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Nasher Sculpture Center, Dallas

Posted 4:16pm on Tuesday, Jan. 04, 2011

Find it: 2001 Flora St., Dallas; 214-242-5100; www.nashersculpturecenter.org

The back story: Opened in 2003 to house the private collection of the late Dallas real estate developer Raymond Nasher and his wife Patsy, this is the kind of breathtaking museum that makes even the most jaded art and culture snobs sit up and take notice. Designed by the famed architect Renzo Piano, the interior is a soothing oasis from downtown Dallas, while the outdoor sculpture garden, designed by landscape architect Peter Walker provides the perfect space to consider some of Nasher's most impressive objects, including amazing works by Joan Miro (Caress of a Bird), and Jonathan Borofsky (Walking to the Sky).

Don't wander away without also trying: The museum's café. In terms of food — a mixture of hit-or-miss soups, sandwiches and desserts — it can hardly compare to the restaurant at the Modern in Fort Worth. But if you can snag a table on the patio that overlooks the Sculpture Garden, trust us, the view will make the food taste delicious.

Best time to go: Late morning on a warm weekday, when you can linger for a few hours in the Sculpture Garden and then settle in for a leisurely al fresco lunch at the café.

Honorable mentions: The Crescent Court, Dallas; Original Nieman Marcus Building, Dallas

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