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Guardian Building

This towering skyscraper, lovingly nicknamed the Cathedral of Finance, is a historic Detroit landmark and one of the most striking art deco structures in the world.

With its eye-catching orange color and art deco design, the Guardian Building is one of the most recognizable buildings in Detroit's financial district. It also serves as a symbol of the industrial and cultural boom that Detroit experienced during the 1920s. Enter the building to inspect the lavish lobby, which features work from dozens of local artists and sculptors.

The Guardian Building was originally opened in 1929 as the flagship headquarters for large banking firm The Union Trust Company and was designed by renowned architect Wirt C. Rowland. Rowland had designed many of Detroit’s most notable buildings, including the Jefferson Avenue Presbyterian Church, but the Guardian Building is one of his most celebrated and iconic designs.

Gaze up at the orange brick facade of the art deco-style building. Note how the taller north tower and smaller octagonal south tower are connected, forming an elegant “I” shape. The bricks were created in a specially formulated orange color that was unusual for the time period. At its construction, the Guardian Building was the tallest masonry structure in the world.

Take a moment to appreciate the artisan handiwork that was put into each of the building’s entranceways. The main granite entrance is inlaid with carvings by local sculptor Corrado Parducci, while the Griswold Street entrance displays stepped arches covered in colorful pottery tiles.

Step into the lobby of the Guardian Building and admire its elaborate vaulted ceiling. The lobby stretches for 150 feet (46 meters), rises over three stories and features intricate tilework, stained-glass windows and marble fixtures. This lavish interior gives the building a church-like feel, hence its nickname, the “Cathedral of Finance.”

The Guardian Building is located at 500 Griswold Street in downtown Detroit. Public parking is available nearby. Alternatively, travel by the Detroit People Mover system to the Financial District station or ride one of several public buses to Griswold Street. 

The Guardian Building is open daily to the public. Admission is free.


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MotorCity Casino Hotel $143
MotorCity Casino Hotel

MotorCity Casino Hotel

2901 Grand River Ave, Detroit, MI
     
    4.5 out of 5.0 Stars

    Situated in Detroit, this luxury hotel is within 1 mi (2 km) of Little Caesars Arena, Fox Theatre, and Comerica Park. Ford Field and GM Renaissance Center are also within 2 mi (3 km). Sproat Street/Adelaide Street Station is 16 minutes by foot and Times Square Station is 17 minutes.

    Crowne Plaza Detroit Downtown Riverfront $127
    Crowne Plaza Detroit Downtown Riverfront

    Crowne Plaza Detroit Downtown Riverfront

    2 Washington Blvd, Detroit, MI
       
      3.5 out of 5.0 Stars

      Located in Downtown Detroit, this hotel is within a 10-minute walk of Cobo Center, GM Renaissance Center, and Campus Martius Park. Greektown Casino and Detroit Opera House are also within 15 minutes. Convention Center Station and Financial District Station are within a 5-minute walk.

      DoubleTree Suites by Hilton Detroit Downtown - Fort Shelby $127
      DoubleTree Suites by Hilton Detroit Downtown - Fort Shelby

      DoubleTree Suites by Hilton Detroit Downtown - Fort Shelby

      525 West Lafayette Blvd, Detroit, MI
         
        3.5 out of 5.0 Stars

        Located in Downtown Detroit, this historic hotel is within a 10-minute walk of Cobo Center, MGM Grand Detroit Casino, and Campus Martius Park. Fox Theatre and Greektown Casino are also within 15 minutes. Fort Cass Station and Michigan Avenue Station are within a 5-minute walk.

        Detroit Marriott at the Renaissance Center $199
        Detroit Marriott at the Renaissance Center

        Detroit Marriott at the Renaissance Center

        Renaissance Center, 400 Renaissance Drive, Detroit, MI
           
          3.5 out of 5.0 Stars

          Located in Downtown Detroit, this hotel is steps from Mariners' Church, GM Renaissance Center, and Detroit Riverwalk. Greektown Casino and Campus Martius Park are also within 10 minutes. Millender Center Station and Renaissance Center Station are within a 5-minute walk.

          Courtyard By Marriott Detroit Downtown $152
          Courtyard By Marriott Detroit Downtown

          Courtyard By Marriott Detroit Downtown

          333 E Jefferson Ave, Detroit, MI
             
            3.5 out of 5.0 Stars

            Located in Downtown Detroit, this hotel is within a 5-minute walk of GM Renaissance Center and Saint Andrews Hall. Guardian Building and Campus Martius Park are also within 10 minutes. Millender Center Station is only a 2-minute walk and Renaissance Center Station is 2 minutes.

            Shinola Hotel $235
            Shinola Hotel

            Shinola Hotel

            1400 Woodward Ave, Detroit, MI
               
              4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

              Located in Downtown Detroit, this hotel is within a 10-minute walk of Detroit Opera House, Fox Theatre, and Ford Field. Greektown Casino and Comerica Park are also within 10 minutes. Broadway Station and Cadillac Center Station are within a 5-minute walk.

              Atheneum Suite Hotel $165
              Atheneum Suite Hotel

              Atheneum Suite Hotel

              1000 Brush Avenue, Detroit, MI
                 
                4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

                Located in Greektown Historic District, this boutique hotel is within a 10-minute walk of Greektown Casino, GM Renaissance Center, and Ford Field. Campus Martius Park and Detroit Opera House are also within 10 minutes. Greektown Station and Bricktown Station are within a 5-minute walk.

                Trumbull and Porter Hotel $139
                Trumbull and Porter Hotel

                Trumbull and Porter Hotel

                1331 Trumbull St, Detroit, MI
                   
                  3.5 out of 5.0 Stars

                  Located in the heart of Detroit, this hotel is within 1 mi (2 km) of West Riverfront Park, MGM Grand Detroit Casino, and MotorCity Casino. Cobo Center and Detroit Riverwalk are also within 1 mi (2 km). Michigan Avenue Station is 16 minutes by foot and Fort Cass Station is 17 minutes.