Legendary architect Frank Lloyd Wright is known as one of the all-time greats in design and urban planning. His “organic architecture” philosophy emphasized the importance of harmony between human life and the environment, and this shone through in his stunning constructions. By the time of his death in 1957, Wright had designed over 1,000 structures. What you might not realize, though, is that over 30 of these buildings can be found right here in Michigan. Here are eight of Frank Lloyd Wright’s gorgeous and iconic creations in the Great Lakes State.
1. Curtis and Lillian Meyer House (11108 Hawthorne Drive, Galesburg)
Flickr/Michigan State Historic Preservation Office
The Curtis and Lillian Meyer House, built in 1950-1951, is part of a community of Wright homes in the Galesburg area referred to as “The Acres.” The home features a hemicycle solar design and custom-built bricks.
2. Melvyn Maxwell and Sara Stein Smith House (5045 Ponvalley Road,
Also known as “My Haven,” the Melvyn Maxwell Smith House in Bloomfield Hills was constructed between 1949 and 1950. The owners of the home were actually two public school teachers on a modest budget — they became intent on owning a Wright-designed home after visiting the famous Fallingwater house in Pennsylvania. Their initial design budget with Wright was $9,000.
3. Gregor Affleck House (
925 Bloomfield Woods, Bloomfield Hills)
Perhaps Wright’s most well-known Michigan design, the Affleck House in Bloomfield Hills was constructed in 1940. It is built of cypress and brick and sits close to a quaint stream bed. The home is another example of Wright’s interest in intertwining living space with nature, as it features many ceiling windows and lookouts to the stream outside.
4. Meyer May House (450 Madison Avenue SE, Grand Rapids)
A visit to the beautiful Heritage Hill neighborhood of Grand Rapids will take you past the Meyer May house, which is now open to the public for tours. The home was commissioned by well-known Grand Rapids clothier Meyer S. May in 1908, and construction was completed by 1909. It stands out as a gorgeous example of Wright’s “Prairie School” era designs, which are marked by overhanging eaves, natural integration, and deliberate use of horizontal lines to mirror the landscape of a prairie.
5. David M. Amberg House (573 College Avenue, Grand Rapids)
Located just blocks away from the Meyer May House, the Amberg House is another Wright-designed home in the Heritage Hill neighborhood of Grand Rapids. During the construction of the house, Wright became tied up in his travels abroad and handed the reigns to Marion Mahony and Herman van Holst, who completed the stunning home.
6. Abby Beecher Roberts House (County Hwy. 492, Marquette)
Affectionally known as “Deertrack,” this home in Marquette is the only Frank Lloyd Wright construction in the Upper Peninsula. The home’s original owner was the mother-in-law of one of Wright’s students, who helped oversee the construction of the project.
7. Erling P. Brauner House (2527 Arrowhead Road, Okemos)
The Brauner House in Okemos features a classic overhanging eave and is constructed out of painted concrete blocks. Its location on a wooded cul-de-sac (and its lovely swimming pool) makes it one of the most peaceful Wright homes in Michigan.
8. Dorothy H. Turkel House (2760 West 7 Mile Road, Detroit)
Located in the Palmer Woods neighborhood of Detroit, the Turkel house is most known for its block-patterned windows and large balcony. Wright designed this home with his environmentally friendly beliefs in mind — you’ll notice that the home is intentionally built below shade trees in an effort to keep the house cool without the use of air conditioning.
There’s simply no denying the legendary talent of Frank Lloyd Wright. Do you have a favorite Wright design? Can it be found here in Michigan?