Rīga has an upscale, big-city feel unmatched in the region. The capital (almost as large as Tallinn and Vilnius combined) is the business center of the area, while original, high-quality restaurants and hotels have earned Rīga some bragging rights among its Western European counterparts. The city also doesn't lack for beauty—Rīga's Old Town (now a UNESCO World Heritage site) is one of Europe’s most striking examples of the art nouveau architectural style. Long avenues of complex and sometimes whimsical Jugendstil facades hint at Rīga's grand past. Many were designed by Mikhail Eisenstein, the father of Soviet director Sergei. This style dominates the city center; you can see the finest examples at Alberta 2, 2a, 4, 6, 8, and 13; Elizabetes 10b; and Strēlnieku 4a.
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- Photo: gadag/Shutterstock