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MAXXI Museum, Rome. Colossal black-painted steel staircase, which connects multilevel atriums.

Louvre, Paris. 71 foot glass pyramid is now as iconic as the Louvre's original 18th century structure.

Contarini del Bovolo, Venice. Winding up the cylindrical Gothic tower is this spiral staircase with elegant white vertical arches.

Grand Opera Staircase, Paris. One of the most recognizable features of the Palais Garnier, the Parisian landmark that became the 13th theater to house the Opera.

Las Pozas, Xilitla, Mexico. Surrealist sculpture garden took more than 2 decades to complete and covers 80-plus acres of Mexican jungle and groovy structures like the "Stairway to the Sky", a winding staircase you can climb up several stories.

Floating Glass Staircase, West 14th Street Apple Store, New York City. Apple famous for it's attention to design, which extends even to the details of it's retail stores. The 1st spiral twice up to the second and thrid floors.

Scala (Rainbow Staircase) Wuppertal, Germany. Artist Horst Glasker took a drab staircase wedged in between 2 buildings and painted it a rainbow of colors, transforming an eyesore into a bright, energetic spot.

Casa Batlo Staircase, Barcelona. The carved wood banister of this staircase evokes an animal’s spine and winds up through the other floors of the building, which has been open to the public since 2002

Nossa Senhora dos Remedios, Lamego, Portugal. Exquisite granite staircase with 686 steps. But at least it’s not straight uphill the entire way. You’ll want to pause to admire the detail work—and catch your breath—on nine platforms decorated with intricate tiles, fountains, and statues.

Loretto Chapel Staircase, Santa Fe, NM. A masterpiece and a mystery of woodworking, this sprial structure is entirely self supporting, without and central column to provide stability and with wooden pegs instead of nails.

Vatican Museums' Spiral Staircase, Rome. Giuseppe Momo created wide ramplike steps and two separate helixes of the spiral staircase so that one leads up and the other goes down—twisting together into a double-helix formation decades before Watson and Crick discovered the structure of DNA.

Umschreibung, Munich. Steel 30ft tall double helix staircase pops against the backdrop of an orange-and glass vertical office tower. It dosen't actually lead anywhere and isn't open to the public to climb.

Staircase Tower, Chateau de Blois, France. When François I took over in 1515, he made his own mark by adding a wing with this staircase tower—notable for the interior’s beautiful spiral staircase and for an ornately carved exterior that mimics the likeness of a tower. It turned out to be the most recognizable part of the Château de Blois.

Museum of Islamic Art, Doha, Qatar. Its most unique feature is the steps cut into its underside, which create the illusion of an upside-down staircase.

The Gray, Milan. Boutique hotel in central Milan. One of the most spectacular results is a sprawling duplex suite connected by this floating stairway.

Tulip Stairs, Greenwich, England. The Queen's house in Greenwich features the 1st geometric self-supporting spiral staircase.

16th Avenue Mosaic Staircase, San Francisco. 163 mosaic panels - one for each step - that make up this staircase.

Cedar Creek Treehouse "Stairway to Heaven" Mount Rainier, WA. 82 ft into the sky, climbers face challenge: a rainbow-colored suspension bridge that stretches 43 feet over the forest floor.

Chand Baori, Abhaneri, India. Just outside of Jaipur. It has a concentration of distinctive step wells called baoris, developed for collecting rainwater.

Heaven's Gate Mountain, Zhangjiajie City, China. 999 grueling steps to an opening in the mountains considered to be the door to heaven.

Melk Abbey Staircase, Melk, Austria. Benedictine abbey overlookig the Danube River.

Lello Bookshop, Porto, Portugal. One of the world's most beautiful bookstores.

Tiger & Turtle - Magic Mountain, Duisburg, Germany.