I love great architecture and towns in the American Midwest are full of beautiful craftsmanship and glorious buildings. Milwaukee was a business center in the 1900’s. Captains of commerce erected sturdy buildings and many remain within a few short blocks of downtown. New architecture is taking flight along the shores of Lake Michigan as well. Don’t miss Milwaukee.
In 1915, John Plankinton, the founder and owner of a Meat Packing Company, built the Plankinton Arcade as an entertainment center with bowling and billiards. It was fashioned in a 15th-century Italian Gothic style that remains but today it houses shops and cafes.
The Loyalty building designed by Richardson Romanesque in a unique classical style now houses a hotel. Mader’s Restaurant has been serving German fare since 1902.
James Beard award-winning, Three Brothers, serves authentic Serbian food inside a historic Schlitz tavern in the Bay View neighborhood. (Note the cream brick.)
The Third Ward is overflowing with new cafes and bars. Grab a bite in its centerpiece, the Public Market.
Inside the Grain Hall, there are massive stain glass windows and classical murals. The floor is inset with a huge, restored medallion.
This video will give you a moving glimpse. Don’t miss Milwaukee in your travels:
The Iron Block ranks among Milwaukee’s most important Civil War era building. It is the only remaining major example of cast-iron architecture in the city and is one of a few of its kind left in the Midwest.
Cream City bricks are made from a red clay containing large amounts of sulfur. It was commonly found in the Milwaukee area. When fired, the bricks become creamy-yellow in color. Unfortunately, they are also porous and soak up city grit. Today many cream brick buildings remain but unless scrubbed with chemicals regularly they remain dark.
The Pfister Hotel lobby is one of uplifting opulence and built for the public to enjoy. Today the hotel still retains its glory. There are panoramic views also in the penthouse Blu Bar.
But the greatest discovery, to my mind, is the new Art Museum. Created by engineer – architect, Santiago Calatrava.Several times a day, when the Lake Michigan winds permit, the building’s giant wings open to allow light into the interior.
The immense space feels like it breathes. It certainly had me breathing faster as I walked through. The Milwaukee Art Museum has been noted around the world for its wings. Inside and out the building is a wonder to experience.
That’s a brief look at some of the windows, the unique walls and the wings that make visiting Milwaukee, Wisconsin’s downtown a great town to walk and ponder.
Here’s another glimpse into Milwaukee culture – The Harley Davidson Museum.
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Great post – we’ve never been to Milwaukee, but would love to visit! Making note of the places you’ve highlighted, as they seem like just the sort of places we enjoy. Thanks for sharing your experience on #TheWeeklyPostcard!
I hope you get the chance one day.
I didnt know Milwaukee was such a beautiful place. I would love to visit that museum. It looks like a great museum and a great design.
Great architecture! I’ve heard they got some good food and beer scene there, too! Were you able to try it?
I had no idea that Milwaukee was such a diverse mix of historic and cutting edge contemporary buildings – the Milwaukee Art Museum is quite the creative fete … I would love to spend some time walking around town and taking in it’s windows, walls & wings!
I need to try and get up to MKE again this summer – I didn’t have enough free time during WITS! The Public Market looks really interesting.
I had no idea there were so many beautiful buildings in Milwaukee! The Art Museum with its Wings is very impressive and I love the contrast of this to the ceiling and windows in the grain hall – which are absolutely beautiful, but in a very different way!
An interesting mix of modern and classic. Thanks for the post and show us such interesting architecture! @ knycx.journeying
Wow these buildings look amazing inside and out! Would love to go and visit one day!
I spent a little bit of time in Wisconsin when I was studying in the US. It is such a beautiful state, sadly I did not get to visit Milwaukee. Maybe I need to change that.
I envy you having spent time in Wisconsin! The US is so large and having always lived on the west coast there’s so much more I have yet to see too.
Great reading about the lovely architecture. Can see traditional and vintage styles to contemporary ones. The arches and staircases are well shown with a nice tribute to olden style architecture. It was a very informative post.
So glad you enjoyed reading about the Milwaukee architecture. I can be a bit nerdy about it!
I’m not really into museums but the town in general looks like a lovely place to explore. The video is very good btw. 🙂
Thanks for the comment (especially about the video!) Museums aren’t for everyone but just walking through Milwaukee is fun for all the variety.
I would love to stay at the Loyalty Building. I would really appreciate the architecture and I really want to see the ceiling in the Pfister Building in person. Would make an amazing photography spot.
I hope you get the chance to do all that, Vedante!
The Milwaukee Art Museum looks like a perfect way to spend a day with family and friends. Great to immerse in the history of art once in a while.
I found it inspiring to see the city through its architecture. While no history buff, it still opens a place up when you learn more about what was going on while buildings were being planned and constructed.
Ooh, I’m actually going to be in Milwaukee this summer so I will have to check out some of these places. I love the wings of the museum, and I definitely want to try the James Beard Award-winning restaurant!
So glad to hear you’re going to Milwaukee, Lois. I look forward to hearing about your experience!
I’ve never considered Milwaukee as a travel destination, but the history and the architecture look/sound very interesting! Thanks for linking up with #TheWeeklyPostcard!
Thanks for stopping by, Lolo. Milwaukee has a lot to offer on so many levels.
I love the intricate detail on the staircase, and the ceilings! The Public Market sounds like it had a wonderfully diverse range of cuisines to try, I’d imagine you’d have to go back many times to sample them all. It’s also interesting to learn that about the sulphur bricks. Thanks for sharing your experience of Milwaukee!
Thank you so much for the detailed feedback. The Midwest has many lovely and diverse cities that are too often overlooked.
I’m not sure what I expected from Milwaukee, but it looks like a place with a lot of great soul and history. That Three Brothers restaurant has my name all over it – good heart, home cooked food I would imagine. That arcade it beautiful and so well taken care of.
I wasn’t sure what to expect either but am so glad I took the plunge and visited Milwaukee.
I never thought Milwaukee could be an interesting travel destination, but after reading your post I decided each place deserves a chance. I don’t know about the city itself, but Milwaukee Art Museum should definitely be on the list of everyone who loves architecture. #TheWeeklyPostcard
There are so many interesting places to explore in the Midwest, Anda. I hope you get to see more for yourself too.