360 Chicago Observation Deck, formerly known as the John Hancock Observation Deck, offers the best possible views of the cityscape and Lake Michigan from 360 degrees inside the John Hancock Center.
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The John Hancock Building was originally meant to be the tallest building in the world. Construction began in 1967 but was interrupted due to engineering flaws in the design plan. The owner was forced to file bankruptcy during this time and John Hancock took over the project, completing construction in 1969.
The John Hancock Center is 1,500 feet tall and is the fourth tallest building in Chicago with elevators that travel 96 floors at a speed of 1,800 feet per minute. In 1999, the Hancock Center was awarded the Distinguished Architects 25 Year Award, presented by the American Institute of Architects. The building is known for its distinctive X-Shaped bracing system that eliminates the need for inner support columns and increases the available floor space.
360 Chicago is located on the 94th floor of the Hancock Center and was first opened in 1969 as the John Hancock Observatory. The observatory was sold in 2012 and renamed 360 Chicago. This attraction provides 360 degree views of the Chicago cityscape, beaches and Lake Michigan coastline.
Visiting 360 Chicago
360 Chicago is open 365 days a year from 9am to 11pm with the last entry being at 10:30pm. Tickets can be purchased online or in person. The best times to visit 360 Chicago are in the morning before lunch or after 6pm. Group reservations are available with motorcoach and van access at the Delaware Street entrance. Groups of 20 or more should reserve their tickets specifically through group sales by contacting the hotel directly. Groups should allow for 1.5 hours to enjoy 360 Chicago not including line wait time.
Package deals as well as the Go Chicago Card and Chicago City Pass, that will get visitors into multiple Chicago attractions at a discount are available through the 360 Chicago website. Private business or social events are welcomed to be hosted at 360 Chicago. There are four rental spaces that can accommodate up to 550 guests.
Group Tours: School groups visiting the Observation desk can enjoy box breakfasts or lunches if ordered one week ahead of time. Breakfast options include hot sandwiches or a continental style breakfast with bagels, yogurt and fruit. Lunch includes a choice of deli sandwich, potato chips, fruit, and a drink. The Café, Architect’s Corner, also provides tables and chairs, adult beverage services and amazing views of Lake Michigan and the city. School groups are also provided with educator materials to help students incorporate lessons in history, architecture, sciences, art, and geography. Lessons are broken down by age group with 4 different plans available for Early Childhood, Elementary School, Middle School, and High School.
Performances Groups- At the North end of the 94th floor there is space for live performance groups to put on productions. The space can accommodate 30-50 performers, and 360 Chicago provides electricity and chairs for the event.
Tilt- This is Chicago’s higest thrill ride that allows visitors to look over the edge of the Hancock Building from 1000 feet up. The ride extends out over the Magnificent Mile with the most incredible views of Chicago and Lake Michigan. Up to 8 people can experience Tilt at a time.
360 Chicago hosts special events and weekly events that enhance the visitor experience on the Observation Deck.
360 Sky Guide- This Tuesday evening program includes a personal tour guided volunteers from the Chicago Architect Foundation. Lectures include educational information on the most impressive buildings in the Chicago skyline.
360 Sky Yoga-Join yoga enthusiasts every Saturday morning at 9am for meditation and Yoga. Registration is required and available online. Participants must bring their own yoga mat.
360 Sunday Funday- Children receive half price admission on Sundays with family friendly entertainment in the afternoon such as magic shows and storytelling.
360 Tripod Monday- Monday is the day for photographers to enjoy the 360 degree views of the Chicago city and coast. No other days may photographs use tripods. Shots shared on social media are entered into an annual contest hosted by photographer Nick Ulivieri.
360 Sky Art- Wednesdays artists are welcomed to set up their easels and paint or draw visions of the cityscape from the observation deck. The floor is covered in plastic and folding chairs are provided to those who are painting. This program is not available during the summer.
360 Happy Hour- Thursday evenings from 5:30-8:30pm Revolution Brewing hosts happy hour at 360 Chicago with craft beer specials and DJ entertainment as well as board games and televisions.
875 M Michigan Avenue, 94th floor, Chicago, Illinois, 60611, website, Phone: 888-875-8439