The grand colonnaded facade of this building was allegedly the model for the Capitol building in Washington, D.C., with one key difference: It’s completely devoid of windows. When Parliament House was built in the 1730s, it had windows, but they were bricked up in the early 1800s for security reasons. The Irish Parliament met here until 1801, when, by an extraordinary quirk of history, it voted for its own abolition. (William Pitt the Younger, then Prime Minister of Britain, had promised sweeping reform of the anti-Catholic laws if Ireland agreed to a formal union with Britain. They did so, but then Pitt was deposed by King George III, the reforms never happened, and the Irish lost what little self-government they had.) Today the building is owned by the Bank of Ireland, but you can see parts of the magnificent interior featuring oak woodwork, 18th-century tapestries, and a sparkling crystal chandelier. Friendly porters are on hand to fill you in on the history. In our experience they may also give informal tours of rooms you can’t normally see, if you ask nicely.