Once the home of Milwaukee’s finest mansions, today the western stretches of Wisconsin Avenue are mostly home to apartment buildings, though a few historic structures (like the Pabst Mansion) remain. But even imagining the street filled with beautiful mansions, there’s one building that still stands out. Topped with a massive, beautiful dome and flanked by stone camels, this exotic building is a mystery even to many locals.
Tripoli Shrine Center was completed in 1928 as a meeting place for the Shriners, a fraternal organization that is composed of Master Masons. The building was heavily inspired by the Taj Mahal, featuring minarets, intricate mosaics, and the previously mentioned camels.
Although Tripoli is still primarily a private social space for Shriners, non-members have more opportunities to get a glimpse at the beautiful Moorish Revival building. The center is available as an event venue, and groups of 10 or more can book a guided tour, including a buffet lunch! If you’re just dying for a peek inside, you’ll be happy to know that the Tripoli Shrine Center opens up to the public once a year for Doors Open Milwaukee.