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New AnaVista Tower offers panoramic views of mountains in three states

The observation tower at Anakeesta is now the tallest point in downtown Gatlinburg.

GATLINBURG, Tenn. — After climbing a few flights of stairs, visitors to Anakeesta's new AnaVista Tower will experience a view of the Smoky Mountains that rivals even the best hiking trails. 

The tower is part of the park's $6.5 million expansion. Its eight wooden support beams are marked with the points on a compass to guide visitors as they look out in any direction for breathtaking views. 

Co-founder and managing partner Bob Bentz designed the tower to look like the petals of a flower opening up. 

 "We could have built just an observation tower with a little deck on top of it, but we chose not to do that. We really wanted to have something that was very sculptural and would last the test of time. We want this to be as cool as it is today 50 years from now," Bentz said. 

Anakeesta is located in downtown Gatlinburg at 576 Parkway. 

Credit: WBIR
AnaVista Tower at Anakeesta.

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