Food & Drink

The Best Rooftop Bars to Check Out in Metro Phoenix

hotel palomar lustre rooftop bar
Lustre Rooftop Bar | Hotel Palomar
Lustre Rooftop Bar | Hotel Palomar

Phoenix knows how to party. We can confidently say -- whether its day drinking at a craft brewery, sipping spirits in a speakeasy, raging at a pool party, or throwing back tiki drinks -- we’re pretty good at drinking (responsibly). And while other cities may have us beat when it comes to the number of rooftop bars that can be frequented in their zip codes, we have some solid options that can compete with even the best rooftop bars and lounges in the country. Sorry, Chicagoans, but you’re not going to be drinking on a rooftop in the middle of winter. Here, you can.

The Perch Brewery

Chandler

Garden bar with beer, birds, and brunch
The 360-views of Downtown Chandler and its extensive craft beer selection are great, but it’s the wildlife that make this East Valley rooftop bar unique. At The Perch, you are greeted by more than 50 rescued tropical birds, some of which will even chirp a few words your way while you feast on brunch bites like brick-oven tamales or jalapeño cornbreads in this gardenesque setting.

shade lounge
Shade Lounge | W/Hotel/Experience Scottsdale

Shade Lounge

Old Town Scottsdale

Destination for pool parties and rooftop workouts
This poolside hotspot at The W Hotel is the essential Scottsdale summer hangout for the trendy crowd. The open-air bar slings cocktails and there is bottle service if you want to ball out. Hit up this Shade Lounge on the weekend you will probably stumble into a rowdy pool party at WET Dayclub. Looking for a more laid back experience? Take a rooftop yoga class or quiet your mind with a zen poolside meditation. Find out more about upcoming events on their Facebook.  

Skydeck

Midtown Phoenix

Hip hangout with panoramic city views  
Not just for guests of this boutique hotel, Skydeck at The Clarendon is a primo spot to take in a sunset with a strong cocktail in hand. The views of the Phoenix skyline and surrounding mountains are hard to beat. The rooftop bar hosts events like concerts, rooftop BINGO, and poolside yoga for those so inclined. And it is just minutes away from more bars and restaurants located throughout the revitalized Downtown core.

lustre bar at hotel palomar
Lustre Bar | Hotel Palomar

Lustre Bar

Downtown Phoenix

Rooftop lounge at the center of the bustling entertainment district
Hotel Palomar is a posh place to stay, and its outdoor lounge, Lustre Bar, pulls rank as one of the best rooftop spaces in The Valley. Lounge in a cabana in the afternoon, take a date for some organic nibbles and craft cocktails, or swing by this rooftop hangout before a baseball game or concert and enjoy a few tall boys at the poolside bar. Happy hour runs nightly on weekdays and features discounted apps as well as specials on house cocktails and draughts.

Bar Smith

Downtown Phoenix

Bi-level Downtown Phoenix club
Phoenix isn’t really a club town. Dive bars and cocktail lounges with moderate noise levels are more so our tempo. But for an epic, eardrum shattering night out Downtown Phoenix’s Bar Smith is a solid option. Located just off the light rail, Bar Smith has two floors to be explored. The rooftop offers exactly what you would expect from a nightclub, like laser shows and live DJ sets. Fine tune your fist pump now.

Wade Poolside Bar
Wade Poolside Bar | The Camby

Wade Poolside Bar

Central Phoenix

Urban oasis in the Biltmore neighborhood
Sometimes you just have to be a tourist in your own city. In those cases your best bet is to book a summer staycation at a luxe hotel and park yourself in a cabana for a weekend. Enter Wade Poolside Bar at The Camby Hotel, a local-friendly rooftop hangout with cabanas and a team waitstaff at the ready. Occasionally you can catch a classic flick here, too -- they use a projector to display films on the side of the hotel. You can also drop by for an outdoor cycle or yoga class. It’s good to be a Phoenician.

The Grapevine
The Grapevine | Mimi Paris

The Grapevine

Old Town Scottsdale

Cocktail and karaoke bar that caters to the Scottsdale crowd
This Old Town karaoke bar has been around since the early 70s. Is it the best bar in town? Well, not exactly. But it does provide plenty of people-watching opportunities. Regulars are said to get first-priority here, especially when it comes to the karaoke lineup. Add your name to the list anyway. Just maybe you’ll get your 15-minutes of fame. If not, hit the rooftop for beers.

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Lauren Reichert is a Thrillist contributor who prefers a panoramic view with her cocktail. Follow her to the best bars and restaurants around The Valley on Twitter.