Frank Lloyd Wright - Chicago to Pittsburgh Architecture Escorted Tour

10 nights starting from
£6195

  • Fallingwater – Wright’s masterpiece and a 20th century icon

  • The stunning art and architecture of Chicago, including the superb Art Institute of Chicago

  • Wright’s home and studio at the Taliesin Estate

  • Pittsburgh and the famed Duquesne Incline

  • Polymath Park and Wright’s Duncan House

Frank Lloyd Wright (1869–1959), was his own greatest admirer and this tour backs up his own rather arrogant claim with visits to a series of innovative and beautiful buildings spanning his long career. The tour starts in the Chicago area and ends outside Pittsburgh, with arguably his masterpiece, Fallingwater, one of the 20th century’s most iconic buildings. Our tour also looks at the collections of art and other architecture of the period, in the company of Professor of Architecture at the University of Hartford, Mike Crosbie.

Available Departures

From

18 - May - 2023 £ 6195.00 Travel Info Book Now

Provisional Timings

London Heathrow

Departing: 18th May 2023 at 10:25

Returning: 28th May 2023 at 21:50

ITINERARY

Day 1: Fly from London Heathrow to Chicago and transfer by coach to your hotel for a four-night stay on bed and buffet breakfast basis. Late afternoon orientation city tour and river cruise before dinner at a local restaurant.

Day 2:  Full day art and architecture of Chicago.
Our first day is devoted to exploring the art and architecture of Chicago, including the Charnley Persky House (now a museum) on which Wright worked as an assistant to his mentor, Louis Sullivan, in the late 19th century. We will also visit The Rookery in the Financial District, which Wright redesigned in 1905 and end the day with an afternoon at the superb Art Institute of Chicago, which houses one of the best collections of art anywhere.

Day 3: Oak Park area of Chicago.
This morning takes us to the Oak Park area of the city, the location for Frank Lloyd Wright’s home and studio for 20 years from 1889, where the ‘Prairie’ style of architecture was conceived and location for the design of a host of his buildings including the Unity Temple (1905). Afternoon free in Chicago.

Day 4: The South side of Chicago.
Our comprehensive exploration of this city of architectural gems, takes us to the south side of the city today, where highlights will include Wright’s Robie House (1910) which epitomises the Prairie style and works by Mies van der Rohe – Crown Hall at the Institute of Technology and his ultra-sleek Farnsworth House in Plano. Dinner at a local restaurant in Chicago.

Day 5: Chicago to Madison, Wisconsin.
We leave Chicago (and Illinois) today as we head to Madison, Wisconsin, with en-route guided visits to Monona Terrace, completed in the 1990s to Wright’s 1938 design and his Unitarian Meeting house (1946) before checking-in to your hotel for a two-night stay. Dinner at a local restaurant.

Day 6: 
Wright’s Taliesin Estate, Spring Green and the First Jacobs House at Usonia.
First on the agenda today is Wright’s Taliesin estate where Wright lived and worked and where he established the Taliesin Foundation to train architects. The visit will include the Hillside studio, theatre, house, Windmill Tower and much more, including refreshments on Wright’s personal terrace. Comfortable shoes are essential for this visit as there is a large amount of walking (approx. two miles) with few rest stop opportunities. This afternoon we return to Madison to visit the First Jacobs House (1937).

Day 7: Madison to Milwaukee.
This morning we transfer to Milwaukee with visits to the Burnham Street historic district of American System-built homes (exterior only) which Wright developed from 1908 to create affordable housing, a guided tour of his Model B1 house and, lastly, a visit to the excellent Milwaukee Art Museum which houses the Prairie School archives, before checking-in to your hotel for overnight stay. Dinner at a local restaurant. 

Day 8: Racine and to Chicago for flight to Pittsburgh.
Today we head to Racine to see the SC Johnson Administration building (1936) and enjoy a guided tour of Wingspread, a Prairie-style house, built by Wright for the head of the Johnson Wax Corporation. We then head to Chicago O’Hare for a flight to Pittsburgh. On arrival transfer to your hotel for three-night stay.

Day 9:  Full day Pittsburgh.

A full day exploring Pittsburgh’s architectural gems, including visits to the Carnegie Museum of Art, including the Heinz Architectural Center and a round trip on the Duquesne Incline, a century old cable car, that offers great panoramic views of the city. Evening dinner at a local restaurant.

Day 10: Polymath Park, the Duncan House and Fallingwater.
Arguably saving the best day till last, we head to Polymath Park for a guided tour of Wright's Duncan House with architect Tom Papinchak, who arranged the moving of the house and rebuilt it at its current location. We will enjoy a brunch in the Treetops Restaurant accompanied by Tom where it will be possible for a question and answer session with him. After brunch we visit Wright's Kentuck Knob (1953) which offers wonderful views of the Pennsylvanian countryside. Our last visit of the day is to Wright’s stunning Fallingwater (1936), the quintessential Frank Lloyd Wright House, spectacularly set amidst the woodland of Bear Run nature reserve, for a comprehensive and special “End of Day” tour to see Wright’s masterpiece in its best light. The house was built for the Kaufman family atop a waterfall and blends seamlessly with its natural setting – it is now a National Historic Landmark. After our visit here we will drive to a nearby local restaurant located on the river for some hors d'oeuvres while admiring the lovely views over the water.

Day 11: Day at leisure in Pittsburgh. Transfer to the airport for the return overnight flight to London Heathrow.

Day 12: Arrive London Heathrow.

NB: Exact order of excursions may vary according to local conditions and tour manager's discretion.

Please note the maximum group size on this tour is 25 passengers.

INCLUDED

  • Return flights from London Heathrow to Chicago returning from Pittsburgh
  • Internal flight from Chicago to Pittsburgh. Please note that we cannot book baggage on internal flights and this needs to be paid at check-in (approx. $25-30 per bag)
  • Four nights' bed and breakfast at The Talbott Hotel, Chicago, based on shared occupancy of a twin/double room
  • Two nights' bed and breakfast at the Madison Concourse Hotel, Madison based on shared occupancy of a twin/double room
  • One night bed and breakfast at the Hilton Garden Hotel, Milwaukee based on shared occupancy of a twin/double room
  • Three nights' bed and breakfast at the Drury Plaza Downtown Hotel, Pittsburgh, based on shared occupancy of a twin/double room
  • Five dinners at local restaurants
  • One brunch
  • Transfers, tours, guided visits and entrance fees
  • Michael Crosbie as expert guide/tour manager throughout

NOT INCLUDED

  • Double for sole use supplement
  • Holiday insurance
  • Upgrade to premium economy - on request, please call us for more details
  • Meals other than those stated
  • Items of a personal nature such as drinks, laundry, telephone calls etc
  • Porterage and gratuities
  • ESTA (Electronic System for Travel Authorization) for entrance into America

HOTELS

Hampton Chicago Motor Club, Chicago
Located in Chicago close to Millennium Park, the four-star Hampton Chicago Motor Club Hotel is a historical landmark and one of Chicago’s finest Art Deco skyscrapers which used to be the home of the Chicago Motor Club. The building has kept many of original details from its opening in 1928 including an Art Deco lobby. Bedrooms are modern with en-suite bathroom, TV, telephone, wifi, mini fridge, hairdryer and tea/coffee making facilities.

Hotel Website

Madison Concourse Hotel, Madison 
This premier hotel is located in the heart of downtown Madison, in the centre of the city. With a new restaurant and cosy bar area, you have the opportunity to realx with a drink after a long day sightseeing. The hotel is also equipped with a fitness centre and indoor pool. Rooms have free wifi, TV, coffee machine and hair dryer.

Madison Concourse Hotel Website

Hilton Garden Hotel, Milwaukee
Located in the historic “Loyalty” Building in downtown Milwaukee, the Hilton Garden offers a high level of comfort and service with restaurant, bar and very comfortable bedrooms with all modern amenities.

Hilton Garden Hotel Website

Drury Plaza Downtown, Pittsburgh
The four-star Drury Plaza Downtown is located in the heart of downtown Pittsburgh in the historically renovated Federal Reserve Bank building. The hotel has a lobby bar and restaurant, indoor pool and whirlpool and comfortable bedrooms with ensuite bathroom, TV, telephone, wifi and hairdryer.


Hotel Website

MORE INFO - Please click here to see full details of this tour

YOUR LECTURER and Tour Guide

PROF. MICHAEL J. CROSBIE, Ph.D., FAIA, DPACSA

 Michael J. Crosbie, Ph.D., FAIA, DPACSA has made significant contributions in the fields of architectural journalism, research, teaching, and practice. He studied architecture and received his Doctor of Philosophy degree from Catholic University. He has served as an editor at Architecture: The AIA Journal, Progressive Architecture, ArchitectureWeek.com, and since 2001 he served as editor-in-chief of Faith & Form. He is the sole author, editor, or contributor to more than 75 books on architecture, including five books for children and is Professor of Architecture at the University of Hartford.   He has lectured and served as a visiting critic at architecture schools in North America and abroad, among them the University of California (Berkeley), the University of Pennsylvania, Yale University, and the Moscow Architectural Institute. Dr. Crosbie has practiced with Centerbrook Architects and Steven Winter Associates and is a registered architect in the State of Connecticut. Added to which he enjoys leading tours with an architectural theme and led our tour to Chicago and Pittsburgh in 2022, so it is a tour that he knows extremely well.

 

 

We love to receive feedback from our customers. Their views help us to keep improving the ours we offer. If you have been on this tour and would like to submit a review, please log in to our client area here and fill in the short form.

Recent Reviews

 

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The tour was quite simply AMAZING! Our tour manager, Mike Crosbie, proved to be not only very knowledgeable but also a superb leader. Being American, he was well able to guide us in the customs of the USA. Mike’s friendly and relaxed approach made the tour a pleasure to all. Would love him to lead a tour of NYC’s iconic buildings!! My only criticism would be the standard of the local restaurant chosen for the group in Chicago. It was awful. For future FLW tours please select a different restaurant .

Review by Russell who travelled 19-May-2022


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Brilliant tour! Eve better than I could have hoped for. Tour leader was excellent. Only criticism was of the first hotel (Millennium Knickerbocker in Chicago) where the staff were surly, grumpy and in one case downright rude. Confusion about the breakfast. We were not advised that ONLY the full American breakfast was included and some of our group were going to be charged120 dollars extra for having a smaller breakfast. I think was eventually resolved when a manager was winkled out! No information in the room. Very meagre supply of tea, coffee etc. Exceptionally high bar prices. My room was not serviced one day despite putting the sign on the door. Very slow check in with only one person at the desk!! No proper lounge area. Etc etc

Review by Barker who travelled 19-May-2022


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I tried to do this several times at the airport but it was impossible to go back to alter anything without losing these comments - a frustrating page. Fabulous itinerary with the chance to see much more than would be available to other FLW tourists. Not sure, though, that all was covered. Mostly excellent hotels and all very central. Excellent meals. Good drivers but the smart minibus was not up to the bumpy roads! Exceptionally knowledgeable tour leader. He was enthusiastic and friendly and offered us the opportunity to dine together on the couple nights when no evening meal was included. I had read the tipping guidelines and felt uncomfortable when publicly expected to contribute 50 dollars for the drivers. I felt even more uncomfortable with the response I received when I demurred but I made the contribution. All in all, an amazing experience.

Review by Shaw who travelled 26-April-2018


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Avery full programme and excellent value for money. Problems with airline sorted ve In ry By pr A very full programme and excellent value for money.

Review by Mcalpine who travelled 26-April-2018


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One meal at Bavarian restaurant well below par compared to others - and I think general feeling of group in Madison.

Review by Mr Robert Kendall who travelled 15-June-2017


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A very enjoyable and informative tour. Mike is an enthusiastic knowledgeable guide with a great sense of humour. He went far beyond the call of duty and we saw and learned about a number of properties which were not part of the original programme. The only down side was that we were sometimes overwhelmed by the amount of information.

Review by Mr James Allibone who travelled 15-June-2017


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Mike Hope the tour director was first class and helped make the whole trip a memorable experience. On many occasions he was more knowledgeable and articulate than the local tour guides.

Review by Dame Mavis McDonald who travelled 15-June-2017


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Mike Hope is simply the best The whole tour was fantastic The hotel in Malwaukee was quite poor United Airlines food was awful

Review by Ms Sara Rowan who travelled 15-June-2017


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Mike Hope is a star! I would tweak one or two items - for example we ended up having lunch one day at 3.30pm which was far too late. Not good experience at what should have been the highlight of the trip, Fallingwater. No fault of Mike but a very poor guide. This has already been mentioned. Generally speaking the tour was more than I expected and, had I not seen half of the proposed tour to Taliesin West next February, I would probably be booking it right now!

Review by Mr C Simpson who travelled 27-April-2017


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One mild disappointment was the arrangement for the first day. We chose to make our own flight arrangements. Full details of our flights were not made available to Mike Hope which meant that he was unable to arrange for us to join the rest of the group on the initial city tour.

Review by Mr Anthony Harpur who travelled 27-April-2017


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Mike Hope was a breath of fresh air ... his enthusiasm and his imagination and skill at adapting to circumstances made the tour both fun and informative . However, the group meals were not so successful! The dinner in Pittsburgh and the brunch and drinks at Bear Run were great, but most other meals were a disappointment.

Review by Ms Madeline Watson who travelled 24-June-2016


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The tour provided everything advertised and more. Our tour manager/guide, Mike Hope did an excellent job, was very good at providing information about the building we visited, and many others that we saw in passing. He worked hard to ensure that we saw everything we came for and even managed to fit in one or two extras. Our schedule of visits was very full but we were never made to feel hassled or hurried. Only quibbles: the food in the restaurants chosen could have been better, and the service in some was poor, especially on our last evening in Chicago. The local guide in Pittsburgh would have been better omitted - Mike would have done a better job on his own. I would certainly recommend this tour to anybody interested in the architecture of Frank Lloyd Wright. It would be impossible to see as much in a self-organised trip.

Review by Mr Robert Gray who travelled 24-June-2016


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Review by who travelled 01-June-2016


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It was an expensive holiday but we were impressed by the detailed planning and it was definitely value for money. We send a particular thanks to Mike Hope who has a deep knowledge about Frank Lloyd Wright and has a robust sense of humour. He also organised many relevant extras to the holiday like seeing inside "closed" buildings. We were looked after very well and are now experts on Frank Lloyd Wright..

Review by Mr Edwin Clapton who travelled 24-June-2016


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Review by who travelled 24-June-2016


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This was a trip I'd waited 30 years for - it was certainly worth the wait and exceeded all my expectations! Thank you so much Travel Editions and of course Mike.

Review by Mrs Josephine Elliot who travelled 24-June-2016


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There aren't enough superlatives to describe this tour, a wonderful blend of experiences in a range of different cities. As ever, Mike delivered the highest quality content and support. As well as the specific Frank Lloyd Wright focus there were opportunities to enjoy the broader cultural aspects of the cities visited. As ever, a great range of visits, guided tours and time to explore individually. The visit to Fallingwater was a fitting climax to a brilliant tour, which I heartily recommend.

Review by Mrs Ann Howe who travelled 21-April-2016


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Our Tour leader, Mike Hope was excellent providing detailed information on places in our itinerary and adding extra visits. A wonderful and educational experience,

Review by Dr David Turner who travelled 21-April-2016


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