Savannah’s downtown skyline is not complete without City Hall’s gold dome towering over the busy residents and curious tourists making their ways up and down Bay Street.
The four-story building that stands today was built in the early 1900s and stands on the same site of the original City Exchange structure which was from 1799. It opened to the public in January 1906, and has served as the center for Savannah’s municipal government to this very day.
The distinctive gold dome was once entirely copper, but was gilded with 23-karat gold leaf in 1987. Inside, you’ll see the dome lined with its gorgeous stained glass windows (and if you climb up to the fourth floor, you’ll see they are now lined with protective panes – though you can still see the ornate detailing). Those who do peek inside will see such details like the mosaic floor and ceiling in the vestibule or the original elevator shaft.
Staff also maintains a rotating art exhibit in the second floor City Council Chambers, which depending on staff availability, you can also look through on your way through City Hall.
The City of Savannah offers a free guided tour the first Tuesday of every month, which you can sign up for on their website, savannahga.gov/firsttuesdaytours. (Space is limited, so book early.)
Runner-up: First African Baptist Church