Modernism Week, the annual event that highlights midcentury modern architecture, art, interior and landscape design, and vintage culture in the Palm Springs area of Southern California, will offer a wide range of in-person tours during its February festival, taking place February 16 – 26, 2023. In addition to an array of compelling programing, the popular annual 11-day event will provide participants with the unique ability to tour rarely-open-to-the-public architecturally significant homes and commercial buildings. All events are open to the public and tickets are on sale at modernismweek.com. Some events sell out quickly due to limited capacity.  

Signature Home Tours

The Coachella Valley has always been a haven for architects and residents who have been attracted to the unique qualities of the desert landscape and lifestyle. Each year, Modernism Week curates a tour of some of the area’s most significant residences in self-driven Signature Home Tours. This year, Modernism Week offers a new Palm Desert Signature Home Tour (2/21, $100) as well as the Palm Springs Signature Home Tour, offered on two dates (2/19 and 2/26, $150).

Palm Desert Signature Home Tour 
This popular tour of midcentury modern and “new century modern” homes will take place in the beautiful neighborhoods of South Palm Desert. Until now, many of these homes have been the best-kept secret in the greater Palm Springs area. The self-driving tour of 4-5 residences will feature a variety of neighborhoods and modern architectural styles. Participants will have exclusive interior access to several fabulous homes never-before seen by the public. A keepsake tour map and program is included. This event is generously sponsored by KUD Properties.

Palm Springs Signature Home Tour 
This is the legendary ‘best of the best’ home tour in Palm Springs that has highlighted different neighborhoods and architectural styles during Modernism Week for more than 10 years. Held on two Sundays and offered in morning or afternoon segments, this popular tour takes visitors inside a curated selection of iconic architectural homes by some of the area’s most noted architects and explores different neighborhoods and architectural styles. A keepsake tour program and map is included. 

Exclusive Signature Tour of Southridge 
Four stunning residences in the exclusive Palm Springs community of Southridge will be showcased in the Southridge Signature Home Tour (2/25, $225, includes shuttle). Southridge is known for its concentration of architectural excellence and the ultimate in seclusion and privacy.  Well-known architects designed dramatic homes for equally well-known clients, on lots created to maximize the panoramic views from a soaring elevation far above the valley floor. The residences on the tour are a curated collection of stunning classic midcentury homes and contemporary masterpieces. 

Featured Home Tours

This year, Modernism Week will present three Featured Home Tours, open for public tours and events most days and some evenings during Modernism Week. 

Modernism Week Featured Home: The Shag House
2/18, 2/19, 2/20, 2/24, 2/25, and 2/26, $35
The artist Shag has reimagined a cherished midcentury modern pool home in Palm Springs to create a fully immersive tour experience that will make visitors feel as though they have climbed into a life-size Shag painting. He preserved much of the original Palmer and Krisel layout of this classic Alexander design, but created an entirely new front exterior, front entry, and converted the original breezeway into a swank party lounge. Modernism Week sponsors Brizo, California Closets, Dunn-Edwards Paints, Ferguson Bath, Kitchen and Lighting, JennAir, and Willis generously contributed to this project.

Modernism Week Featured Home: Yoasis
2/17, 2/18, 2/19, 2/20, 2/24, 2/25, and 2/26, $35
“Yoasis” (named after the home’s location – Yosemite Drive and Oasis) is Grace Home Furnishings’ latest desert project and a new Modernism Week Featured Home. The project is a 1965 hip and unique vacation home that has been completely transformed with an updated midcentury design that blends Bohemian and Hollywood Regency style. Modernism Week sponsors Bang & Olufsen, Brizo, California Closets, DEDON, Dunn-Edwards, Ferguson Bath, Kitchen & Lighting Gallery, Flor, JennAir, Modern Twig, and Willis generously contributed to this project. 

Modernism Week Featured Home Tour: Hi-Sun
2/17, 2/18, 2/19, 2/20, 2/24, 2/25, and 2/26, $35
Enjoy the drama of a panoramic stone and mountain backdrop while touring Hi-Sun, designed by Charles Du Bois and built by the Alexander Construction Company in 1963 as the model home for the Las Palmas neighborhood’s Summit Estates development. The home’s Hawaiian flair and other original midcentury modern features, such as the living room’s stone fireplace, were retained as the house was remodeled to reflect the designers’ signature style. Modernism Week sponsors Bang & Olufsen, Brizo, California Closets, Dunn-Edwards, Ferguson Bath, Kitchen & Lighting Gallery, Flor, JennAir, and Willis generously contributed to this project. 

Spanish Colonial Revival Tours
This year Modernism Week is offering several tours that showcase Spanish Colonial Revival architecture. Modern for their time, these homes from the 1920s-40s were forerunners to the midcentury period of architecture that would follow in the 1950s. These tours include:

  • Las Casas Romanticas, a Home Tour of Spanish Colonial Revival Architecture in Old Las Palmas (2/23, $150). This all-new Modernism Week home tour features Spanish Colonial Revival architecture and offers seldom-granted access behind the tall hedges and period defining gates. Thick clay tile roofs, wood-beamed ceilings, hand crafted vividly colored floor tiles, wrought iron embellishments, motor courts and loggias define this style. Noted architects and builders are featured including architectural designer Charles Tanner and prolific builder Alvah Hicks.  A special, celebratory pre-tour event will be held the night before (2/22, $295) at the Historic O’Donnell estate. Tickets are sold separately. 
  • Indian Trail Tour: Tres Casas Españolas (2/18, $55) The Palm Springs Preservation Foundation will host a tour of three stunning 1930s Spanish Colonial Revival homes in the city’s historic Warm Sands neighborhood. 
  • A case study in authentic restoration of a Spanish Colonial Revival home tour (2/21, $35) This self-guided home tour allows participants to step back in time to an authentically restored Spanish Colonial Revival home. The tour will be annotated by Marty Newman, a historic restoration specialist.

OTHER FIRST-TIME MODERNISM WEEK TOURS OFFER HALF DAY EXCURSIONS

  • Frank Sinatra’s “Villa Maggio” (2/18, $110) residence has previously never been open to the public. Tours of this ultra-private 7.5-acre mountain retreat about 45 minutes south of Palm Springs include the main and guest houses, pool, tennis courts, helipad, and the expansive outdoor entertainment area. The 6,428 square foot interiors have been lovingly preserved and reflect Sinatra’s style and preferences, with few changes to the original design. The surrounding 360-degree sunrise -sunset mountain-valley views provide a timeless, surreal backdrop. A poolside cocktail party (2/17, $250) will be held the day before the tour.
  • Joshua Tree Retreat Center – Lloyd Wright Historical Walking Tour (2/19 and 2/20, $65) This tour will feature a walking tour of the historical Institute of Mentalphysics property in Joshua Tree. This secluded enclave, rarely open to the public, features the largest collection of Lloyd Wright buildings in the world and a dramatic desert landscape.

RETURNING TOUR FAVORITES 

Modernism Week aficionados will be pleased to see that many “fan favorite” tours will return this year. Highlights include the Premier Double Decker Architectural Bus Tours (including a Twilight Architectural Bus Tour and special tours led by Charles Phoenix and Bella da Ball), Frey House II, and tours of iconic homes in the Coachella Valley (including residences formerly owned by Frank Sinatra, Kirk Douglas, and William Holden). Also included are the Modern Garden Tour, Palm Springs Historical Society Walking Tours, neighborhood tours, a guided walking tour in Indian Wells tours of the exclusive Lautner Compound, and tours of the historic Temple Isaiah. 

Tickets for tours and all other Modernism Week programs may be purchased in advance at modernismweek.com or on-site during the event at CAMP, Modernism Week’s “Community And Meeting Place,” located inside the Hyatt Hotel on Palm Canyon in downtown Palm Springs. CAMP provides a central activity hub that is free and open to the public every day during Modernism Week from February 16 – 26. CAMP will offer convenient, fast and fresh food options and libations by Cheeky’s To Go, an information desk, the Modernism Week store by Destination PSP, a lecture theater, fun photo opportunities, musical entertainment, and free daily Professional Color Consultation by Dunn-Edwards. Modernism Week sponsors including Ferguson Bath, Kitchen & Lighting Gallery, Brizo, Dunn-Edwards Paints, and JennAir will have engaging displays. CAMP will be open daily at the Hyatt Palm Springs from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. with free entry. Free parking is available in the nearby underground parking structure.