Hilly and steely (quite literally), Pittsburgh has had a reputation as a hard-working city without much tourist appeal. That conventional wisdom has always been incorrect. This city of incredible cultural assets — created in part from the largess of well-known American philanthropic families whose names adorn them — has attracted in-the-know tourists to attractions ranging from the Carnegie Science Center and the Heinz Hall for the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra to the lesser known but super gay-popular Andy Warhol Museum (he was a hometown boy).
With the opening of the newest uber-cool Ace Hotel in Pittsburgh, housed in a former century-old YMCA building, scheduled for later this year, we asked openly gay and also uber-cool Brad Wilson, right, President and co-founder of Ace Hotel Group, his favorite things to do in the new and improved Steel City since he’s spending so much time there opening the new property.
Breakfast/brunch: If it’s a special occasion, I’m partial to The Grand Concourse which is in an old train station in Station Square. It’s a gorgeous space with a huge buffet. They even fry fresh donuts for you while you’re waiting for a table.
Cocktails: I’m a big fan of Max’s Allegheny Tavern in the North Side. No frills here: it’s a great old German spot with big martinis, manhattans and a lot of beer.
Sunday Funday: [Frank Lloyd Wright’s iconic residence] Fallingwater is also always worth the trip, and it’s only 45 minutes away.
Outdoors: If you have a friend with a speed boat you can take to the river, then you’re golden. Failing that, find (or make) a friend who is a member of The Bayardstown Social Club, a members-only outdoor social club where you bring your own meat for the grill.
Hidden Gem: My favorite Pittsburgh gem is Banjo Night at the Northside Elks Lodge. Friendly people, good beer, great music and spirit.
Learn more: Pittsburgh’s official tourism site offers information for LGBT travelers including a listing of nightlife options and upcoming gay events.
For additional LGBT trip-planning information and suggestions for destinations, tours, events and more download ManAboutWorld’s latest issue.
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