Last week I had the opportunity to experience Modernism Week’s bus tour. We boarded around 11am to depart on a 3 hour tour around town. Keep in mind that this bus is not your typical ‘yellow school bus’ per say – it’s actually red and topless, in typical Palm Springs fashion.
The Modernism Week bus lead us through the architecturally significant neighborhoods that Palm Springs is famous for. The tour is guided, pointing out the homes created by famous architects and telling a bit about their backstories (including some juicy celebrity gossip that happened behind those closed doors). You could compare this tour something similar to what you might experience if you get a guided tour through a museum.
I found this to be a great experience because I am certainly not an expert in architecture, however after stepping off the bus I felt like I had a basic understanding of what modern architecture is, how it came to be, why it’s significant and that Palm Springs is the epicenter of it.
Now I want to learn more. What do the homes look like from the inside? How does the interior design play up to all these low ceilings and clean lines? What does the fashion from this era say about their lifestyles?
I am excited to find the answers to all my questions in February during Modernism Week. This is when there are tours, lectures, and parties that allow you into the homes to get a first hand experience of what modernism is opposed to just reading it in a book.
Even though I grew up in the desert it doesn’t mean I automatically know everything about it – this tour certainly was a testament to that. It was so refreshing to learn something new about not just my home town but another form art as well.
Check out my photos from the tour…and maybe I’ll catch ya in February on the next one!
I sat in the back of the bus, like all bad kids do. Pretty great view on a perfectly sunny day. We were sitting so high up that I think I could have touched the street sign if I had stood up on my tippy toes. I totally was tempted to slap a couple CVAS stickers up, but didn’t, of course.
One of the first, and most impressive homes we drove by first was the Kauffman house. My oh my, I adore this place. I definitely want to tour inside this home! What do you think the interior looks like?
The bus twist and turned through multiple Palm Springs neighborhoods. Peering out over the edge of the bus we could look down into the yards of some of these remarkable mid-century homes.
Drooled a little when I saw this one. Trying to envision the perfect car to park in the driveway…suggestions?
I am a sucker for the smallest of details. These colored doors are my absolute favorite. Pink and yellow?! Genius.
So fascinated with the butterfly roof…
I was particularly into this roof because it reminded me a little of the Palm Springs Visitors Center roof by the Palm Springs Tram.
I love how dramatic it is! So much style.
We also had the opportunity to pass by some of the historic boutique hotels in Palm Springs. All of which are still in service!
This is a photo I took from inside Spencer’s. As you can imagine, the photo gives it no justice to how adorable it truly is! This place is a must see if you are in Palm Springs.
The Three Hundred, The Four Hundred and The Five Hundred hotels were all favorite exteriors of mine.
Many of the exteriors of the hotels compliment the mountains behind them. In the distance behind The Orbit Hotel you can see the famous Albert Frey II house.
The famous Palm Springs Community Church was recently damaged in a fire, I photographed my favorite part that remained.
After driving around these stylish neighborhood and admiring the million dollar modern homes, I started to feel a little sad that wasn’t going to be able to afford one any time soon. But just when I was feeling a little down the tour took a right hand turn and we ended up in a neighborhood that was full of mid-century condos. Perfect for the winter bird and/or me.
Just to give you an idea of how tall these palm trees are… and what living in the desert is all about.
Such a fun day! Thank you Modernism Week for having me as a guest. Looking forward to February!
Get more info on Modernism Week’s events & tickets here: