Go Where the Stars Put on a Show for Free: Up on a Roof

People in "the DMV" (the locals' term for the District of Columbia, Maryland and Virginia) appreciate a roof deck and terrace as much as they like politics, especially if beverages and cool vibes are involved. Here’s a guide to some of Arlington’s elevated watering holes.

rooftop drinks
Experience all the fun of outdoor dining with a bird’s eye view.


If you want to kick outdoor dining up a notch, quite literally, try Le Terrace @ Amuse restaurant at Le Méridien Hotel. Experience all the fun of outdoor dining with a bird’s eye view. There’s a view of Georgetown, Washington, D.C.’s oldest neighborhood, and the Potomac River while you dine on elegant cuisine and fine wine.

Arlington Rooftop Bar & Grill

Want to go sky-high in Arlington? The name gives it away that this is the place for the airy rooftop experience. It’s chill, and often a nice breeze up top. Diners perch high above the bustling Courthouse neighborhood to enjoy beer, a cocktail or even Sunday brunch. Catch a sunset, dine on pub grub and breathe in the atmosphere.

Clarendon Ballroom

Dance the night away outdoors. Clarendon Ballroom, in the historic Woolworth Building, is a unique event venue. Refurbished maple wood floors, a pressed tin ceiling and crown molding brought back the building to its 1930s glow. By adding the Rooftop Pavilion, an 80-foot long Brazilian cherry wood bar in the Main Ballroom, and a cozy lounge on the bottom level, the Ballroom created a unique venue with amazing views.

Don Tito in Clarendon

This Mexican restaurant and bar in the Clarendon neighborhood features a DJ booth on the rooftop, and 9 p.m. Tuesdays mean half-price tacos, hookah and bottle service. Fair warning, the rooftop tables are first come, first serve.


At Fashion Centre at Pentagon City shopping mall, diners sit outdoors at Matchbox restaurant’s elevated terrace and take dining to a new level: Wood-fired pizza, the “Walk of Shame” burrito, or the sliders with mile-high onion frizzles along with a big tap beer list can keep you satisfied. Or try chicken and waffles for a hearty brunch.

Whitlow’s on Wilson

Rub elbows with the capital’s up-and-comers for an after-work happy hour or night out on the town at Whitlow’s On Wilson. Whitlow’s Rooftop Tiki Bar features festive cocktails and a beachy summer atmosphere that’s reminiscent of a tropical getaway right here in Arlington. Later you can tell the folks back home you met a real Washington insider…outside.

Wilson Hardware Kitchen & Bar

You don't have to wait for warm weather to enjoy the rooftop at Wilson Hardware Kitchen & Bar in the heart of Clarendon. This rooftop is also heated in the winter, and the bar offers drinks with names like Bright Idea, Blue Print or the Permit Denied along with contemporary American cuisine. The roof is absolutely perfect for de-stressing during the day.

Author: Kathleen Murphy