Itinerary Suggestion: Architecture Tour
After breakfast at The Allegheny Inn, the architecture tour begins in our own neighborhood, part of the former Allegheny City. In the 1800s, this neighborhood had more millionaires per capita than anywhere else in the world! We are clearly biased, but some of the best examples of Victorian architecture in Pittsburgh are right in the neighborhood. See the grand homes that line Cedar Avenue, right across from Allegheny Commons, Pittsburgh’s first park—and the first park west of the Allegheny Mountains. In Deuchtown, be sure to see the homes along Lockhart. Stop in the Priory, a 1880s Benedictine convent. Have a drink inside at Monks Bar, the smallest bar in the city. Try to peek in the beautifully restored Grand Hall.
Make your way west along North Avenue, taking in the homes across from the park, and explore the Mexican War Streets, another subsection of old Allegheny City. These streets were named after events in the Mexican American War. While all beautiful, Resaca and Monterey are two of the best restored examples. Be sure to see the indescribable Randyland on the corner of Jacksonia and Arch Steet. Stroll through the community gardens just a block down on Arch as you make your way back to North Avenue.
Want more on the North Side? Turn right at the bottom of Arch back onto North and head to Allegheny West. The crown jewel here are the wonderfully restored homes on Beech Avenue, but if you make your way to Ridge Ave, you can get a glimpse of the former grander of the neighborhood with some of the old townhome mansions that are now part of the CCAC campus.
Head back to the Inn, grab your car, and head out to Henry Clay Frick’s Clayton estate. This perfectly restored mansion from Pittsburgh’s Gilded Age gives you a rare window into Pittsburgh’s Victorian wealth.
Linger around the East End in Shadyside. Visit the shops on Walnut Street, and stroll by the homes on Westminster Place and Amberson Avenue. Walnut has a lot of great restaurants for lunch.
Stop in Heinz Chapel in nearby Oakland on Pitt’s campus to see the tallest stained glass windows in North America. Next door, visit the massive Cathedral of Learning, an academic skyscraper at Pitt. Don’t miss the unique nationality classrooms.
Head to the Duquesne Incline at the base of Mount Washington. Take the Incline up for a breathtaking view of the city. After taking in the sights on Grandview Ave, head down Bigham Street to Chatham Village, a neighborhood that earned its spot on the US National Register of Historic Places for being the first planned community in the US that incorporated greenbelts of undeveloped land.
Head back to the Inn to relax and enjoy our cocktail hour. After refreshing, head downtown to Point State Park. The Fort Pitt Blockhouse there is the oldest building in the city. Explore some of the other highlights downtown (and check out the lobbies!): The Union Trust Building, The Frick Building, The Courthouse, and Market Square.
For a tough decision, choose between the Renaissance and the William Penn hotel lobbies to relax and grab a beverage before dinner.
For dinner, another architectural and culinary wonder awaits at The Grand Concourse, Pittsburgh’s restored Pittsburgh and Lake Erie train station.