The South Loop’s best apartments – views

This post is the first in a series on the best apartment towers in Chicago’s South Loop neighborhood. The above photo shows all of the buildings, and their location relative to each other.

Renters simply have so many differing priorities – and budget constraints – that singling out an overall best building would be a pointless exercise. We’ll identify the buildings that rank highest on each of these criteria:


  • Views
  • Grocery shopping convenience
  • Public transit access
  • Close to parks, beach
  • Proximity to the expressway grid
  • Walking distance to the Loop
  • Most dining, nightlife nearby
  • Shopping
  • Building features

  • Affordability
  • Amenities package
  • Boutique ambiance
  • Pet-friendly
  • Apartment features

  • Apartment finishes
  • Private outdoor space
  • Studio / convertible floor plan
  • One-bedroom floor plan
  • Two-bedroom floor plan
  • Three-bedroom floor plan
  • We begin with the first item on our list, views, and note that most of the buildings in the South Loop enjoy great views of the downtown skyline and the lake. If views are one of your top priorities, the South Loop serves up a lot of good choices.

    Views of Grant Park and Lake Michigan are the most desirable, in part because they’re not static: Buckingham Fountain surges and subsides, boats traverse the lake, crowds gather and disperse for events, and Navy Pier fireworks light up the night sky twice weekly in the summer and on New Year’s Eve.

    Two buildings earn top rank in this category due to their location directly fronting Grant Park: Park Michigan and 1130 South Michigan.

    West-facing units from these buildings have skyline, cityscape and sunset views.

    The north and east-facing units at Sky55 also have great views of the park and lake, but those views may be curtailed in coming years by development on nearby vacant sites.

    In addition to having different priorities, renters have differing takes on what constitutes a great view. If you disagree with our selections, or if you have a priority we haven’t mentioned, chime in with a comment.

    You’ll find links to our objective, visually-rich apartment reviews of South Loop buildings and links to near real-time availability checks for most of them, at our at-a-glance list, and some tips and advice at our Guide to renting in the South Loop.

    Next topic: Most convenient grocery shopping.

    Note: Park Michigan is one of our advertisers.

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