Cheers to the Best Rooftop Bars in Scottsdale

By local contributor
Taryn Shorr

With about nine months a year of perfect patio weather, incredibly clear skies, and laid-back yet vibrant entertainment and nightlife options, it’s easy to see why the Scottsdale rooftop bar scene is thriving. Whether you’re looking for a chill weeknight spot to enjoy the sunset with a cocktail or you want to be at the center of the city’s trendiest party scene, check out some of the best rooftop bars in Scottsdale.

 


Outrider Rooftop Lounge

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Perched on top of the Canopy by Hilton Scottsdale Old Town hotel, Outrider Rooftop Lounge is perhaps the buzziest rooftop bar in Scottsdale. Take in some of the best views in the Valley of the Sun as you enjoy locally focused cocktails like the Southwest Sunburst or Seasonal Slushie and shareables including Honey-Balsamic Glazed Pork Belly Queso Fundido and Turkey Chorizo Spiced Meatballs. The 360-degree views always impress, but Outrider really shines at sunset, as the sun dips below Camelback Mountain.

Outrider also has misters and a chic pool with reservable cabanas. During the winter, fireplaces dot the rooftop bar. Note that seating is first-come, first-served only and Outrider doesn’t accept reservations.

 

Cottontail Lounge at The W Scottsdale

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As far as the rooftop bar Scottsdale scene, it’s hard to “top” Cottontail Lounge. Situated on the second floor of the W Scottsdale in the heart of the Entertainment District, this see-and-be-seen hotspot is often compared to iconic Las Vegas pool bars.

The wildly popular WET Deck pool is the focal point of Cottontail Lounge, and there’s no question why — it’s stylish, vibrant, and incredibly clever, with four portholes built into the bottom for giving people in the lobby below peek-a-boo views. Cottontail Lounge also is open year-round, cooled in the summer and heated in the winter.

Reservations are highly recommended, and the entire pool area is 21-and-up Fridays through Sundays, including for Sunday brunch. Upscale pool attire is required on weekends during the day.

 

Orange Sky Lounge at Talking Stick

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If you’re looking for that elusive combination of excellent food and drinks with an unbeatable view, Orange Sky Lounge at Talking Stick is one of the best rooftop restaurants Scottsdale has to offer. Talking Stick Resort is best known for its upscale casino, but Orange Sky Lounge is well worth a visit in its own right, particularly for special occasions or date nights.

Situated on the resort’s 15th floor and facing westward, the lounge boasts breathtaking views — especially at sunset. The menu centers around specialty cocktails and an impressive wine list with over 300 bottles to choose from, as well as a nice selection of elevated small bites such as burrata with Calabrian chilies and locally sourced artisan charcuterie boards. Orange Sky Lounge also hosts live music on the weekends.

 

The Balcony at Social Tap

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Equal parts weekend brunch hotspot and lively late-night cocktail lounge, The Balcony at Social Tap is one of the top rooftop bars in Scottsdale. It’s situated in the heart of Old Town just across from Wasted Grain and offers a totally different vibe from the main bar and restaurant on the ground floor.

The Balcony is slightly more upscale and distinctly more chill, with a focus on cocktails and wine rather than beer. Instead of traditional bar games, the 1,800-square-foot space offers plush, stylish seating, a large fireplace, a DJ booth, and an unmatched, bird’s-eye view of Old Town Scottsdale. The Balcony also is available for private events and accommodates around 85 people.