A century ago, Cleveland held the status as the "Sixth City," a proud time when inventors, bankers and industry tycoons ruled with entrepreneurial might. Take a step back in time to explore the tenacity and brawn that was keystone to Cleveland's growth through the very places these forefathers lived, worked and built.
Image © Roger Mastroianni
Tours of Cleveland offers walking tours of Downtown CLE that cover all the highlights, fun facts and must-knows within two hours. Wear comfy shoes as the tour makes its way on foot through Public Square, down to The Arcade and on to Playhouse Square.
Dating back to 1925, the Cleveland Public Library's popular Downtown Main Library branch is housed inside an ornate Walker & Weeks-designed building. Free, youth-appropriate tours showcase the space's captivating contents—from art to history to architecture.
You'll feel like you've stepped into “The Great Gatsby” at Marble Room Steaks & Raw Bar located inside the former Guardian Bank space in Downtown Cleveland. Surf-and-turf is served in the world's second-largest bank lobby, flanked by towering columns made of pink Georgia marble.
Just call the Dunham Tavern Museum — which offers glimpses into the lives of early Ohio settlers and explorers — the last building standing. The 1824-built structure is the oldest in Cleveland to remain in its original place.
Located in a park named after oil icon John D. Rockefeller, Sr., this eco-friendly greenhouse and botanical garden dates back to 1905. Colorful orchid displays, repurposed railroad gargoyles and a formal Japanese garden are just a few must-see highlights.
Besides being the final resting place of President James A. Garfield and other notable Clevelanders, Lake View Cemetery doubles as an Instagram-worthy nature enclave. Be sure to see Wade Memorial Chapel, which boasts an interior by Louis Comfort Tiffany.
Italian food in Cleveland doesn't get much more authentic than Guarino’s. Established in 1918 as a Prohibition-era speakeasy, this homey Little Italy joint is the city's oldest restaurant—known for real-deal, made-with-heart food.
End your evening on a high note at this classical music mecca, built in 1931. Check out the behind-the-scenes tour revealing details such as the original tiled driveway and lotus flower designs, then stay to hear the world-renowned Cleveland Orchestra do their thing.
This historic estate was built in the early 20th century for F.A. Seiberling, co-founder of Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company. Today, the 65-room mansion and accompanying 70 acres of meticulously landscaped grounds offer plenty of room for exploration.
Talk about an awe-inspiring lunch! Grab salads, sandwiches and other prepared meals at Heinen’s Downtown grocery store—located in the Cleveland Trust Rotunda Building—under an 85-foot-high dome with Tiffany-style stained glass panels and Italian Renaissance-inspired touches.
Mixology meets time travel beneath the Cleveland Trust Building. Once Ohio’s largest bank vault in the early 1900s, this unique cocktail lounge offers history-themed sips like “The Short Ton” (an ode to the 200-short-ton bank vault and its 17-short-ton door).
Tucked away next to Hofbräuhaus in what resembles a cheerful gingerbread house, the 1904-founded Hermit Club is a private club dedicated to amateur performing arts — and the nation’s oldest continually operating club of its kind.
Lights, camera, backstage! Get a sneak peek at where the magic happens with a behind-the-scenes tour before an entertaining show at Playhouse Square. With five fully restored historic theaters (built in 1921-1922), Playhouse Square is considered the world’s largest theater restoration project.
The heart of Downtown, Public Square packs a sightseeing punch with the post-Civil War-era Soldiers’ & Sailors’ Monument and statues celebrating the city’s forefather Moses Cleaveland and influential mayor Tom L. Johnson. Head to the Terminal Tower or attached Tower City Center for shops and restaurants, or check out the historic Old Stone Church. Take a walk to remember in Cleveland’s city center!
Feast on a Parisian-style savory crepe, bratwurst sandwich or handmade pierogi (or all three—we won’t tell!). With dozens of vendors, the world is your oyster at this nationally renowned historic market that has served Cleveland for over a century.
Displaying 170+ vintage cars made right here in C-town, the Crawford Auto-Aviation Museum inside the Cleveland History Center revisits the city’s one-time status as a bustling automotive industry hub. Inside the Bingham-Hanna and Hay-McKinney mansions, the lifestyles of Cleveland’s early 20th-century influencers are on opulent display.
There's always plenty to see at the Cleveland Museum of Art, although the redesigned Tiffany and Fabergé Galleries are sure to beckon with stained glass lamps and bejeweled items once owned by the Russian imperial family.
Groups are greeted at the door, kicking off each visit with a personal touch. Yuk it up at a comedy show, catch a concert at Center Stage or just head straight for the 200,000 square feet of casino games and try your hand at becoming a millionaire yourself. Need a bite? The Buffet never disappoints.
Stay Classy, Cleveland
These hotel digs offer a healthy dose of history alongside charm and classic appeal.
With a plum location near Progressive Field, the ultra-modern Metropolitan at the 9 already has an effortless cool factor—but the chance to sip cocktails in a centuries-old bank vault certainly kicks it up a notch.
Two fully restored 1931 murals set the tone for the rich history at Drury Plaza Hotel Cleveland, the product of an ambitious renovation of the former Board of Education building.
No ordinary boutique hotel, the 1910-built Glidden House mansion was a gem of Millionaires’ Row in its heyday. Today the reimagined 60-room hotel sits on the National Register of Historic Places.
Originally the “Cleveland Club” for local elite, then a high-end hotel known for lively jazz shows, the now-restored DoubleTree Tudor Arms celebrates its 100th anniversary in 2019.