Fallingwater, perhaps one of the most famous houses in all of America, has always been a place i’ve wanted to visit, but at the same time only vaguely knew where it was. thanks to twitter friend Julia for reminding me that it’s sorta near where i was headed this weekend, Pittsburgh.
Y'all, Fallingwater is everything they said it would be. Absolutely breathtaking inside and out. pic.twitter.com/BQ1nJDQSoq
— Jonathan Khoo (@jonk) May 31, 2014
i’ve always enjoyed Frank Lloyd Wright‘s work, perhaps the Guggenheim most of all, but Fallingwater is so famous and architecturally groundbreaking that i couldn’t pass up a chance to see it.
sidebar: practicalities Fallingwater is a bit over an hour southeast of Pittsburgh and four and a half hours west of Philadelphia, out in the middle of a forest (where cell phone reception, at least Verizon, is spotty at best). they say you should reserve tickets in advance — which i did. the standard tour is currently $25, which is about an hour long. the in-depth tour is nearly triple that price: double the length, and allows you to take pictures inside. otherwise, you can only take pictures of the exterior once you are done with the tour and dumped back outside, where you have free access to anywhere that’s not roped off. you can’t even take a picture of the outside from an outside terrace while on the standard tour — a lady got admonished by the guide and a guard. there’s also a short fundraising video/spiel you have to sit through at the end of the tour. grin and bear it!
there is no admission to the grounds without a tour. i overheard some people say the tours were sold out online but they came anyways and were able to secure tickets. i wouldn’t count on that, though, especially in busy months. note also that if you arrive early, they might even get you in before your scheduled time (i got in 15 minutes early) — there were tours groups of 10 departing every 10-15 minutes when i was there.
in terms of food there is a simple cafe onsite. a couple miles down the road there is a small quaint town with more restaurants there.
it really is an amazing building, and going inside is an absolute treat. the original furnishings are still there and all the tricks that Wright used to bring the outside in and harmonize the building with the surroundings are still so amazing they gave me chills.
(p.s. the only Frank Lloyd Wright work i still really want to see is the Johnson Wax HQ in Wisconsin.)
bonus instagram: if you’re passing through Harrisburg on the way in, be sure to stop and take a peek inside the state capitol building!