Dining

The Best Nautical-Themed Restaurants & Bars

These restaurants and bars take waterfront dining to a whole new level
Best Nautical-Themed Restaurants & Bars
Photo: Scott Robertson

Restaurateurs are always looking for new ways to attract guests, and it's not just with delicious food and strong cocktails. Most of the establishments you walk into these days put just as much time into the menu as they put into their eye-catching decor. After all, design plays a major part in overall atmosphere, which is why restaurateurs are willing to pay big bucks to get it right.

As we've seen with the millennial pink design trend, people are flocking to restaurants and bars not just with appetites but with iPhone in hand in search of a good (and photogenic) time.

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So for those missing out on summer houses by the water but looking for a piece of the coastal life, these nautical-themed haunts are just what you need. Their interiors feature thoughtful designs, color schemes and decorations that will transport you right to the ocean—even if you're stuck in your home city.

So whether you're craving fresh seafood or just want the seaside experience minus the sand and sunburn, test the waters at one of these spots around the country.

  • The Ship (New York, NY)

    Head below deck to this bar in Soho where a long staircase leads you downstairs into a cocktail lounge with high ceilings and big booths upholstered with off-white sails. The subtle marine elegance and unique atmosphere make it a casual spot to grab a drink any night of the week.

    Architect & designer: Robert Jamieson | Photo: Sam Oerter

  • Blyth & Burrows (Portland, ME)

    This upscale bar is brought to you by Portland native Joshua Miranda. The inside resembles a historic ship galley, paying homage to two fallen captains who were killed in the battle of the Boxer and Enterprise. Mermaids, netting and figureheads from a ship's bow cover the restaurant walls. Make sure to head up to the second floor and check out the serious selection of oysters.

    Photos: Bonnie Durham Photography

  • Lure Fishbar (Miami, FL & New York, NY)

    Whether you're in the Big Apple or South Beach, these prime seafood spots will make you feel as if you just stepped onto your own personal luxury yacht. The menus offer a variety of raw and fresh seafood dishes like signature sushi rolls and seared diver scallops, so you can live your best seafaring life.

    Photo: Lure via Facebook

  • Bateau (Seattle, WA)

    Though you won't find any ships hanging on the walls at this contemporary steakhouse, the light color patterns and minimal white design provide a subtle nautical feel. One side of the restaurant is lined with tall windows that peer outside and has a quaint bar with five seats.

    Photo: Bateau

  • The Folly (New York, NY)

    Step inside this gastropub on Houston Street, and you'll be transported onto a fancy pirate ship at once. The interior features a semi-upscale space decorated with antique steamer trunks, rope chandeliers, weathered trunks and old wooden ship parts hanging above the bar. Head for the staircase, which leads to a furnished lounge in the back.

    Photo: The Folly

  • ReelHouse (Boston, MA)

    Beantown is home to some of the best seafood in the country, so it's no surprise the city is full of nautical-themed restos as well. ReelHouse features large windows with beautiful views of Boston Harbor and the city skyline. The nautical sensibility carries over to a globally inspired seafood-focused menu by executive chef Marc Orfaly.

    Photo: Brian Samuels

  • Alcomar (Austin, TX)

    This spot proves you don't need to be near an ocean to enjoy the beach vibes. The casual atmosphere and coastal decor make you feel like you and your friends are having dinner at your very own beach house. Plus, it's hard to miss the octopus painted on the wall as you enjoy Mexican-inspired seafood dishes like tortilla-crusted crab cakes and adobo grilled shrimp.

    Photo: Scott Robertson

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