Despite Melbourne’s well-established temperamental weather conditions, summer is the time to enjoy the great outdoors, with a drink, several floors above ground level. We are hard pressed to think of anything more delightful than indulging in a thirst quenching beer or classic cocktail overlooking the city as the sun goes down, so we thought we would share with you our favourite places to do just that. Some rooftop bars are exciting and buzzing with nearly as much life as the city streets below, while others are tucked away in unusual spots and are some of Melbourne’s best-kept secrets. It’s time to ride that elevator (or climb those stairs) right to the top and gaze upon our beloved city in all its glory, with our hit list of the best rooftop bars in Melbourne.
Rooftop Bar | Melbourne CBD
As the name might imply, Rooftop Bar is one of the original, and easily one of the best rooftop bars in Melbourne CBD, perched at the top of Curtin House on Swanston Street. Come for a sunset beer or an after work drink or two, stay for some Rooftop Cinema action, which will be running until early April. If the night air gives you a chill, meander down the stairs for more fun times at Cookie or The Toff in Town.
Goldilocks | Melbourne CBD
Sitting pretty on top of Swanston Street’s Noodle Kingdom is the lovely Goldilocks bar, a very welcome guest to the Melbourne rooftop bar contingent. We give the table service and cocktail menu two big thumbs-up—try the Through Rosé Tinted Glasses, with Solerno Blood Orange Liqueur blended with Hendricks gin and Creme de Violette, topped with Rosé and soda.
Naked In The Sky | Fitzroy
Brunswick Street’s best rooftop bar, Naked In The Sky provides surrounding views of the city, Collingwood, and Fitzroy North, making for some spectacular panoramic sights. Pair a frozen grapefruit granita (with vodka in it, of course) with some of Melbourne’s best bar snacks to boot, like the crumbed eggplant with honey and blue cheese, and you’ve found yourself a winner.
Captain Baxter | St Kilda
If sipping cocktails while taking in a delightful ocean view is your jam, you’d be lucky to find a better Melbourne rooftop bar than Captain Baxter. Share a Large Cargo cocktail jug amongst friends as you overlook Port Philip Bay, and give yourself a pat on the back for crushing life.
Madame Brussels | Melbourne CBD
Pretty cocktails and preppy-dressed bartenders is the way it goes at Madame Brussels, and that’s how we like it. It’s a little bit girly, a little bit saucy, and is lovely all year round with a seasonal cocktail menu. Fruity explosions for Summer sipping in the sun, or Hot Toddies under blankets and heat lanterns in Winter—delightful any time, all the time.
Wolf's Lair | Carlton
This Melbourne rooftop bar gem is tucked away behind Jimmy Watson’s in Carlton, and a great hidden secret for those looking for a little escape. Split a jug of Pimms No 1 or Dry & Dry with your pals, and while away the afternoon at your leisure. The astro-turf covered rooftop is decked out with colourful lanterns, flower pots in crates, and timber outdoor furniture making this Wolf’s Lair very inviting indeed.
Siglo | Melbourne CBD
If you’re all about living life #likeaboss, then a single malt and a fat Cuban cigar at top-shelf Melbourne CBD rooftop bar, Siglo, is for you. If you’re getting a bit peckish from gazing out at Parliament House, don’t hesitate to order yourself up some of their crazy-good polenta chips with sour cream and chive dipping sauce. If Frank Underwood from House Of Cards was Australian, we have no doubt this would be his bar of choice.
Palmz | Melbourne CBD
Located on the top floor of the den of iniquity that is The Carlton Club, lies a tropical oasis, otherwise known as Palmz Rooftop Bar. The thatched-roof bar and tropical flora sprouting from every angle really does make you feel far away from the city below, so why not make the most of your little getaway? Welcome to the jungle.
Loop Roof | Melbourne CBD
If you’re keen on having a drink amongst Melbourne’s skyscrapers, and are into a cocktail menu that is both creative and a bit of fun, step right up to Loop Roof. Whether you’re keen on a boozy snow cone or a looking to share a mini watering can full of cocktail goodness with friends, you will find your summer refreshment of choice at this killer Melbourne rooftop bar.
Uncle | St Kilda
Guys don’t panic, Vietnamese street food doesn’t just have to be enjoyed on the street; it’s equally as delicious when being consumed on a rooftop! While most are clustered in the CBD (rooftop bar crawl—yes please!), one of the best rooftop bars in Melbourne is St Kilda’s Uncle. We’d recommend noshing on a crispy pigs ear banh mi and washing it down with a Ho Chi Mama cocktail, with jasmine-infused West Winds gin, lychee, crème be mure, prosecco and bitters.
Bomba | Melbourne CBD
The old Aylesbury has been given a Spanish facelift, and we dig it. The food at Bomba focuses on flavoursome but simple tapas and montadidos, allowing you to try plenty of tasty morsels while taking in the view. The wine list features Indigenous Spanish varieties from small artisan producers that they have imported over directly, making the overall experience an authentic one.
Image credit: Rooftop Bar, The Urban List