A rooftop lounge is not a new concept, just new to Phoenix. In the Gaslamp Quarter of San Diego, Altitude Sky Bar overlooks Petco Park, while down the street one of Stingaree’s most popular floors is the rooftop lounge. In New York, the rooftop lounge of the Hotel Gansevoort overlooks the Meat Packing District, and, on the Lower East Side, the lounge at the Hotel on Rivington provides 360º views of lower Manhattan.

In a climate perfectly suited for outdoor lounging, the concept of a rooftop lounge has previously escaped Phoenicians.

Enter Ben Bethel, owner and visionary behind the many renovations and updates undergone by The Clarendon Hotel. The latest accomplishment is Sunsets at the Clarendon. In a move that will surely spawn copycats, Bethel has furnished a rooftop deck with modern outdoor furniture, landscaping and unique lighting imported from Italy. There is also a sound system for down-tempo music. Each week on Wednesday through Sunday from 4 to 9pm, DJs spin and bartenders serve beer, wine and cocktails. A complimentary salsa bar is also provided.

The views of downtown are amazing as the buildings change color with the setting sun. Of course the sunsets are not bad either. There is also a bird’s-eye view of The Oasis, The Clarendon’s spectacularly sparkly new pool area with numerous fountains, lights and colorful outdoor furniture.

Sunsets at the Clarendon is quickly shaping up as the place to be. The weather is perfect, the view is inspiring, the drinks are cold and the music is hot. Hopefully Bethel is starting a new trend in the valley.