Big Salt Lake
Salt Lake City is well known for its Mormon church and an all-star NBA team, yet what most people don't know is how darn big the place is. Blocks here are loong, so long that you might choose to drive four blocks as opposed to walking them. Buildings are big, too, in this city tucked between the Wasatch Mountains and the Great Salt Lake. What will you do on your visit to Salt Lake City? A few suggestions below.
Where to stay: The Little America Hotel is a slice of the seventies five blocks from the city center. Its lobby is a stunner, and the spacious rooms are done in a French Provincial chic reminiscent of Mom's (but nicer). There are two pools, just as many restaurants and an easygoing feel to the whole place. The Little America Hotel, 500 S. Main (801) 363-6781. Double rooms range from $59-$159.
Where to eat: P. F. Chang's, a hip-hopping Chinese restaurant, is the newest member of the Salt Lake City dining scene. The wait may be long but it's worth it. Lamb's , at the other end of the chi-chi scale, is Salt Lake's oldest restaurant and a retro gem. Admire the deco touches as you slink into a red leather booth and order manicotti or the catch of the day. Sophie Garcia's is a good choice for seafood enchiladas while the Rio Grande Cafe is a long-time Mexican food destination. And by all means end a meal (or begin the day) at A Cup A Joe , a coffeehouse which is "the only funky place in town," according to the barista (who should know).
What to do: Temple Square is ground zero in Salt Lake City in more ways than one. The city's street numbering system begins here, yet this is also the place which most visitors feel they have to see. You should do the same. A thirty-minute tour of the Square, including information on the Temple, Tabernacle and the faith which envelopes them (expect some proselytizing) begins at the Square's flagpole every ten minutes. The Mormon Tabernacle Choir has two performances most weeks and the public is invited. If you miss the Choir, try to catch one of several organ recitals held daily. Next, step across the street to the Joseph Smith Building (also known as the Hotel Utah) and do two things: visit the Family Search Center to trace your ancestry and enjoy the panoramic view from the tenth floor observation deck. The Utah State Capitol, with its majestic dome and other historical touches, is also worth a visit. If you're in town during hoops season, by all means go see the Mailman and his teammates on the Utah Jazz at the Delta Center. Finally, if you're hale and hearty, take the time to walk the city center streets -- there's a lot to see, especially the rich collection of 19th century architecture.
A little bit more: The Park City ski resort is only an hour away and chock full of things to do year round. Who knows, maybe you'll even bump into local resident Robert Redford, who hosts his Sundance Film Festival here every January.
There's a lot more going on in Salt Lake but you'll have to read the story to find out!
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