A tower restaurant is an eatery located on the top floor of a building and specifically designed to give dining customers a panoramic view of the surrounding area. Most of these restaurants are in major cities so that guests can enjoy the urban skyline while dining. Some tower restaurants are also revolving restaurants that give everyone a chance see the view from all angles. Many tower restaurants are only accessible by elevator, and some require a separate admission fee in addition to the price of a restaurant meal.
First-time visitors to a tower restaurant sometimes find the movement of the rotating building section slightly dizzying. This problem is often more noticeable in people who are normally prone to motion sickness. Tower restaurant owners often advise that dizziness can be reduced by skipping or minimizing alcohol consumption and by keeping a reasonable distance from the restaurant windows.
Food served at a tower restaurant can come in any number of styles and varieties. Cities with a large tourist trade often have at least one tower restaurant that offers samplings of local cuisine. Some revolving restaurants also follow the latest food trends in order to attract high numbers of customers. In addition to a restaurant, the top floors of some buildings also feature other attractions such as thrill rides similar to those found in amusement parks.
The history of the tower restaurant dates back to the 1960s, and the first revolving restaurants appeared in the United States during this specific time period. Architects and interior designers wanted these restaurants to have an atmosphere that suggested a space-age future. Many visitors responded enthusiastically, and these types of elevator restaurants were considered technological wonders for a few decades. Tower restaurants began to fall out somewhat of fashion after the 1980s, although plenty of them still enjoy regular business from both locals and tourists in major cities.
While some select tower restaurants are located at the top of multi-use commercial buildings, many of them are on the top sections of major hotels. Many hotel owners have a tower restaurant built in hopes of turning their particular hotel into a city landmark. A well-designed revolving restaurant often proves to be an effective way to increase overall hotel business. The continued popularity of revolving restaurants has also resulted in the development of architectural firms that specialize in the design and construction of these types of restaurants.