Glas­gow

The Scot­tish city’s streets have names like Gal­low­gate and John Knox, dot­ted with Vic­to­rian burial sites and his­toric chip shops

Business Traveler (USA) - - INSIDE - By Rose Dykins

1 EAST END Be­gin your tour just out­side the city cen­ter, at me­dieval clock tower Tol­booth Steeple. Walk east­wards on Gal­low­gate past Glas­gow’s Old­est Chip­pie (es­tab­lished in 1884) at num­ber 161 – where you can pick up a deep-fried Mars bar – and a Celtic FC para­pher­na­lia store that blares Ir­ish folk mu­sic.

This part of town is gritty, and a far cry from the his­tor­i­cal ten­e­ment build­ings of the cen­ter, but it gives you a taste of the city’s au­then­tic char­ac­ter.

At 244 Gal­low­gate is the Bar­row­land Ball­room, with its iconic neon sign fringed with stars. Orig­i­nally opened in 1934, it was se­verely dam­aged by a fire in 1958 be­fore re­open­ing in 1960, be­com­ing the city’s premier mu­sic venue, host­ing ev­ery­one from Bob Dy­lan and David Bowie to Oa­sis and the Pro­claimers. Its floor is said to be sprung on thou­sands of ten­nis balls cut in half to cush­ion the heels of twirling dancers – now a great sur­face for im­pas­sioned au­di­ences to jump up and down on.

Be­side Bar­row­land is the arched gate­way to Bar­ras mar­ket, which takes place on week­ends from 10:00 AM to 5:00 PM. Wares in­clude vinyl records and bric-a-brac.

2 GLAS­GOW NE­CROP­O­LIS Head back to Tol­booth Steeple and brace your­self for a steep, ten-minute walk up the High Street. Turn right on to John Knox Street, and stroll a short way down un­til you reach the cast-iron gates of the city’s Vic­to­rian burial ground.

Fol­low the wind­ing path to the top of the grassy mound, stop­ping to ad­mire the mag­nif­i­cent graves of Glas­gow’s most distin­guished 19th-cen­tury cit­i­zens.

The tow­er­ing obelisks, gi­ant stone an­gels and mau­soleums re­flect the so­cial stand­ing of those in the ground be­low, par­tic­u­larly the mer­chants who were revered at a time when Glas­gow was a global cen­ter of trade, the Sec­ond City of the Bri­tish Em­pire.

At the top of the pile is the John Knox mon­u­ment – an 60-foot-tall sand­stone col­umn topped off with a statue of the Protes­tant leader clutch­ing a Bi­ble. Keep your eye out for the rest­ing place of An­drew McCall – though lit­tle is known about him, his grave is marked with a Celtic cross de­signed by Scot­tish ar­chi­tect and de­signer Charles Ren­nie Mack­in­tosh (more on him later).

Open daily 7:00 AM un­til dusk. glas­gownecrop­o­lis.org

3 TELL­ERS BAR AND BRASSERIE Walk down the hill and turn right on to In­gram Street – at num­ber 191 you’ll find the Corinthian Club. Ar­chi­tect David Hamil­ton de­signed the build­ing’s lav­ish clas­si­cal fea­tures in 1842, when it opened as the Glas­gow and Ship bank.

Since then, the ed­i­fice has served as the Union Bank of Scot­land and ju­di­ciary courts, be­fore be­com­ing the Corinthian in 1999, a venue with bars, event space, a res­tau­rant and a casino.

The Tell­ers Bar and Brasserie is looked down upon by the 26-foot-wide glass Corinthian dome, sur­rounded by op­u­lent ceil­ing pan­els. It’s an el­e­gant space to dine in, with plenty of things to cast your eye over – in­clud­ing chan­de­liers mod­eled on the orig­i­nal ones from its days as a bank­ing hall, a long bar adorned in mir­rored tiles and in­tri­cate gold-leaf plas­ter­work.

The in­ter­na­tional cui­sine is very good (with dishes such as shell­fish, sand­wiches, steaks and sal­ads) but it’s the set­ting that you’ll re­mem­ber. Open daily around the clock; tel +44 (0)141 552 1101;

thecorinthi­an­club.co.uk 4 CITY CHAM­BERS Turn right on to Fred­er­ick Street and walk straight on to Ge­orge Square, where you’ll find a mon­u­ment of civic pride.

Wan­der­ing through the 120 rooms of Glas­gow City Cham­bers, you will dis­cover clues about the city’s past – in the ban­quet­ing hall, for ex­am­ple, oil-painted mu­rals of young men work­ing at the docks on the River Clyde il­lus­trate the city’s sta­tus as an in­ter­na­tional ship­build­ing hub in the late 19th and early 20th cen­turies.

Queen Vic­to­ria opened the City Cham­bers in 1888 and it has been the head­quar­ters of the coun­cil ever since. The build­ing boasts one of the largest mar­ble stair­cases in Europe – a stun­ning fea­ture that winds up to the third floor.

The warm sepia col­ors of the Car­rara mar­ble arches, thick leather wall cov­er­ings and brass chan­de­liers dis­tin­guish the in­te­ri­ors from other Bri­tish in­sti­tu­tions by giv­ing it a Euro­pean feel – Lon­don-based ar­chi­tect Wil­liamYoung was in­flu­enced by his time spent in Italy.

Open Mon­day to Fri­day 9:00 AM – 5:00 PM; ad­mis­sion is free; com­pli­men­tary tours twice daily at 10:30 AM and 2:30 PM.

glas­gow.gov.uk 5 MACK­IN­TOSH HOUSE Hop in a taxi and ask for the Hun­te­rian Mu­seum and Art Gallery, which you’ll reach in 15 or 20 min­utes.

Next door is a nar­row, con­crete house – you will have seen Charles Ren­nie Mack­in­tosh’s art nouveau de­signs some­where be­fore, but com­ing face-to­face with the de­signer’s house makes you re­al­ize how his work was light years ahead of his time.

Re­assem­bled in 1981 by an ex­pert team, the house con­tains orig­i­nal fur­ni­ture, fix­tures and in­te­ri­ors that were de­signed by Ren­nie and his wife (and fel­low artist) Mar­garet Mac­Don­ald Mack­in­tosh, ar­ranged ex­actly as they were in the orig­i­nal build­ing, at 78 South­park Av­enue.

It’s dif­fi­cult to be­lieve you’re see­ing a room from 1906, with its ul­tra-white in­te­ri­ors, min­i­mal­ist feel and sleek lines that are mod­ern even by to­day’s stan­dards. Mack­in­tosh and McDon­ald would in­vite po­ten­tial clients to the house for con­sul­ta­tions and to show­case their work. Open Tues-Sat 10:00 AM – 5:00 PM (last tour of house at 4:00 PM), Sun 11:00 AM – 4:00 PM (last tour 3:00 PM); ad­mis­sion is free. Lo­cated at the Univer­sity of Glas­gow, 82 Hill­head Street.

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