Dallas – Texas Travel guide, Vacation, Tourism
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Dallas is a young city with all the vigour of youth. Effigies of modern architecture rise like glass trees out of the downtown area. In 1841, it was simply a plan of 20 streets on the 256 hectares (640 acres) of south central America, claimed by a Tennessee lawyer, John Neely Bryan. Today, it is the ninth largest city in the USA, and including its western neighbour of Fort Worth, it is the nation’s fastest growing metropolitan area.
Thriving at the bottom edge of America’s Great Plains, Dallas has embraced dreamers and entrepreneurs for the better part of two centuries. Big D, as it’s affectionately called, merges Southern hospitality with modern sophistication. Though the landscape looks different than at its humble beginning, the city still welcomes enterprising people who gather to share their grand ideas and stake claims on new frontiers.
Dallas will always be remembered for one, if not two, shootings. The first and most shocking occurred on 22 November 1963, when President J F Kennedy was assassinated in downtown Dallas. The second shooting may only have been fictional but, when J R Ewing was shot by an unknown killer in the TV series Dallas in the early 1980s, fans across the world were devastated. Even today, the legend of J R remains strong, as does the legacy of President Kennedy.
Today the city is a mecca for the banking, electronics and oil industries, as well as for dining, shopping, arts and entertainment. Large scale developments of urban lofts, apartments, condominiums, retail and both indoor and outdoor recreational facilities are springing up across the city. An impressive new Dallas Center for the Performing Arts opened in 2009 to vie with New York’s Lincoln Center. New facilities and relevant attractions in and around this cultural centre continue to grow.
Among things you probably didn’t know about Dallas: The city has the largest urban arts district in the United States spanning 19 blocks. What’s more, the Dallas Arts District has more buildings designed by Pritzker Prize-winning architects in one contiguous location than anywhere else in the world. And Dallas’ Fair Park, just a short distance east of the arts district and a district with numerous museums and venues, features the nation’s largest collection of 1930s Art Deco, exposition-style architecture.
Dallas offers true Southern hospitality, be it in a humble hideaway cocktail bar or in the Mansion on Turtle Creek, repeatedly and regularly ranked as one of the world’s top hotels. And with a 10th of its workforce in the hospitality industry, Dallas is always happy to have y’all come on in and stick around awhile.
Those wishing to explore further afield should take the busy freeway 30 miles to the west to the easy-going, cattle-driving, twin city of Fort Worth, home to a national historic district and a surprising stash of world-class art museums.
The similarities between the two include a stunning rate of business and population growth, in spite of a sluggish recent economy; a shared passion for the pro sports teams, including the Dallas Cowboys, whose new billion-dollar stadium is now in Tarrant County instead of Dallas; and a great pride in being Texan.
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