I loved Philadelphia; it's full of colour and life. I was surprised by how much greenspace there is in the city and by the amount of public art that is featured on sidewalks and in plazas. Ashley and I started our tour of the city in the South Philly neighbourhood of Pennsport where we stayed in an old row house with our lovely friend Maddie. Parking here was unlike anything I had ever experienced... I honestly don't know how people managed to get in and out of their spots - it seemed like there was barely 6 inches between vehicles! Needless to say, we did not quite master the art of Pennsport parking.
To start our full day of touring, we walked to Grindcore House where I had the best vegan mocha I've ever tasted (roasted marshmellow!), coupled with fresh bagels smothered in kalamata olive cream cheese... Delicious! From there we drove to Logan Square, where we parked in order to explore the area by foot.
Swann Memorial Fountain (photos 3-5), located in Logan Circle within the Benjamin Franklin Parkway, is a large fountain designed by sculptor Alexander Stirling Calder in honour of Dr. Wilson Cary Swann who founded the Philadelphia Fountain Society. Built in 1924, it features three bronze Native American figures reclining around a central geyser. The figures represent the area's three major waterways - the Delaware River, the Schuykill River, and the Wissahickon Creek - and the fountain is also known as the Fountain of the Three Rivers.
You probably recognize Robert Indiana's iconic Love sculpture (photo 6). The sculpture was placed in JFK Plaza, at the end of the Benjamin Franklin Parkway, in 1976 during the country's bicentennial celebrations but removed in 1978. After much hue and cry from the public, Philadelphia Art Commission chairman F. Eugene Dixon Jr. bought the sculpture and it was installed permanently in the plaza.
Pennsylvania Railroad Suburban Station (photo 7) is an art deco, 21-storey limestone and sandstone building featuring a polished black granite facade with bronze details. Completed in 1930, with its interior renovated in 2006, it is a stunning building.
Philadelphia City Hall (photo 13) was designed by architect John McArthur Jr., and was completed in 1901 after 30 years of construction. Upon completion, the building was the tallest habitable building in the world, a distinction it held until the completion of the Singer Building in 1908. It remained the tallest building in Pennsylvania until 1932, and in Philadelphia until 1987. With its granite and brick walls - some 22 feet thick! - and facade of granite, limestone, and marble, Philadelphia City Hall is currently the world's tallest masonry building and the largest municipal building in the United States.
The Divine Lorraine Hotel (photo 14) was designed by architect Willis G. Hale, and constructed between 1892 and 1894 in North Philadelphia, and was one of the first high-rise buildings in the city. Initially the building was named Lorraine Apartments, and served as a luxurious apartment complex for wealthy Philadelphians. In 1900 the Metropolitan Hotel Company purchased the building, renaming it Lorraine Hotel. In 1948, the building became Philadelphia's first racially integrated hotel after being sold to Reverend M.J. Divine.
One final place I want to mention in this post is Little Baby's Ice Cream... We went to their Frankford Avenue location and it was absolutely delicious. I highly recommend them for vegan ice cream (and I'm sure their dairy ice cream is delicious as well).