Smith Tower Observation Deck
506 2nd Ave
I admit it. I'm weird. I love doing touristy things in my own city. I wish more guests would come to town so I'd have an excuse to do them.
The Smith Tower's observation deck is one of my favorites because it's easy to get to, it's beautiful, and it's flexible. Unlike museums and tours, it can be whizzed through in a few minutes, or you can linger and enjoy the view. If you're there long enough, you'll eventually need to head down to the bathroom.
Head down the stairs, be jealous of the amazing private residence above, wonder what's behind the tiny doors, and check out the crack in the vintage floor tiles.
Here's where I have to admit, my memory of the bathroom was nicer than the bathroom actually is. I'm not saying it's bad or anything, I just remembered vintage fixtures that aren't actually there.
There's also a lovely bench to wait on outside while your friend takes too long, next to a big mirror he or she can admire him- or herself in upon exiting.
I wanted to sneak into the women's restroom for some photos, but figured the last thing our city needs is dudes with cameras scaring German tourists in ladies' loos.
I could easily veer off topic and go on and on about the building's history and possible future, as well as great places to go nearby. Instead, I'll end with a warning. Be sure to call ahead because a sign I saw a block away from the Smith Tower said they'd only be open until 3pm, while their web site said 5pm.