Frank Lloyd Wright designed this 20th-century American architectural masterpiece for Frederick Robie, a bicycle and motorcycle manufacturer. The home, which was completed in 1909, bears signs of Wright's Prairie School of design (an open layout and linear geometry of form), as well as exquisite leaded- and stained-glass doors and windows. It's also among the last of Wright's Prairie School-style homes: During its construction, he abandoned both his family and his Oak Park practice to follow other pursuits, most prominently the realization of his Taliesin home and studio in Spring Green, Wisconsin. Docents from Oak Park's Frank Lloyd Wright Home and Studio Foundation lead tours here, even though the house is undergoing a massive, 10-year restoration (the house is open throughout the process, but your photos may include some scaffolding). A Wright specialty bookshop is in the building's former three-car garage -- which was highly unusual for the time in which it was built. Allow 1 hour per tour, plus time to browse the gift shop.
More Frank Lloyd Wright Homes -- In addition to Robie House, several of Wright's earlier works, still privately owned, dot the streets of Hyde Park. They include the Heller House, 5132 S. Woodlawn Ave. (1897); the Blossom House, 1332 E. 49th St. (1882); and the McArthur House, 4852 S. Kenwood Ave. (1892). Note: These houses are not open to the public, so they should only be admired from the outside.
- © Frommer's 2013
- Highly Recommended 2009
- Highly Recommended 2010