Durham has a gorgeous new rooftop bar, the Velvet Hippo. The city’s latest gem and a haven of tropical bliss.

Step into the Velvet Hippo, and you’ll be greeted by a captivating indoor lounge adorned with lively and colorful decorations.

At the heart of the space lies a long and inviting bar, where imaginative and refreshing cocktails are whipped up that perfectly complement the warm atmosphere. The lounge is also designed with cozy nooks, providing the perfect setting to unwind and relax with friends.

Cool off with exciting drinks like “Hot Girl Summer” and my personal favorite, the sparkling, “Ursula, Queen of Atlanticia.”

Velvet Hippo Durham
Ursula, Queen of Atlanticia

Venture to the other half of the Velvet Hippo, and you’ll find yourself on a two-tiered rooftop patio offering stunning views of Parrish Street and Durham City Hall. This spot is the ultimate setting to enjoy a drink while taking in the city lights. They even have dog-friendly hours out here on the weekends!

Velvet Hippo Durham
Velvet Hippo Durham
Velvet Hippo Durham
Velvet Hippo Durham

The Velvet Hippo is more than just a bar; it’s a celebration of unity and empowerment, as it’s the brainchild of five talented women: Alison Domnas, Claire Lyons, Sarah Matista, Amy Lyons Floyd, and seasoned hospitality expert Leslie Matista.

Get ready to experience this fantastic rooftop bar, as it opens its doors for a soft opening on July 28th, located on the third floor of 119 Orange St. Velvet Hippo is sure to become the new hotspot in Durham.

Mark your calendars because the grand opening celebration is set for August 5th!


  • Monday-Wednesday: 4pm-midnight.
  • Thursday-Friday: 4pm-2am
  • Saturday: 12pm-2am
  • Sunday: 12pm-midnight

Dog Friendly Hours (Outdoor space only!)

  • Saturday & Sunday: 12pm-6pm

Visit the Velvet Hippo’s site here

See More: Best Rooftop Bars and Patios in Durham

Katelyn Belch
Author: Katelyn Belch

Founder of Best of the Bull and Shop Durham. It’s my chief goal to keep you in the know about all things Durham.