Photo by Gabriele Stravinskaite

Guides | 03.12.2024

Weed Bars: Exploring The Rising Trend Of Cannabis Lounges

Cannabis clubs represent a fascinating chapter in the story of American cannabis culture and legal evolution.

Cannabis lounges have come a long way, evolving from hidden gems in the city to welcoming spots across the country—from Alaska’s chilly borders to the lively streets of New York. We’ll explore how changes in laws, society, and culture have helped create these spaces where people can come together. 

Come along as we tour the states leading this movement and shine a spotlight on nine standout cannabis bars, each offering a rich historical experience.

Which States Allow Cannabis Consumption Lounges?

Photo by Aditya Vyas

Cannabis lounges track back to the 1920s in the United States. The era gave rise to “teapads,” urban havens where jazz flowed as freely as cannabis. These teapads vanished once cannabis was outlawed, though the spirit of communal consumption lived on in ventures like the early San Francisco Cannabis Buyers Club.

The concept saw a resurgence and transformation across the Atlantic in the 1990s and early 2000s with the emergence of cannabis social clubs in Spain, particularly in the Basque country and Catalonia. These clubs were pioneering, non-commercial entities dedicated to the collective cultivation of cannabis strictly for personal use by members, emphasizing security, quality, and a cooperative ethos.

In recent years, several states have legalized cannabis lounges for regulated, safe and social consumption:

  • Alaska
  • California
  • Colorado
  • Illinois
  • Massachusetts
  • Michigan
  • New Jersey
  • New Mexico
  • New York
  • Nevada
  • Pennsylvania

This progression reflects changing attitudes towards cannabis, merging historical practices with contemporary acceptance and legal frameworks for communal enjoyment.

9 Weed Bars In The US Worth A Visit

The United States boasts several cannabis lounges.

From the historic streets of San Francisco to the bustling avenues of New York, these nine weed bars stand out for their distinctive ambiance and premium services.

Moe Greens Dispensary & Lounge (San Francisco, California)

Photo by Moe Green’s

Located: 1276 Market St, San Francisco, CA 94102, United States

Operating as a dispensary and lounge, Moe Greens offers a mid-century modern-inspired aesthetic. Its interior, adorned with plush green leather booths, reflective gold wallpaper, and the rustic touch of exposed brick walls, invites guests into a world where style meets comfort.

Moe Greens distinguishes itself with specialized areas tailored for different cannabis consumption preferences, notably “The Playground,” a spacious zone dedicated to vaping enthusiasts. 

The lounge upholds a stringent “no alcohol” policy, ensuring a safe and enjoyable atmosphere by screening patrons for intoxication upon entry. This policy underscores Moe Greens’ commitment to providing a high-class, professional, yet welcoming environment for all its guests.

Cannabis Cafe (West Hollywood, California)

Photo by Los Angeles Magazine

Location: 1201 N La Brea Ave, West Hollywood, CA 90038, United States

Reopening in November 2023 after a hiatus caused by the pandemic, the Cannabis Cafe has quickly reclaimed its status as a hotspot for those seeking a blend of trendiness and tradition.

The cafe’s Instagram-worthy ambiance, enhanced by a vintage flair, sets the stage for a unique dining experience. Guests can indulge in a menu that cleverly integrates cannabis into delectable bites, such as Korean-style wings, nachos, and burgers while offering non-infused options for those who prefer traditional dining. 

NuWu Cannabis Lounge (Las Vegas, Nevada)

Photo by Nuwu Cannabis

Located: 1235 Paiute Cir, Las Vegas, NV 89106, United States

Offering multiple locations, the NuWu Courtyard seamlessly blends cannabis-inspired entertainment with breathtaking views, offering a versatile experience for every cannabis enthusiast. Whether you’re drawn to the melody of Canna Karaoke Night, the humor of Comedy Club evenings, or the connections made during Industry Nights, NuWu caters to all tastes.

One location, the SkyHigh Lounge, is on a rooftop terrace overlooking Las Vegas’ iconic skyline; the venue boasts dab bars, diverse food selections, drink options, and a lively courtyard for live performances. This dynamic setting ensures a memorable visit, whether you’re there for the entertainment, the views, or the vibrant cannabis culture.

Rise Mundelein Lounge (Mundelein, Illinois)

Photo by RISE Dispensaries

Location: 1325 Armour Blvd, Mundelein, IL 60060, United States

As the primary cannabis consumption lounge offered in Illinois, Rise Mundelein Lounge takes its design inspiration from 1930s Americana to echo the speakeasy vibe of Chicago’s storied past. More than just a place to enjoy cannabis, Rise Mundelein intertwines its rich history and education with its offerings, striving to demystify cannabis use through empowerment and informed responsibility.

The Summit Lounge (Worcester, Massachusetts)

Photo by The Summit Lounge

Location: 116 Water St, Worcester, MA 01604, United States

Established in 2017, The Summit Lounge redefines the cannabis club model with its membership-exclusive approach since its inception in 2017. Catering to diverse preferences, it features “the High Roller” for traditional cannabis smokers and “the Vault” for those who favor concentrated cannabis extracts.

With a modest membership fee of $20 per month, The Summit Lounge is dedicated to providing a secure, immaculate, and prejudice-free environment for both medical and recreational cannabis users.

Barbary Coast (San Francisco, California)

Photo by Barbary Coast

Location: 952 Mission St, San Francisco, CA 94103, United States

Barbary Coast harks back to the lively days of San Francisco’s Gold Rush era, transforming from the notorious red-light district to a revered dispensary and lounge in 2018. Under David Ho’s ownership, it combines a touch of history with modern cannabis culture, offering quartz glass appliances for dab enthusiasts and an “old-school” vibe that has cemented its status as a city favorite, even earning accolades from the Los Angeles Times for its distinguished ambiance.

The Coffee Joint (Denver, Colorado)

Photo by Westword

The Coffee Joint stands as Denver’s pioneering licensed social cannabis consumption lounge. The Coffee Joint invites patrons with a minimal $5 entry fee, which includes a complimentary cup of coffee, making every visit a warm welcome.

Those who purchase the adjacent Yuma Dispensary enjoy complimentary access, enhancing the community feel. Located at the heart of Denver, The Coffee Joint is a vibrant gathering place for cannabis enthusiasts to meet, mingle, and create lasting connections.

The Stoned Lounge (New York, NY)

Photo by The Stoned Lounge

Location: 235 E 4th St, New York, NY 10009, United States

For a price of $120 per person, The Stoned Lounge offers an exclusive, all-you-can-eat and drink experience that spans a five-course tasting menu, with the freedom to sample an array of edibles, concentrates, and flowers—either purchased on-site or brought from home. Food includes items like cannabis-infused cannolis, wings, and garlic knots.

What To Expect At A Weed Bar

Venturing into a weed bar for the first time—or even as a seasoned patron—offers a unique adventure into the world of cannabis culture. With diverse venues, from rooftop terraces to cozy lounges, each establishment provides its own distinctive experience. 

Here’s what you can generally expect, along with tips to maximize your visit:

Weed Etiquette: Embrace the social norms of cannabis consumption. Practices like “puff, puff, pass” are commonplace. Awareness and respect for these etiquettes enhance the communal experience.

Location Perks: Many weed bars boast unique features, such as rooftop pools or bars with private balconies, offering a perfect backdrop for your cannabis enjoyment. Choose a venue that aligns with your preferences for a memorable experience.

Culinary Delights: It’s wise to indulge in some hearty food before exploring the cannabis offerings. Since certain foods can augment THC’s effects, many lounges conveniently offer snacks or collaborate with local eateries for a richer experience.

Privacy Respect: In the intimate setting of a consumption lounge, the privacy of fellow patrons is paramount. Practice discretion and seek consent before capturing and sharing moments.

Safety First: Enhance your safety by visiting with trusted companions, abstaining from driving post-consumption, and selecting venues in well-lit, accessible areas.

Budtender Wisdom: Engage with knowledgeable staff to find cannabis products that align with your desired experience. Starting with smaller doses allows you to find your comfort zone safely.

Adhering to Rules: Each lounge has its own rules, including policies on bringing your cannabis, tobacco use, and alcohol consumption. Familiarizing yourself with these guidelines ensures a smooth visit.

Atmospheric Influence: The ambiance of a lounge, from live music to the warmth of the staff, significantly shapes your visit. Look for places that tick all your boxes for a splendid time.

Diverse Selections: Weed bars typically offer an extensive selection of cannabis products, from edibles to concentrates, catering to various tastes and preferences.

Tips To Enhance Your Cannabis Lounge Experience

Book Ahead: Secure your spot in advance, especially at popular venues, to avoid disappointment.

Rideshare Ready: Opt for transportation alternatives like taxis or rideshares to ensure a safe journey back home.

Socialize Safely: Bringing friends amplifies the fun and adds a layer of safety to your outing.

Prioritize Dining: Consider ordering your meals first to mitigate any potential discomfort from cannabis consumption.

Experiment: Don’t avoid trying new products or experiences—under the guidance of the lounge’s experts.

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