National Building Museum
National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial
The memorial on Judiciary Sq commemorates US police officers killed on duty since 1794. In the style of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial,...
National Law Enforcement Museum (Future Site)
The group that operates the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial has broken ground on an accompanying museum, which will open...
Marian Koshland Science Museum of the National Academy of Sciences
A big, kid-friendly complex of hands-on, educational fun.
Washington's winning pro basketball team plays at the Verizon Center from October through April. The lowest-price tickets are around $30...
Daikaya offers two options. Downstairs it's a casual ramen-noodle shop, where locals swarm in and slurp with friends in the slick wooden...
401 F St NW · interesting places nearby
National Building Museum information
Devoted to architecture and urban design, the museum is appropriately housed in a magnificent 1887 edifice modeled after the Renaissance-era Palazzo Farnese in Rome. Four stories of ornamented balconies flank the dramatic 316ft-wide atrium and the Corinthian columns rise 75ft high. There's no charge to view the glimmering public areas; the admission fee is for the exhibits, which will please architecture buffs.
The space has hosted 17 inaugural balls – from Grover Cleveland’s in 1885 to Barack Obama’s in 2013. Step inside to see the inventive system of windows and archways that keep the Great Hall constantly glimmering in natural light. For more information, pick up a self-guided-tour brochure at the information desk, or join a free 45-minute docent-led tour (11:30pm, 12:30pm and 1:30pm). There’s also a nice cafe and a nifty bookstore inside.
The museum's Building Zone for kids is a local secret, where two- to six-year-olds stack block towers, drive toy bulldozers and otherwise construct in the hands-on play area.