The Whitney

The Whitney, previously known as the David Whitney House, is a beautifully restored mansion that is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Located on Woodward Avenue in Midtown Detroit, the Whitney was originally constructed in 1894 as a private residence for lumber baron, David Whitney Jr. and his family. Today, this iconic turn-of-the-century, Romanesque Revival mansion is an award-winning restaurant that offers an elegant and refined dining experience. Photo: The Whitney

»History and Construction

History and Construction


Built between 1890 and 1894 by lumber baron David Whitney Jr., the Whitney House features a pink jasper exterior and 21,000 square-feet of interior spaces with 218 windows, including Tiffany windows, 52 rooms (including ten bathrooms), 20 fireplaces, and a secret vault in the dining room, and an elevator. The house the was first residential home to have an elevator for personal use, and the Tiffany glass windows feature themes oriented around the function of the room, such as music room's windows feature images of Saint Cecilia, the patron saint of music. The mansion, which took four years to complete, is believed to have cost approximately $400,000, which equates to over $10.5 million today.

Today, the Whitney is a world-renowned restaurant that serves award-winning cuisine in an elegant and historical setting. Beautifully restored to its former 1894 glory, the Motor City landmark retains the classic charm of Detroit’s early upper echelon with several unique features, including the Katherine McGregor Dessert Parlor, the Ghostbar and Gardens, and the fine dining restaurant. The first floor of the mansion features an ornate mosaic design, beautiful molding and cornice work, and intricate woodworking made with some of the best wood in the country at the time. Photo: The Whitney

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»Haunted House

Haunted House


When the mansion was being renovated in the mid-1980s, rumors of supernatural activities on all three floors of the Whitney house began. Both David Whitney Jr. and his wife died in the mansion, and to this day, some people believe their ghosts haunt parts of the estate. Sightings have been reported in the elevator and on the second and third floors, and the Whitney hosts unique Paranormal Dinners and Tours. Photo: The Whitney

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»The Restaurant

The Restaurant


The Whitney serves acclaimed menus of new American cuisine that includes tantalizing entrées from the land, sea or garden accompanied by fine wines from the famous wine cellar and other libations. Brunch, dinner and dessert menus are available, and guests can dine in the music room, the parlor or the library on the first floor, each of which offers a different aesthetic experience. Most of the rooms in the house have been converted into dining spaces of various sizes with many old-style design details from the 1890s still present, such as massive pocket doors, a back staircase, oversized shelves, and a locked vault behind a fake wall on the first floor.

The daytime menus offer contemporary American fare from shrimp cocktail appetizers to Gold Brick sundaes for dessert. Entrées range from classic burgers and fries to more elaborate selections such as a filet mignon and lobster tail, served by courteous, efficient and well-dressed staff. Brunch offerings include traditional eggs Benedict and seasonal omelets, as well as freshly prepared salads and sandwiches and a range of entrées, such as chicken and wild rice, shrimp scampi, sauteed Michigan whitefish and sliced tenderloin in mushroom sauce. Desserts are to die for with miniature pastries, carrot cake or a vintage Gold Brick Sundae just a few of the mouthwatering options.

Guests can enjoy The Whitney in a variety of ways from lazy brunches and private functions to romantic evening dinners and snacks and drinks at the Ghost Bar on the third floor. The Whitney is open seven days a week from 5:00 pm to 10:00 pm with Sunday brunches served between 10:30 am and 2:30 pm. Traditional high tea is served daily at 2:00 pm and The Ghost Bar opens at 5:00 pm every day, Monday through Saturday.

The Whitney host a variety of events and functions throughout the year, including a Paranormal Dinner/Tour, an Annual Spring Fling, an Easter Brunch and Dinner, and Garden Parties.

Back to: Detroit, Michigan

4421 Woodward Avenue Detroit, MI 48201, website, Phone: 313-832-5700 Photo: The Whitney

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The Whitney in Detroit, Michigan