Orchid Lounge. While its claim to fame is music, visitors can now enjoy their music and drinks with another popular pastime – people watching. From its perch on Lower Broadway, Tootsie’s open-air patio supplies endless entertainment. If you’re looking for a casual dance party, check out the rooftop of Acme Feed & Seed, which has a stellar view of the Cumberland River.
If the honky-tonk scene isn’t your thing, UP’s rooftop lounge in The Gulch provides a more upscale atmosphere with a beautiful view of the Nashville skyline. Craft cocktails and shareable plates make it the perfect destination for a night out with friends or a date.
New York City
Of course, the biggest city in the United States has a few rooftop bars worth checking out. The Baita at Birreria, atop Eataly, transforms into a ski chalet during the colder months with blankets, heat lamps, pine trees, log-constructed furniture and more. The restaurant offers everything from house-made ales to beer cocktails and warm cocktails.
If you want to experience the madness of Midtown from afar, check out the Skylark with its 360-degree view of the Manhattan skyline and Hudson River. While the drinks are a bit pricy, the Instagram-worthy sunset selfies are priceless.
Many of these rooftop hot spots are only open seasonally, so visit their websites to check their status before visiting.