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19 Rooftop Bars in D.C. to Visit for Drinks with a View

The weather is getting warmer, and post work gatherings are in full swing! Nothing compares to being with friends on a rooftop in Washington, D.C., enjoying a breeze and cocktails. 

cocktail drink at Washington D.C. rooftop bars

From rooftop bars in buildings with major history to casual spots to gather with friends for happy hour, we’ve rounded up the best rooftop bars in Washington, D.C. for you!

Check each of the rooftop bars off your list this Summer. You’ll experience a different part of the city on each rooftop visit, ensuring you get a taste of everything Washington, D.C. has to offer!

La Vie

88 District Square SW 5th floor, Washington, DC 20024
Phone: 202-560-5501
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Located at the Wharf, La Vie is one of the most visually appealing restaurants in the D.C. area, and their rooftop is an extension of that beauty.

La Vie is swanky, spacious, and offers jaw dropping waterfront views. La Vie is no stranger to hosting large scale events, including an annual Fourth of July celebration for diners to enjoy the fireworks show.

Their cuisine is largely Mediterranean, and absolutely delicious. You are guaranteed to be dazzled by the experience La Vie offers. It is a perfect choice for a date night in the District.

Top of the Gate

2650 Virginia Ave NW, Washington, DC 20037
Phone: 844-617-1972
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Boasting the most beautiful 360 degree views of Washington, D.C., Top of the Gate is located on the top of – you guessed it, the famed Watergate building in the West End.

This luxurious rooftop lounge is ideal for those taking in a show at the Kennedy Center, located within walking distance, or for those celebrating a special occasion.

This award winning rooftop is well known for offering an elevated experience is a lavish setting. Their handcrafted cocktails are delicious and add to an already spectacular experience.


1120 Maine Ave SW, Washington, DC 20024
Phone: 202-747-5222
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The rooftop at Officina is located in the Wharf in Washington, D.C., and is led by Chef Nicholas Stefanelli.

Chef Nicholas Stefanelli brings his Puglia childhood experiences to life with the decor and recipes at Officina. Their Terrazza is a glorious rooftop oasis inspired by outdoor dining in Italy.

With beautiful views of Potomac, Officina is expansive with a rooftop bar and a retractable roof.

Their firepit lounge seating is popular, as are their small bites and delicious cocktails. Reservations are available, but not required, for their firepit lounge. The bar serves customers on a first come, first serve basis.

The Conservatory

1401 Okie St NE, Washington, DC 20002
Phone: 202-763-7942
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The Conservatory is located above the Michelin rated restaurant Gravitas in the Ivy City area of Washington, D.C.

The Conservatory has been a smash hit with Washingtonians. Led by Chef Matt Baker, it is a rooftop bar and lounge that is also home to a culinary garden used by Chef Baker and his team.

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Don’t sleep on the menu options at The Conservatory! With sensational food offerings at Gravitas, the quality of dining extends to their rooftop, where diners can choose from a variety of small bites to a 3-course prix fixe menu.

Jack Rose Dining Saloon

2007 18th St NW, Washington, DC 20009
Phone: 202-588-7388
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Jack Rose Dining Saloon is an establishment in the Adam’s Morgan area of Washington, D.C. Their open air terrace is heated and has a retractable roof, which makes it an ideal place to gather with friends any time of the year.

Jack Rose Dining Saloon has an extensive Whiskey collection. In fact, they have one of the largest collections in the Western Hemisphere, according to Jack Rose. The Terrace has their own drink menu, including coveted Whiskey Flights!

The open air terrace at Jack Rose is open from Thursday to Saturday only. They offer happy hour from Wednesday to Friday.


1309 5th St NE, Washington, DC 20002
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Located on the roof at Union Market in Washington, D.C., Hi-Lawn is a winner for rooftop dining. Thanks to Hi-Lawn being directly over Union Market, diners have the advantage of bringing food from the many diverse restaurants from the market to enjoy on the rooftop.

This is a prime way to spend a beautiful evening for many, especially for students attending Gallaudet University, which is within walking distance of Hi-Lawn.

There are outdoor games in this spacious setting and alcohol is available for purchase on the rooftop. Reservations are needed to enjoy Hi-Lawn.

Picnic tables are available for those with reservations. Be sure to bring a blanket in case you are assigned a lawn area spot.


515 15th St NW, Washington, DC 20004
Phone: 202-661-2437
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Vue, a swanky rooftop lounge, is located adjacent to the White House in the downtown area of Washington, D.C.

If you are looking for a rooftop bar and lounge to provide a full experience and unbeatable views, Vue is what you might be looking for. Their space is large, offers magnificent views, and even allows for private events.

Vue can accommodate a number of requests including private concerts and intimate occasions. Please know there is a dress code and a time limit for dining service.

12 Stories

75 District Square SW 12th floor, Washington, DC 20024
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12 Stories is located at The Wharf in Washington, D.C., on top of the Intercontinental Hotel. Once a nondescript and almost hidden rooftop lounge and bar, the popularity of 12 stories grew substantially and it is now a fully coveted rooftop spot to hang.

In fact, reservations are suggested, as word of mouth amongst Washingtonians has blown up this “secret spot.”

This sexy spot offers 360 degree views of D.C., and their cocktail menu is impressive. 12 stories is super spacious, the food menu offers elevated bites, and the vibe is smart casual.

Hedy’s Rooftop

1155 14th St NW, Washington, DC 20005
Phone: 202-379-4353
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Hedy’s is the rooftop bar and restaurant located on the top of Hotel Zena, in Logan Circle. Hedy’s rooftop is an upscale rooftop restaurant where diners dress to impress.

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The space is stunning, has a movie theater size screen perfect for watching games, and even has a rooftop pool.

While the vibes of this outdoor dining experience is the star of the show, the cocktails are delicious, as is the food!

Consider splurging for the Cabana experience and enjoy your private firepit and couches to lounge with friends. 

After you enjoy dinner and cocktails on Hedy’s Rooftop, be sure to check out the fun decor at Hotel Zena, where the concept of Women’s empowerment continues.

El Techo

606 Florida Ave NW, Washington, DC 20001
Phone: 202-836-4270
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Often compared to as a treehouse for adults, El Techo is a hip rooftop bar located in the Shaw area of Washington, D.C.

Serving up Latin inspired small plates and cocktails and a vacation type vibe, El Techo might be one of the funnest rooftop bars in the area!

The decor is beautiful, with lots of flowers, greenery, and wood finishings. This all season oasis delivers incredible hand crafted cocktails and is available for a full or partial buyout! Head on over for the happy hour, stay for the music and fun!

Graham Rooftop

1075 Thomas Jefferson St NW, Washington, DC 20007
Phone: 202-952-9219
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Located on top of the luxury Graham Boutique hotel in Georgetown, The Graham Rooftop is a rooftop to visit this Summer!

This comfortable rooftop offers sweeping views of everything Washington, D.C. has to offer, including the historic monuments and landmarks.

With overstuffed couches and lounge beats, you might never want to leave from the rooftop at The Graham.

A Business casual dress code is enforced, and seating is offered on a first come, first serve basis. We love that this rooftop offers a bottle service!

Summit The Rooftop

950 New York Ave, NW Rooftop – 11th Floor, Washington, DC 20001
Phone: 202-844-5900
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Summit The Rooftop is located on the top of the Conrad Hotel, in the heart of Logan Circle in Washington, D.C.

This rooftop has a garden forward menu to showcase a wonderful culinary experience that is perfectly suited for outdoor dining.

They have a wide selection of cocktails and beers, from local and national based breweries. Be sure to book a reservation to enjoy some of the best views and cocktails Washington, D.C. has to offer.

Whiskey Charlie

975 7th St SW, Washington, DC 20024
Phone: 202-730-2402
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Whiskey Charlie, an original favorite of Washingtonians as far as rooftop bars are concerned, is located atop the Canopy in the Wharf.

Adorned with waterfront views, Whiskey Charlie treats customers to a premium and intimate ambiance with nautical vibes and uninterrupted views of the Wharf.

The menu at Whiskey Charlie is full of shareable plates, featuring locally sourced and seasonal ingredients. Whiskey Charlie is as unpretentious as they come, and they take pride in their iconic cocktails.


1274 5th St NE, Washington, DC 20002
Phone: 202-888-8790
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If your favorite food is sushi, O-Ku is a dream come true. With some of the best sushi in all of D.C. and located in the Union Market neighborhood, it’s a go-to Friday night spot for me! O-Ku is all about using quality ingredients to make simple, but outstanding food and cocktails.

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Their Evening Incantation vodka, blueberry, and lavender drink is amazing to start with. Non-fish-lovers, don’t worry there are still plenty of delicious land-based dishes!

Anchovy Social

221 Tingey St SE, Washington, DC 20003
Phone: 202-249-6274
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Anchovy Special at Thompson Washington DC in the Navy Yard neighborhood is all about taking in the magic of DC.

With views of National Park, the Yards, and the Anacostia River combined with local seafood dishes and fun cocktails, it’s an easy place to spend an afternoon.

Their Prickly Situation cockatiel made of mezcal and prickly pear is fruity with a bit of heat pairing perfectly with the decadent lobster roll sliders.


1905 9th St NW, Washington, DC 20001
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In the heart of the bustling Shaw neighborhood lies the Baja California tequila rooftop bar, Cortez. Their seasonal menu means there’s something new to try every visit.

They’re best known for their frozen drinks–it’s the best way to cool down on a muggy DC summer day!

Also, they’re officially cashless, so make sure to bring other forms of payment. I love hitting up their happy hour for good deals on their frozen drinks and their Baja fried fish tacos!

Crimson View DC

627 H St NW, Washington, DC 20001
Phone: 202-847-4459
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On the penthouse level of Motto DC, you can find the Crimson View rooftop bar AKA the best place to watch the sunset over the Washington Monument.

The rooftop is partially covered, so rain or shine you can enjoy the bar. They have tons of local and regional beers in bottles and on tap, so I always choose the pale ale on draft.

They also have a pretty extensive cocktail and wine offerings. The rooftop has a special snack menu. My favorite is their creamy goat cheese dip!

Ivy and Coney

1537 7th St NW, Washington, DC 20001
Phone: 202-670-9489
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Ivy and Coney is a sports bar institution with the feel of a neighborhood dive bar. Located between the Shaw and Mt Vernon Square neighborhoods, there’s always a game, race, or match on the TVs.

Grab a local brew or sip on a simple mixed drink to wash down your coney dog, smash burger, and wings.

Their rooftop deck looks out over the heart of DC. It’s the perfect spot to watch the game and then head upstairs to take in the sunset or meet up with friends.

Perry’s Restaurant

1811 Columbia Rd NW, Washington, DC 20009
Phone: 202-234-6218
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For delicious Japanese food and drinks in the open air, the Perry’s Restaurant rooftop bar is ideal. In the heart of the Adams Morgan neighborhood, Parry’s is the perfect post-work drinks and dinner spot.

My favorite is their bento box because you get a little taste of everything you want! Washed down with one of their many sakes and it’s a recipe for a good time!

They also have an extensive list of Japanese beers, so it’s a great place to try something new!

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Written by Brian Nagele

Brian attended West Virginia University, then started his career in the IT industry before following his passion for marketing and hospitality. He has over 20 years experience in the restaurant and bar industry.

As a former restaurant owner, he knows about running a food business and loves to eat and enjoy cocktails on a regular basis. He constantly travels to new cities tasting and reviewing the most popular spots.

Follow him on LinkedIn, Instagram, Quora, Google Guide and Facebook.