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Best restroom in America: Chicago museum's lavatory is flush with fame

If you're heading to the Field Museum to check out its world-class exhibits, you may want to consider stopping at its latest award-winning spot - the restroom.

This year's 10th annual America's Best Restroom contest, sponsored by Cintas Corp., named the Field Museum's ground-floor restrooms as the top bathroom in America as chosen by online voters.

The Field's bathrooms were lauded for its two large break rooms featuring artwork of the night sky, "a calming image that also absorbs sound," according to Cintas, which designs and manufactures restroom supplies.

The bathrooms also have eco-friendly automated water faucets and hand dryers, are cleaned every hour, and were lauded for their family friendly touches, such as a "tot area" with smaller toilets and a nursing room with a sofa in the women's restroom.

The Field Museum's vice president of finance, Jim Croft, said in a release that the museum "strives to give visitors the best service and exhibitions; we also feel this about the amenities."

Other Chicago bathrooms - at the Drake Hotel and the Signature Room at the 95th in the John Hancock Tower - have been nominated in the past, but this is the first Windy City restroom to take the top prize.

The Field beat out the Scottsdale Center for the Performing Arts in Arizona, which features terrazzo floors in its restroom and lighting systems that shift from blues to greens and golds, and the Presidential Luxury Restroom Trailer in Chantilly, Va., designed for President Barack Obama in 2009 for the inauguration.

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