Steel City Memories to Last a Lifetime
Built on a strong history of industry, Pittsburgh has recently become a popular destination for culture aficionados and sports fans alike. While you may have come to the revitalized “Paris of Appalachia” for a Steelers game at Heinz Field or to catch a Pirates game at PNC Park, you'll find that there’s so much more to discover about this surprisingly cosmopolitan city. Pulsating with vitality, the elegant Fairmont Pittsburgh hotel’s cultural district location affords you easy access to the area’s best culture, dining and shopping. The hotel’s award-winning staff offers many luxurious ways to help you have an unforgettable stay. From planning a relaxing boat ride on the Ohio, Monongahela and Allegheny rivers to outlining an inspirational tour of local museums and galleries, the Fairmont Pittsburgh concierge can help you make Steel City memories to last a lifetime.
The View From Above
The large floor-to-ceiling windows of Fairmont Pittsburgh’s steel-and-glass building design afford you sweeping views of the Downtown skyline, but be sure to get a different perspective of the city on the Duquesne Incline. Scaling the verdant façade of Mt. Washington, a restored 19th-century cable car ascends 400 feet above Pittsburgh’s three rivers as it carries you to the observation deck at its Upper Station. From here, you’ll be able to spot several of the city’s hundreds of bridges, the gleaming cluster of buildings that form the city skyline and the Point State Park Fountain bubbling at the westernmost tip of downtown Pittsburgh.
Pittsburgh’s vibrant art scene is anchored by several outstanding museums. The Andy Warhol Museum is a must-see, seven-story monument to the Pittsburgh-born artist whose pop art became a hallmark of 20th-century culture. Located less than one mile from the Fairmont Pittsburgh, visitors enjoy exhibitions of Warhol’s work, temporary exhibitions and film and video programming that reflects his love of the medium.
Venture another mile farther north to the Mexican War Streets section of the Northside area and lose yourself in the Mattress Factory’s art installations. The rooms of this former Stearns & Foster warehouse feature captivating, immersive pieces like the unsettling bedroom scene of Greer Lankton’s It’s all about ME, Not You. Outside the Mattress Factory, it's a short, three-minute walk to Randyland, the rainbow-colored home of artist and neighborhood do-gooder Randy Gilson. Equal parts kitsch and 1960s hippie bombast, the playful courtyard and reclaimed abandoned buildings alongside it stand as a vivid and quirky testament to positivity.
Gilded Age elegance and Pittsburgh history is waiting for you at The Frick, just a 20-minute drive east of Fairmont Pittsburgh. Clayton, the magnificent 22-room mansion home of famed industrialist Henry Clay Frick and his family, is a preserved shrine to their lives at the turn of the 20th century. Don’t miss the almost comical children’s entrance, with its child-sized clothing rack and tiny sink. Reservations are recommended to visit Clayton, so speak with Fairmont’s concierge to arrange a tour of the house. Save time to explore the impressive property beyond the house, including the Frick Art Museum, the greenhouse, expansive gardens and the Car and Carriage Museum, containing Frick’s 1914 Rolls Royce Silver Ghost.
The blue-collar profile of Pittsburgh has changed over the years, and so has its dining scene. Native-born chefs and big city transplants alike have shaped the city’s newly heralded cuisine, which can be enjoyed at Habitat. The restaurant’s tandoor oven is a testament to the city’s growing international influences, and their made-to-order naan bread is a delightful starter. Meaty main course highlights include a grass-fed, house-butchered, eight-ounce beef tenderloin, a 12-ounce ribeye steak, and the white cheddar and bacon covered One-Cow Burger, with all three items locally sourced from a farm in nearby New Wilmington as part of an ongoing effort to incorporate organic, sustainable menu items.
Head to the sleek Zen garden environs of Soba in Shadyside for small plates like their tuna taco with tempura fried peach and blackberry gazpacho. Pair it with one of their unique cocktails, such as the Sichuan Sour, a mix of bourbon, peppercorn syrup and rosemary-lavender bitters. Just a half-mile west, bistro-inspired New American fare shines at Avenue B. With its low-key atmosphere and BYOB alcohol policy, the focus remains squarely on tempting dishes such as wild caught fish & chips served with Napa slaw, or Wagyu meatloaf with goat cheese and chive whipped potatoes.
The self-described "craft food gastropub" Meat & Potatoes is a carnivore's dream. Sporting boldly colored walls and floor-to-ceiling windows provides a contemporary setting for their menu of meaty masterpieces. The dinner menu offers a bone marrow and gremolata appetizer and such popular mains as pastrami crusted duck breast or lamb neck cassoulet. Their drink menu is no less intriguing, with Prohibition-era cocktails as well as an unexpected absinthe selection.
If you’re in the mood for a nightcap, Andys Wine Bar, named for a pair of the city's most prominent Andys (Warhol and Carnegie) is a smart choice. Order the Mule Undone, a ginger-infused vodka tipple finished off with Pittsburgh-made Arsenal Cider, and enjoy your sip to the sounds of live jazz or world music.
Take It Home with You
If you’re looking to bring a bit of Steel City charm home with you, there’s no shortage of nifty boutiques and big-name department stores. Seasoned shoppers, with time to spare, delight in exploring the city's 90-plus neighborhoods. Hit the historic Strip District for unique designer home goods at Hot Haute Hot. Be sure to make your way over to hip Lawrenceville for one-of-a-kind keepsakes, like the locally made T-shirts at Wild Card and the Keystone- and Pennsylvania-shaped jewelry at Alissa Martin’s indie-centric boutique Pavement.
To embark on a personalized Pittsburgh experience of your own, reach out to Fairmont Pittsburgh’s concierge in advance at firstname.lastname@example.org.
After living for five years in Brazil, where he wrote restaurant, nightlife and hotel city guides for Time Out São Paulo and others, Corey Mittenberg Gorey returned to his native New York City. With experience creating and revising content for corporate PR and social media campaigns for the art market, he also continues to translate Brazilian Portuguese works for film, television and theater.
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Incline in Pittsburgh by Sean Pavone
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania Downtown Skyline by Sean Pavone
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania Skyline by Sean Pavone
Pop-art daisie by marcouliana