Where to host an after-work outdoor happy hour in your city

A bloody mary, a glass of wine, and a margarita on a bar overlooking water.
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No matter if the majority of your team works remotely or together in an office, everyone enjoys the opportunity to gather in a more relaxed environment to let loose and kick back. Enter the work happy hour. 

When the weather starts to warm up, an outdoor happy hour can be the perfect way to re-energize and reconnect with your colleagues. No computers, no ringing phones, no customers (unless you’re counting yourselves!). Just good conversation and even better drinks in a decidedly cubicle-free setting. 

Interested in planning an outdoor happy hour for your team? Read on to discover some of the best outdoor happy hour establishments for large groups across the country. 


New York City 

Planning an after-work party in the Big Apple? Here’s where to host the best outdoor happy hour in NYC. 


Left: A close up of two glasses and a bottle of rose on a wooden bench; Right: An outdoor seating area with a flower wall.Images by Loreley NYC.


Loreley Restaurant & Biergarten, Lower East Side

Why it’s good: Modeled after Cologne’s famous Brauhauses, this heated German beer garden has 12 rotating taps, plenty of rustic picnic-style tables, and a menu full of Deutsche delights like bratwurst and schnitzel. 


Left: People enjoying drinks on a boat bar; Right: A close up of drinks and apps at Grand Banks including oysters and french fries.Left image by Grand Banks; right image by Shilin Chen.


Grand Banks, Tribeca 

Why it’s good: Float your team’s boat—literally—with a happy hour aboard this one-of-a-kind oyster bar. Located on a historic wooden schooner docked on the Hudson River, it’s sure to make a lasting impression. 


Left: Close up of hands clinking two Aperol Spritzes; Right: A mural at The Springs.Left image by The Springs; Right image by Ayden Byrnes.


The Springs, Greenpoint

Why it’s good: Transport your team to Southern California at this Brooklyn bar with retro pastel vibes to spare. The only thing bigger than its cocktail menu is its massive patio space out back. 


Los Angeles 

L.A.’s unbeatable weather means that outdoor happy hours are a year-round possibility. Here’s where to go.

Left: People enjoying the rooftop at Mama Shelter LA; Right: A tropical drink with a pineapple slice.Images by Mama Shelter LA


Mama Shelter, Hollywood  

Why it’s good: This sprawling rooftop bar has views of the iconic Hollywood sign, plus tons of brightly colored seating (including comfy couches) and umbrellas for shade.


Left: Close up of three people clinking their cocktails; Right: A mural at Employees Only.Images by Employees Only.


Employees Only, West Hollywood
Why it’s good: This aptly named cocktail bar and restaurant boasts a grassy outdoor space with twinkle lights and striped umbrellas. Bonus for pup-friendly offices? Dogs are welcome.


Left: People enjoying their meals at The Edendale’s backyard; Right: A close up of hands holding a cocktail.Image by The Edendale.


Edendale, Silver Lake  

Why it’s good: With vine-covered walls and café tables, this Silver Lake staple with an extensive drink menu gives off European vibes your colleagues will adore beaucoup. 


Washington, D.C.

Office politics have no business attending these outdoor happy hour spots in D.C.


Left: A close up of a cocktail overlooking a river; Right: The rooftop seating at Whiskey Charlie.Left image by Macy Dolton; Right image by Whiskey Charlie.


Whiskey Charlie, The Wharf 

Why it’s good: Perched atop the Canopy Hotel, this outdoor craft cocktail lounge with beautiful harborfront views is the perfect place to take in a summer sunset with your coworkers. 


Left: The roof deck at El Techo; Right: Close up of a skull-shaped pitcher.Left image by Kimberly Kong; Right image by friestequila.


El Techo, Shaw

Why it’s good: Take your team on a tropical vacation at this colorful bar and tapas spot with a 1,100-square-foot roof deck. With tons of Latin American flair, it’s like entering an oasis in the middle of the city. 


Left: Two people clinking wine glasses; Right: People enjoying the garden at St. Vincent Wine.Left image by Brittany Ingalls. Right image by Hannah Wagner for The Washington Post.


St. Vincent Wine, Park View 

Why it’s good: This wine garden’s sprawling 4,000-square-foot gravel patio is big enough to accommodate even the largest office happy hours—and its charcuterie boards and frequent live jazz performances are crowd pleasers, too.


San Francisco

Planning a team outing by the Bay? Try these outdoor happy hour favorites. 


The outdoor seating at 4505 Burgers & BBQ.Image by Michael David Rose.


4505 Burgers & BBQ, NoPa
Why it’s good: One of the best (and only) barbecue joints in San Francisco, this place has a spacious covered patio with communal picnic tables, plus a long list of beer, wine, and hard seltzer—ideal for a more casual office happy hour. 


Left: A bloody mary, a glass of wine, and a margarita on a bar overlooking water; Right: People on the outdoor patio at Mission Rock Resort.Image by Mission Rock Resort.


Mission Rock Resort, Mission Bay

Why it’s good: Right on the shores of the historic Mission Bay, this sea-centric establishment offers up classic bar food on its covered outdoor patio, and as good an oyster happy hour as you’ll find anywhere in the area. 


Left: Cocktails on a table next to a pink couch; Right: The rooftop seating at Charmaine’s with a roaring fire.Left image by San Francisco Proper; Right image by Charmaine’s.


Charmaine’s, Civic Center  

Why it’s good: Located above the Proper Hotel, this slightly more upscale (read: pricier) option for your team’s happy hour has a rooftop terrace with terrific views of City Hall and Market Street—and the tasty cocktails aren’t too shabby, either.



You can’t go wrong hosting a work happy hour at these outdoor Chi-Town hot spots. 


Left: Outdoor seating at The Duck Inn; Right: Close up of a cocktail.Images by The Duck Inn.


The Duck Inn, Bridgeport 

Why it’s good: Treat your colleagues to a fun evening at this inviting gastropub with a great big backyard patio—home to tons of creative cocktails, beer, wine, and a seasonally-updated food menu.


Left: A bartender pouring a drink; Right: The fireplace at Frontier.Images by Frontier.


Frontier, Noble Square

Why it’s good: For a truly wild happy hour experience, take your team to this lodge-inspired spot with a stone fireplace, seemingly endless cocktail menu, and 100-person all-weather patio with a retractable roof. 


Left: The rooftop at Offshore; Right: Four people cheersing with a lake in the background.Image by Offshore.


Offshore, Navy Pier

Why it’s good: With a 20,000-square-foot terrace—it’s the largest rooftop venue in the country—this huge happy hour destination offers unmatched views of both Lake Michigan and the city skyline, along with an ample seasonal drink menu. 


Outdoor happy hour invitations

Whether you live on the West Coast, East Coast, or somewhere in between, the best outdoor happy hours are the ones that are carefully planned out ahead of time. With Paperless Post, it’s easy to send online invitations to your coworkers with all your outdoor happy hour details in just a few minutes. 

Send stationery-inspired professional event invitations, or keep things more casual with a customizable animated Flyer. From there, you can track RSVPs instantly, ask for information about dietary restrictions, and so much more. 

We’ll just come right out and say it: outdoor happy hours are even happier when they’re organized with Paperless Post.


Browse Happy Hour Invitations


Hero image via Mission Rock Resort.