Summer is a great time to soak in the sun and the expansive views from the rooftop bars dotted across the city! While Chicago may be the "Second City" - it certainly has blue ribbon rooftop bar experiences that will not disappoint. Cheers to that!
Below you will find just a small list of some of our favorite rooftop bars with the best views of the city. Chicago offers so many amazing restaurants and bars with a view - it is impossible to choose.
CHICAGO'S TOP 10 ROOFTOP BARS
Check out these rooftops and the scenery that accompanies them! This is just a small sampling of rooftop bars that Chicago has to offer.
While you're looking for great Chicago entertainment, don't forget to use our other popular Chicago posts to help you make plans:
- Best Things to Do in Chicago
- Things to Do in Chicago's Loop
- Tourist Attraction Discount Passes
- Summer in Chicago
1) Cindy's Rooftop
The Loop; 12 S. Michigan Ave.
Topping off the historic Chicago Athletic Association at 13 stories high is the rooftop bar called Cindy's. It provides a breathtaking scene of Millennium Park, Lake Michigan, and of course the magnificent sculpture "Cloud Gate" a.k.a. "The Bean".
As one of the best rooftops in the Loop, Cindy’s cocktails are balanced and aesthetically pleasing, to match the view. The glassed-in deck area allows this to be a great decision, no matter the weather! While their drinks are delish their food menu is also worth chewing on. It updates frequently - so check their website to see what their chef has come up with.
This rooftop bar has become very popular over the years - so be sure to make a reservation to ensure you will get to enjoy this experience.
Hundreds of guests have complimented Cindy’s on Yelp and TripAdvisor, assuring that the drink prices are worth the view!
One Yelper commented, “Cindy's is highly recommended for anyone visiting Chicago! It is a beautiful space, which includes an open-air terrace that provides a great view of Millennium Park as well as the Lake.”
2) Reggies' Trainwreck Rooftop Deck Bar
The South Loop; 2109 S. State St.
Reggies' is a music lover’s favorite.
This space has been transformed from a run-down repair shop to the music venue, record shop, and bar that is it today!
Beyond the good food you will find a rooftop playground, complete with picnic tables, a pool table, and a basketball hoop!
This spot is a refreshing change of pace from the downtown rooftops.
Many satisfied customers have reviewed Reggies’ on Yelp and TripAdvisor, calling it, “Just awesome.”
One yelp review stated, “Super chill, South Loop bar. You'll probably see the most diverse group of people at Reggie's which makes it even more cool."
3) LH Rooftop
The Loop; 85 E Wacker Dr.
Make your way to the top of the London House Hotel to find the sweeping views from this tri-level rooftop patio. Overlooking the Chicago River, Magnificent Mile, and the famous architecture along the way, this is one of the best angles to take in the surrounding city.
You can visit between 11am-midnight and enjoy the view during the daytime or the twinkling city lights. They have hand-crafted cocktails, a tasty menu, and several local beers. Be sure to check out their weekend brunch.
A yelper stated, “I have been to London House twice, the rooftop, and the city views are amazing you can definitely see Chicago's architecture." Lots of locals agree that the LH Rooftop is not one to miss.
The Loop; 203 N. Wabash
26 stories up, the Virgin Hotel’s rooftop bar, Cerise, hosts a bird's-eye view of the expansive skyline. With crafty cocktails and comfy furniture, this is a great spot to begin or end the night. Nothing beats a cocktail with a view of Downtown Chicago! If you've never visited the Virgin Hotel - it is truly a treat. This hotel is very eclectic and has a surprise around every corner. Speaking of treats - be sure to check out their food menu too!
Enjoy the music and lights as you take in the fresh air from the balcony that surrounds three sides of this historic building. On Fridays and Saturdays there is often a DJ spinning tunes.
Many guests have advertised their positive experience at this bar on Yelp and TripAdvisor.
The ambiance and drinks have been complimented, with comments stating, “Really cool atmosphere with amazing rooftop views overlooking downtown. ... I'd definitely return… Perfect for a summer night out.”
The Gold Coast; 201 E. Delaware Pl.
This rooftop sits a block off of the Magnificent Mile in the Gold Coast neighborhood.
With a focus on crafty cocktails and quality liquor, this rooftop serves as an oasis on top of the Raffaello Hotel to enjoy some quality conversation and the beautiful scenery.
Many positive reviews prove Drumbar to be a rooftop you won’t want to miss.
One Yelper appreciated this urban escape, stating, “This bar definitely has a local feel too it, since it's tucked behind the Hancock and right off of Michigan.
In my opinion, it's a bit of a hidden treasure. The drinks are amazing and the ambiance is great.”
6) The J. Parker
Lincoln Park; 1816 N. Clark St.
Not every amazing rooftop bar is downtown. Take the redline north to visit Lincoln Park. Panoramic views of Lincoln Park and the lake are found at The J. Parker, on top of the Hotel Lincoln. This year-round rooftop bar hosts themed drinks and small plates perfect for every season. A great location to visit after enjoying a day on the Lincoln Park & Gangster walking tour and the Lincoln Park Zoo.
With comfy seating and high top tables, this place is perfect for any occasion, and the needed diversion from the heart of downtown.
Many guests have claimed this as their favorite rooftop bar in the city! This bar provides beautiful views of the city, as one Yelper stated, “The view is impeccable! Seriously it is so beautiful I couldn't stop looking at it.”
7) The Z Bar
Magnificent Mile; 10 E. Superior St.
After a day of shopping the Mag Mile you can enjoy an evening with a hand crafted cocktail and a view of the street you just conquered at Z bar. The bar is located on the on the 16th floor of the Peninsula Hotel. Guest comes for the cocktails, small bites, and atmosphere.
One Yelp review said, "Came here for a pre-dinner cocktail and was delighted. Z Bar offers beautiful views of the city in a sleek, chic space, with some pretty impressive cocktails to boot.
I went for their old fashioned, which was beautifully rendered. Their cocktail menu is a delightful mix of the classics and more inventive creations."
Z Bar is named after Maria Zec, The Peninsula Hotels’ first female General Manager. Cheers to you Maria!
River North; 118 W Grand Ave
Taste the color and flavor of Peruvian culture at the rooftop at Tanta.
With Peruvian celebrity chef Gastón Acurio calling the shots, this spot has delicious food and cocktails.
The rooftop deck provides space to enjoy the summer weather while you sip on a pisco sour and enjoy the delectable food.
This restaurant is becoming a River North staple, as seen with the hundreds of positive reviews posted on Yelp and TripAdvisor.
One satisfied Yelper simply stated, “Tanta has a really cool rooftop, beautiful people, and amazing food & drinks."
9) IO Roofscape
River North; 127 W Huron St.
Nestled in River North, you will discover IO Roofscape within the Godfrey Hotel.
With a spacious lounge and modern vibe, this rooftop provides indoor and outdoor seating for every season and every time of day.
This urban, upscale rooftop serves chef-crafted cocktails accompanied by a view.
This has been a popular spot for years, as customers have commented on everything from the atmosphere to the food.
Many locals have used this as a platform to show off their city, as one TripAdvisor review stated, “It's my go-to bar for visitors. Great view...Great service and drinks”
10) Up & Up
Wicker Park; 1600 N. Milwaukee Ave.
Head west to Wicker Park to check out another neighborhood in Chicago. Wicker Park is known for street art, food, shops and a bit of history. Check out this self-guided tour of Wicker Park. The Up & Up rooftop lounge is above the Robey Hotel and showcases the beauty of The Windy City. Sometimes the view from a distance gives the best perspective.
Hovering above the ‘L’ tracks, you will find views of the skyline in the distance and the dynamic neighborhood that surrounds this hotel. This is an open-air bar - so breathe in the smells of Wicker Park.
Enjoy your inventive cocktail and peruse the menu during your time at Up & Up.
As one of the newer rooftops in Chicago, this bar has already started to receive positive feedback from customers.
Customers enjoy this rooftop escape in the vibrant Wicker Park neighborhood, as one Yelper commented, “Hands down the best view in Wicker Park.”
11) Raised - An Urban Rooftop Bar
The Loop, 1 W Wacker Dr.
This garden-themed terrace sits above Wacker Drive and boasts a view of the Wrigley Building, Michigan Avenue Bridge, and the surrounding hustle and bustle of the neighborhood.
There is a curved railing at the edge of the building facing a clear glass panel, which is perfect for people-watching.
Raised has amazing signature cocktails and view that you will literally want to toast. You can wave to the residents of the Marina Tower while enjoying an appetizer. They offer a few local partner's like Few Gin, Green River Soda, and Haymarket brewing if you are looking to enjoy a local beverage.
One Yelper said, "I had an amazing event at this gem of a rooftop! Unlike many other (also gorgeous) rooftops in Chicago, this rooftop makes you feel like you're in the mix of downtown Chicago rather than just above it. And you're not just paying for the views - they truly delivered on food and beverages too!"
12) Signature Lounge
875 N. Michigan Ave.
The tallest rooftop bar in Chicago is the Signature Lounge on the 95th & 96th floors of the Hancock building a.k.a. 875 N. Michigan Ave.
You cannot beat the bird's eye view of Chicago. It is breathtaking. You can literally see all of the city from this rooftop bar including: Navy Pier, Sears Tower (Willis Tower), and Lake Michigan.
The bar is on the 96th floor and is indoors - so great for any weather! The award-winning restaurant is on the 95th floor and worth every penny. Their white and dark chocolate mousse cake is delicious.
One Yelper gave this advice: “The view is item #1 on your cocktail menu! Whether the Willis Tower poking through the cloud and fog, the adjacent rooftop patio and parties and condo units, enjoy the notes of Chicago nightlife as you sip. My nightcap was their smooth and sweet chocolate martini (maybe more than 1 lol). It had the right amount of sweetness and alcohol for social lubrication. Try to get a seat facing the windows to really highlight the experience."