With its scenic location on the Zürich Lake and its picturesque old city, Zürich hosts a range sights and activities during the day. Come dusk however, the city offers a bustling atmosphere and an excellent bar scene. With bars ranging from quirky to classic, visitors can take their pick from numerous spots. The world renowned bar scene of Zürich is worth checking out, and here we explore the best bars in the city.
George Bar & Grill
Situated in the fashionable Zone 1, George Bar & Grill is located in the penthouse of the Ober building and overlooks the rooftops of Zürich. The stylish bar with its elegant and sophisticated interior offers a terrace on both sides of the building, where visitors can enjoy fantastic views over the city. Next to the bar, George also features a classic lounge, where you can tick your pick from their grilled specials. True to its theme, a piano player provides the perfect soundtrack for the bar’s cultivated ambiance.
Address: Sihlstrasse 50, Haus Ober, Seite Sihl, Penthouse 5. Stock, Zurich 8001, Switzerland, +41 44 444 50 60
The Widder Bar, part of the Widder Hotel, is not only one of the best in the city, but arguably one of the best in the world. The finest jazz artists have performed here and over the previous decades the bar has seen a range of important personnel. The long wooden bar stocks more than 1000 different spirits, with over 250 single malts alone. The Widder Bar’s red leather seats and dimmed lights provide the perfect setting for the tunes of the shiny piano. Located in the heart of Zürich city, the cozy bar’s mysterious atmosphere and range of drinks have yet to find their equal in the country.
Address: Widdergasse 6, 8001 Zürich, Switzerland, +41 44 224 24 11
The Kronenhalle bar has made a worldwide name for itself, just like the adjoining restaurant. The elegant bar propels the visitor into a different time with its high-top wooden counters and paintings by Picasso and Chagall lining the walls. Kronenhalle only serves high-quality spirits and the barkeepers’ skillful preparations can only be described as a work of art. The legendary bar is rumored to possess more than 300 different cocktail recipes and has been the meeting place for a wide range of artists. The Kronenhalle is one of Zürich’s landmarks and the event of a lifetime.
Address: Rämistrasse 4, 8001 Zürich, Switzerland, +41 44 262 99 00
This cozy little bar is located at the Wipkingen railway station and is reminiscent of stepping into your grandmother’s living room. Wooden paneled walls and old-fashioned furniture give the bar a relaxed feel. While serving as a cafe during the day, the Nordbrücke attracts a variety of different customers during the evening, looking to enjoy the bar’s spirits. Entertainment is provided through DJs or bands on the weekends and poetry readings during the week. The low-key Nordbrücke is the ideal spot to relax over a glass of wine.
Address: Dammstrasse 58, Zürich 8037, Switzerland, +41 44 271 01 77
The quirky El Lokal stands out through its eclectic interior, a mixture of Mexican and Caribbean kitsch and nautical elements. The bar features a gallery and a terrace, and the outdoor vibe makes El Lokal one of the most desired places to be in the summer. Referring to itself as the very last island on the Sihl River, El Lokal is also host to a variety of live performances and serves a variety of refreshing drinks. The giant skeleton hanging from the ceiling truly makes this bar one of the most unique places in the city, and the mixed crowd contributes to the vibrant atmosphere.
Address: Gessnerallee 11, 8001 Zürich, Switzerland, +41 43 344 87 50
Raygrodski comes in the style of a typical cocktail bar with long wooden bar counters and a minimalist setting. The bar has quickly risen to fame and offers a variety of skilfully prepared spirits and most importantly, some truly unique signature drinks. The extensive choice of cocktails make this place a popular spot with students and the young and fashionable. It is no surprise that Raygrodski tends to be packed on the weekend, with everyone trying to get their hands on one of the skilfully prepared beverages. Raygrodski’s keeps it simple and cool with a touch of class and that’s what makes it so popular with the crowds.
Address: Sihlfeldstrasse 49, 8003 Zürich, Switzerland, +41 79 109 49 49
There is no place quite like Moods in Zürich’s bustling bar scene. Considered one of the best jazz clubs in Europe, Moods has hosted the most talented musicians over the past decades. The bar is located in the trendy Schiffbau quarter, next to the quirky Les Halles restaurant. The bar offers tasty cocktails and other fine spirits and the visitors can enjoy some world class entertainment ranging from jazz, soul, reggae to classical and electronic music. The intoxicating atmosphere will sweep away longtime lovers of live music and newcomers alike. Moods provides world class entertainment and some of the finest artists, who have to be seen to be believed.
Address: Schiffbaustrasse 6, 8005 Zürich, Switzerland, +41 44 276 80 00
The Barfussbar is another of Zürich’s popular spots that transforms into a bar by night. Serving as a women’s only swimming bath during the day, the Barfussbar offers one of the most magical settings in the city. The scenic deck is filled with Zürich’s hippest crowd, who can enjoy refreshing drinks while dangling their feet in the cool water. The Art Noveau-styled pool and twinkling fairy lights make the Barfussbar one of the most special places in Zürich. Wander across the little pool bridge while sipping a cool drink and marvel at Zürich’s stunning nighttime panorama.
Address: Stadthausquai 12, 8001 Zürich, Switzerland, +41 44 251 33 31
While Zürich is renowned for its sophisticated bar scene, Gonzo, a rock and pop club, offers an alternative for those looking to dance the night away. Numerous people are often waiting to descend down the narrow stairs into the cellar, where bright red walls and dimmed lights create the ideal setting for a rock’n’roll night. The unpretentious atmosphere and hip crowd make Gonzo one of the coolest bars in Zürich.
Address: Langstrasse 135, 8004 Zürich, Switzerland, +41 43 317 99 25
Rimini is located on the Sihl River at the Schanzengraben and is one of the most popular outdoor spots in Zürich. The wooden deck is lit by colorful lights and oriental cushions are spread out on the floor. During the day, Rimini serves as a men’s swimming bath, before coming to life as one of Zürich’s trendiest bars in the city. Guests can take their pick from a range of tasty cocktails and other drinks or enjoy one of the grilled specialties. Additionally it hosts a Monday market where local designers can present their creations. The magical atmosphere, created by the reflection of the lanterns on the water, is worth the visit alone. Rimini is one of the hippest spots in the summer and provides a tropical flair in the middle of the city.
Address: Badweg 10, 8001 Zürich, Switzerland