Bars & Pubs

10 Places To Keep Your Cool This Summer In Brisbane

By Catherine Blake
21st Dec 2016

best bars brisbane

Frolicking in the outdoors is the bom diggity when the weather is tender and mild, but a Brisbane summer is anything but. We’re looking down the barrel of a three month hazing ritual and I’ll be damned if I’m not going to do everything I can to escape it.

Those jetting off to the frostworlds in the northern hemisphere, or cruising to the beach for a summer of surf will be strangers to the struggle of sourcing heat relief suffered by Brisbanites staying in the city. And given our city’s preference for outdoor seating, keeping cool and having fun is an oft-difficult manoeuvre.

I entertain no delusions that I am resilient or tough in the slightest so here’s where I’ll be cowering this summer. You’re all welcome to join...

Soleil Pool Bar


Chasing coolness in every sense of the word? The aptly named Soleil has your back. Sipping and splashing at this luxurious pool and bar combo is like spending summer in your best mate’s house except everyone is dressed nicely and the drinks are more than a six-pack of Milton Mangoes.

Blue Room Cinebar


Fully-licensed cinemas with plush seating, chair service and air conditioning. Can I get an amen? Their new look unveiled, Blue Room Cinebar has soared upwards on our summer agenda combining all our favourite leisuresports into one smooth op: eating, drinking and watching stuff we can’t get on Netflix.


South Brisbane

Museums are a well-known haunt of seasoned air-con thieves, and while you’re leeching off the cooling system you might as well load up on some culture. QAGOMA is currently celebrating ten wonderful years of artistic celebration with a completely free exhibition of some of their greatest hits including a badass two-storey slide that I highly recommend. The gift shop is also pretty baller for any last-minute gifts.

Goodness Gracious Café


Complete with air-con and a shady patio area if a breeze turns up, Graceville’s favourite coffee hut may just save your life this summer. Goodness Gracious’ cure-all menu offers the full spectrum of chow from nourishing superfoods all the way through to French toast and an epic Cuban sandwich.

Dandelion & Driftwood


For those with a deep and real appreciation of the brew, Dandelion & Driftwood is a summer godsend serving some of the Brisbane’s best caffeination from within their air-conditioned nook and dappled terrace. Named for their two signature blends, these guys don’t mess around when it comes to coffee; they’ll ice that long black, they’ll chill that filter, they’ll even serve your order on a popsicle.

Gelato Messina


Tipped to arrive early 2017 the pride and wonder of Sydney and Melbourne scoop-hounds is finally coming to Brisbane. Many of you will know the enticement and allure of Messina’s lip-smacking gelato so once this baby lands on Melbourne Street you can trust that it will become the number one spot to ice up this summer. 

Pearl Café


Mostly indoors and totally exquisite, Pearl Café makes a point of being excellent in every respect. From the coffee to the cakes to the exposed brick walls – it’s all slammin’, and just when we thought we couldn’t love them more they go and crank dat thermostat. Come in and forget what was so horrible about deciding to wear jeans that morning.

Lennons Pool Terrace & Bar


Okay let’s set this scene: lounging by the pool, flaunting your extravagantly chic resort wear ‘neath a stark white umbrella, sippin’ on a Mai Tai and pretending that you’re in control of your life enough to own a house. Sound good? Sounds like Lennons and we’ll meet you there. I’ll be the one in the audacious brim.

Spring Hill Deli

Spring Hill

One of Brisbane’s favourite OG breakfast spots, Spring Hill Deli has always been there for us and soaring mercury is no exception. Breakfast’s reputation for provoking warm and cosy sensations is so often at odds with the furnace heat of summer but Spring Hill Deli manages to deliver the same internal tingles of the first meal while at the same time sparing us the scorch.

Catchment Brewing Co.

West End

Working their way towards tenure on our list of reliable good times, Catchment Brewing Co. is an amalgam of everything that’s well and good. Through sheer ingenuity they’ve discovered that putting food and air-con under the same roof as a brewing company creates the perfect environment for any sun-dodger to ride out the summer in absolute comfort.  

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Image credit: Ariana Gillrie

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