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A rooftop terrace overlooking the Chicago River.
Capture the best sights of downtown Chicago at Raised.
Raised

22 Spots With Gorgeous Views of the Chicago Skyline and Lake Michigan

Everything tastes better with a spectacular backdrop

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Capture the best sights of downtown Chicago at Raised.
| Raised

Chicago has some of the most gorgeous scenery in the world, and very few things enhance it better than outstanding food and beverages. Luckily, there are plenty of restaurants and bars with exemplary views. The following list highlights many of the best spots to gaze at the buildings and the water, ranging from craft cocktail bars in the sky to restaurants along the the Chicago River. They all reveal different, but similarly beautiful, sides of the city.

For updated information on coronavirus cases, please visit the city of Chicago’s COVID-19 dashboard. Health experts consider dining out to be a high-risk activity for the unvaccinated; it may still pose a risk for the vaccinated, especially in areas with substantial COVID transmission. The latest CDC guidance is here; find a COVID-19 vaccination site here.

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Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.

1. The Robey

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2018 W North Ave
Chicago, IL 60647
(872) 315-3050
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The Wicker Park hotel the Robey has multiple options for a good time. Cabana Club, a rooftop bar on the building’s sixth floor, features a pool, two bars (serving frozen drinks), and unobstructed 360-degree views. For those seeking a more intimate setting, saunter over to the Up Room, the midcentury modern lounge on the 13th floor, to enjoy creative craft cocktails and dazzling sights.

A rooftop with the skyline in the background.
A rooftop with a pool and a cocktail lounge are the highlights at the Robey.
Barry Brecheisen/Eater Chicago

2. Homestead on the Roof

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1924 W Chicago Ave
Chicago, IL 60622
(773) 332-2354
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Although it’s not near the lake, Homestead on the Roof is green oasis above a bustling Chicago neighborhood. Sample dishes made from seasonal ingredients, plus standout desserts and drinks. Fun fact: Some of the restaurant’s produce comes directly from its rooftop garden.

A rooftop restaurant filled with tables.
Homestead on the Roof is a West Town favorite.
Homestead

3. Nobu Chicago

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854 W Randolph St
Chicago, IL 60607
(312) 779-8800
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Prime views and indulgent luxuries are aplenty at the city’s first Nobu Hotel. The ritzy chain co-owned by Robert De Niro pulls out all the stops to impress, and on the rooftop, guests are in for an especially extravagant experience. Celebrity chef Nobu Matsuhisa’s Japanese-Peruvian menu features fresh sushi and hot dishes, such as miso black cod in butter lettuce, to go with the spectacular sights.

302 N Green St 3rd Floor
Chicago, IL 60607
(773) 645-1400
Visit Website

Lettuce Entertain You Enterprises’s Aba serves as the counterpart to Ēma, both of which are helmed by chef C.J. Jacobson and explore the flavors of the Mediterranean. Aba spans 4,000 square feet, including a lush rooftop patio stamped with greenery and killer views, all the better to enjoy potent and zero-proof cocktails crafted by Liz Pearce (the Drifter).

5. Cabra

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200 N Green St
Chicago, IL 60607
(312) 761-1717
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When the chic London-based lifestyle hotel the Hoxton touched down in Chicago in 2019, the company decided to partner with local hitmaker Stephanie Izard of Girl & the Goat fame. Cabra, which claims the Hoxton’s rooftop terrace, is dedicated to Peruvian cuisine and affords awesome views of the West Loop’s cityscape.

6. North Pond

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2610 N Cannon Dr
Chicago, IL 60614
(773) 477-5845
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One of Chicago's most picturesque dining experiences is at this Michelin-starred spot next to a pond in Lincoln Park. The farm-to-table restaurant feels like taking a trip to the country while downtown skyscrapers rise in the distance.

The exterior of a restaurant next to a pond.
North Pond has romantic views of Lincoln Park.
Barry Brecheisen/Eater Chicago

7. Beatnik on the River

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180 N Upper Wacker Dr
Chicago, IL 60606
(312) 526-3345
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The sibling of Bonhomme Hospitality Group’s globetrotting hotspot Beatnik, Beatnik on the River brings the boho-chic vibes to the Loop. The alluring riverside locale is decorated with colorful and comfy couches, tasseled umbrellas, and lush greenery. Guests can expect a menu that’s influenced by Spanish, Mediterranean, and South American flavors from executive chef Marcos Campos.

8. Utopian Tailgate

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1608 N Wells St
Chicago, IL 60610
(312) 210-7799
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Head to the rooftop above the Second City complex and discover a sprawling adult playground full of colorful furniture, picnic tables, lush plants, lawn games, tire swings, and more. The views only add to the fun while the menu features tailgate-themed foods like sliders, pizzas, and nachos, plus large-format cocktails and house shots. Sports fans will appreciate that there are numerous TVs showing the games throughout the space.

A rooftop restaurant full of colorful furniture and plants.
Utopian Tailgate is a rooftop wonderland.
Barry Brecheisen/Eater Chicago

9. The J. Parker

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1816 N Clark St
Chicago, IL 60614
(312) 254-4747
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This rooftop draw atop Hotel Lincoln gives bird’s-eye views of the lakefront and downtown, along with excellent cocktails and small plates. A retractable roof makes it comfortable year-round.

10. Bar Avec

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640 N LaSalle Dr 8th floor
Chicago, IL 60654
(312) 736-1740
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One Off Hospitality opened a second location of its popular Mediterranean-inspired wine bar Avec last year in River North. With it also came a rooftop patio, dubbed Bar Avec, on the eighth floor of the same building. Complementing the stunning views is a menu that channels the Iberian Peninsula. Folks can enjoy items like smoked salmon conserva, clam toast, cheese plates, gin and tonics, and frozen daiquiris.

A rooftop restaurant with views of the skyline.
Popular wine bar Avec gets taken to the sky in River North.
Bar Avec

11. Chicago Cut Steakhouse

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300 N La Salle Dr
Chicago, IL 60654
(312) 329-1800
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Chicago Cut charges top dollar, which not only gets its customers the finest cuts of beef and possible celebrity sightings, but also sterling skyline views from the River North side of the Chicago River. Bonus points in the summertime for al fresco dining on the elevated riverside patio.

An elegant dining room filled with tables and red chairs.
Steak isn’t the only star at Chicago Cut.
Barry Brecheisen/Eater Chicago

12. River Roast

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315 N La Salle Dr
Chicago, IL 60654
(312) 822-0100
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The large restaurant that specializes in large chunks of roasted protein has an elevated outdoor patio that offers one of the best downtown riverside views in Chicago. Diners can even take a water taxi right to the door.

13. Devereaux

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1112 N State St 18th Floor
Chicago, IL 60610

Chicagoans can live their best lives at this swanky rooftop lounge and bar in the Gold Coast. Devereaux, located up high on the 18th floor of the Viceroy Chicago, combines sophisticated design with sweeping sightlines. The food and beverage program is equally impressive, boasting expertly crafted cocktails and elevated refreshments like truffle deviled eggs and Maine lobster sliders. There’s even a pool for those hot summer days.

14. Raised

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1 W Wacker Dr
Chicago, IL 60601
(312) 795-3444
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This indoor/outdoor lounge on the third floor of the Renaissance Chicago Downtown Hotel overlooking the Chicago River has one of the city’s most scenic backdrops. Grab a seat on a cushy couch and snack on elevated bar bites, such as truffle frites, dilled cheese curds, house-made corn nuts, and cheese and charcuterie boards. The beverage program focuses on seasonal cocktails made with locally sourced ingredients as well as beers brewed in Chicago. There are also heat lamps on the patio to help keep things comfortable.

15. LondonHouse Chicago

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85 E Wacker Dr 22nd Floor
Chicago, IL 60601
(312) 357-1200
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LondonHouse Chicago has arguably the city’s most prominent outdoor terrace and there’s no denying the appeal. The tri-level rooftop on the 22nd floor is a bucket-list-worthy destination that offers panoramic views of towering skyscrapers and the Chicago River. The kitchen rounds out the experience with re-imagined American fare highlighting fresh seasonal ingredients and global influences. 

A rooftop overlooking the Chicago River and skyline.
The views from the top of LondonHouse Chicago are unbeatable.
Barry Brecheisen/Eater Chicago

16. Z Bar

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108 E Superior St
Chicago, IL 60611
(312) 573-6888
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At Z Bar, the contemporary cocktail lounge on the Peninsula hotel’s sixth floor, one can sip a Manhattan served over ice that’s laced with 24-karat gold flakes and garnished with black truffle or saffron bitters. The cocktail list spans the globe in terms of flavors and spirits, while the terrace provides glowing views of the Mag Mile.

17. Cindy's Rooftop

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12 S Michigan Ave
Chicago, IL 60603
(312) 792-3502
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The stylish rooftop of the Chicago Athletic Association hotel is one of the hottest spots in town, with gorgeous views of Millennium Park and, beyond that, Lake Michigan. The cocktails and food are also top notch.

18. The Signature Room at the 95th

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875 N Michigan Ave
Chicago, IL 60611
(312) 787-9596
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Very few restaurants anywhere in the world offers views that can match those experienced from the Signature Room, the fine dining restaurant on the 95th floor of 875 North Michigan Avenue (formerly the John Hancock Center) — unless it’s those from the Signature Lounge on the 96th floor, for those who just want a drink. (And for visitors who only want the view, it’s worth stopping by the women’s bathroom.)

19. VU Rooftop

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133 E Cermak Rd
Chicago, IL 60616
(312) 528-0191
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There aren’t many rooftops on the South Side so VU was a welcome addition when it opened in 2018. Located near Wintrust Arena and McCormick Place, the 13,000-square-foot space sits 22 stories above ground and has three bars, two patios, a karaoke room, outdoor fire pits, and retractable windows. Seasonal plates, such as ramp kimchi flatbread and green onion and crab dip, provide nourishment for guests as they sip on classic and specialty cocktails.

VU Rooftop is a rare open-air space south of downtown. Barry Brecheisen/Eater Chicago

20. Caffè Oliva

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550 E Grand Ave
Chicago, IL 60611
(312) 612-0734
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The views from this seasonal lakefront spot on the Ohio Street Beach are nearly unparalleled. Sit in the shadows of some of the city’s tallest buildings and dine on sandwiches, burgers, light starters, accompanied by a solid selection of libations, including fish bowls. Pups are welcome to join the fun, too.

21. Cité

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Lake Point Tower, 505 N Lake Shore Dr 70th Floor
Chicago, IL 60611
(312) 644-4050
Visit Website

Perched on the 70th floor of Lake Pointe Tower, Cité is big on the “wow” factor. The upscale restaurant features a breathtaking 360-degree view of the lakefront and skyline and is the perfect spot for an intimate and romantic evening. The menu showcases contemporary American fare with French influences, including escargot, lobster tail served with lobster ravioli, and bananas foster flambéed tableside.

22. Offshore

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1000 E Grand Ave
Chicago, IL 60611
(312) 535-6660
Visit Website

The nation’s largest rooftop venue gives locals an enticing reason to visit Navy Pier. The all-seasons bar and lounge spans 36,000 square feet and is decked out with fire pits, a DJ stage, lots of cozy seats, and a glass-enclosed area so visitors can still admire the unmatched views of the skyline from the east when the temperature dips. The menu ranges from pizzas and sliders to oysters and filet mignon.

An outdoor terrace overlooking Lake Michigan.
There’s plenty of space at Navy Pier’s rooftop restaurant.
Barry Brecheisen/Eater Chicago

1. The Robey

2018 W North Ave, Chicago, IL 60647
A rooftop with the skyline in the background.
A rooftop with a pool and a cocktail lounge are the highlights at the Robey.
Barry Brecheisen/Eater Chicago

The Wicker Park hotel the Robey has multiple options for a good time. Cabana Club, a rooftop bar on the building’s sixth floor, features a pool, two bars (serving frozen drinks), and unobstructed 360-degree views. For those seeking a more intimate setting, saunter over to the Up Room, the midcentury modern lounge on the 13th floor, to enjoy creative craft cocktails and dazzling sights.

2018 W North Ave
Chicago, IL 60647

2. Homestead on the Roof

1924 W Chicago Ave, Chicago, IL 60622
A rooftop restaurant filled with tables.
Homestead on the Roof is a West Town favorite.
Homestead

Although it’s not near the lake, Homestead on the Roof is green oasis above a bustling Chicago neighborhood. Sample dishes made from seasonal ingredients, plus standout desserts and drinks. Fun fact: Some of the restaurant’s produce comes directly from its rooftop garden.

1924 W Chicago Ave
Chicago, IL 60622

3. Nobu Chicago

854 W Randolph St, Chicago, IL 60607

Prime views and indulgent luxuries are aplenty at the city’s first Nobu Hotel. The ritzy chain co-owned by Robert De Niro pulls out all the stops to impress, and on the rooftop, guests are in for an especially extravagant experience. Celebrity chef Nobu Matsuhisa’s Japanese-Peruvian menu features fresh sushi and hot dishes, such as miso black cod in butter lettuce, to go with the spectacular sights.

854 W Randolph St
Chicago, IL 60607

4. Aba

302 N Green St 3rd Floor, Chicago, IL 60607

Lettuce Entertain You Enterprises’s Aba serves as the counterpart to Ēma, both of which are helmed by chef C.J. Jacobson and explore the flavors of the Mediterranean. Aba spans 4,000 square feet, including a lush rooftop patio stamped with greenery and killer views, all the better to enjoy potent and zero-proof cocktails crafted by Liz Pearce (the Drifter).

302 N Green St 3rd Floor
Chicago, IL 60607

5. Cabra

200 N Green St, Chicago, IL 60607

When the chic London-based lifestyle hotel the Hoxton touched down in Chicago in 2019, the company decided to partner with local hitmaker Stephanie Izard of Girl & the Goat fame. Cabra, which claims the Hoxton’s rooftop terrace, is dedicated to Peruvian cuisine and affords awesome views of the West Loop’s cityscape.

200 N Green St
Chicago, IL 60607

6. North Pond

2610 N Cannon Dr, Chicago, IL 60614
The exterior of a restaurant next to a pond.
North Pond has romantic views of Lincoln Park.
Barry Brecheisen/Eater Chicago

One of Chicago's most picturesque dining experiences is at this Michelin-starred spot next to a pond in Lincoln Park. The farm-to-table restaurant feels like taking a trip to the country while downtown skyscrapers rise in the distance.

2610 N Cannon Dr
Chicago, IL 60614

7. Beatnik on the River

180 N Upper Wacker Dr, Chicago, IL 60606

The sibling of Bonhomme Hospitality Group’s globetrotting hotspot Beatnik, Beatnik on the River brings the boho-chic vibes to the Loop. The alluring riverside locale is decorated with colorful and comfy couches, tasseled umbrellas, and lush greenery. Guests can expect a menu that’s influenced by Spanish, Mediterranean, and South American flavors from executive chef Marcos Campos.

180 N Upper Wacker Dr
Chicago, IL 60606

8. Utopian Tailgate

1608 N Wells St, Chicago, IL 60610
A rooftop restaurant full of colorful furniture and plants.
Utopian Tailgate is a rooftop wonderland.
Barry Brecheisen/Eater Chicago

Head to the rooftop above the Second City complex and discover a sprawling adult playground full of colorful furniture, picnic tables, lush plants, lawn games, tire swings, and more. The views only add to the fun while the menu features tailgate-themed foods like sliders, pizzas, and nachos, plus large-format cocktails and house shots. Sports fans will appreciate that there are numerous TVs showing the games throughout the space.

1608 N Wells St
Chicago, IL 60610

9. The J. Parker

1816 N Clark St, Chicago, IL 60614

This rooftop draw atop Hotel Lincoln gives bird’s-eye views of the lakefront and downtown, along with excellent cocktails and small plates. A retractable roof makes it comfortable year-round.

1816 N Clark St
Chicago, IL 60614

10. Bar Avec

640 N LaSalle Dr 8th floor, Chicago, IL 60654
A rooftop restaurant with views of the skyline.
Popular wine bar Avec gets taken to the sky in River North.
Bar Avec

One Off Hospitality opened a second location of its popular Mediterranean-inspired wine bar Avec last year in River North. With it also came a rooftop patio, dubbed Bar Avec, on the eighth floor of the same building. Complementing the stunning views is a menu that channels the Iberian Peninsula. Folks can enjoy items like smoked salmon conserva, clam toast, cheese plates, gin and tonics, and frozen daiquiris.

640 N LaSalle Dr 8th floor
Chicago, IL 60654

11. Chicago Cut Steakhouse

300 N La Salle Dr, Chicago, IL 60654
An elegant dining room filled with tables and red chairs.
Steak isn’t the only star at Chicago Cut.
Barry Brecheisen/Eater Chicago

Chicago Cut charges top dollar, which not only gets its customers the finest cuts of beef and possible celebrity sightings, but also sterling skyline views from the River North side of the Chicago River. Bonus points in the summertime for al fresco dining on the elevated riverside patio.

300 N La Salle Dr
Chicago, IL 60654

12. River Roast

315 N La Salle Dr, Chicago, IL 60654

The large restaurant that specializes in large chunks of roasted protein has an elevated outdoor patio that offers one of the best downtown riverside views in Chicago. Diners can even take a water taxi right to the door.

315 N La Salle Dr
Chicago, IL 60654

13. Devereaux

1112 N State St 18th Floor, Chicago, IL 60610

Chicagoans can live their best lives at this swanky rooftop lounge and bar in the Gold Coast. Devereaux, located up high on the 18th floor of the Viceroy Chicago, combines sophisticated design with sweeping sightlines. The food and beverage program is equally impressive, boasting expertly crafted cocktails and elevated refreshments like truffle deviled eggs and Maine lobster sliders. There’s even a pool for those hot summer days.

1112 N State St 18th Floor
Chicago, IL 60610

14. Raised

1 W Wacker Dr, Chicago, IL 60601

This indoor/outdoor lounge on the third floor of the Renaissance Chicago Downtown Hotel overlooking the Chicago River has one of the city’s most scenic backdrops. Grab a seat on a cushy couch and snack on elevated bar bites, such as truffle frites, dilled cheese curds, house-made corn nuts, and cheese and charcuterie boards. The beverage program focuses on seasonal cocktails made with locally sourced ingredients as well as beers brewed in Chicago. There are also heat lamps on the patio to help keep things comfortable.

1 W Wacker Dr
Chicago, IL 60601

15. LondonHouse Chicago

85 E Wacker Dr 22nd Floor, Chicago, IL 60601
A rooftop overlooking the Chicago River and skyline.
The views from the top of LondonHouse Chicago are unbeatable.
Barry Brecheisen/Eater Chicago

LondonHouse Chicago has arguably the city’s most prominent outdoor terrace and there’s no denying the appeal. The tri-level rooftop on the 22nd floor is a bucket-list-worthy destination that offers panoramic views of towering skyscrapers and the Chicago River. The kitchen rounds out the experience with re-imagined American fare highlighting fresh seasonal ingredients and global influences. 

85 E Wacker Dr 22nd Floor
Chicago, IL 60601

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16. Z Bar

108 E Superior St, Chicago, IL 60611

At Z Bar, the contemporary cocktail lounge on the Peninsula hotel’s sixth floor, one can sip a Manhattan served over ice that’s laced with 24-karat gold flakes and garnished with black truffle or saffron bitters. The cocktail list spans the globe in terms of flavors and spirits, while the terrace provides glowing views of the Mag Mile.

108 E Superior St
Chicago, IL 60611

17. Cindy's Rooftop

12 S Michigan Ave, Chicago, IL 60603

The stylish rooftop of the Chicago Athletic Association hotel is one of the hottest spots in town, with gorgeous views of Millennium Park and, beyond that, Lake Michigan. The cocktails and food are also top notch.

12 S Michigan Ave
Chicago, IL 60603

18. The Signature Room at the 95th

875 N Michigan Ave, Chicago, IL 60611

Very few restaurants anywhere in the world offers views that can match those experienced from the Signature Room, the fine dining restaurant on the 95th floor of 875 North Michigan Avenue (formerly the John Hancock Center) — unless it’s those from the Signature Lounge on the 96th floor, for those who just want a drink. (And for visitors who only want the view, it’s worth stopping by the women’s bathroom.)

875 N Michigan Ave
Chicago, IL 60611

19. VU Rooftop

133 E Cermak Rd, Chicago, IL 60616
VU Rooftop is a rare open-air space south of downtown. Barry Brecheisen/Eater Chicago

There aren’t many rooftops on the South Side so VU was a welcome addition when it opened in 2018. Located near Wintrust Arena and McCormick Place, the 13,000-square-foot space sits 22 stories above ground and has three bars, two patios, a karaoke room, outdoor fire pits, and retractable windows. Seasonal plates, such as ramp kimchi flatbread and green onion and crab dip, provide nourishment for guests as they sip on classic and specialty cocktails.

133 E Cermak Rd
Chicago, IL 60616

20. Caffè Oliva

550 E Grand Ave, Chicago, IL 60611

The views from this seasonal lakefront spot on the Ohio Street Beach are nearly unparalleled. Sit in the shadows of some of the city’s tallest buildings and dine on sandwiches, burgers, light starters, accompanied by a solid selection of libations, including fish bowls. Pups are welcome to join the fun, too.

550 E Grand Ave
Chicago, IL 60611

21. Cité

Lake Point Tower, 505 N Lake Shore Dr 70th Floor, Chicago, IL 60611

Perched on the 70th floor of Lake Pointe Tower, Cité is big on the “wow” factor. The upscale restaurant features a breathtaking 360-degree view of the lakefront and skyline and is the perfect spot for an intimate and romantic evening. The menu showcases contemporary American fare with French influences, including escargot, lobster tail served with lobster ravioli, and bananas foster flambéed tableside.

Lake Point Tower, 505 N Lake Shore Dr 70th Floor
Chicago, IL 60611

22. Offshore

1000 E Grand Ave, Chicago, IL 60611
An outdoor terrace overlooking Lake Michigan.
There’s plenty of space at Navy Pier’s rooftop restaurant.
Barry Brecheisen/Eater Chicago

The nation’s largest rooftop venue gives locals an enticing reason to visit Navy Pier. The all-seasons bar and lounge spans 36,000 square feet and is decked out with fire pits, a DJ stage, lots of cozy seats, and a glass-enclosed area so visitors can still admire the unmatched views of the skyline from the east when the temperature dips. The menu ranges from pizzas and sliders to oysters and filet mignon.

1000 E Grand Ave
Chicago, IL 60611

Related Maps