Six of the best: Los Angeles' hippest rooftop bars


Recently refurbished and rebranded, the rooftop bar of the iconic Shangri-la (the original Art Deco hotel bearing the Shangri-la name) is a favourite on midweek ''date nights'', when the space is less crowded and more intimate. With banquettes set around fire pits and gas heaters on a wrap-around deck, you can cosy up over a signature ''gossamer'' cocktail, soaking up unbeatable views as the sun sets over the Pacific Ocean. Inside, the bar area itself has a funky '70s feel, with glitter floor, gold-veined mirrors and light emanating through the translucent slab bar. 1301 Ocean Ave, Santa Monica, see


Downtown LA is being re-invented, with the 16th floor rooftop of the beautifully restored Pershing Square building (built in1923) offering the best views of the Gotham City skyline. Just getting to the bar is a trip in itself, with old-fashioned lifts reminiscent of a ''haunted mansion'' experience. From the French bistro-inspired restaurant on the 15th floor, walk up the final set of stairs to a fairyland with fire pits, lounges and indoor and outdoor seating, a fabulous space attracting an eclectic crowd. 448 S. Hill St, Downtown. See


Aussies are taking over West Hollywood's restaurant and bar scene, led by restaurateurs David Combes and Grant Smillie. While former Longrain head chef Louis Tikaram whips up Asian-inspired share plates downstairs (EP), the large rooftop bar (LP), boasting expansive views from the Hollywood Hills to Downtown, serves $10 bites and bubble-tea cocktails to a glamorous, celebrity-laden crowd who hang out around the fire pit until 2am. 603 N. La Cienaga Blvd, West Hollywood. See


With its casual vibe, bright, Mexican-inspired furnishings, greenery, movie screens, games area and unbeatable views of Runyon Canyon and the Hollywood sign, the rooftop of hip Mama Shelter hotel has become the place to hang as the sun sets. Snack on dips, pizzas and shawarma, while sangria is served in jugs and the cocktail list has a classic movie theme. With just a 98-person capacity, bookings are recommended, and must be done via phone. Open 5pm-12am, 5600 Selma Ave, Los Angeles. 


With 360 degree panoramic views taking in the Pacific Ocean and the chaotic antics of the boardwalk, Venice Beach's only rooftop bar – perched on top of the funky Hotel Erwin - attracts Aussie tourists like moths to a flame. Handcrafted cocktails (including hot toddies n winter) complement a reasonably-priced snack menu that includes lamb sliders and mahi mahi tacos. Heaters and blankets are on hand to protect from chilly sea breezes.  1697 Pacific Ave, Venice Beach. see


LA's newest rooftop restaurant and bar is already creating buzz, attracting award season parties before the doors officially opened on September. Despite having a 340-seat capacity, there are enough nooks and crannies to ensure intimacy, while the retractable roof, bubbling fountain and hanging floral arrangements create a lush, ''secret garden'' vibe. With a focus on seafood with Asian influences, the menu includes Catch classics such as Truffle Sashimi and Cantonese Lobster; while there's a strong focus on bubbles and saki on the beverage menu. Open till 2am. 8715 Melrose Ave, West Hollywood, see

The writer travelled as a guest of Visit West Hollywood and Santa Monica Travel & Tourism.