Making the most of both the sub-tropical weather and the kicking cocktail scene, Brisbane's best rooftop bars are the perfect spots to hang this summer. You'll find drinks, paddling pools, and snacks a-plenty to help you ride the inevitable heat wave in style.
So don't waste the sunny days hunkered down in aircon, make the most of our iconic climate with a summer-long sesh hopping around the best of Brisbane's rooftop bars, because, as we all know, alcohol is so much better at altitude.
If 180 degree views of the CBD with a cocktail in hand is your thing, then Maya in Fortitude Valley is a must. Aside from the stunning view of the Brisbane skyline, their cocktail menu is top notch and their cactii-adorned rooftop area has this whole Tulum theme going on—it's truly a vibe. Sip on a watermelon margarita and watch the sun go down.
The Terrace at Emporium Hotel
If views all the way to Moreton Island take your fancy, The Terrace at Emporium Hotel is the spot for you. Christened as South Bank's first rooftop bar, this stunning elevated setting will have you sipping on carefully crafted cocktails as you sit back and take in the views from the open alfresco area. Make sure you order the Iced Vovo Cocktail this spring.
Fiume At Crystalbrook Vincent
Howard Smith Wharves
Feeling glamorous? Strut on up to Crystalbrook Vincent's rooftop bar, Fiume, that boasts spectacular views of Howard Smith Wharf, the Brisbane CBD and the Brisbane river all in one. With a truly enviable position, you'll feel totally fancy with a cocktail in hand at this rooftop bar.
Perched atop Hotel X on the outskirts of the Valley, Iris comes to us from the team behind Donna Chang, Blackbird and Boom Boom Izakaya—so you know it's a banger. With possibly the best Story Bridge views in Brisbane, comfy booths for big group and a stellar menu of Middle Eastern eats, we're sure we don't even need to talk about how good the cocktails are to get you up the elevator.
Eagles Nest Brisbane
Hidden inside The Point Hotel, and high above the city is where the aptly named Eagle’s Nest resides. With perfect, uninterrupted views of the city, plus some of the best cocktails in town, this is the ideal bar to while away a balmy eve, but take note, they're only open from 3pm on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays.
Turkish-inspired and Instagram-ready, the exotic new Turkish-inspired bar has taken over the rooftop of the Tryp Hotel on Constance Street. There's massive day beds on the edge of the rooftop to laze on while you sip on Turkish Delight cocktails and nibble meze platters and Turkish pide. Be sure to save room for a slice of Nutella baklava for dessert.
Cielo Rooftop Bar
The newest spot on this list, Cielo Rooftop Bar is a little slice of the Italian Riviera high above Fortitude Valley. While the views are sublime, it's the cocktails you'll want to come here for, with a list curated by none other than the gang from Sydney's Maybe Sammy, Australia's number one bar. Frozen, swirled and topped with bubbles that pop with a puff of smoke, they're the stuff dreams are made of.
Limes Rooftop Bar
Trailblazers of Brisbane's rooftop drinking scene, Limes are once again proving themselves to be the go-to for summer soaks everywhere. With slammin' snacks and drinks, two spas, live DJs, an open-air cinema, and accommodation on offer, you won't want to leave this rooftop bar all summer.
Elixir Rooftop Bar
It may not look like much from the outside but Elixir is worth the climb up the stairs, even if you're in heels. This rooftop bar is straight out of a fairy tale, inspired by the Chinese tale of the ‘Moon Rabbit’ forever mixing the elixir of life for the immortal moon. Once through the door, you'll forget all about what's down below as you relax and unwind in this inner city oasis.
You’re a city slicker with a penchant for knock-offs at dizzying heights; where do you go? Hidden high on top of the Pullman Hotel, Sixteen Antlers boasts flawless views of King George Square and the CBD, giving you eye-gasms aplenty paired with a kick-ass cocktail menu ideal for summer sessions that go on into the early hours.
Fitz + Potts
If you find yourself loving rooftop bars but prefer your local more chill than thrill, Fitz + Potts might just be the place for you. Located in Nundah, this suburban rooftop bar is a must do for afternoon bevvies with your besties this summer, and has a completely vegan menu if you get peckish after a few.
Dandy’s Rooftop Bar At The Fox
Stop by on a Friday, Saturday, or Sunday afternoon at Dandy’s Rooftop Bar at The Fox. This colour explosion has an awesome backyard-drinks-meets-tropical-club vibe. Enjoy their specialty cocktails on a hot night and have a nibble on their chargrilled platter or tasty selection of pizzas. This plus live DJs and 360 views? Yes please.
Spicers Balfour Hotel
A true hidden gem, Balfour Hotel’s secret rooftop bar has some whopping views of Fortitude Valley and the Story Bridge and boasts some pretty delicious cocktails too. Kick back here for relaxing post-dinner evening drinks.
Need more bar-spiration? Check out our picks of the best bars in Brisbane with activities other than drinking.
Image credit: Limes, Ariana Gillrie, Sophie Spencer