Music & Nightlife

Go upstairs and unwind

Looking for a place to sit back and enjoy the spring weather with a cocktail? Check out these sky-high options that offer beautiful views of the city, away from the noise and exhaust from traffic. The best rooftop patios in our area include some old standbys, a lakefront oasis and a brand-new addition to Charlotte's skyline. The Roof Garden at Forum For an upscale experience under the stars, check out the chic rooftop deck at the Forum. Rattan couches, greenery and a teakwood floor are the centerpieces of this uptown hot spot's patio, which overlooks Sixth and College streets and the bustling alley behind the club. This spring/summer, the club will host various DJs on the roof on Thursdays and will have live music on Saturdays. 300 N. College St. 704-375-8765; www.thecharlotte The Pavilion The newest addition to the uptown skyline is scheduled to open by the end of the month. The 25,000-square-foot open-air venue on top of the EpiCentre will offer soaring views of the center city. Pavilion will feature a covered bar area where glass, garage-style doors can be closed to keep out the elements. The entire space will be able to accommodate up to 2,000 people. Shiela Fletcher, a partner in and manager of Pavilion, hopes to bring in big-name music acts for entertainment and is planning an EpiCentre at Five event, similar to the popular Alive After Five party on Wachovia Plaza. 210 E. Trade St. The Dock Bar Looking to get out of the city? Check out the beautiful homes on Lake Norman and watch the boats come in from this floating waterfront bar at Queen's Landing in Mooresville. You can get there by car or by boat and tie up right at the bar's dock. Grab a drink at the snack bar and head up to the roof for the best view. 1459 River Highway, Mooresville. 704-663-2628; The Gin Mill This South End watering hole's rooftop offers unobstructed views of uptown and is a popular place to rent out for private parties. Owner Chris Healy says there's a private event at least once a weekend. He says the bar attracts business people after work, before skewing younger late at night. 1411 S. Tryon St. 704-373-0782; Mint Museum of Craft + Design You can take in amazing views of Tryon Street and its skyscrapers while flanked by serene Four Season statues. But only if you're invited to a private party there, or attend one of the Mint's special events for the public – like the outdoor reception the Young Affiliates of the Mint will host there tonight as part of its Mint After 5 series. Held the third Friday of the month in May, June and September, it features music, food from area restaurants, and a cash bar. (6-9 p.m. $15, free for Young Affiliates of the Mint.) OLIVIA FORTSON 220 N. Tryon St. Six Pence Pub For a small-town setting, head down to Fort Mill and take the lift up for a pint at this British pub in Baxter Village (think Birkdale Village on a smaller scale). The rooftop terrace seats about 50 at wrought-iron tables and has a private bar. Worth noting: It's limited to those 21 and older. The patio overlooks the shops and colorful townhomes of the tree-lined community. The setting is so quaint that we were (almost) able to overlook the below-average service. 993 Market St., Fort Mill. 803-802-5885.