central west end
In the 1890's, wealthy St. Louisans move to the western edge of the city limits to the newly built mansions cropping up at the edge of Forest Park. Distinguished architecture is still the hallmark of the Central West End real estate, along with sophisticated urban lifestyle that residents relish. The historic homes of the 19th century mix effortlessly with the luxury condominiums, urban lofts, town homes and single family homes of today.
At the heart of the Central West End lies Maryland Plaza and the surrounding business district that was once the retail haven for the wealthy. Today, the cobblestone streets are lined with outdoor cafes, restaurants, antique shops, art galleries and specialty shops. The Chase Park Plaza hotel and Chase Residences is a restored St. Louis landmark. It elegant ballrooms, movie theatre, private residences and hotel suites are always alive and bustling with natives and visitors, alike.
Leading medical institutions, such as Barnes-Jewish Hospital, St. Louis Children's Hospital, the Siteman Cancer Center and Central Institute for the Deaf are housed alongside and in partnership with world-renowned Washington University Medical Center. The St. Louis University main campus and nearby medical center border the Central West End and are home to Cardinal Glennon Children's Medical Center and Saint Louis University Hospital.
Forest Park, the largest urban park in the U.S. is home to cultural institutions, whose structures were built for the 1904 World's Fair. The St. Louis Art Museum sits majestically on top of Art Hill, overlooking views of the city skyline and cascading water fountains of the Grand Basin. Within a short walk is the Missouri History Museum, where free summertime concerts are a local favorite. The Saint Louis Zoo offers free admission and houses popular exhibits like Jungle of the Apes, Puffin Coast and Big Cat Country. The St. Louis Science Center rotates shows in the Omnimax Theatre, Planetarium and Exploradome. Recreation abounds in Forest Park; you will find biking/jogging paths, playing fields, golf courses, tennis courts, ice skating and the Muni Opera, a large outdoor summer theatre.
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