Nothing quite says “living the highlife” like clinking glasses on a city rooftop. Touch the sky this season with a brunch, evening, or nightcap on the most jaw-dropping rooftops in Houston. [Featured image: @zon23rooftop]
1. The Grove
Planted in the south end of Discovery Green, The Grove is an elegant two-story bar and restaurant to relish in patio weather. Catch their Happy Hour from 1 – 5 pm from Tuesday to Saturday to enjoy half off appetizers (such as their Blue Crab Corn Fritters), raw and chilled items (including Oysters On The Half Shell), beer, specialty cocktails, and house red and white wines.
2. El Big Bad
Heralded by many as having the best margarita in town, El Big Bad in First Ward gives customers the chance to customize their own ‘ritas with 30 given infusions at a time. While the choices alone might leave your head spinning, just wait until you actually finish one. Happy Hour clocks in from 4 – 7 pm daily.
3. Parkview Terrace at Marriot Marquis
Nothing compares to the blissful relaxation of floating in the heat of the Texas sun with a cold drink in hand. While lazy rivers are not so easy to come by in Houston, you can now swim over to the Marriot Marquis in Downtown, Houston, where visitors at the hotel can float the Texas border six stories high. If you’re not a guest at the hotel, you can book a day pass ($50) that includes access to food and beverages.
Fresh on the scene, Sunset Rooftop Lodge is an East Downtown newcomer that’s hit the ground running. With DJs on deck, Sunset offers an array of bright, tropical cocktails of which to enjoy against the backdrop of the downtown skyline and the festivities of Truckyard patio bar below.
The Main Street speakeasy is the definition of a hidden gem. Unmarked and deviously tucked away behind a deceptive, nondescript “Attorney at Law” door, a dark and mysterious stairwell leads visitors up to a dim-lit cocktail haven. Here, the bartenders know what they’re doing and will set you up right with your drink of choice. As for their second story patio, you could definitely do worse.
6. La Carafe
While not a speakeasy, La Carafe Wine Bar on Congress St. largely flies under the radar of Houston’s bar scene. Housed in a building built in 1847, the historic dive is believed to be the oldest bar in Houston. La Carafe offers an intimate and ambient atmosphere, fit with a chandelier, wax-crystallizing candles, antique relics of times past, and one damn good jukebox. Take the stairs up to their second-story balcony for an enchanting view of downtown.
Brenner’s on the Bayou is a rustic yet elegant bar and restaurant that offers one of the most unique views of the Bayou City. Overlooking a pristinely landscaped garden as well as lush natural greenery, Brenner’s provides an idyllic atmosphere in which to enjoy fine dining at its best. Happy Hour at Brenner’s runs from 4 – 7 pm Monday through Friday that includes $9 cocktails and martinis, $7 wine glasses, and $5 craft beers.
8. Grand Prize
Grand Prize is tucked in the east edge of Montrose north of Museum Park. Driving by, the bar first gives off the vibe of a low-key house party – what with the front porch, music, and the colorful array of lights twinkling in the front window and all. On sunny days, their second story balcony is a prime place to polish off some tacos or craft beers. On cold, dark, and wet days, Grand Prize is the ultimate hole-in-the-wall to crawl into and stave off the storm.
Located on 19th Street in the Heights, Harold’s offers fine southern cooking with a view. Their menu, which includes brunch, lunch, and dinner, features crave-worthy options such as their Creole Benedict, Crawfish Fondue, Beer Battered Fish, and Chocolate Bourbon Pecan Pie.
10. Z on 23
Perched on top of the 23rd floor of La Méridien hotel in Downtown, Houston, Z on 23 has some of the most elevated views in the city. The open air rooftop comes bar equipped, but it only takes cash so withdraw accordingly. It’s open from 4 – 11 pm on Fridays and Saturdays only and while it doesn’t offer Happy Hour, it does feature daily specials.
New Heights coffee shop, The Coffee House at West End is located inside a historic building built in the 1930s. The three-story coffee shop features top-notch joe, a cozy interior, and a stunning rooftop with sweeping views of the Houston skyline.
12. Night Shift
Opened this past July, Night Shift is housed inside a remodeled warehouse and auto parts store. Overseen by a collaboration of award-winning bartenders, as well as a seasoned executive chef, Night Shift is an excellent go-to destination to burn the midnight oil. Plus, with its expansive roof deck opening up soon to sweeping Downtown views, you can’t miss it this holiday season!
13. Cielo XLIII at Market Square Tower
Chicly made in the image somewhere between a Miami nightclub and Las Vegas Resort, Cielo XLIII in Market Square Tower adds a touch of gold to Houston’s skyline. Its lavish features include exclusive VIP sections, top notch DJs, sweeping views of the skyline, and an expansive rooftop lounge fit with a glowing infinity pool. Plus, its elevated real estate 43 stories above ground makes the ultra lounge and bar soar above any and all rooftop bars in the City of Houston.
14. Post Houston
Behold, the former USPS warehouse as a new a cutting-edge, multi-purpose, multi-layered facility with a complete technical re-design. Featuring multiple double-helix staircases, a trio of skylit atriums, and a FIVE-ACRE ROOFTOP PARK AND FARM.