Chicago, Il

Chicago Penthouse Rooftop

Architectural Transformation of a Chicago Penthouse Rooftop

Our team was commissioned by the client and their real estate agent to ingeniously transform the expansive 1,800-square-foot rooftop of a downtown Chicago penthouse into an architecturally distinguished outdoor retreat. The project’s objective was to amplify the allure of the $4 million penthouse condo, necessitating a design that was both unconventional and functional. Utilizing our expertise in design and architecture, we embarked on this endeavor to create a rooftop layout that would elevate the property’s appeal in the competitive real estate market.

Our architectural vision segmented the rooftop into three distinct zones, each embodying a unique function: a culinary area, a dining zone, and a relaxation lounge. However, this project presented a challenge unlike our usual designs, where seamless interaction between spaces is a key element.

On the rooftop’s southern expanse, shielded from Chicago’s prevalent West North West winds, we positioned a putting green alongside the dining area. This decision capitalized on the area’s relative calm and smaller footprint.

Turning our focus to the West, we crafted a visually stunning space. Here, a transparent, infinity-edge swim spa is oriented northward, offering an unobstructed panorama of the Chicago skyline. Adjacent to it, we designed an outdoor kitchen crowned by a sleek, metallic pergola. This structure is not just a statement piece but also serves as a functional element, equipped with custom lighting to enchant visitors.

We recognized each zone on the rooftop as a distinct destination, interlinked by pathways that blend natural vegetation with contemporary materials. These walkways are designed to be more than mere connectors; they are experiences in themselves, embellished with living elements and other sensory enhancements. Furthermore, we integrated a heating system from Radiant Panel Technologies across the entire deck, ensuring comfort during cooler evenings.

The northern section, despite offering the most spectacular views, posed a spatial challenge with its 60-foot length but mere 8-foot width. Our solution was to conceive this area as a scenic overlook, complete with seating and a linear fire feature, ideal for long evenings of wine and conversation.

Lastly, the northeast segment of the rooftop transforms into a haven for late-night entertainment. Here, residents can revel in views of Lake Michigan and the city skyline while a state-of-the-art movie projector turns this area into an outdoor cinema. This segment’s design not only captivates but also resonates with the architectural essence of the existing 26th-floor penthouse.

In summary, this project was a foray into creating an architectural marvel that merges functionality with an extraordinary aesthetic, making the rooftop not just an extension of the penthouse but a standout feature in its own right.


  • Create an outdoor living area as vibrant as the current home, fully utilizing the roof deck.
  • Ensure each area offers an enjoyable view of the city.
  • Integrate the outdoor and indoor spaces for a fluid transition between the two.


  • An outdoor kitchen system that combines cooking with outdoor beauty.
  • A putting green that offers city views and endless entertainment.
  • A glass-edged swimming area.
  • Heated floors across the entire project.


  • Adapting the design to support the weight on the existing roof deck.
  • Installing a roof deck on the 26th floor in a dense urban area.
  • Incorporating existing roof safety features into the design.