Detroit Skyscrapers: Inside the David Whitney Building

The Whitney as it appeared in 1915 it stands on the left.
The Whitney as it appeared in 1915 it stands on the left.

The David Whitney Building stands as one of the most enduring buildings of Detroit’s Skyline. Built in 1915, the 19 story Building was the skyscraper of its time, a classic symbol of America’s strength and beauty. Designed by the Daniel H. Burnham & Co. Architecture Firm.

The lobby of the Whitney Building

The lobby of the Whitney Building

The large atrium is one of the signature elements of style that makes the David Whitney Building an American classic. The atrium was once one of the most visited retail destinations in the Midwestern United States.

Beautifully lit by a skylight and adorned with white marble and gold additions, visitors would come from around the region to shop at the Whitney Building and see the incredible architecture. After its opening, the David Whitney Building quickly established itself as the premiere address of Detroit’s best doctors and medical professionals.

The recently restored skylight of the Whitney

The recently restored skylight of the Whitney

As a result, Detroiters of all ages and income levels have strong memories of walking through its sunlit lobby, Riding in its wood-lined elevators and ambling its marble-lined corridors. Perhaps no building still standing in the City of Detroit holds stronger recognition for its residents than the David Whitney Building. It was closed in 1999.

After a two-year, $92 million redevelopment, it reopened as of December 2014. It now boasts 108 apartments, Aloft Detroit boutique hotel with 136 rooms and the Grand Cirque Brasserie French-American restaurant. The Whitney is now on the growing list of restored gems of Detroit. The restored building is a must-see if you are in downtown Detroit, and if you let your mind wander, you may find yourself transported back to the 1920s.

 

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