The city of Detroit, nicknamed the Motor City and renowned as the auto capital of the world, is brimming with historical sites and attractions to explore. With a range of options from art museums to sports arenas, there is no shortage of entertainment in this dynamic city. Also affectionately known worldwide as “Motown,” Detroit is the birthplace of musical legends like the late Aretha Franklin, Diana Ross, and Hollywood icons like Tom Selleck.
Despite some hard times in the 2010s, Detroit has come out on the other side of its historical bankruptcy to a major tourist attraction. Detroit boasts a vibrant cultural scene, with a multitude of activities and events on offer throughout the year. Visitors with an interest in history can discover the city’s industrial roots at the Henry Ford Museum and the following hidden gems.
1. The Henry Ford Museum of American Innovation
The Henry Ford Museum of American Innovation is a significant cultural institution located in Dearborn, Michigan. It is part of The Henry Ford, which is a large complex that includes the museum, Greenfield Village, the Ford Rouge Factory Tour, and other attractions. The Henry Ford Museum of American Innovation is known for its extensive collection of artifacts related to American history and technological innovation.
This museum showcases a wide range of items, including historic automobiles, airplanes, including the Wright Brothers’ plane, agricultural machinery, and items associated with important figures and events in American history. It aims to highlight the spirit of innovation and entrepreneurship that has shaped the United States.
2. The Detroit Institute Of Arts
Immerse yourself in the rich tapestry of art at the Detroit Institute of Arts, where a diverse collection awaits. From ancient treasures to modern marvels, the museum showcases a wide range of artistic styles and periods. Notably, visitors can admire the works of Diego Rivera and other esteemed artists. As one of the premier mid-sized art museums in the United States, the DIA proudly presents a curated selection that encapsulates 6000 years of human creativity.
Established in 1885, the museum initially occupied a space on Jefferson Avenue. However, as its collection grew at a rapid pace, it had to relocate to its present location on Woodward Avenue in 1927. The architectural marvel, designed by Paul Cret in the Beaux-Arts style, was promptly dubbed the “temple of art.” Over the course of the 1960s and 1970s, two wings were added to the structure, and a significant renovation and expansion project, which commenced in 1999, was successfully finalized in 2007.
With a vast expanse of 658,000 square feet, the museum is home to over 100 galleries, a 1,150-seat auditorium, a 380-seat lecture/recital hall, an art reference library, and a state-of-the-art conservation services laboratory.
3. MGM Grand in Detroit
Located in the heart of downtown, MGM Grand is part of the legendary hotel and casino resort of MGM International. Besides being a main part of Detroit’s nightlife, MGM Grand Detroit is the mecca and one of the main partnering casinos for online gambling in Michigan.
This MGM establishment in downtown Detroit offers a luxurious hotel experience and a massive casino, bringing a touch of Las Vegas to the city. With over 121 table games and 3,500 slot machines, as well as a multi-table poker room, guests have plenty of options to choose from.
Alternatively, they can enjoy the hotel’s other amenities, such as the numerous restaurants, entertainment options, and a resort-style spa with an indoor infinity pool. Recent guests have praised the spacious and clean lodgings, as well as the friendly staff and the large bathrooms with marble showers and dual shower heads.
The Lavish Rooms
Spaciousness is a defining feature of the standard rooms at the MGM Grand Detroit, with a minimum size of 510 square feet. These rooms are tastefully decorated, showcasing a stylish combination of white, crimson, and olive tones. Guests can enjoy a variety of amenities in their rooms, such as flat-screen TVs, comfortable leather sitting chairs, luxurious marble showers with dual shower heads, convenient Keurig coffeemakers, well-appointed work desks, and complimentary bottled water.
4. The Guardian Building
Indulge in the awe-inspiring beauty of the art deco architecture and meticulous interior of this historic skyscraper. With its construction dating back to 1929, the Guardian Building serves as an exemplary testament to the art deco style that flourished during the 1920s.
Immersive guided tours provide a chance to appreciate the ornate details showcased within, including exquisite paintings, murals, stonework, and terrazzo floors. Moreover, these tours offer a unique opportunity to explore restricted areas that are not typically accessible to the general public. Due to limited availability, it is advisable to secure your booking well in advance.
The Guardian Building was originally constructed as the Union Trust Building and later became the Guardian Building. It has served various purposes over the years, including as the headquarters of the Union Trust Company and later as office space for various tenants.
The interior of the Guardian Building is renowned for its intricate and colorful tilework, decorative elements, and ornate design. The building’s lobby, in particular, is often praised for its unique and visually stunning features.