Explore St. Louis

St. Louis' Grand Center Deserves Plenty of Applause

St. Louis' premier arts and entertainment district delivers both...big time

Grand Center, envisioned some 30 years ago as an arts and entertainment district, has leveraged the drawing power of original stalwarts like the Fox Theatre and the St. Louis Symphony to build a formidable collection of arts venues offering a nonstop day of exhibits and performances.

Start off at Contemporary Art Museum St. Louis, currently showing  work by Deana Lawson, Katherine Bernhardt and Nicola Tyson. Then head next door to the Pulitzer Arts Foundation, where Medardo Rosso: Experiments in Light and Form (which includes sculptures, drawings and photographs) constitutes the artist's first comprehensive U.S. museum exhibition in more than fifty years. The nearby Saint Louis University Museum of ArtSheldon Art Galleries, Museum of Contemporary Religious ArtInternational Photography Hall of Fame and Museum and Portfolio Gallery & Education Center round out the art-rich day.

Pulitzer Foundation for the Arts
Pulitzer Foundation for the Arts (©D. Lancaster)

There’s a free architectural tour on Saturdays at 10 am (sign up online), and motorcycle enthusiasts should not miss the Moto Museum's collection of vintage European motorcycles and their stories.

Moto Museum
Moto Museum (©D. Lancaster)

A bevy of performance venues vie for your evening hours: The Fox Theatre (Broadway shows and big-name concerts), The Sheldon Concert Hall (perfect acoustics in the 800-seat auditorium), the St. Louis Symphony at Powell Hall, Jazz at the Bistro (just what the name says), New Line Theatre (the self-proclaimed "Bad Boy of Musical Theatre") at the Marcelle Theater and a wide variety of theater and music by local groups at the Kranzberg Arts Center.

David Robertson leads the St. Louis Symphony.
David Robertson leads the St. Louis Symphony. (©Dilip Vishwanat)

Plenty of dining options at Triumph Grill (right next to the Moto Museum), Pappy's Smokehouse, Southern, The Fountain on Locust and The Dark Room.

Get your Southern fried chicken at Southern.
Get your Southern fried chicken at Southern. (©D. Lancaster)