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Panoramic Perches

July 20, 2016
Top Picks... View-tiful Chicago

While few skylines rival that of marvellous Manhattan, Chicago’s impressive lineup kicks New York right up the brownstone, with four of America’s eight tallest building snuggled up with commercial and residential high-fliers. Here are our fave places to graze and gaze upon this second-to-none cityscape...

Want to grasp the expanse of this concrete jungle in its entirety? Get sky high atop Chicago360’s The Tilt. This knee-weakening observation deck affords unique, downward facing angles from 1,000 feet in the air by tilting viewers outward from 10-30 degrees. Or, whizz up to Skydeck to step outside the Western Hemisphere’s tallest building and take it all in from The Ledge; a glass box extended 4.3 feet from the deck, and 1,353 feet above the ground.

But you don’t need to go above and beyond to see it all. Tie va va-vistas in with cultural activities like a day on the greens at the Sydney R. Marovitz Golf Course; nestled between Lake Shore Drive and Lake Michigan with sights over Montrose Harbour and the skyline at a distance.

Or, take a wander through The Modern Wing of the Art Institute of Chicago and ogle the museum’s impressive stash of mod European artworks, set against a stunner cityscape backdrop visible through the building's enormous floor-to-ceiling plate-glass windows. Better yet, snag a perch at on-site Terzo Piano, where the glinty panorama offsets the light-filled restaurant’s minimalist-white interior.

Rather kick back and take it all in? Simply enlist a private charter from Chicago Sailing, where your own personal captain will spearhead spectacular skyline-chasing with a custom tour across the lake. All aboard!

The Tilt / 94/F / 360 Chicago / 875 N Michigan Ave / Downtown / +1 888 875 8439 / 9am–11pm daily /

The Ledge / Willis Tower / 233 S Wacker Dr / Downtown / +1 312 875 9447 / 9am-10pm daily (Mar-Sep) /

Sydney R. Marovitz Golf Course / 3600 N Recreation Dr / Uptown / +1 866 223 5564 / 5.30am-7pm daily /

The Modern Wing / Art Institute of Chicago / 159 E Monroe St / Downtown / +1 312 443 3600 / 10.30am-5pm Fri-Wed, until 8pm Thu /

Terzo Piano / Art Institute of Chicago / +1 312 443 8650 / lunch Mon-Sat, brunch Sun, dinner Thu /

Chicago Sailing / N Belmont Harbor / Lakeview East / +1 773 871 7245 /

Photos © Pigprox, Songquan Deng, Pemi prod, Joseph Sohm, luca85 / Shutterstock