There’s no shortage of hopping watering holes in The Mother City
From speakeasy-style dives and boisterous pubs to swanky hotel lounges and rooftop gardens, I’ve rounded up the coolest bars in the city for all tastes and occasions.
1. Gigi Rooftop Restaurant & Bar
The Gigi Rooftop Restaurant & Bar at the Gorgeous George Hotel is an intimate 80-seater lounge on the 6th floor. Indulge in wild tiki-inspired cocktails or CBD-infused non-alcoholic drinks as you let your hair down and enjoy the sun-filled poolside sessions.
Location: 118 St George’s Mall, Cape Town
Contact details: +27(0)87 898 6000
2. The Athletic Club & Social
Cozy corners to eat, drink and relax in, this three-story bar and restaurant perfectly pair a casual ambiance with an indulgent design to create an unforgettable experience.
Trace South Africa’s sporting history on the walls, enjoy a cocktail on the terrace, share a meal over candlelight and end your night grooving to good tunes in the hidden basement bar.
Location: 35 Buitengracht St, CBD, Cape Town, 8001, South Africa
Contact details: +27 84 087 5566
3. The Nines
Enter the Nines, a rooftop restaurant and cocktail lounge perched atop the uber-swanky Station House. From its indulgent views of Sea Point and its surroundings to its sexy decor-the Nines is the perfect place to end your day.
Go back in time to the beginning of cocktail making with their Vintage collection or dare to delve into their Modern Classics. There’s also the option of a mixologist concocting one of their signature creations, mysteriously titled Masterpieces.
Location: Station House, 19 Kloof Rd, Sea Point
Contact details: 021 745 6609
4. The Gin Bar
A gin that tastes like the wind through the trees. A gin that tastes like your best friend’s laugh. A gin that tastes like the tears of joy running down your face. They have more gins than you can shake a stick at.
But they’re not just a Gin Bar, they’re also a beer and wine bar. And a newly opened Bubbly Bar. So if you’re into any of those things, they’ve got you covered. It’s a place so good you’ll want to keep it a secret.
Location: 64A Wale St, Cape Town City Centre, Cape Town, 8000, South Africa
Contact details: +27 71 241 2277
5. Yours Truly
With live DJs and acoustic sessions every weekend, Yours Truly is ideal for after-work drinks, lazy weekends, and breathtaking sunsets. Once a backpacker, Yours Truly has crept into the hearts and minds of both locals and international visitors alike.
Location: 73 Kloof St, Gardens
Contact details: +27(0)21 426 2587
6. Bascule Bar
Unwind at Bascule Whisky, Wine and Cocktail Bar, located at the V&A Waterfront’s yacht marina.
Bascule is where connoisseurs and social butterflies gather for signature sundowners and lively tunes after a long day.
Choose from more than 400 internationally acclaimed whiskies or indulge in one of Cape Town’s finest wines.
Location: Cape Grace Hotel, West Quay Road, V&A Waterfront
Contact details: +27(0)21 410 7100
7. The Blue Room
The Blue Room at Grub & Vine is a live music and cocktail lounge that pays homage to the soulful sounds of jazz and the blues. A collaborative venture between Grub & Vine’s Chef Patron Matt Manning and well-known jazz artist Buddy Wells. The Blue Room is open from Wednesday – Saturday for pre-show dinner and cocktails with live performances from some of the country’s top jazz, soul, and blues artists.
Location: 103 Bree St, Cape Town City Centre, Cape Town
Contact details: +27 87 153 5244
Named after the 1951 Bollywood movie Awara (The Vagabond), this locale is the chic new incarnation of the ever-popular Bukhara. Picture trendy sophistication meets tongue-in-cheek alcohol offerings. From Pani Puri Gin and Masala Old Fashioned to coy cardamom-scented Blushing Lady, the fruits and spices used in Asian-fusion cuisine find their way into their divine drinks.
Location: 33 Church St, Cape Town
Contact details: +27(0)21 424-0000
Savour sensational views, sunset sessions, and sizzling summer beats at Chinchilla, rated by Time Out Chicago as one of the best rooftop bars in the world. Come in and drift off with resident DJs spinning the coolest sounds on the city’s hottest strip. Sip on chic alcoholic and non-alcoholic cocktails courtesy of their talented in-house mixologists.
Location: Shop 120, Second Floor, The Promenade Building, Victoria Road, Camps Bay
Contact details: +27(0)21 286 5075
Inspired by Baja California, Hacienda is a destination where guests can experience a modern twist on authentic COASTAL MEXICAN cuisine. Paired with exclusively selected Tequilas and Mezcals from the Baja California peninsula region in Mexico. They offer a dining experience not to be found anywhere else in Cape Town.
Location: 92 Bree St, Cape Town City Centre, Cape Town
Contact details: +27 21 422 0128
11. Views by De Grendel
Situated on the peak of a natural wonder of the world, Views by De Grendel is a brand-new beverage experience on top of Table Mountain. After an enthralling 5-minute ascent to the summit via the cableway, patrons can indulge in elegant wines while drinking in spectacular vistas over the Mother City.
Note: Cableway tickets can be purchased online.
Location: Table Mountain Aerial Cableway, Tafelberg Road, Gardens
Contact details: +27(0)21 424 8181
12. RED Roof Bar
Right on top of the Radisson Red Hotel, RED Roof is another must-visit bar in the mother city. Order refreshing cocktails and beers on tap (from a red truck casually parked poolside). The RED Roof is the perfect sunset meet-up spot in the stylish Silo District.
Location: Silo 6, Silo Square, V&A Waterfront
Contact details: +27(0)87 086 1578
For over a decade, Asoka has been the gem of Kloof Street, a sensual experience where the music is intoxicating and the energy is palpable. The restaurant tantalizes patrons with nights of culinary and rhythmic indulgence.
Location: 68 Kloof St, Gardens, Cape Town, 8001, South Africa
Contact details: +27 21 422 0909
14. Mountain Club Bistro
Voted one of the top rooftop bars in Cape Town, Mountain Club Bistro showcases jaw-dropping 360-degree of the city and Table Mountain.
Opt for their signature showstopper cocktails or choose from a range of local wines, beers, and ciders. A crystal blue plunge pool, sun loungers, and a backdrop of the mountain make this trendy rooftop bar totally Instagrammable.
Location: Cloud 9 Boutique Hotel, 12 Kloof Nek Rd, Gardens
Contact details +27(0)21 424 1133
15. Latitude Café
With astonishing views and a laidback atmosphere, Latitude Café is located atop the Latitude Aparthotel. Escape to this 50-seater café above the city, bristling with cosmopolitan afternoon cocktail culture. Relax on the edge of a luminescent rooftop pool or take an invigorating dip under the watchful gaze of Lion’s Head.
Location: Cnr Kings and Regent Roads, Sea Point
Contact details: +27 21 286 2738