- Located in Washington, D.C., the Smithsonian American Art Museum is home to one of the largest and most inclusive collections of American art in the world, with approximately 42,000 works—from Impressionist paintings to contemporary craft. CREDIT: Ken Rahaim
Readers were pumped up and fully engaged in casting ballots for their favorite arts places in AmericanStyle’s 2011 Top 25 Arts Destinations competition. It’s the 14th annual edition of our wildly popular readers’ poll, and the results are now official. For the fourth year in a row, no other major city in the country has been able to unseat the Big Three: New York City held on to first place in the Big Cities category, with nearly 40 percent of all votes cast; Chicago remained in second place, with 23.4 percent; and Washington, D.C., stayed in the No. 3 spot, with 20.2 percent. San Francisco came in at fourth place, followed by Boston at No. 5.
In the Mid-Size Cities category, St. Petersburg, Fla., held on to the No. 1 spot with 26.9 percent of the vote. Former sixth place city Savannah, Ga., leapfrogged four places ahead into the No. 2 spot, pushing last year’s second place finisher New Orleans down a notch to No. 3. Rounding out the top five in this category are Charleston, S.C., at No. 4, and Scottsdale, Ariz., at No. 5.
The tightest voting margins played out in the Small Cities category, with Asheville, N.C., winning by a hair with 16.7 percent of the votes over No. 2 Santa Fe, N.M., with 16.5 percent. Third place went to Gloucester, Mass, a total newcomer to the Top 25 Small Cities list, which pushed Saugatuck, Mich., down a notch into fourth place. Sarasota, Fla., held its position again this year at No. 5.
Click the links below for a complete list of the Top 25 Arts Destinations in each category.