adventure, travel

Delightful Detroit

Much of what we read or hear about Detroit is negative, so when my boss asked for volunteers to go for three days, my first thought was, “No thanks.” But the chance to get out of the office and see a new place sounded fun, so I volunteered. I’m glad I did.

My hotel was not the boarded up shack covered in graffiti that I imagined. Instead, the Detroit Marriott at the Renaissance Center is an amazing skyscraper—the third tallest hotel in the Western Hemisphere—overlooking downtown and the Detroit River. I was on the 61st floor with a view of Canada, the river, and much of Detroit including Comerica Park, home of the Detroit Tigers.

Sunrise over the Detroit River from my hotel room.

The Renaissance Center is also the General Motors world headquarters and is like a small town in itself. Inside were shops, restaurants—including a McDonalds—and even a CVS pharmacy. The meetings I would attend were also in the hotel, so I never had to leave if I didn’t want to. The hotel also had the nicest and largest hotel fitness center I’ve ever seen.

A life sized Chevy Silverado made from over 300,000 legos in the GM Center.

The first evening a couple of friends and I explored downtown near the hotel. I was surprised by the beautiful architecture, historic buildings, and works of art. There were also lots of inviting pubs and restaurants. The locals seemed friendly, and we never felt a bit unsafe.

Along the river is a beautiful and clean new river walk. We walked along, passing numerous runners, couples holding hands, and a few skateboarders. It looked like the place to be for active people. On the river itself we saw a sailboat and riverboat near the Underground Railroad Memorial. We didn’t stay out after dark, but I’m sure we’d have been fine if we did. One friend caught the Tigers and Yankees game and felt just fine about walking back when it was over.

The river walk in front of the Renaissance Center.

Our hotel was very near the Detroit-Windsor Tunnel and Ambassador Bridge, both crossing the river into Windsor, Canada, so we couldn’t help going for a short visit. I wrote about our two hours in Canada here.

A boat on the Detroit River with Canada in the background.

My three days flew by. We all agreed that Detroit is a lovely and exciting city that doesn’t get the credit it deserves. I sincerely hope that I can return with more time to explore. If you have the chance to go, don’t hesitate.

The Underground Railroad Memorial

About Nowhere Tribune

A husband and daddy, striving to love his neighbors and be kind to his pets. I love good food, good beer, and a few good friends. My other interests are hiking, taking walks, lifting weights, reading books by manly authors like Hemingway and Twain, and splitting fire wood with my bare hands.


18 thoughts on “Delightful Detroit

  1. I have to agree, it’s gotten a bad rap, but from the pictures you’ve taken it looks positively intriguing. And, it’s in Michigan……GO BLUE!! 😎

    Posted by thehuntress915 | September 15, 2019, 9:12 am
  2. Wonderful pictures. I’ve heard Detroit is making a comeback…. and I hope that’s true. It’s one of the great working class cities!

    Posted by Rivergirl | September 15, 2019, 9:16 am
  3. Well, with your adventurous spirit I’m surprised you didn’t tour W Chicago & Livernois Ave, just to say you saw it. Certainly all big cities have their bad spots, but Detroit is Happenin’! Great post Mr Byrd. Neat place.

    Posted by jim- | September 15, 2019, 9:18 am
    • Thank you, Jim! Man, if I’d ever heard of Chicago or Livernois Ave, I might have put them on my list. But I went not knowing anything at all about the city.

      Posted by Nowhere Tribune | September 15, 2019, 10:12 am
      • I was in a white Lincoln continental rental car and got pulled over by the police. I was actually lost, (back in the day before gps) and he said “man you need to get out of here”. He told me where to go and said “if you get a flat or anything, just drive it out on the rim”. Haha. Great place.

        Posted by jim- | September 15, 2019, 10:19 am
  4. It is funny how people see other parts of the country through different types of media. When I first came to Texas, I thought there were nothing but ranches and cowboys. I blame the TV shows Dallas and Gunsmoke. To my surprise there were buildings and paved roads. Dallas was more city than the suburb of Philadelphia I moved from.

    Posted by bigguyhiking | September 15, 2019, 10:59 am
  5. Beautiful pictures. Amazing view from your room.

    Posted by Snowbird In Training | September 15, 2019, 11:38 am
  6. It’s nice to find out that something you thought would be a bit worrisome was just fine after all. I have found this out in several places. Makes me realizes that the media is mostly negative and that colors our interpretation of places.

    Posted by Jason Frels | September 15, 2019, 11:48 am
  7. Thanks loads. I was planning on buying one of those cheap Detroit houses for a few thousand dollars. But this post has probably doubled the cost of real estate in that city.

    Posted by Tippy Gnu | September 15, 2019, 12:15 pm
  8. Glad you had a wonderful time. All cities have their problems but also have goods sides to them as well.

    Posted by Darnell Cureton | September 16, 2019, 3:57 am
  9. Good to know! I guess it’s like Chicago, safe and unsafe areas ?

    Posted by pkadams | September 16, 2019, 9:39 pm

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