Mission Inn Museum
Mission Inn Museum Review
The crown jewel of Riverside is the Mission Inn, a Spanish-revival hotel whose elaborate turrets, clock tower, mission bells, and flying buttresses rise above downtown. Docent-led tours of the hotel are offered by the Mission Inn Foundation, which also operates an expansive museum with displays depicting the building's illustrious history. The inn was designed in 1902 by Arthur B. Benton and Myron Hunt; the team took its cues from the Spanish missions in San Gabriel and Carmel. You can climb to the top of the Rotunda Wing's five-story spiral stairway, or linger a while in the Courtyard of the Birds, where a tinkling fountain and shady trees invite meditation. You can also peek inside the St. Francis Chapel, where celebrities such as Bette Davis, Humphrey Bogart, and Richard and Pat Nixon tied the knot before the Mexican cedar altar. The Presidential Lounge, a bright, wood-panel bar, has been patronized by eight U.S. presidents.
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