Detroit Final Four: Other Things to Do

February 16th, 2009
The American landscape was literally transformed by the ingenuity of Detroit, birthplace of the automobile and the Motown sound. The Motor City has been slower to rebound from the urban blight that plagued so many U.S. cities in the '70s and '80s, but there is no doubt that Detroit is in the throes of a rebirth. Vacant downtown buildings are quickly being replaced by new sports stadiums, posh hotels, casinos, and unique eateries. Add a renewed focus on the arts--such as the city's historic theater district--and you'll understand why Detroiters feel optimistic about their city's future. And why travelers are coming back.

Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History
315 East Warren Avenue • Detroit, MI 48201 • 313.494.5800
In the mid-1800s, Detroit was a key stop on the Underground Railroad, through which thousands of slaves escaped to Canada. This and other aspects of African-American heritage, from African roots through slavery to civil rights struggles, are celebrated at the world's largest museum of African and African-American history and culture.

Detroit Historical Museum
5401 Woodward Avenue • Detroit, MI 48202 • 313.833.1805
Begin your exploration of Detroit with this repository of the city's history. You can walk a re-created cobblestone and brick street lined with 19th-century shops, and check out the two-story assembly line in the Motor City exhibit. Interactive displays entertain children of all ages.

Detroit Zoo
8450 West Ten Mile Road • Royal Oak, MI 48068 • 248.398.0900
The Detroit Zoo is one of the finest in the nation. Its newest addition, the Arctic Ring of Life, includes the world's largest polar bear exhibit. Visitors can watch frolicking polar bears and seals through a 70-foot-long underwater Polar Passage. Other highlights include the world's largest amphibian research and exhibition center, a butterfly and hummingbird garden, a free flight aviary, and a great apes exhibit 8450 West Ten Mile Road • Royal Oak, MI 48068 • 248.398.0900

Henry Ford Museum & Greenfield Village
20900 Oakwood Boulevard • Dearborn, MI 48124 • 313.271.1620
The Henry Ford Museum, a 12-acre repository of Americana, lies behind the doors of a replica of Philadelphia's Independence Hall. You'll see everything from telephones and refrigerators to steam engines, carriages, airplanes, and--of course--cars. The multimedia presentation "The Automobile in American Life" explores our nation's infatuation with cars. Look for Ford's 1901 Model-T, the Oscar Meyer Wienermobile, George Washington's camp bed, the Lincoln rocking chair, and a parade of presidential vehicles.

Also: Check out a Pistons game or go gambling in a near-by Casino.. take a day trip into Canada as well.

Suggested Restaurants

3663 Woodward • Detroit, MI • 313.831.3838
Duet's red velvet curtains and vintage loge seating combine with urban chic to create an enjoyable and unique atmosphere, one that is almost as good as its food. For lunch try the almond-crusted chicken salad with apple slices, goat cheese, and warm honey mustard. For dinner, the crispy seared salmon with tomato shallot stew is good. Enjoy live jazz on the weekends.

Tribute Restaurant
The New York Times called Tribute "the best restaurant between New York and Chicago"; and Food & Wine named its chef, Takashi Yagihashi, one of the nation's 10 best in 2000. Tribute is quickly becoming known as the place to dine in Detroit. Try the grilled orange-anise glazed duck breast or the sautéed Pacific snapper "Thai" with oyster mushrooms and somen noodles. The elegant food and decor--which includes stained glass and orchids--create a memorable evening.