Magnicity, the global operator and creator of innovative, experiential attractions high above notable cities, celebrates the grand opening of CloudBar on the 94th floor of the former John Hancock Center (875 N. Michigan Ave.). Situated over 1,000 feet above The Magnificent Mile at 360 CHICAGO Observation Deck, the new concept bar unveiled reimagines how tourist destinations feature hyper-local artisans and food and beverage partnerships to magnify a city's authentic best.
"We want each Magnicity location to act as a true city ambassador for our guests – encouraging exploration of the vibrant neighborhoods within our cities and forging new adventures and experiences. We are thrilled to introduce our brand-new bar concept with CloudBar," says Alexia Vettier, CEO of Magnicity, a Paris-based company that owns and operates 360 CHICAGO and other Magnicity experiences in landmark locations around the world.
Expect sky-high style and an exclusive showcase of Chicago's makers and artisans curated from the diverse communities admired in the city's distinct neighborhoods.
The $2M+ renovation and opening of CloudBar represents the most recent of a ten-year, $14M investment strategy at 360 CHICAGO, all with a goal of centering authentic Chicago stories and experiences in every aspect of the guest journey.
After a 42-second elevator ride whisks riders to breathtaking views from the 94th floor observation deck, guests often look down on the clouds from floor to ceiling windows. The Gettys Group Chicago design team purposefully extends this experience by giving guests a feeling of floating in the air. CloudBar interior design incorporates reflective surfaces as a tool to help create this immersive experience as a mirrored ceiling, smoked mirror drink rails, and a mirrored back wall at the 18-seat bar intensifies the grand views.
A wall of windows is lined with cozy ledges and seating, plus modern European furniture and lighting style which gives a stylish nod to the Magnicity ownership brand. Toned down, soft green upholstery reflects the Chicago local sensibility while giving a nod to Magnicity's brand color according to Ji hyun Kim, Director Gettys Interiors.
Local art is a crucial design element that not only sets the tone but also brings an authentic Chicago street experience to the space. A breeding ground for art and culture, Chicago is filled with phenomenal street art including that of Lauren Asta, a traveling muralist/artist based in Chicago. Specializing in freehand illustration, oddity art and street murals, she has created inspiring pieces in Chicago on over 40 walls such as gigantic murals in West Town, Pilsen, and the West Loop.
For CloudBar, Asta was commissioned to create original graphics that appear on large-scale architectural fabric that runs throughout the bar, and also on custom room dividers to define private event space. Each incorporates representations of Chicago street culture ranging from local neighborhood personalities to world recognized architecture.
The Food & Beverage
To strengthen and celebrate the distinctive fabric of our city, 360 CHICAGO has forged partnerships with a curated list of local makers. Moody Tongue, the world's first two Michelin star brewery, is excited to introduce the Magnicity Pilsner, a brew created in partnership with 360 CHICAGO and solely available at CloudBar.
Other important partners include Kit Kat Lounge & Supper Club, Vosges Chocolate, Garrett Popcorn, Carol's Cookies, and Kikwetu Coffee Company. By providing a unique platform for these local businesses, CloudBar seeks to introduce guests to these true Chicago brands and inspire a personal connection by sharing their products and stories.
In addition to featuring these dynamic partnerships, the menu at CloudBar is inspired by the culture and cocktails of many of the Chicago's neighborhoods. Guests will be able to both enjoy these true Chicago tastes while visiting 360 CHICAGO and also able to take home many of the city's best with a wide selection of thoughtfully packaged items for purchase.
"We recognize that food and drink bring communities together and we want to reinforce and amplify everything visitors and locals love about our city, while exposing our guests to iconic Chicago tastes and undiscovered new and exclusive flavor experiences," says Jennifer Hesser, assistant general manager for 360 CHICAGO.
CloudBar will soon offer pairings that speak specifically to neighborhoods – one dessert and two-to-three cocktails delivered with a descriptive card that informs the visitor why it's significant, how it's made, and the neighborhood and vendor story, providing not only a delicious education but a keepsake. Up to 10 of the 77 neighborhoods will be rotated in this focus throughout the year.
3 of 77: The Soul Of The Midwest
In addition to introducing CloudBar, 360 CHICAGO will also unveil the remarkable storytelling of local filmmaker Harvey Pullings II. Pulling's most recent work is a documentary entitled 3 of 77: The Soul Of The Midwest. This documentary exclusively commissioned by 360 CHICAGO is hosted by Jahmal Cole, founder of My Block My Hood My City, a nonprofit that also contributed to content coordination. The film introduces viewers to three diverse neighborhoods -- Bronzeville, Lakeview and Pilsen – through the lens of small businesses that call the neighborhoods home. The small businesses and local cultural institutions use their own stories to share the distinct history and culture of each neighborhood. A photography exhibit entitled The Culture: 3 of 77 supports this film with portraits of notable residents who represent and impact each neighborhood's personality.
"Both CloudBar and the exclusive documentary 3 of 77: The Soul Of The Midwest, represent a continuation and expansion of our 10-year commitment to sharing the stories of the people, communities and artisans that define our neighborhoods and the city of Chicago," says Nichole Benolken, managing director for 360 CHICAGO. "Our further investment will appeal not only to tourists but young professionals seeking a strong local experience, and at the same time it allows small businesses to gain exposure to the international guests we draw. It's a win-win."