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L.A.’s best rooftop bars

Check out L.A.’s best rooftop bars with the best views, from Malibu sunsets to city views over the Sunset Strip
Mama Shelter Los Angeles
Photograph: Courtesy Mama Shelter Los Angeles
By Erin Kuschner, Time Out contributors and Stephanie Breijo |

What is it that they say about smog? Oh yeah, beautiful sunsets. Make L.A.’s haze work for you at these cocktail bars and beachside spots, where the views rightfully rival the booze. From Downtown’s bars with stellar sights to seaside cabanas in Malibu and Venice, here are the city’s top (literally) rooftop bars.


The best rooftop bars in L.A.

Photograph: Courtesy Above Beverly Hills
Bars, Cocktail bars

Above SIXTY Beverly Hills

icon-location-pin Beverly Hills

Above SIXTY provides both a name and directions to this exclusive hotel bar. Open to Sixty Beverly Hills guests, members, and cabana reservations during the day, this ritzy rooftop lounge is open to the public for a swanky bar crowd at night. The rooftop lounge offers wine, beer and “sunkissed cocktails” such as the Strawberry Smash, crafted with vodka and fresh muddled strawberries. Appetizers and meals, including kale chips and avocado toast, are also available on the roof of the sleek hotel, as are occasional weekend pool parties. You’ll pay a pretty penny for your libations, but it’s worth it for the view.

To book a room at SIXTY, click here.

Photograph: Stephanie Breijo
Bars, Hotel bars

Broken Shaker

icon-location-pin Downtown

The Freehand Hotel’s trendiest clientele are like moth to flame at the quirky, colorful and palm-laden rooftop bar above DTLA. Cool off with eclectic cocktails—with some equally eclectic and colorful garnishes—served from the thatched-roof bar as you snack on street-food-inspired dishes. (Don’t skip that guac with peanut salsa.) It’s a perfect perch to take in views of Downtown, especially around sunset. Overwhelmed by that brief but fun menu? We’re crazy for the Carrot Colada, made with gin, montenegro, carrot-and-coconut orgeat and a pink peppercorn cordial.

High at the Hotel Erwin
Photograph: Courtesy High at the Hotel Erwin
Bars, Cocktail bars

High Rooftop Lounge

icon-location-pin Venice

Beachside rooftops are in surprisingly short supply in L.A., making Hotel Erwin’s High Rooftop Lounge an in-demand spot for sun-kissed Venice Beach locals. Even if you’re staying at the hotel, be sure to make a reservation; there’s nothing like a multi-hued sunset over the Pacific with a cocktail in hand to get Angelenos buzzing. Getting chilly? Evening bar-goers can wrapthemselves in one of the bar’s cozy blankets, along with a spiked cocoa or hot root beer float. If you don’t like your drinks sweet, stick to local craft brews to pair with munchies like gourmet sliders and street tacos.

To book a room at the Hotel Erwin, click here

L.P. rooftop bar
Photograph: Jakob N. Layman
Bars, Cocktail bars

L.P. Rooftop Bar

icon-location-pin West Hollywood

There’s a party happening at the intersection of La Cienega and Melrose—and while everyone is invited, not everyone may fit in. That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t give L.P. Rooftop a try, though. Located above E.P., a restaurant featuring a hodgepodge of vibrant Asian cuisine, you'll find L.P., a rooftop bar with killer views and swanky, photo-ready, fun-loving clientele. Share spiked bubble tea with new friends or industry colleagues as the sun sets on West Hollywood. Hit this roof at just the right time during the summer and you can even catch an outdoor screening—and yes, there are snacks.

Mama Shelter Hollywood rooftop
Photograph: Courtesy Mama Shelter Los Angeles
Restaurants, Contemporary American

Mama Shelter

icon-location-pin Hollywood

We’re big fans of Mama Shelter as a hotel and a restaurant, but once we saw the rooftop, we decided we just might move in for good. The bright space is splattered with multicolored sofas and chairs where you can lounge while waiting for your salmon pita to arrive. Cocktails veer from the Mediterranean, with a full Moscow mule bar and multiple sangrias. On warm nights, you can dance under the stars while DJs spin an eclectic mix of music, or take in a classic movie on their outdoor screen. There’s also a fusbol table, a yoga studio and sweeping views of Hollywood. Like we said—we’re never leaving.

To book a room at Mama Shelter, click here.

Photograph: Courtesy Moonshadows
Restaurants, Seafood


icon-location-pin Malibu

Forget flip-flops and sunscreen—dolphin sightings are de rigueur at this longtime PCH watering hole. This one isn’t so much sky-high as it is water-on, with an outdoor lounge area lined with white sofas and curtained booths that hang right over the Pacific—you’re practically within blowhole distance of the pods that swim close to shore. Catch afternoon rays at weekend brunch or laze on the sundeck at sunset or after dark, when Malibu locals turn out for margaritas and the salt air mixes with pretty young things.

Photograph: Stephanie Breijo
Hotels, Boutique hotels

NoMad Los Angeles

icon-location-pin Downtown Financial District

Equal parts stunning views, expert bar program and Italian-décor flair, NoMad hotel’s gorgeous rooftop is one of the city’s newest up-in-the-clouds bars, which means it’s also one of the most popular. Make a reservation online to guarantee seating, or take your chances with a walk-in and sit or lean against the marble bar. No matter where you perch, you’ll enjoy classics, sherry-based painkillers—served here in fun pineapple glassware—and frozen cocktails by one of L.A.’s—and the country’s—best bar teams. Hungry? There’s a quick menu of snackable items, as well as a killer Milk & Honey ice cream sandwich. (Do not neglect that ice cream sandwich.)

Rooftop at Perch
Photograph: Courtesy Perch
Restaurants, French

Perch LA

icon-location-pin Downtown

This rooftop bistro is one of the prettiest in town with its patterned tile floors and potted trees full of twinkly lights. Downtown locals, plus a few hundred of their closest friends, sit on velour bar stools and plush sofas inside the eclectic boudoir-themed bar or fireside on the outdoor patio. From any seat, you’ll want to sample the wide selection of kir-style cocktails that go beyond crème de cassis—try a tasty, blackberry-flavored crème de mure—and other French by-the-glass pours. The after-work crowd drops in for happy hour, dubbed Apéritif Hour, weekdays from 4 to 6pm, while late-night partygoers can enjoy a live DJ on Saturdays from 10pm to 2am.

Hotels, Boutique hotels

Petit Ermitage

icon-location-pin West Hollywood

Just off the hustle and bustle of the Sunset Strip, this West Hollywood boutique gem boasts boho-chic rooms with European touches and overwhelming charm. Take in the 360-degree vistas of Los Angeles from the rooftop (often overlooked by locals as a relaxing hangout spot), complete with heated outdoor pool, fireplaces, two bars, lounge seating, patio and garden, recognized as a hummingbird and butterfly sanctuary by the National Wildlife Federation.

Photograph: Courtesy Skybar
Bars, Hotel bars


icon-location-pin West Hollywood

The rooftop bar that started it all, the Mondrian’s Skybar still retains its secret Sunset Strip entryway, complete with dress-to-impress entry and nightlife cred—this is one of the rare poolside bars where people really do jump in after a night of cocktails. The all-ages crowd ranges from wide-eyed ingénues to aging Robert Evans types, but no matter where you fall on the spectrum, the Mexican-style oasis of flowering walls and gorgeous nooks will win you over, especially with a mojito in hand.

To book a room at the Mondrian Hotel, click here.

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Just looking for great drinks?

The Chestnut Club
Photograph: Alicia Cho

The best cocktail bars in L.A.

From bespoke libations made with farmers’ market-fresh ingredients to the revivial of the classic cocktail worthy of Don Draper, cocktail bars in L.A. are mixing undeniably phenomenal drinks. Wind down after a long day at one of these top spots.

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