Revolving Restaurants: A Throwback to the Future

Itching for a revolution? Then visit a restaurant perched up high and watch the world go around.

Revolving restaurants sprouted atop towers and boxy buildings across the U.S. in the 1960s, ’70s, and ’80s as symbols of modernity, progress and a space-age future, according to Chad Randl, author of “Revolving Architecture: A History of Buildings that Rotate, Swivel and Pivot.”

“They were really the thing to have,” he said. Once the novelty of spinning around over a meal ran its course, however, most revolving restaurants fell into disrepair. Some were converted into conference rooms; many were toppled.

But don’t despair, those that still spin tend to have a charm worthy of their kitschy revolution – a spectacular view, for example, or a menu that claims to make the world stand still.