GM Renaissance Center - Detroit, Michigan - skyscraper complex in downtown Detroit

Detroit's Renaissance Center is a historic complex of skyscrapers designed and built in the 1970s. Now known as the GM Renaissance Center, or more familiarly as the RenCen, the Renaissance Center was conceived as a project intended to revitalize downtown Detroit and return it from the brink of economic disaster. The complex consists of seven connected skyscrapers, all centered around the central tower, which houses the tallest all hotel tower in the Western Hemisphere. The only all hotel tower in the world that is taller is Singapore's Swissotel, The Stanford, built in 1986. Since 1977, the building now known as the Detroit Marriot at the Renaissance Center has held the honor of being the tallest building in Michigan.

In addition to the central tower, the Renaissance Center consists of four 39 story office towers and two 21 story office towers. The bases of the four towers include five stories of retail space referred to as "podium space''. When GM renovated the complex in 2001, they added a five story atrium known as the Wintergarden. The Wintergarden faces the International Riverfront and offers riverfront access and a view of Canada across the river.

The project is entirely owned by General Motors, who rent space out to retail and commercial tenants. The central tower is fully occupied by the Marriot at the Renaissance Center, flagship hotel of the Marriot chain and the largest hotel in the chain. It boasts 1,298 rooms on 73 stories. The top three stories of the tower are occupied by the Matt Prentice Restaurant Group Coach Insignia. The restaurant, which once rotated a full 360 degrees to offer diners an ever changing view of the city, serves Coach wines, and is considered to be a world class dining experience.

The Renaissance Center offers 5.5 million square feet of office, retail and entertainment space. In addition to the hotel and restaurant, it houses four movie theaters, a financial center, the Canadian and Japanese Consulates, four restaurants and an 1,100 seat food court.

From McDonalds to veal steaks and salmon, the Renaissance Center offers a truly eclectic dining experience to visitors. There are no less than thirty-three different places to grab a bite - or luxuriate over a fine meal scattered throughout the seven towers. The crown jewel of dining at the RenCen is the Coach Insignia, located at the top of the central tower. A modern chophouse, the Coach Inisgnia offers a menu of fine foods accompanied by an award-winning wine list and one of the most impressive views in the world. Coffee lovers can choose from Starbucks, Tim Horton's, Maui Wowi and the Coffee Beanery, each located in a different tower. The Food Court offers standards like McDonalds, Subway, Arby's and Au Bon Pain, while the more discriminating can choose from local favorite restaurants like Fish City and forty-two degrees north.

In addition, the Renaissance Center features a handful of specialty stores, including a GM memorabilia shop, flower shops, gift shops and specialty food stores.

The Renaissance Center offers free one hour tours of the Center Monday through Friday at 10 am, noon and 2 pm. The tours include a guided walk of the Center including the GM Wintergarden, the GM Lobby and Pavilion, the Circulation Ring and Glass Sculpture and a tour of the RenCen's restaurants and shops. For more information on RenCen tours and reservations, contact the Renaissance Center at 313-568-5624.

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