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There are lots of things one can easily bank on seeing in the Palmetto state, but when you think about a cannabis bar, South Carolina is the last place you’d find one of those.

When states such as Nevada, New York, and Massachusetts talk about opening marijuana bars and eventually open them, nobody is astoundingly surprised. But when it comes from a red state resistant to marijuana legalization, we have many reasons to raise our eyebrows.

Thankfully, it’s happening. Joining the states with a cannabis bar, South Carolina has opened its first, and we’re here to talk about it!

But before we hop in, what is a cannabis bar, marijuana bar, or cannabis dry bar? What should you expect when you visit any of the marijuana bars in the U.S.?

What is a Cannabis Dry Bar?

A cannabis dry bar is a bar that specializes in cannabis-infused mocktails or nonalcoholic cocktails. It is simply a cocktail bar minus the alcohol plus cannabis.

Think of it as the sort of bar that would give you all the solace you need when you’re trying to stay sober or wish to give dry January a run.

Marijuana bars are founded on the need to provide safer alternatives to alcohol. They are a wholeness space for people who wish to withdraw from alcohol without suffering the grave effects of quitting cold turkey.

In a marijuana bar, you‘ll get all the vibes of a proper bar or lounge, but instead of having alcohol and getting plastered, you’ll nourish your body and mind with some cannabis-infused drinks.

You’ll most likely leave the marijuana bar with a contagious zen vibe. And that’s exactly what the High Rise Beverage Company wants to achieve with the first cannabis bar in South Carolina.

The Opening of South Carolina’s First Cannabis Bar

The Palmetto State is a state well-known for maintaining a hard stance against the use of drugs, including marijuana. Although alcohol is legal in S.C., state regulations keep it on a tight leash.

Several attempts to fully legalize medical marijuana in the state have been met with resistance. However, the state legalized high CBD/low THC extracts for medicinal use via Julian’s Law in 2014.

It is this Julian’s law and the federal Farm Bill that form the basis upon which High Rise Beverage Company and the Charleston Hemp Collective successfully opened a marijuana bar in South Carolina.

It is definitely great news for patients in South Carolina who are having difficulties accessing a diverse catalog of hemp products that could be beneficial to them.

According to Matt Skinner, co-owner of the bar, “It is cannabis-themed, but it’s a wellness bar.” 

That statement brings some perspective to what you should expect when you visit.

The cozy, 32-seater bar exudes a beachy vibe, offering a sense of calmness that aids elevation.

For the owners, the bar is not merely an experience of zesty cannabis-infused mocktails that are feel-good alternatives to alcohol. 

It’s also an education space that ushers the customers to an experience of the medicinal benefits of hemp-derived CBD, delta-8, and delta-9 beverages.

Although the bar was earlier scheduled to open in June, it suffered some delays, which saw it finally open its doors to customers on August 11, 2023.

The High Rise cannabis dry bar is located inside James Island Charleston Hemp Collective and is open Sunday through Wednesday, from 10 AM to 10 PM, and Thursday through Saturday, from 10 AM to 11 PM.

Other Marijuana Bars in the US

Where else can you find a cannabis bar? South Carolina is not the first and won’t be the last state to open a marijuana bar in the U.S. More so, states like California and Illinois have been at the forefront of cannabis lounges before now.

cannabis bar

Below is a list of 12 other marijuana bars and cafes to try out in the U.S.:


    New York and Nevada are looking to open more marijuana consumption lounges.

    What Cannabis Bars Mean for Marijuana in the United States

    Raise the cannabis vs. alcohol argument in any health community, and conclusions are almost always an unanimous agreement that alcohol is indeed more toxic. 

    In fact, many people will argue that marijuana is not in any way nearly as toxic as alcohol.

    In support of this argument, the American Addiction Centers (AAC) reiterated that according to CDC reports, nearly 88,000 alcohol-related deaths occur in the U.S. each year. 

    Meanwhile, the number of marijuana-related deaths is almost zero.

    If you replace alcohol with coffee in these debates, the conclusions are not so different when caffeine addiction and caffeine overdose are thrown into the mix.

    Despite the high addiction rates and death rates, there are over 100,000 cafes and bars in the U.S. 

    Since cannabis is safer and much healthier than alcohol, it makes sense that marijuana bars should exist too to allow patients and adults the opportunity to freely enjoy some cannabis in the company of friends or like-minded individuals.

    But that’s yet to be the case, as you can effortlessly count the number of marijuana bars in the U.S. across your fingers.

    The Rise of Marijuana Bars in the U.S.

    Thanks to the efforts of some pacesetters in the industry, we’re witnessing the gradual rise of more variants of cannabis businesses besides conventional dispensaries. 

    Cannabis lounges, bars, and other forms of cannabis consumption areas are at the forefront of the businesses ushering in the new era in the industry.

    While it’s all still in the baby phase, we have seen news of legislators in different states considering the prospects of having cannabis bars in their territories. 

    It is definitely only a matter of time before we have more café-like or bar-like cannabis businesses spring up across the United States.

    What would an era of marijuana bars mean for the industry?

    The implications are positive across the board for the states, the business owners, and the consumers.

    What Cannabis Bars Mean or the State and Local Governments

    More cannabis bars mean more avenues for state revenues.

    What’s currently happening with cannabis criminalization and legal restrictions is tantamount to what happened in the Prohibition Era, where states missed out on billions of dollars from excise tax.

    For the states capitalizing on the Green Rush, revenue generation could also come from canna-tourists, which MJ bars are most likely to attract.

    Also, bearing in mind that drinks served in marijuana bars tend to be more CBD-based than THC-based, DUI cases, as well as other alcohol-related deaths and cases, are most likely to drop significantly in all weed-legal states. Well, that’s if marijuana bars are to be widely adopted.

    What Cannabis Bars Mean for MMJ Patients and Consumers

    Whether for medical or recreational use, individuals who use marijuana often acknowledge that it has better effects than alcohol.

    However, due to restrictions on the consumption of marijuana in public spaces, many of these individuals are stuck with the option of using alcohol when they go to bars to cool their heads or hang out with friends. 

    Relapse is usually imminent for those who are struggling with sobriety.

    With the new cannabis bar, South Carolina citizens can now enjoy some better-for-you cannabis mocktails without suffering the risk of relapse or alcohol poisoning.

    Cannabis bars hold the promise of cheerful evenings filled with camaraderie and very chill vibes. More so, marijuana bars offer you a broader option of cannabis products to choose from.

    What Cannabis Bars Mean for the Marijuana Businesses

    We have seen many marijuana businesses shut down in the past year, while some are currently on the brink.

    Any cannabis entrepreneur who has explored the entrails of the “What is a cannabis dry bar?” question knows that it is a business venture worth diversifying into. Dispensaries that are at risk of shutting down due to low sales could take a leaf from the new cannabis bar South Carolina opened.

    The cannabis bar in South Carolina is a merger between the High Rise Beverage Company, the producers of THC and CBD seltzers, and the Charleston Hemp Collective, a CBD shop.

    With the bar now open, the businesses get to market and sell more of their products to customers who come in for a refreshing cannabis mocktail.

    Cannabis bars are a call for marijuana businesses to consider diversifying their product and service portfolios to maximize profits, sustain their business, and expand the cannabis industry.

    Checking Out a Marijuana Bar With Your MMJ Card

    Whether it’s a trip to a cannabis bar or a cannabis dispensary, Elevate Holistics has you covered.

    We are here to help you with all medical marijuana cards and associated telehealth services you need to access marijuana bars and dispensaries to get the medicine you need.

    With Elevate Holistics, you can get a doctor’s approval for medical marijuana in less than 15 minutes. Our process is quick, easy, affordable, and efficient. And we have over 100,000 happy patients to attest to that!

    Click here or below to schedule a consultation and start your MMJ journey

    Get Your MMJ Card Right From Home

    Elevate Holistics’ process is quick, affordable, and done entirely online. It’s never been so easy.

    About the author

    Ally Hilbert is the Content and SEO Manager here at Elevate Holistics, working to publish and run Elevate’s blogs and landing pages, as well as conduct keyword research, competitor analysis, and more. After having brain surgery at the age of 17, Ally became fascinated with medical cannabis and its benefits, and, at 18, had her first CBD-related piece published. Today, she’s been writing about cannabis for the past six years, and simply can’t think of a better company to get to do it for. When she’s not writing or editing, Ally’s side-by-side with her pup Sadie in Seattle.
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