Motown Museum#2 in Best Things To Do in Detroit
An entire genre – or at least sound – was born in the space of this small Detroit home. A blue and white sign, reading "Hitsville U.S.A," hangs above the similarly painted building. And with gold records by the Supremes, the Temptations and the Jackson 5, this former Motown recording studio became a hit-making machine from 1959 to 1972. The interior has been left much the same from those magic music-making days, but there are also instruments, costumes and more on display.
Although the museum looks small and admittedly unimpressive from the outside, many visitors say the wealth of experience and information that you receive once inside is worth every minute of your time and every penny of your money. Reviewers particularly praised the tour guides, which they said helped to transport museumgoers back in time to the age of Motown.
You'll find the museum on West Grand Boulevard in the Boston-Edison Historic District. Recent visitors said the parking around the museum was a bit of a pain; consider taking the bus (several routes stop within walking distance of the house) or simply request an Uber. If you want to see any part of the museum, you'll have to tag along on a guided tour. The Motown Museum is open from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., Tuesday through Saturday, with extended summer hours June through August. Admission for adults costs $15; kids and teens ages 5 to 17 can enter for $10. Keep in mind: Tickets often sell out on Saturdays, so if you'd like to secure your tour spot, consider purchasing your admission in advance online. For more information, visit the museum's website.
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#1 Detroit Institute of the Arts
Arguably one of the city's foremost cultural destinations, the Detroit Institute of Arts dates back to 1885, but the beaux-arts building (referred to as the "temple of art") that it now resides in opened in 1927. The institute is huge, comprising more than 100 galleries, a 1,150-seat auditorium and a 380-seat lecture hall. And its permanent collection is extensive: On its walls are Diego Rivera's "Detroit Industry" fresco and Vincent Van Gogh's "Self Portrait" painting, among other works. The institute also hosts events like Friday Night Live! concerts and Art + Authors book discussions.
For many visitors, a visit to the DIA was a highlight of their Detroit trip, with some calling it a "national gem." Though many were initially drawn because of the museum's Diego Rivera collection, reviewers said they were satisfied with every part of the DIA, especially the temporary exhibits. Visitors also praised the staff, which they said were friendly and helpful.
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