Architecture Week

7 Amazing (and Architecturally Significant!) Vacation Rentals You Need to Book

published Oct 25, 2022
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Credit: Airbnb

Architecture is a substantial part of American history as it marks eras and styles. Although many cities offer tours of architecturally significant buildings, the next time you travel, make plans to stay in one. Even if you haven’t heard of a particular designer before, there are plenty of beautiful structural masterpieces that you can make yours for a night or even a weeklong stay.

From a modest Frank Lloyd Wright home tucked into the woods to a parkside dwelling reminiscent of a UFO, this list encompasses several design styles at different price points. So whether you are an architecture enthusiast or simply want a unique place to rest your head, here are seven fantastic vacation rentals to book stat.

Credit: Airbnb

The Rubber House Co. — New York

Self-billed as an “architectural case study” home on its Airbnb listing, The Rubber House Co. certainly is an interesting property with a celebrity history. As the first house designed by Tom Pritchard, it was commissioned for Eugene Loring, who was a famous choreographer, and his chef partner. The exterior color blends in with the environment, but the unique shape offsets its natural backdrop. Inside you’ll find a relatively open floor plan with pops of color and distinctive architectural features.  

Seth Peterson Cottage — Wisconsin

Not only was the Seth Peterson Cottage the first Frank Lloyd Wright home opened for public overnight rental, but it sits on Mirror Lake in Wisconsin, making it perfect if you want to combine architecture appreciation with nature. At only 880 square feet, it was Wright’s last project in Wisconsin and one he completed while in his 90s. Although tiny, the home features exposed brick, wood features, and sharp angles, all earmarks of homes designed by Wright. It also sits within a state park where you can participate in four seasons of fun, from skiing to swimming.

Weidlinger House — Massachusetts

Cape Cod is known for its coastline and namesake style of house, but one home is in stark contrast to what you usually find in New England: the Weidlinger House. With rigid angles and a flattened, horizontal shape, the home is full of windows overlooking the water. The inside has a fairly open floor plan designed by Hungarian architect Paul Weidlinger. Built in 1953, the house almost faced demolition 1990s until a trust restored the home and opened it up for short-term rentals.

Credit: Airbnb

Area 55 Futuro House — California

Even if you’re not planning on heading to Joshua Tree — although it’s a fabulous national park, so put it on your list — you can go there and stay in a Futuro Pod. Matti Suuronen, a Finnish architect designed Futuro homes, which are oddly reminiscent of a UFO. Unfortunately, less than 100 were sold and built as prefabricated houses in the late ‘60s and early ‘70s. Of course, many architecture lovers want to add a Futuro to their collection, but you can walk up the hatch stairway and peer out the oval windows as you make the Area 55 Futuro House yours for a night or two. 

The Palmer House — Michigan

If you’re a Frank Lloyd Wright fan and a tiny home in the woods isn’t suitable, head to The Palmer House in Ann Arbor. The Palmers commissioned the 2000-square-foot house in 1950 and owned it up until 2009. After Wright died in 1959, the family had a tea house built on the property by Wright’s protégé, John H. Howe. The home sleeps six and includes unique features, such as angular furniture and a cantilevered terrace area.

Credit: Airbnb

The Glass Treehouse — Georgia

Although you may not want to take up permanent residence inside of a glass house, there’s no harm in renting one for the weekend, especially when it’s elevated. The Glass Treehouse in Atlanta was designed by its owner mostly from reclaimed materials and is nested among historic bungalows and Victorian-style homes. The entire area is a feast for an architecture lover’s eyes. However, if you’re worried about onlookers, the home offers an additional layer of privacy, especially in the summer when the trees provide a lush cover of green. 

Credit: Airbnb

The Wave Lambertville — New Jersey

Lambertville, New Jersey, and New Hope, Pennsylvania, are just across from each other on the Delaware River. And although they are both filled with old buildings, vintage shopping, and fabulous restaurants, you can center your stay at The Wave Lambertville. The home was designed by Jules Gregory and built in 1960, and the appropriately named structure features a giant wavelike roofline, rock-lined walls, and a sunken living room for relaxing. There’s also a lovely outdoor space so that you can have your morning coffee on the patio and head out to explore.