Steep yourself in great design spanning throughout the ages as you explore Dallas’ collection of architecturally significant venues. From newer marvels like the Perot Museum to Dallas skyline icons like Reunion Tower, the magnificent builds will keep you looking up for hours. And with several of these stops on the Dallas CityPASS admission program, your adventure got that much easier.
BREAKFAST AT YOLK
Stop in Yolk for the most important meal of the day. Yolk offers a fresh approach to your breakfast experience from traditional comfort foods to innovative dishes, you won’t leave here hungry. Start with the corned beef hash and eggs or the chicken and waffles. Either will leave you with plenty of energy to take in the Dallas Arts District, located just steps away.
WALKING AMONG (ARCHITECTURAL) GIANTS
After breakfast, head over to the Dallas Arts District, 19 contiguous city blocks of ingenious design, bold color and soaring views. You’re walking among impressive museums and unparalleled performing arts venues created by architecture masters, including I.M. Pei, Renzo Piano, Sir Norman Foster and Rem Koolhaas. Dive deep into details of these architectural marvels dating from the 1890s to present day with a 90-minute, docent-led tour by the Dallas Center for Architecture.
LUNCH AT NASHER CAFE BY WOLFGANG PUCK
Stop for lunch at the elegant Nasher Café before finishing up the afternoon. Enjoy seasonal sandwiches and salads on the outdoor patio, then walk it off as you explore the Nasher Sculpture Center.
AN AFTERNOON OF CULTURE
Combine art with architecture at the Renzo Piano-designed Nasher Sculpture Center. The center houses one of the finest collections of modern and contemporary sculptures in the world. Step into the outdoor garden, filled with iconic pieces by internationally acclaimed artists including Alexander Calder, Picasso and Henry Moore. Continue to the boldly designed Perot Museum of Nature and Science, designed by Pritzker Laureate Thom Mayne, where you can access the galleries via the 150-foot glass-enclosed escalator jutting dramatically from the side of the building.
DINNER AT SLOANE’S CORNER
Located inside the redeveloped Trammell Crow Center, Sloane’s Corner is the perfect treat for dinner and cocktails. The restaurant is a New American bistro with international influences, serving a variety of dishes that are all made from scratch daily.
A STROLL AFTER DINNER
Continue to enjoy the fresh air and the marvel of design and urban planning as you explore the Klyde Warren Park. The lush green space has changed the face of the city, creating a grass-carpeted community living room complete with a dog park, playground and venues for live music and yoga, all built over a busy interstate.
BREAKFAST AT GARDEN CAFE
Rise and shine and indulge in a homemade breakfast made completely from scratch with fresh ingredients from the on-site garden at East Dallas favorite Garden Cafe. The cozy breakfast spot has a beautiful outdoor patio – take a seat there before heading out for an adventurous day.
ART DECO ADVENTURE
Head over to Fair Park where you’ll find the world’s largest collection of Art Deco buildings, in addition to terrific examples of Modernism and Mid-Century Modern design. This was the site of the 1936 Texas Centennial Exposition and continues to host the annual State Fair of Texas. Download a self-guided tour on your smartphone for highlights on more than 60 significant spots around the park.
GO BACK IN TIME
Step back into history at the Old Red Courthouse which was built in 1892 and houses the Old Red Museum of Dallas County History & Culture. Spy the four terra cotta winged serpents – two of which are original – perched atop the building. Tours inside the Revival Romanesque building offer access to the restored courtroom and rare rooms not open to the general public.
SEE A MOMENT IN HISTORY
Stand on the infamous grassy knoll before visiting the Sixth Floor Museum at Dealey Plaza – one of Dallas CityPASS attractions. Walk through the museum using the audio tour to experience the life, assassination and legacy of President John F. Kennedy through thoughtful exhibits and artifacts. After the museum, walk one block to the John F. Kennedy memorial, a simple and serene 50-foot square enclosure designed by famed American architect Philip Johnson.
BRUNCH AT ELLEN’S SOUTHERN KITCHEN
Stop for brunch at Ellen’s Southern Kitchen for some comfort classics. This stylish, southern diner has a homey feel which is the perfect setting to relax and get your grub on.
Cross the Trinity River on the Margaret Hunt Hill Bridge, designed by internationally acclaimed architect and engineer Santiago Calatrava. The bridge’s iconic arch – as much art as architecture – soars 400 feet and provides a gateway to West Dallas. This was Calatrava’s first vehicular bridge in the U.S., and you can already see a second under construction. The 350-foot- high Margaret McDermott Bridge, which will include separate pedestrian and bike lanes, is slated to open in 2017.
DESIGN MEETS SCIENCE
It’s a short drive to the Perot Museum of Nature and Science, designed by Pritzker Laureate Thom Mayne, where you can access the galleries via the 150-foot glass-enclosed escalator jutting dramatically from the side of the building. Dine on quick classics at the Museum’s café so you don’t have to miss any time exploring. The Perot is one of six local attractions on CityPASS.
CLIMB TO THE TOP
Cap off your architecture tour with a visit to the GeO-Deck (another Dallas CityPASS attraction) at Reunion Tower. Nicknamed “The Ball,” the sphere-topped tower is one of Dallas’ most iconic structures, featured in the opening credits of the hit 1970s TV show Dallas.