SkyBrunch at Top of the Tower

The day dawned dismal with rain and fog blanketing the entire area, not necessarily the best conditions to enjoy a brunch 50 floors up in the city skyline. But we had reservations, A Deal for Two from TravelZoo, and still looked forward to a scrumptious meal, no matter how limited our views would prove to be—and limited they were.

SkyBrunch in Philadelphia is on the 50th floor of Three Logan Square at 1717 Arch Street, and features some of the most spectacular views in Philadelphia from the expanse of the western horizon to the Art Museum, Parkway and City Hall. Available with a side of awe, it sits 50 stories above the city streets, with a panorama beyond anything you’ve ever seen before—if the weather is cooperating…

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Our less-than-spectacular view.

Convenient parking is available through a back entrance underneath the building. Luckily for us, we then didn’t have to schlepp out in the rain, instead we took one elevator up to the lobby, then an express elevator to the 50th floor. The hostess greeted us in the center of a long hallway backed by sweeping views of the city behind her, and food stations flanking her on either side.

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Our table by a window when we first arrived.

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A partial view of one of the dining areas.

Within a few minutes we were lead to our table at one end of the floor (there is an identical dining area on the opposite end) at a table round for two overlooking what would have been an impressive vista.

Overall the waitstaff is very attentive and professional without being overbearing or in-your-face. Our waitress Javaughn explained that in addition to coffee, tea or a variety of juices, we were entitled to a free cocktail, so we both settled on the Silver Lining, a libation akin to a Bloody Mary made with Skyy vodka, V8 juice, fresh horseradish, worcestershire, tabasco, lemon juice, topped with a cherry tomato, olive and pepper jack skewer—excellent! There is a full-service bar if you wish to imbibe on beer, wine or other cocktails.

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Our perfectly seasoned, on-the-house Silver Lining cocktail.

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Russ’ first plate was all from the Seascape station.

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Offerings from the Seascape and Landscape stations.

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A side of the Tower caesar salad caprese.

Our first foray to the food stations started at the Seascape with jumbo shrimp cocktail, a crab claw shooter and smoked salmon (all stations described in full detail below), and pretty much ended for me at the Landscape with the perfectly medium-rare prime rib with merlot and horseradish sauces, an unbelievably good green bean dish with caramelized onions, just a taste of the very rich Gruyere potato gratin, and the Tower caesar salad caprese.

There were four stations I didn’t even attempt, although Russ helped himself to a sampling from a few of them. After the meal, we enjoyed some hot tea and coffee and decided to check out the Sugar High station with an array of miniature desserts. You know I pretty much never eat dessert, but this time I did take a bite or two of a couple samples, namely the chocolate chip and walnut blondie and a mini chocolate chip cheesecake. Russ savored his lemon and raspberry cheesecake minis.

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The unmanned Panorama Station offers yogurt, fruit and granola.

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The Sugar High dessert station is the the only one inside the dining area.

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A close-up of a few mini desserts from the Sugar High Station.

All you can eat buffets are not necessarily a bargain for me, but looking around at the amount other patrons piled on their plates, they certainly got their money’s worth. Regular price for adults is $50 a pop, making it more of a special occasion place in my opinion. But for kids 13 and under you only pay $1 per year (i.e. a 6-year-old would cost only $6).

They do not serve meals any other time during the week, but they will hold special events such as Cupid in the Sky on Valentine’s Day. Over the years, Top of the Tower has seen it all. Spectacular fireworks watching VIP parties on the 4th of July…Intimate 50th wedding anniversaries…Birthday parties from Sweet 16 to 60+… Commitment Ceremonies… New Year’s Eve Parties… Senior Proms and Formals for nearby schools… Graduation Receptions and Brunches from Penn to Villanova.

And on the 51st floor, there is a bar on Wednesdays through Saturdays, although we didn’t have access to check it out on that Sunday afternoon.

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What the view looks like on a clear day.

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Chef Matt Lane’s stations include seven options plus, there’s a table of charcuterie and cheeses with pickled vegetables and artisan mustards and a display of assorted dessert miniatures.

SEVEN SUMPTUOUS BUFFET FOOD STATIONS

THE OUTLOOK: Honey-Stung Fried Chicken, Crème Brulee Brioche French Toast, Chantilly Cream and Mixed Berries, Shemanski Farm PA Pure Maple Syrup, House Made Jams and Butters, Breakfast Pastries

THE LANDSCAPE: Carved to Order Meats featuring Pepper-Cured Prime Rib, Merlot Sauce and Horseradish Cream, Fresh Vegetables, Pasta of the Day, Gruyere Potato Gratin, Tower Caesar Salad Caprese, Charcuterie

THE SEASCAPE: Cocktail Shrimp en Barigole, Crab Claw Shooters, Variety of Duck Trap Smoked & Cured Salmon, Classic Garnitures and Cream Cheese Varieties, Sushi by Zento

THE VIEW: Pecan Smoked Bacon, House Crafted Sausages, Baby Yukon Home Fries

THE PANORAMA: Assorted Cereals, Fresh Fruit, Yogurt Parfait, Metropolitan Granola

THE SUNNY SIDE: Omelets & Scrambles

THE SUGAR HIGH: Hand Dipped Chocolate Ganache Strawberries, Variety of Miniature Desserts, Cookies and Brownies

DRINKS FIRST ROUND’S ON US!

Each adult is offered a complimentary cocktail from among the following …

PIECE OF HEAVEN: Oatmeal Infused Skyy Vodka, PA Pure Maple Syrup, Light Cream, Fireball Whiskey, Dash of Cinnamon

BLUE SKYY: Blueberry Skyy Vodka, White Cranberry Juice, Blue Curacao, Splash of Lime Juice, Fresh Blueberry Skewer

SILVER LINING: Skyy Vodka, V8 Juice, Fresh Horseradish, Worcestershire, Tabasco, Lemon Juice, Cherry Tomato, Pepper Jack Skewer

CLOUD 50 COCKTAIL SPRITZER: La Marca Prosecco and Freshly Squeezed Blood Orange Juice

PIE IN THE SKY (FOR THE LITTLE GUYS): Apple Juice, Sprite and a Dash of Grenadine with a Cherry Garnish.

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