Downtown is the central business district of Minneapolis. It is sprinkled with architecturally interesting skyscrapers, most of which are interconnected, mainly on the second level above the street level, by a growing web of skyways, now approaching eight miles in total length. Nicollet Mall is the main semi-pedestrianized shopping street in downtown Minneapolis. Downtown proper is anchored by the Downtown East, Elliot Park, Loring Park, and North Loop neighborhoods.
By METRO Light Rail
The Blue Line and Green Line both run on 5th Street through Downtown Minneapolis. The Blue Line links to South Minneapolis, the airport, and the Mall of America in Bloomington, while the Green Line links to the University of Minnesota and Saint Paul. The METRO is probably the easiest way to get into Downtown if you are coming from any of those areas.
By commuter rail
The Northstar Line runs from the northwest suburbs and terminates in Downtown Minneapolis at Target Field Station, which is also a transfer point to the light rail. However, service hours are limited and geared more towards weekday commuters than average visitors. Trains mostly run inbound during weekday mornings and outbound during weekday afternoons. There is also some limited service on weekends and special service timed around Twins and Vikings games.
Numerous buses serve Downtown Minneapolis, far too many to name individually. Local buses from Southwest or Northeast Minneapolis generally run along Hennepin Avenue or Nicollet Mall (a pedestrian/transit mall). Buses from the University of Minnesota and Saint Paul mostly run along 4th Street. Buses from North and South Minneapolis are less predictable, and may run along 4th, 6th, 7th, 8th, or 9th Streets depending on the route and the direction it is traveling in.
- Interstate 35W from the south suburbs or the northeast suburbs.
- Interstate 94 from Saint Paul and the east suburbs or the northwest suburbs.
- Interstate 394 from the west suburbs. I-394 directly connects to some parking garages along the western edge of downtown.
- Hiawatha Avenue (Minnesota State Highway 55) from the airport and the southeast suburbs.
Although most of the city's grid is along a strict north-south/east-west layout, the area near downtown on both sides of the river lies at an angle to the rest of the city's grid to better align with the river. Here streets run parallel to the river, and avenues run perpendicular (except for Washington Avenue, which parallels the river). Downtown contains mostly numbered streets and avenues, although a few important ones are named. Most of Downtown is within South Minneapolis, although the Warehouse District extends into North Minneapolis. Keep in mind that this is the only part of town, other than the West Bank, where you will encounter streets as well avenues designated "South". The intersection of S 2nd Ave and S 5th St is many blocks from the intersection of S 2nd St and S 5th Ave!
Much of downtown uses a series of Skyways to connect downtown shops and businesses. Navigating the skyway system can be confusing since one often has to take a curcuitous route to reach their destination. However, it's often a welcome alternative to walking outside in Minneapolis' harsh winter cold. For example, one could walk from the Convention Center in Minneapolis to Washington Avenue (a block before the Mississippi) without going outside, and without stopping at a pedestrian traffic light. Interstate 394 feeds into heated parking garages, so that a Wayzatan suburbanite could enter her vehicle, drive the length of 394 to the heated lot, go to work, shop at Target or Neiman-Marcus, see a movie, have dinner, and return home - all without having to wear a coat or change clothes, even in 20-below weather.
If you get tired of walking, Metro Transit buses are only $0.50 per ride within the Downtown Zone; keep in mind that no transfers are issued when paying the downtown fare. You can also ride a light-rail train between Target Field and Downtown East stations for this same fare. In addition, certain buses on the Nicollet Mall are marked "Free Ride"; specifically, they are the northbound Route 18 and southbound Route 10 buses. You can board these buses without paying a fare.
Parks and gardens
- Gold Medal Park, S 2nd St and 11th Ave S, ☎ +1 612 904-5607. 6AM-10PM daily. Gold Medal Park is a 7.5 acre park next to the Guthrie Theater. A 32 ft-high mound, reached by a spiral walkway, offers great views of the riverfront.
- Mill Ruins Park, 102 Portland Ave (at W River Pkwy), ☎ +1 612 313-7793. 6AM-10PM daily. Archaeological site at the location of former flour mills and other industrial buildings. A canal that ran through the area has been restored. Free.
- Minneapolis Sculpture Garden, 726 Vineland Pl (at Hennepin/Lyndale), ☎ +1 612 230-6400. 6AM-midnight daily. The Sculpture Garden is an outdoor exhibition of sculptures from many different artists, including the famous Spoonbridge and Cherry. It takes up 11 acres and is one of the largest urban sculpture gardens in the country. Free.
- Stone Arch Bridge, Portland Ave and W River Pkwy. A former railroad bridge of the Great Northern Railway spanning the Mississippi River; it was abandoned in 1978 and sat idle until it was repaired and adapted for pedestrian and bicycle use in the early 1990s. The Stone Arch is famous for its graceful arches and breathtaking views overlooking the Saint Anthony Falls.
- Foshay Museum, 821 Marquette Ave (30th floor), ☎ +1 612 215-3783. M-Sa noon-9PM, Su noon-6PM. Museum of the Foshay Tower, the former tallest building in Minneapolis from 1929-1971. The art deco tower was modeled after the Washington Monument. Outdoor observation deck on the 31st floor offers spectacular views of Minneapolis landmarks. $8 adults, $5 seniors/students, free children ages 12 & under.
- Mill City Museum, 704 S 2nd St (at Park), ☎ +1 612 341-7555, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. Tu-Sa 10AM-5PM, Su noon-5PM. This interactive museum, an arm of the Minnesota Historical Society, recounts Minneapolis' history as the flour milling capital of the world. The eight-story "Flour Tower" ride describes life in the mills, and leads to an observation deck atop the Washburn A Mill, formerly the world's largest flour mill. $12 adults, $10 seniors (65+) and college students, $6 children ages 6-17.
- Walker Art Center, 1750 Hennepin Ave (at Vineland, where Hennepin and Lyndale meet; Bus: 4, 6), ☎ +1 612 375-7600. Tu-W,F-Su 11AM-5PM, Th 11AM-9PM. One of the "big five" modern art museums in the United States, which underwent expansion in 2005. $14 adults, $12 seniors (62+), $9 students, free for children 18 and under. Free admission for all on Thursdays after 5PM and all day on the first Saturday of each month.
- Basilica of St. Mary, 88 N 17th St (Hennepin Ave between 16th and 17th Sts; Bus: 4, 6), ☎ +1 612 333-1381. M-F 6:30AM-5PM, Sa 8AM-6:30PM, Su 6:30AM-7:30PM (Guided tours Su after 9:30AM and 11:30AM masses, excluding holidays and Holy Week. Self-guided tours also permitted). Opened in 1914 as a pro-cathedral, Pope Pius XI lifted its rank to that of minor basilica in 1926, making it the first basilica in the United States. It serves as co-cathedral for the Archdiocese of Saint Paul and Minneapolis along with the Cathedral of St. Paul. Free.
Theater and performing arts
- Orpheum Theatre, 910 Hennepin Ave (at 9th St), ☎ +1 612 373-5600. Opened in 1921 as the Hennepin Theatre, a Beaux-Arts style building that was said to be the largest vaudeville house in the country at the time. It later became a movie house around the 1930s and 40s, and also started hosting live theater in the late 1950s. The theater was renovated in the early 1990s to host larger Broadway productions (a couple musicals debuted here before moving on to Broadway), and it also hosts the occasional concert.
- Guthrie Theater, 818 S 2nd St (at Chicago), ☎ +1 612 377-2224. This internationally renowned theater opened in 1963 and is known for its productions of both classical literature and new work from contemporary playwrights. In 2006, the theater moved into a new building along the Mississippi River near the old milling district. Designed by award-winning architect Jean Nouvel, this building houses three stages, and also acts as a public space, with restaurants, a cafe, and a 178 foot cantilevered bridge (the "Endless Bridge") looking out over the river.
- State Theatre, 805 Hennepin Ave (at 8th St), ☎ +1 612 373-5600. The State opened in 1921 and was designed in an Italian Renaissance style. It mostly operated as a movie house, although the theater occasionally hosted vaudeville acts and live music. The theater closed in 1978, but was later renovated and reopened in 1991, and now hosts live theater and concerts.
- Pantages Theatre, 710 Hennepin Ave (at 7th St), ☎ +1 612 373-5600. Opened in 1916 as a vaudeville house run by theater magnate Alexander Pantages, later converted to a movie house. Originally built as a Beaux-Arts twelve story complex, it was later significantly reduced to two stories. It operated as the Mann Theater from 1961 until closing down in 1984. A five-year restoration led to its reopening in 2002 under the original name, now hosting theatrical and occasional live music performances.
- Minnesota Orchestra (at Orchestra Hall), 1111 Nicollet Mall (at 11th St), ☎ +1 612 371-5656, e-mail: email@example.com. Minneapolis' symphony orchestra dating back to 1903. Puts on the annual Sommerfest every summer.
- Loring Theater (formerly the Music Box Theatre), 1407 Nicollet Ave (at 14th St), ☎ +1 612 424-1407.
- Brave New Workshop, 824 Hennepin Ave (at 9th St), ☎ +1 612 332-6620. An improv and sketch comedy theater that has been around in various locations in Minneapolis since 1958; the theater had a long history in Uptown but moved to its present location in 2010.
- Target Field, 3rd Ave N between 5th and 7th Sts. Opened in 2010, this outdoor stadium is home to Major League Baseball's Minnesota Twins, who moved in after a 28-year long stint at the since-demolished indoor Metrodome.
- Target Center, 600 1st Ave N (between 6th and 7th Sts). Home of the NBA Minnesota Timberwolves and the WNBA Minnesota Lynx basketball teams.
- Magical History Tour, 125 Main Street SE, ☎ +1 952 888-9200. April 1st-November 15th M-F 9:30AM-2:30PM. Ride a Segway as you enjoy the history of the Minneapolis Riverfront area from 10,000 BC to present. Tour goes for 5-7 miles on a beautiful historic route. The tour lasts around three hours and includes a stop for refreshments at the Mill City Museum.
- The Hitching Company, 1300 Nicollet Mall, ☎ +1 612 338-7777. Tour downtown Minneapolis in a horse-drawn carriage with the Hitching Company. Carriages accommodate up to four people.
The Skyways boast an excellent variety of retailers, and one can find almost anything, though the distances between stores can be very inconvenient. That said, it's like a mall for the agoraphobic or claustrophobic. The best times to find what you want are between 10AM and 2PM, as many excellent food shops are opened just to handle lunch hour.
Nicollet Mall is not an enclosed shopping mall but rather the downtown portion of Nicollet Avenue, one of the major streets in Minneapolis, running more or less north-south. The Mall is a two-lane busway with wide sidewalks that stretches from Washington Avenue to Grant Street, about one mile, and private automobiles are prohibited from it, except for the southernmost block between Rainville Place and Grant Street. Retail is heaviest on the wavy portion of Nicollet Mall, between 5th and 10th Streets. Many national chains such as Macy's, Banana Republic, and The Gap all call Nicollet Mall home. The Skyways cross Nicollet Mall in only three places and integrate the indoor malls with Nicollet. Buses running frequently through the Nicollet Mall, the Light Rail running along 5th Street, and numerous parking decks connected to the Skyways combine to provide good access to downtown.
- Macy's, 700 Nicollet Mall (between 7th and 8th Sts), ☎ +1 612 375-2200. M-Sa 10AM-8PM, Su noon-6PM. This particular Macy's was once the flagship store of Dayton's, a highly-renowned Minneapolis institution that was the dominant department store chain of Minnesota, and also had some presence in surrounding states. That all ended when it was rebranded as Marshall Field's in 2001 (a move that aggravates some Minnesotans to this day); five years later the Marshall Field's brand would also become a thing of the past when the chain was bought by Macy's.
- Hubert White, 747 Nicollet Mall (IDS Center), ☎ +1 612 339-9200. M-W,F 9AM-6PM, Th 9AM-7PM, Sa 10AM-6AM. Men's clothing store with in-house tailor. They have been in Downtown Minneapolis (in a couple different locations) since 1936 and started out in Saint Paul back in 1916.
- Rush's Bridal, 927 Nicollet Mall (at 10th St), ☎ +1 612 343-9333. Tu,Th 10AM-8PM, W,F-Sa 10AM-5PM. Bridal accessories, shoes, and dresses.
- Gaviidae Common, 651 Nicollet Mall (between 5th and 7th Sts), ☎ +1 612 372-1230. A shopping center divided between two adjacent buildings on Nicollet Mall. Gaviidae I and II house exclusive department stores, specialty retailers, and delicious restaurants. Below is a small selection of stores located in Gaviidae Common.
- City Center, 40 S 7th St (Nicollet Mall between 6th and 7th Sts). A brutalist monstrosity of a shopping center from the early 1980s. It went through rough times at the end of the 1990s and through the 2000s; only now are retailers slowly trickling back in.
- James and Mary Laurie Booksellers, 250 3rd Ave N (at Washington), ☎ +1 612 338-1114. M-Sa 11AM-6PM. Bookseller offering antiquarian printed maps and used classical and jazz albums.
- Minneapolis Farmers Market, 312 E Lyndale Ave N (between Glenwood and Olson on the east side of I-94; Bus: 9, 19), ☎ +1 612 333-1737. Mid-Apr to mid-Nov: 6AM-1PM daily; closed rest of year. The flagship farmers market in Minneapolis, operated by the Central Minnesota Vegetables Growers Association. Most of the produce is locally grown, although there are some resellers with non-local produce in the mix as well; each vendor should have signage indicating whether their goods are local. The CMVGA also operates a market along Nicollet Mall on Thursdays during the market season.
- Farmers Market Annex, 200 E Lyndale Ave N (between Glenwood and Olson on the east side of I-94; Bus: 9, 19), ☎ +1 612 573-0148. May-Oct: Sa-Su 6:30AM-1:30PM; closed rest of year. Directly adjacent to the main farmers market (many people mistakenly think it's part of the main market), the Annex has many textile and pre-made food vendors mixed in with its produce vendors.
- Big Brain Comics, 1027 Washington Ave S (at 11th Ave; Bus: 7, 22), ☎ +1 612 228-4390. M-Sa noon-8PM, Su noon-5PM. A great comic/underground book store, very neatly and intelligently laid out. The only mark against it is the slight air of pretension that casual buyers may encounter.
- Pacifier, 219 N 2nd St, Suite 102 (between 2nd and 3rd Aves N), ☎ +1 612 623-8123. M 10AM-6PM, Tu-F 10AM-7PM, Sa 10AM-6PM, Su 11AM-5PM. Pacifier offers a wide selection of hip and trendy baby gifts, nursery decor, clothing, wooden toys and baby gear. They also have a smaller location with limited hours at City Center.
- 8th Street Grill, 800 Marquette Ave (at 8th St), ☎ +1 612 349-5717. M-F 10:30AM-2AM, Sa 11AM-2AM, Su 11AM-midnight. Established in 1992 and known for its burgers and 32 on tap beers. 8th Street Grill serves breakfast, lunch, dinner, and late night. $9-20.
- Black Sheep Pizza, 600 Washington Ave N (at 6th Ave N; bus: 14), ☎ +1 612 342-2625. Su-Th 11AM-10PM, F-Sa 11AM-11PM. The only pizzeria in Minnesota using coal-burning ovens. $7-20.
- Bombay Bistro, 820 Marquette Ave (between 8th and 9th Sts), ☎ +1 612 312-2800, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. M-F 11AM-2PM and 5PM-10PM, Sa-Su noon-3PM and 5PM-10PM. Lunch buffet $12, dishes $11-16.
- Davanni's, 1242 Hennepin Ave (at 12th St), ☎ +1 612 338-0000. M-Th 10AM-11PM, F-Sa 10AM-12:30AM, Su 11AM-11PM. Chicago-style pizza, beer on tap, good hoagies. $9-20.
- Salsa a la Salsa, 1420 Nicollet Ave (between 14th and 15th Sts; Bus: 17, 18), ☎ +1 612 813-1970. M-Sa 11AM-10PM, Su 11AM-9PM. Authentic Mexican food. $9-15.
- Cello Pizza, 645 Hennepin Ave, ☎ +1 612-357-1122. Thin crust delicious pizza take away restaurant. Dine in is also available for only 8-10 people. $5-15.
- 112 Eatery, 112 N 3rd St (between 1st and 2nd Aves N), ☎ +1 612 343-7696. M-Th 5PM-midnight, F-Sa 5PM-1AM, Su 5PM-10PM. Casual upscale dining with fresh seafood, lamb, bone-in pork tenderloin, baked chicken, country-style ribs, and many other great offerings. $16-23.
- Atlas Grill, 200 S 6th St (at 2nd Ave S, inside U.S. Bank Plaza), ☎ +1 612 332-4200. M-F 11:30AM-7PM. Delicious global cuisine, a wonderful wine list and beautiful surroundings are perfect for an evening out or a celebration with friends and family. $12-20.
- Barrio, 925 Nicollet Mall (between 9th and 10th Sts), ☎ +1 612 333-9953. M-F 11AM-2AM, Sa noon-2AM, Su noon-1AM. Barrio has extra-cheap happy hour specials on its already-cheap small plates. You can get tacos for less than three bucks. And even during regular hours, Barrio's selection of small plates wont cost much more than 8 bucks. $8-20.
- Basil's, 710 Marquette Ave (between 7th and 8th Sts, inside the Marquette Hotel overlooking the Crystal Court of the IDS Center), ☎ +1 612 376-7404. M-Su 6:30AM-2PM. Offers a casual dining experience with a contemporary flare. Experience both an imaginative and intensely flavored breakfast and lunch menu that features American cuisine from traditional to unique. $15-30.
- Cafe Lurcat, 1624 Harmon Pl (between Maple and Lyndale/Hennepin; Bus: 4, 6), ☎ +1 612 486-5500. M-Th 5:30PM-10PM, F-Sa 5:30PM-11PM, Su 5:30PM-9PM. Highly recommended. Chic establishment with French/fusion offerings. $18-40.
- Gluek's Restaurant and Bar, 16 N 6th St (between Hennepin and 1st Ave N), ☎ +1 612 338-6621, fax: +1 612 343-9790, e-mail: email@example.com. M-F 11AM-2AM, Sa noon-2AM. Gluek's is a 4th generation brewery and restaurant. The food and the beer are good, but it is the history of this restaurant that sets it apart. Gluek's has been brewing beer since 1857 and there has been a bar on this site since 1902, except during Prohibition. The building burned in 1989, but was repaired and reopened in 1990. $10-20.
- Hell's Kitchen, 80 S 9th St (between Nicollet and Marquette), ☎ +1 612 332-4700. M-W 6:30AM-10PM, Th 6:30AM-11PM, F 6:30AM-2AM, Sa 7:30AM-2AM, Su 7:30AM-10PM. A chef-owned restaurant known for its damn good food. Awesome atmosphere and full bar. $20-30.
- Ichiban, 1333 Nicollet Mall (at Grant St), ☎ +1 612 339-0540. Su-Th 4:30PM-9:30PM, F-Sa 4:30PM-10PM. Japanese steakhouse. Dinner entrees $20-40.
- Market Bar-B-Que, 1414 Nicollet Ave (between 14th and 15th Sts), ☎ +1 612 872-1111. M-Sa 11:30AM-2:30AM, Su noon-1AM. $12-25.
- Masa, 1070 Nicollet Mall (at 11th St), ☎ +1 612 338-6272. M-F 11AM-2:30PM,5PM-10PM, Sa-Su 5PM-10PM. You won't find hot sauce in this mod Mexican dining expanse, where each table comes stocked with sea salt, limes and a trio of tasty homemade salsas. $12-20.
- Nami, 251 1st Ave N (at 3rd St), ☎ +1 612 333-1999. Lunch: M-F 11:30AM-2PM; dinner: M-W 4:30PM-9:30PM, Th 4:30PM-10PM, F 4:30PM-11PM, Sa 5PM-11:30PM. Japanese cuisine. Lunch specials, decor, and very modern, relaxing atmosphere. $10 per person plus tip at lunchtime, and $20 per person in the evening.
- Origami, 30 N 1st St (between Hennepin and 1st Ave N; Bus: 4, 6, 7, 11, 61), ☎ +1 612 333-8430. Lunch: M-F 11:30AM-2PM; dinner: M-Th 5PM-9:30PM, F-Sa 5PM-10:30PM, Su 5PM-9PM. Best known for their sushi. Generally a posh, overly-sedate crowd and indifferent service. Closing December 23, 2015. $10 per person plus tip at lunchtime, and $20 per person in the evening.
- Pizza Lucé, 119 N 4th St (between 1st and 2nd Aves N), ☎ +1 612 333-7359. M-Th 11AM-2:30AM, F 11AM-3:30AM, Sa 10AM-3:30AM, Su 10AM-2:30AM. Full bar, punk rock staff. You can get pizza by the slice or sit down and order a whole pie. This particular Pizza Luce location also offers brunch on Saturdays and Sundays from 10AM-2PM and a gluten-free menu.
- Manny's Steakhouse, 825 Marquette Ave (at 9th St). Su-Th 6:30AM-10PM F-Sa 6:30AM-11PM. Voted favorite steakhouse by Mpls.St.Paul magazine. $50+.
- Murray's Restaurant and Cocktail, 24 S 6th St (between Hennepin and Nicollet), ☎ +1 612 339-0909. M-F 11AM-2:30PM and 5PM-10PM, Sa-Su 5PM-10PM. Murray's opened in 1946 and could be considered to be the best white tablecloth restaurant in Minneapolis, with prices to match. If on a budget, consider eating during lunch when you can enjoy the atmosphere without worrying about breaking the bank. Or go all out and get the 4 pound golden butter knife steak at $100+ and share it with the entire family. $50+.
Hennepin Avenue is probably the single best-known street for drinking and clubbing in Minneapolis. The street is lined with late-night bars, dance clubs, and music venues. Similairly 1st Avenue which is the next street directly west of Hennepin Avenue, is also lined with late night destinations. There is also a good cluster of bars and nightclubs in the Warehouse District, which is just north-west of Hennepin Avenue and very much within walking distance.
- First Avenue, 701 1st Ave N (at 7th St), ☎ +1 612 332-1775. Probably the oldest and most legendary club in town. Dance nights of various flavors (house, salsa, etc.) are hosted as are local and national bands and the occasional weird event such as pro-wrestling and the roller derby league. Housed in the former Minneapolis Greyhound station, the club is located at the corner of 1st Avenue and 7th Street (hence the name), and can be easily identified by its black exterior decorated with silver stars of all the noteworthy artists who've played there. First Avenue gained national notoriety in the mid-1980s as the club where Prince played out his rivalry with Morris Day and The Time in Purple Rain. The club is divided into two main parts. The Mainroom is where the dance nights are held and national touring acts perform. The Mainroom is regarded as one of the premier sites for live music in the country. Often compared to Chicago's Metro, or San Francisco's Filmore. it offers nightly drink specials and a limited kitchen. The 7th Street Entry is a smaller room off to the side where one is more likely to see local bands or lesser known national touring acts. Don't be put off by the small size. Hundreds of touring bands have graduated from the Entry to become major touring acts. Son Volt, Wilco, The Replacements and Jane's Addiction are among the list of bands that played first in the Entry before moving on to the Mainroom, much bigger venues and even arenas.
- Fine Line Music Cafe, 318 1st Ave N (between 3rd and 4th Sts), ☎ +1 612 338-8100. A smaller-sized music club located on 1st Avenue, the Fine Line features national and local acts. The main level provides a close proximity to the acts, while the mezzanine offers meals and seating for a more expensive price.
- Dakota Jazz Club, 1010 Nicollet Mall, ☎ +1 612 332-1010. Upscale jazz club.
- Bunkers, 761 Washington Ave N (at 8th Ave N), ☎ +1 612 338-8188.
- O'Donovan's Irish Pub, 700 1st Ave N, ☎ +1 612 317-8896. 4PM-2AM daily. A rather small-looking pub with a big inside, this is a good place to go for a pint. They have a nice variety of drinks on tap, from cider to stout to both ("Poor Man's Black Velvet"), and some authentic Irish food in case that isn't thick enough. The help can range from decent to good, and the regulars may even be rather welcoming as well. Fair prices, good beers, and even better food.
- Lee's Liquor Lounge, 101 Glenwood Ave N (at N 12th St), ☎ +1 612 338-9491.
- The Lounge, 411 2nd Ave N (between 4th and 5th Sts), ☎ +1 612 333-8800. Jeans are allowed inside the club, but the following attire is not: No white tennis shoes, baseball hats, athletic apparel, badly ripped jeans, baggy clothing, or white t-shirts.
- Prohibition, 821 Marquette Ave (between 8th and 9th Sts, inside the Foshay Tower, 27th floor), ☎ +1 612 597-2413. Upscale bar located on the 27th floor of the Foshay Tower.
- Gay 90s, 408 Hennepin Ave (at 4th St), ☎ +1 612 333-7755. Happy hour bar M-Sa 8AM-2AM, Su 10AM-2AM (other bars in the club don't open until later in the evening). Historically a gay nightclub, these days the straight patrons often outnumber the gay patrons (sometimes to the chagrin of the latter). Six different bars contained inside. Large dance floor with live DJ. Drag shows nightly.
- Aqua, 400 1st Ave N (between 4th and 5th Sts), ☎ +1 612 232-3232. Th-Su 10PM-2AM. 18+ bar and dance club with a live DJ. Generally very loud and very crowded.
- 19 Bar, 19 W 15th St (between Nicollet and LaSalle; Bus: 11, 17, 18), ☎ +1 612 871-5553. M-F 3PM-2:30AM, Sa-Su 1PM-2:30AM. This casual gay dive bar is also the oldest gay bar in town. Features pool, darts, an outdoor patio, and cheap beer.
- Clubhouse Jäger, 923 Washington Ave N (at 10th Ave N; Bus: 7, 14), ☎ +1 612 332-2686. M-Tu 4PM-1AM, W-Sa 4PM-2AM. Small bar on the far end of the North Loop with various DJ nights. Of particular note is Transmission on Wednesday nights, a popular dance night featuring 1980s post-punk, indie, and new wave. The bar is housed in a building built by the Gluek Brewing Company in 1906, and various bars have occupied the space continuously since then.
- Best Western Normandy Inn and Suites, 405 S 8th St (at 4th Ave S), ☎ +1 612 370-1400. Check-in: 3PM, check-out: 11AM. On site restaurant. Indoor pool, spa, and sauna.
- Holiday Inn Express Minneapolis Downtown, 225 S 11th St (at 3rd Ave S), toll-free: +1-877-859-5095. Check-in: 3PM, check-out: 11AM. Within walking distance of Nicollet Mall and the convention center.
- Aloft Minneapolis, 900 Washington Ave S (between 9th and 10th Aves S; Bus: 7, 22), ☎ +1 612 455-8400. Check-in: 3PM, check-out: noon. Located in the Mill District, across the street from the Guthrie Theater, Mill City Museum, Gold Medal Park, and the Stone Arch Bridge. Includes an on site bar, XYZ.
- Crowne Plaza Northstar, 618 2nd Ave S (between 6th and 7th Sts), ☎ +1 612 338-2288, fax: +1 612 673-1157.
- The Depot Renaissance, 225 3rd Ave S (between 2nd St and Washington), ☎ +1 612 375-1700. Check-in: 3PM, check-out: noon. Indoor water park and seasonal ice skating rink. Located in the historic Milwaukee Road train station.
- DoubleTree Suites, 1101 LaSalle Ave (at 11th St), ☎ +1 612 332-6800. Located a few blocks from the Minneapolis Convention Center, and just one block from Nicollet Mall.
- The Hotel Minneapolis, 215 S 4th St (at 2nd Ave S), ☎ +1 612 340-2000. Check-in: 3PM, check-out: noon. Recently renovated, this boutique style hotel built in a former bank (the old vault doubles as a wine cellar) offers classy and modern style all at once. Guest rooms are smaller but offer all the amenities of a luxury hotel. The lobby area is inviting with a beautiful lobby bar with free billiards as well as a full service restaurant known as the Max.
- Hilton Minneapolis, 1001 Marquette Ave (at 10th St), ☎ +1 612 376-1000.
- Hyatt Regency Minneapolis, 1300 Nicollet Mall (at 13th St), ☎ +1 612 370-1234, fax: +1 612 370-1463. Rooms start at $189 per night, but discounts can be had. The Hyatt is also home to two high quality dining experiences: Oceanaire and Taxxi.
- Grand Hotel Minneapolis, 615 2nd Ave S (between 6th and 7th Sts), ☎ +1 612 288-8888. Recently renovated luxury hotel and spa with rooms starting at $170 per night. Connected to the climate-controlled Skyway, letting guests walk to the Target Center, Convention Center and other buildings in any weather.
- Radisson Plaza Hotel Minneapolis, 35 S 7th St (between Hennepin and Nicollet), ☎ +1 612 339-4900, toll-free: +1-800-967-9033, fax: +1 612 337-9766. Built on the site of the original Hotel Radisson (which opened in 1909), Radisson Plaza Minneapolis has an important historical significance for Minneapolis, and continues to be a thriving hotel. Featuring the outstanding FireLake Grill House & Cocktail Bar (try the "purple rain" martini at the bar, and the... well, really just about anything from the kitchen), underground parking, skyway access, and affordable packages. $170+.
- Westin Minneapolis, 88 S 6th St (at Marquette), ☎ +1 612 333-4006. Recently built into the historic Farmers & Mechanics Bank in downtown Minneapolis. The wine cellar is built into the former bank's vault. Appropriately, the bar/restaurant is called BANK.
- Hotel Ivy, 201 S 11th St (at 2nd Ave S), ☎ +1 612 746-4600. Check-in: 3PM, check-out: noon. Located in the heart of downtown. Connected to seven miles of skyway, connecting guest to attractions such as the Convention Center, Nicollet Mall, Orchestra Hall and the Guthrie Theatre regardless of weather.
- Le Meridien Chambers Hotel, 901 Hennepin Ave (at 9th St), ☎ +1 612 767-6900, toll-free: +1-800-543-4300, fax: +1 612 767-6901, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. Check-in: 3PM, check-out: noon. Luxury hotel with modern art furnishings. Guests get free access to the Walker Art Center. The hotel also houses the Burnet Art Gallery. $169+.
- Loews Minneapolis, 601 1st Ave N (at 6th St), toll-free: +1-855-775-6397. Check-in: 3PM, check-out: noon. Directly across the street from the Target Center, the hotel is connected by Skyway to the entire shopping and business district.
- W Minneapolis (The Foshay), 821 Marquette Ave (between 8th and 9th Sts), ☎ +1 612 215-3700. Check-in: 3PM, check-out: noon. Located in the Historic Foshay Tower in the heart of downtown. Hotel includes an on site bar, and famous Manny's Steakhouse. Just a block from Nicollet Mall.
- Minneapolis Central Library, 300 Nicollet Mall (between 3rd and 4th Sts; entrances on both the Nicollet Mall and Hennepin Avenue sides), ☎ +1 612 543-8000. M,W,F-Sa 10AM-6PM, Tu,Th 10AM-8PM, Su noon-5PM. The current Minneapolis Central Library was designed by Cesar Pelli and opened in 2006, replacing a hideous 1950s structure that previously housed the library. Unfortunately, the planetarium housed in the former structure has yet to be replaced. Plenty of computers are available here, and there are plenty of tables on each floor equipped with electrical outlets to plug in your laptop computers if you want to use the free wi-fi.
|Routes through Downtown|
|END ←||N S||→ South Minneapolis → Bloomington|
|END ←||W E||→ South Minneapolis → Saint Paul|