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Brew City Embraces Future While Preserving Past Glories

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Milwaukee, Wis. was once at the center of the American beer brewing industry, home to four of the world's largest brewers, but with increased popularity of imports and consolidation in the industry, the city has been forced to adapt. Today, the city is home to tech concerns like Johnson Controls, a premier manufacturer of batteries for hybrid cars, and boasts plenty of cultural attractions to draw a younger generation of employees. The crowning glory of this cultural transformation is the latest addition to the Milwaukee Art Museum (above), a lake-front winged structure designed by starchitect Santiago Calatrava. But just because they've got the flashy new starchitecture doesn't mean the citizens of Milwaukee have forgotten their architectural heritage.

? The early success of Milwaukee's brewing industry is reflected in some spectacular mansions built for the beer barons that controlled the city's bottlers. One of the most impressive is the Pabst Mansion (above), built by the people responsible for a great deal of hipster inebriation. Completed in 1892, the grand stone manor is now under the purview of a historic preservation group, Wisconsin Heritages. Prior to the purchase by Wisconsin Heritages in 1978, the house was set to be demolished to make way for a parking structure. The rescue of this architectural treasure kickstarted a preservation movement that persists to this day.

? For something approaching the grandeur of the Pabst Mansion, this 1917 Mediterranean manse offers ten foot ceilings, French mahogany woodwork, Orlandini plaster ceilings, eight-foot wooden doors, all centered around a dual staircase topped with an elegant archway. Some of the finishes and detailing could use an update, but this is a hefty dose of "good bones" for $1.03M.

? To tap into Milwaukee's modern vein, this modern row of townhouses is just the ticket. The 3,700-square-foot house features wenge wood doors, glass-framed staircase, elevator, oversized two car garage, and a slick 900-square-foot roof deck. The $1.15M price tag sounds a bit steep next to the old-school manor, but there's a price to pay for all those clean lines.

? But in a city set on the shores of Lake Michigan, it might be wise to invest in something that takes advantage of those views. This high-rise two bedroom has sweeping views—including Calatrava's museum—and 3,000 square feet, along with a spacious, well-furnished loggia. Despite being the smallest on our list, this tower home is the most expensive at $1.4M. Dog not included.
· 3026 N Marietta Avenue [Zillow]
· 775 E Kilbourn Avenue [Zillow]
· 825 N Prospect Avenue [Zillow]