Recently I have been hearing more and more talk about Detroit. Most of it not in the most positive light. I have heard things like, “there is nothing there,” “tumbleweeds roll down the street,” and other things along that line. Over the years I have met and have made friends with so many amazing people from the Detroit area. The vast majority of them no longer live there, but rep their hometown with much pride. So when I got the chance to visit, I wasn’t sure what to expect.
There were definitely no tumbleweeds rolling through Downtown Detroit as I looked around. There was certainly a lot there. It was a beautiful sunny day, perfect for walking around. The first thing I noticed was an area called Greektown. There were tons of greek restaurants which reminded me of Astoria in Queens, NY. There is also a Greektown Casino and Hotel.
There was a store inside the Greektown International Building called ‘Detroit V Everybody.’ The store is pretty small, but has a ton of hoodies, hats, and shirts in an array of colors that say Detroit V Everybody. Despite the size, the store was pretty crowded. I was gifted a very nice t-shirt that I will wear soon. The owner has envisioned his brand to rebuild Detroit’s image though the pride of those from Detroit. Perfect for this city!
As we continued to walk around I saw a sand volleyball court in the middle of downtown. I thought that was pretty awesome. I then looked and noticed a ton of guys playing have court basketball. It was easy to look on from the many nice table and chairs they had. Walking a little further, I saw a beach. There was no water, more like a really large sandbox with 150 tons of sand located on Woodward Avenue.
I thought the beach concept for the summer’s public space was awesome. There are some lounge chairs to kick back and relax. I saw kids digging in the sand having a blast. I didn’t dare dip a toe in it as sand is a clinger and I had on sneakers, but I loved the concept! There was also a beautiful fountain that lit up at night.
As we headed towards the riverwalk I began to notice more and more people. Across the street from the Spirit of Detroit crowds were forming. Turns out there was a really big techno event going on that people were lining up for. We braved the crowd to go inside the GM Renaissance Center.
It was like walking around a car show, for General Motors. I didn’t get to see everything, but I saw a few beautiful cars. There was a gorgeous view of the river through the huge window that amped me up to head outside. There were tons of people on their boats, walking around, and lining up for the techno event. It was a gorgeous view with Canada directly across the water.
I also got the opportunity to get some great views from high up in some of the many buildings when night fell after dinner. Detroit is definitely a city that is making attempts to rise from the ashes. The city is beautiful and it was great to be taken around by locals to really get a feel for Downtown.
I had an amazing time and look forward to going back and exploring more. Don’t believe people when they tell you there is nothing in Detroit. There is plenty.
Have you ever been to Downtown Detroit? What was your experience?