As far as Chicago’s best rooftop patios go, it’s hard to think of one better than the IO Godfrey Rooftop Bar. In fact, it’s the largest indoor/outdoor lounge in Chicago, and it boasts numerous awards and accolades that include:
- Several Nightclub & Bar Awards distinctions
- An OpenTable Diner’s Choice award
- Frequent positive citations in several local food & beverage publications
The luxury Godfrey Hotel itself is older than the IO rooftop area (though not by that much), which finally opened just a few years ago in 2013, after years of construction. The IO Rooftop is on the Godfrey Hotel’s 4th floor, and features amenities that include:
- A retractable roof to try and combat Chicago’s constantly changing weather
- A two level fire pit to add ambience to your visit
- A gorgeous view of Chicago’s downtown
Recently, the IO Rooftop has been making waves for their inventive and totally Instagrammable private igloos. This rooftop bar is open from early ‘til late each day (with last call happening sometime around 2 or 3am, depending on the night). The time you arrive will have a measured effect on your experience. To illustrate, coming in early means delicious brunch food options with craft cocktails to match, and a more relaxed atmosphere. But when the IO Rooftop hosts late night festivities, the mood is completely different, and the bar is packed. Note that they do enforce a late night dress code, basing the policy off the fact that they operate within a luxury hotel. The IO Rooftop’s sweet spot is right around happy hour, where drinks and bites are a little more affordable than similar spots in River North. Of course, once happy hour is over, expect to spend about $14 per cocktail, or more.
As far as food, patrons gush about the IO Burger (made with burnt-onion marmalade, cheddar, garlic aioli & mesclun on potato bun) and their Truffle Fries. Between the numerous food offerings and delectable craft cocktails, it’s hard not to find something that will make you want to come back for. Frequent day and night events keep the IO Rooftop interesting as more than just a happy hour or brunch destination. In the past, they’ve hosted numerous holiday parties for Halloween, the Kentucky Derby, NYE, and even Father’s Day/Mother’s Day brunch. For more information, check out the IO Godfrey website.