We highlight some of Palm Springs, California’s must-see midcentury modern structures.
January 23, 2023
Palm Springs has one of the world’s largest concentrations of preserved midcentury modern homes in the world. Modernism Week offers an incredible chance for visitors to tour these homes and see them up close.
Palm Springs Modernism Week is an annual event that celebrates midcentury modern architecture, design, and culture. This year’s Modernism Week takes place from February 16-26 and features a range of events and activities that showcase the best of midcentury modern design.
Here are 5 must-see midcentury modern homes in Palm Springs that capture the spirit of the desert.
1. Frey House II
The Frey House II, designed by renowned architect Albert Frey, is a must-see for anyone interested in midcentury modern architecture. Located in the heart of Palm Springs, this stunning home was built in 1964 and features an open-plan design with floor-to-ceiling windows that offer breathtaking views of the surrounding mountains. Palm Springs Modernism Week offers a unique opportunity to see this iconic building and learn about its history.
2. Kaufmann House
When you’re in Palm Springs during Modernism Week, don’t miss the opportunity to visit the E. Stewart Williams-designed Kaufmann House. This stunning mid-century modern home was originally owned by department store magnate Edgar J. Kaufmann Sr. and later purchased by Elvis Presley. The Kaufman House is a prime example of mid-century architecture, featuring a unique circular design with open living spaces and large windows that let in plenty of natural light.
3. The Hope Residence
The Hope Residence, also known as the Bob Hope House, has been a prominent feature of Palm Springs architecture since it was built in 1962.
Designed by the famous midcentury architect John Lautner, this spaceship-like compound is arguably one of Lautner’s most incredible designs.
The house is not accessible to the public, but it’s worth viewing from afar. You can see it clearly from a few vantage points in the city, particularly if you’re standing outside the Parker Hotel. It remains an enduring symbol of Palm Springs architecture and design.
4. Monterey Manor
Welcome to Monterey Manor, a midcentury desert oasis with a rich history and captivating design story. This historic home is the perfect blend of elegance and comfort, designed by renowned architect Albert Belden Crist in 1957.
Indoor/outdoor elements pair with California’s natural beauty and easygoing lifestyle. With the formidable San Jacinto mountain range in view from nearly every room, Monterey Manor draws inspiration from the eternal. Here, the serenity and free spirit of the wide-open west reign supreme.
The historic Monterey Manor is available as a vacation rental.
Click here to reserve Monterey Manor as a home base for Modernism Week.
5. Abernathy House
Designed by William F. Cody, the Abernathy House sits in the heart of Palm Springs and is a prime example of desert modernism. Once the party house of millionaire James Abernathy, this incredibly well-preserved home maintains its midcentury sensibilities and retro glamour. The 1962-built Abernathy House is open for tours during Modernism Week.