Food and drinks taste better (and seem cooler) when consumed on a rooftop, right? There’s something about city views and fresh air that just feels right.
And while Philly may not be bursting with rooftop bars like our neighbor New York City, we do have a solid collection of sky-high dining spots, ranging from an 11th-floor rooftop taqueria in Rittenhouse to an eight-stories-up bar on the top of a former high school in South Philly (with some of the best skyline views around).
See our guide to the Philly area’s best rooftop bars and casual restaurants.
Because it’s Old City’s largest rooftop restaurant, with an overhead covering that blocks the sun and most rain, the roof deck here is popular, so reservations are a good idea. Menu includes salads, burgers, entrées, and Neapolitan pizza, plus a full slate of cocktails, beers, and wines.
There’s a retractable roof at Rittenhouse’s taqueria and Mexican bar El Techo, which means rooftop dining and drinking are always a possibility no matter the weather. Tequilas and mezcals are menu cornerstone; margaritas, fruity cocktails, beers, and wine round out the drink menu. For food, there’s tacos, a seasonal ceviche, chips and salsa, guacamole, and a selection of fun ice pops in flavors like flan. The sprawling space is at the top of the Motto by Hilton hotel.
Head to this classic Center City spot to eat and drink at a tucked away, yet in-the-middle-of-it-all rooftop. Two outdoor spaces flank the retro bar and indoor fireplace, where items like shoestring fries and lobster mac and cheese are on the menu.
Even if you can’t grab an outside table at this rooftop restaurant and bar, the wide-open windows mean you can catch a breeze nearly anywhere you sit. The greenery-dense space is perched atop Broad Street’s Cambria Hotel Downtown-Center City and offers prime views of the picturesque Bellevue Hotel.
Nine stories up, this lounge has prime views of the Benjamin Franklin Parkway. When you’re ready to stop snapping photos, cushy seating awaits, along with frosé, strong cocktails, and small-bite options.
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Above the hookah bar Byblos is Vango Lounge and Sky Bar, a currently walk-in-only option in the heart of Rittenhouse. It has been a staple for years, and while it’s not the best or coolest rooftop out there, it’s still a space for above-street-level drinks.
After a year-plus of reservation-only seating (because of pandemic restrictions), Bok Bar is now happily open to walk-ins, with a portion of the bar still reservation-only. Here, you can take in sweeping views from New Jersey to West Philadelphia from the top of the refurbished and repurposed former school. Throughout its season, the bar is home to dining pop-ups, fitness nights, live performances, and more. For drinks, Bok has a full menu of beer, wine, ciders, and cocktails.
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Irwin’s is now home to chef Michael Ferreri of shuttered Res Ipsa, who brings his signature dishes (eggplant gnocchi, agrodolce chicken) to the Bok Building. This southern-facing sibling to Bok Bar promises an eighth-floor deck complete with hanging lights and views of South Philly below Snyder. Enter at Eighth and Mifflin Streets and take the elevator to the top floor.
New York-based Emmy Squared serves its full menu (it’s known for its pizza and burgers), including drinks, atop the Queen Hotel on a multi-level deck with excellent, 360-degree views of its South Philly surroundings and beyond.
The 1.2-acre lawn covering Cira Green’s parking garage (along 30th Street between Chestnut and Walnut) is one of the city’s newer outdoor standouts, with sandwiches, salads, drinks, and prime skyline views. It’s 12 stories above ground level, so take the elevator to the top of the garage to access the free, no-reservation-required space.
The spacious Skytop Garden at the Conshohocken location of the reliable Great American Pub is first-come, first-served, but there is lots of room to enjoy food and drinks a few stories above street level in downtown Conshohocken.
The roof deck at the Media location of the popular pan-Asian restaurant overlooks the town. The full menu is available, which includes sushi, lobster mac and cheese, salads, bulgogi spring rolls, and shrimp tempura. Reservations are encouraged, especially on weekends.
The large rooftop at West Chester’s Mas Mexicali Cantina is first-come, first-served and is a popular hangout on nice days. Arrive early, and preferably with a small group, to avoid a wait for a rooftop seat. , The restaurant’s menu of tacos, burritos, nachos, and margaritas is available.