Five houses for rent designed by Frank Lloyd Wright – Chicago Magazine
Why not rent a home designed by one of America’s most famous architects for your next getaway? Frank Lloyd Wright designed over 1,000 structures during his lifetime, of which 532 were completed. Today, many of its residences have been converted into house museums or rental properties, used for special events or weekend getaways. This represents a perfect opportunity for people looking to experience what it is like to live in a Wright Residence without purchasing one. The good news is, you don’t have to travel too far to find the five homes available for rent. But don’t forget that the architectural importance will cost you dearly.
Located near the Wisconsin Dells, is one of Wright’s last and smallest commissions, the Seth Peterson Cottage (1958), a design of native sandstone and Philippine mahogany. The tiny retreat – just 880 square feet of living space – has walls of windows that offer views of Mirror Lake and the surrounding state park. As well as relaxing among the beautiful scenery, there is still plenty to do here, whether it’s picnicking, boating (weather permitting), swimming, fishing, or cross-country skiing. The extremely popular property has a two night minimum and reservations are made up to two years in advance.
Known as Woodside, this five-bedroom, five-bathroom home in Marion, Indiana was originally built for Dr. Richard Davis, who attended Frank’s gallbladder surgery. Lloyd Wright at the Mayo Clinic in 1950. The most striking feature of the Usonian style design is the octagonal center section located under a cedar roof in the shape of a teepee. It has been owned by Matthew Harris for 20 years, who restored the two-acre property based on Wright’s design principles.
On the way to Door County, a popular getaway for Chicagoans, you can stop at Still Bend in Two Rivers, Wisconsin. In 1938, Life The magazine published Wright’s idea for a “modern house for a family of $ 5,000 to $ 6,000 in income.” The following year it was adapted and built by Bernard Schwartz on the East Twin River with its tilted T-plane taking advantage of the view of the water. The current owners, brothers Gary and Michael Ditmer, have lovingly restored the rare two-story Usonian-style house. Its distinctive features include wraparound integrated seats and geometrically patterned windows. The house is available for both public tours and nightly rentals (minimum two-night stays).
On a quiet, dead-end street not far from the University of Michigan at Ann Arbor is a red cypress-wood and brick house originally commissioned by William and Mary Palmer in 1950, which has been preserved in the family until a little over a decade ago. The second owners made it available for rent as a guest house and meeting place. Sheltered by a long, wide hipped roof with deep overhangs, the play of angles (there are no 90 degree corners) is what makes this Wright residence one of his most breathtaking designs. Located down the hill on the wooded two-acre property is a tea room which is included with the rental (but not during the winter months).
Milwaukee is a great city for a quick getaway. If you’re looking for something a little different, why not consider one of Wright’s restored American homes? It is one of a series of duplex structures on the same block in the Burnham Park area. In 1916 Wright created these “pre-fab” designs for Arthur L. Richards of the American Realty Service Company. The three-bedroom, two-and-a-half-bath residence is close to the Mitchell Park Conservatory and Milwaukee Domes, Miller Park / American Family Field and Forest Home Cemetery, the final resting place of the famous beer barons of the city.