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Virgin Hotels Chicago saves the best for last – Cerise Rooftop

Rooftop Bar and Lounge makes fifth dining and drinking outlet.

CHICAGO – Virgin Hotels Chicago recently opened Cerise, the rooftop bar and lounge located on the hotel’s 26th floor. Cerise, meaning cherry red, is the fifth and final food and beverage space to open at Virgin Hotels, and joins The Commons Club, Miss Ricky’s, Two Zero Three and 24/7 in-room dining.

Virgin Hotels collaborated with Italian designer, Paola Navone, to create the whimsical and playful aesthetic, giving guests a peek inside her wild imagination. From the moment guests depart the elevators, they are immersed in bold hues of blue with touches of red and green, unexpected trinkets from Navone’s global travels and expansive views of Chicago’s historic architectural skyline, including the Jewelers’ Building.  Cerise expands the entire width of the hotel, including a terrace that wraps around three sides. Two bars are situated at the far ends of the rooftop, with an assortment of large, plush couches both indoors and out.

“We’ve been anticipating the opening of Cerise since we welcomed our first guests in January, and now that Chicago has thawed out, it’s time to unveil the cherry on top,” said Raul Leal, CEO Virgin Hotels. “Cerise isn’t like any other Chicago rooftop; the surprising design fuels you with curiosity and imagination and leaves you wanting to explore more. The views, the entertainment and the summer-style cocktail menu, will make Cerise the most sought-after rooftop spot in Chicago.”

An Izakaya-inspired menu offers salty and spicy, crunchy and savory small dishes; engineered to be enjoyed with beer, wine and cocktails. Items on the menu include Oysters on a Half Shell, Japanese Chicken Wings and Shrimp Dumplings, while the cocktail menu offers individual or shared drinks. Sip the Tradewinds Punch with up to six friends, combining el Dorado 151 rum, Bombay Dry Gin, grapefruit, guava, lime, vanilla, saffron and IPA, or try something more subtle, such as the Far East Gimlet with Grey Goose Vodka and house yuzu-lime cordial. The full menu can be downloaded here.

The Roots frontman and part of the Jimmy Fallon house band, Questlove, provided the soundtrack for Cerise’s opening on April 25, and set the dance floor aflame. A cast of marquee and underground DJs will provide the energy every Wednesday thru Saturday from now until Memorial Day, followed by seven days a week.

The hotel was originally built in 1928 as the Old Dearborn Bank building. With almost 100 years of history, Virgin Hotels carefully renovated the building from basement to 26th floor, maintaining much of its original charm, but adding in modern elements. Part of the renovation process was moving the elevator machinery room from what is now Cerise to a new floor above the rooftop deck.