Travel With Sara

Summer Brings Frank Lloyd Wright Into My Midwest Road Trips

It’s been a summer of Frank Lloyd Wright. It all started when I hit the pavement in my hometown of Mason City, Iowa. Here is where the Historic Park Inn Hotel is located, which is known to be the last known hotel in the world designed by Frank Lloyd Wright. An affordable night stay awaits you in the heart of Mason City, Iowa.

Park Inn Hotel

The Muirhead Farmhouse is the only known farmhouse designed and built by Frank Lloyd Wright during his lifetime. Now being an Iowa farm girl, this Illinois farm house intrigued me. Driving to and from the house was an adventure in itself. Surrounded by country and all the feels of the midwest.

Bridge near Frank Lloyd Wright House

Designed in 1950 and constructed between 1951 and 1953. This property underwent a major renovation in 2003 and is now under the care of the Muirhead family.

Frank Lloyd Wright Farm House

Located outside of Elgin, Illinois, in a memorable farm setting. this one is worth a visit. Tours need to be booked ahead of time through here.

Wichita, Kansas surprised me as I stumbled upon the Frank Lloyd Wright Allen House. His famous prairie house design, which emphasized those recognizable horizontal lines, immediately told me this was one of Wright’s designs.

Frank Lloyd Wright House Wichita

It’s fascinating to me that I can now recognize Wright’s architectural properties as I kept stumbling on his stunning masterpieces this summer. Guided tours are available here.

I spent some time in Rockford, Illinois and learned that the Laurent House is a popular attraction in their community. I always enjoy chatting with the locals and one of them mentioned that they were home to a beautiful home designed by one of the greatest American architects, Frank Lloyd Wright. While dining on some of the best grass fed beef (from Iowa) at Franchesco’s Ristorante in Rockford I learned that Rockford is a community that prides itself on what Wright contributed to their community.

Franchesco's Ristorante Rockford

I’m not surprised that Frank Lloyd Wright kept popping up in my travels across the midwest this summer. What surprises me the most is that we have a lot of people in our local communities that do not see the value in these properties. His architecture is something that communities all across our country would love to be a part of.

Fall looks to include more Frank Lloyd Wright properties., as my road trips are being planned.The midwest is loaded with his work and it looks like my travel routes will connect us again. Stay tuned and follow through social media, as you never know where I will land.

*Thank you to Elgin, Illinois; Rockford, Illinois; and Wichita, Kansas for hosting me.






Thanks for the share!

24 thoughts on “Summer Brings Frank Lloyd Wright Into My Midwest Road Trips

  1. Claudia

    Frank Lloyd Wright’s work continues to impress, and how lovely that so much of it is closely located in the US midwest. His architecture is so timeless. You’ll have to visit Taliesin West one day outside Phoenix, if you haven’t yet. It’s incredible.

  2. Sandy N Vyjay

    Frank Lloyd Wright was an institution into himself. I understand that he designed more than a thousand structures. Being able to stay in the places designed by this genius is indeed a privilege and an exciting experience.

  3. elisa

    I studied architecture but I did not know about this property. However Frank Lloyd Wright’s “stamp” is recognizable in its design. Can’t wait to read your post about the falling water house πŸ˜‰

  4. WorldGlimpses

    This was all new to me, but I have to say – the architecture is just lovely, one that catches your eye. Love those houses’ designs. Learned something new today, thanks. πŸ™‚

  5. nickwheatley

    I was familiar with a few Frank Lloyd Wright buildings – Fallingwater, of course, and The Gordon House (the only FLW building in Oregon). These are some cool examples of his work that I was unaware of. I’ll have to check these out if I find myself in the Midwest in the future!

  6. forever roaming the world

    I have to admit I have no idea who Frank Lloyd Wright haha I’m sorry but the buildngs look incredible. I’m sure for a fan of his work these building would be quite special, grad you a had good time πŸ˜€

  7. Tom

    To be honest the Name Frank Lloyd Wright doesn’t say much to me. I love the buildings though as they have their own charm. I probably like the Frank Lloyd Wright Allen House the most of the bunch.

  8. Jenn and Ed Coleman

    I was looking at your pictures and said to myself – That looks like a Frank Lloyd Wright house, but I couldn’t put my finger on why until you said “horizontal lines”. That is precisely the feature I identify with FLW. Seems like a fun trip.

  9. SaraB Post author

    I’m on the same page as you. The older I get, the more I appreciate Frank Lloyd Wright’s work!

  10. Michelle Hiatt

    Iowa girl here! I honestly had no idea growing up that there were Frank Lloyd Wright buildings anywhere near me. But as an adult, his aesthetic is so amazing to me. I’d love to tour some of them.

  11. SaraB Post author

    They are boxy and not colorful. Low ceilings are throughout all of his designs. Tall people literally have to duck in places in some of his designs. People come from all around the world to stay at the hotel in my hometown, but the locals don’t think much about it, as it’s something we all drive by on a regular basis. New Orleans does have many more curvy and colorful buildings, not so here in rural America. Now I’m thinking about it, most of our historic buildings are square, boxy with lots of brick.

  12. Eric Gamble

    So first of all, how cool that you found one in your own back yard. So with issue to what surprises you. Do you think this has to do with the fact that many of his building are kind of boxy, colorless, & blah?? I mean I have seen many pic and just looking at the outside of them in your pics of the Allen House or the farmhouse kind of look boring to me. Being from new Orleans where the buildings are old, curvy, & colorful, that may influence our opinions of what may be a great building. Do they look cooler inside?

  13. SaraB Post author

    Yes, I agree and so many people overlook them. Thanks for taking the time to leave me a comment.

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