Libraries as tourist attractions: Maybe some film, quotes or art for your liking

St. Louis Library

Libraries as tourist attractions?

We’ve found during our trips that libraries can be unspoken tourist attractions. Not many people think to check out a library on their vacations.

But, maybe they should.

Lisa is more into the library stops than me. But, I agree that a couple of libraries we’ve been to have been quite interesting.

It actually started in the early 2000s, when we were in Salt Lake City, Utah. Our friends Mark and Ron lived there for a short time.

The four of us stopped in at the main Salt Lake library.

Salt Lake Library

Wow! This place was more than a library. It had small shops – boutiques, as well as coffee shops – outside the usual books and magazines areas.

Salt Lake Library1

The design of the building was very modern. It had a curved front, with tinted glass.

It was a beautiful building in a great setting, sitting in a valley with a mountain range within view.

Lisa continued her library visits while we were in Seattle. Again, we had met Mark and Ron for a few days in the Emerald City. While Mark and I were at the Nebraska-Washington football game, Lisa and Ron toured parts of Seattle.

They stopped at the main library.

Seattle Library

The unique thing about this building was the design. The exterior is a diamond facade. They leaned against the window for views.

Seattle Library1

Kansas City has a cool downtown library.

For starters, the parking garage has a façade representing books. It runs a block long. Books, such as Fahrenheit 451 and Catch-22 are listed among the group.

Kansas City Library

Then, the library interior is interesting.

Kansas City Library1

The children’s section continues the book design on the wall, as well as book quotes.

The super cool thing to us was the movie vault in the basement. This section of the library was once a bank, so the vault stayed in place.

Kansas City Library2

The library uses the vault as a movie theater exhibit. Columns stand made from old film canisters.

Kansas City LIbrary3

An old movie camera stands on display.

Kansas City Library4

The downtown Los Angeles library is home to art work and art décor. The ceiling has some interesting light fixtures.

Los Angeles Library

The artwork even featured a painting of President Obama with a Hispanic flair.

Los Angeles Library1

If you want to see elegance in a library, head off to St. Louis.

St. Louis Library

The library was constructed in a unique architecture design.

St. Louis Library1

Rooms on the main floor have high ceilings. They have beautiful designs and columns.

The library has a brochure depicting the top 10 attractions within the building for visitors to check out.

St. Louis Library2

In the lower level, book quotes dot the ceiling.

St. Louis Library3

The children’s section had gummy bear sculptures to welcome visitors.

St. Louis Library4Check out our full visit to the St. Louis library here

While not on the same scale as some libraries around the country, our own downtown library has its attractions.

It sits squarely in front of a nice skyline for Omaha visitors.

Omaha Library

The library uses a section of the first floor for special exhibits, including on Black history as well as Omaha’s hosting of the 1898 Trans-Mississippi Fair. The current exhibit promotes Latin musical instruments.

Omaha Library1

Riccardo Marchio is a musician and sculptor who makes mandolins, violins, guitars and kalimbas, according to the library’s website – Each piece is completely unique and hand-built in his South Omaha studio. The exhibition will feature instruments in traditional and non-traditional styles.

While visiting a library may not be high on people’s lists when traveling, if the opportunity comes to visit a downtown or main library, it may be worth the stop.

You don’t have to check out a book to check out a possible hidden gem. Enjoy your travels.