Showing posts with label travel. Show all posts
Showing posts with label travel. Show all posts

Monday, June 18, 2018

Oklahoma Modernism Weekend: Home Tour Highlights







Wednesday, March 16, 2016

Okie Mod Weekend

Oklahoma's first celebration of modern architecture and design will be held May 20-22, 2015.

The event will be hosted by the Okie Mod Squad, an Oklahoma City-based group that promotes the appreciation and preservation of Mid-Century Modern design. To drive home that point they have chosen a uniquely identifiable site to host this first-ever event: The First Christian Church of Oklahoma City.

Thursday, December 17, 2015

Photogenic Sites

Congratulations to the Tulsa Zoo!

Turns out the zoo is the "Most Instagrammed Place" in Oklahoma!

Sunday, January 26, 2014

New Mexico Modern

Okie in the Land of Enchantment
Off the Beaten Path In Search of Enchanted Neon, High-Desert Modern and Breaking Bad


Last week I found myself in Albuquerque, New Mexico on business with a few hours of spare time. I went exploring and discovered an innate New Mexico modernism– and some unexpected surprises.


Thursday, April 18, 2013

Central AIA Tour

Last week I got to spend a day with some of the Oklahoma Mod Squad crew. The occasion was National Architecture Week and the Central AIA Chapter was sponsoring a tour of seven projects in the Oklahoma City area.

I had a great time and saw some inspired commercial spaces, unique homes and promising projects. Everyone agreed and we're looking forward to more pan-turnpike modernism projects in the future!

Monday, October 15, 2012

What Happened in Vegas?

About the only thing that happens in Vegas faster than new construction is the erasing of history. In a city where a five year-old building is considered tired, it's no surprise that history passes through the bulldozer's bucket faster than a free buffet line.

Enjoy this view of that
blue and silver building.
It won't be around much longer!

When visiting Las Vegas I usually find myself visiting the seedier parts of town looking for what made Sin City click in the Fifties and Sixties. This time around I actually wanted to visit something new. Yes, a modernist enclave on the main drag for a change!
One of the most interesting new sites on the Strip is called City Center. Ironically, this new Geary-induced development is soon to be visited by wrecking crews!

In a bizarre "only in Vegas" turn of events the Harmon Hotel is going to be razed before it ever opened its doors. The 26-story hotel has been deemed defective and the owners have requested a permit to demolish it. How they managed to continue building something so large when they knew it was sub-code is amazing to me. But I guess it happens.



Friday, June 29, 2012

Colorado Modern

Key Savings & Loan
So you're probably wondering, "What the heck does Colorado have to do with Oklahoma Modern?"

Well, for one Colorado borders Oklahoma. Barely.

Also the renowned architect Charles Deaton, designer of the "sculpture house" that overlooks I-70 west of Denver and is best known from the movie Sleeper, was raised in Oklahoma.

But mainly because... um, we recently visited Colorado for a week. So there. Now sit back and enjoy:

Oklahoma Modern: the Colorado Edition


Sunday, April 8, 2012

Letters: Visit to Tulsa

Oklahoma Modern reader JS from Dallas writes:
Hi Rex and Jackie- 
I’m an Okie from Shawnee and I enjoy your Oklahoma Modern blog. 
I’m taking a photo trip/family visit to Tulsa in mid-April and want to check with you about what’s still around for me to enjoy. 
Here’s a tentative list: 

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Save the Date for Dallas Mods

One of our favorite events isn't in Oklahoma, but it is modern.

The White Rock Home Tour is an annual tour showcasing some of Dallas' nicest Mid-Century Modern homes. This area is northeast of downtown Dallas, near White Rock Lake, and features ranch-style and minimalist homes from the Fifties and Sixties. 

Each year the tour highlights 5 or 6 homes, some vintage and some new construction. The weekend also features architectural lectures and exhibits. Proceeds from the event benefit Hexter Elementary, a nearby public school. For 2012 the tour will be held April 21st and 22nd.

So mark your calendars, Okies! We'll round up the wagons and make ourselves a convoy. Breaker, breaker. Headin' down to Big D. 10-4.

More

Monday, December 26, 2011

Thoroughly Modern Getaway

We had been hearing about the unique hideaway called the Canebrake for years. I decided Jackie's birthday would be the perfect occasion to get out of town to sample their gourmet menu and spend the night in a cabin in the woods.


The Canebrake is located just east of Wagoner, OK on a peninsula overlooking Fort Gibson Lake. It's miles away from the city lights so it's a great place to "get away from it all."

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Goff's Most "Usual" Design

Bruce Goff is known for his unusual architecture. So our visit to the home he designed for the Cox family in 1949 was a bit of a surprise.

P51596Cox HouseFrom the street it's easily the most "usual" home by Bruce Goff we have ever seen. It even has vertical walls, brick veneer and square corners. There are no spheres or conversation pits or Klingon-inspired roof escarpments. It would be easy to overlook the Cox House. Odds are you'd miss it- even if someone told you to keep an eye out for a Bruce Goff house in Boise City.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

McModern

Weary travelers making a pit stop on the Muskogee Turnpike may think they've stumbled into a W Hotel. Alas, it's only a McDonalds.

As a child these travel plazas held a science fiction-like fascination. Gaudy signs and futuristic architecture invited you into a world of tomorrow. The best part of any road trip was the rest stop. Like an oasis on the endless ribbon of concrete, the travel plaza provided a much needed break from the monotony of transcontinental travel by car.

The new 15,000 square foot travel plaza, located in Wagoner County, replaced the existing convenience store and Mickey D from the Seventies. Both businesses are now located in one building which opened in April 2011. The decor is open and contemporary, what I'd describe as West Elm-ish. We especially liked the bright red Emeco 111 Navy chairs molded from recycled Coke bottles. Even the toilets are hip, featuring sleek waterless urinals and Dyson Airblade hand dryers.

Another nice touch is the artwork in the center of the restaurant. Four photos of Oklahoma scenes by Muskogee dentist David Jones are displayed on segmented panels. It's a nice touch that adds some local color.

It's no world of tomorrow. But it's nice to see a little effort spent on making it special.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Going Modern in Beaver

We crossed the Oklahoma Panhandle on a recent trip to Black Mesa for a hike up to Oklahoma's highest point (but that's another story). I had read about the two private residences in Beaver, Oklahoma designed by Bruce Goff, so we decided to make a detour. We discovered a great little town and a number of interesting buildings!

Things you probably didn't know about Beaver, Oklahoma:
  • Two homes in Beaver were designed by Bruce Goff (okay, that doesn't count)
  • Hosts the World Cow Chip Throwing Championship
  • Beaver Dunes State Park is nearby and actually has sand dunes
  • They still have an operating OTASCO*
Who knew?


Wednesday, April 20, 2011

International Recognition for Bartlesville's Price Tower

Anyone who questions the validity of architecture as a tourism generator in Oklahoma got a firm rebuke last week. The unique skyscraper in Bartlesville known as the Price Tower was included on a list of Frank Lloyd Wright structures nominated for international recognition by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (mercifully known as UNESCO). Just the nomination is a huge honor, and recognition as a World Heritage Site would mean a huge boost in international visitors to the Price Tower. The 19-story skyscraper currently houses an art center, boutique hotel and a struggling restaurant.

Saturday, April 9, 2011

6th Annual Dallas Modern Home Tour

Jackie dons her booties
during last year's White
Rock Home Tour
We attended the White Rock Home Tour last year and really enjoyed it. Unfortunately we can't make it this year. Bummer!

For 2011 the tour features five modern homes, an opening reception at Design Within Reach and meet-and-greets with notable architects. Plus, the proceeds benefit an area school, Hexter Elementary.

Tickets are $10 in advance or $15 at the event. For more details and ticket locations visit the website...

6th Annual White Rock Home Tour
April 16-17, 2011

Speaker Reception- April 15


Roadtrip Adventures: Plan a roadtrip and find things to do plus great deals on hotels stays at Expedia!

Friday, March 4, 2011

Two Okies in the Mecca of Mod

Modernism Week in Palm Springs

We'd been hearing about this desert city full of Mid-Century Modern architecture for years. But it's difficult to comprehend until you actually experience that cool-building-on-every-corner aspect of Palm Springs, California. The celebrities who frequented this city in the Forties, Fifties and Sixties built cutting-edge homes to use as their Winter retreats. Today this city of approximately 45,000 is awash in well preserved examples of Streamline Moderne, International, Brutalist and Postmodern architecture.

And fortunately for us the civic leaders appear to understand the power of architecture as a tourist attraction. Preservation has saved many important buildings, and many commercial structures are protected from any visual alterations or possible "remuddle" jobs. New construction also leverages the  modern look by incorporating classic Fifties styling cues like a butterfly roof or aluminum brise-soleil.

If you love modern architecture you'll enjoy visiting Palm Springs. Unless it's August.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Let's Go: Modernism Week in Palm Springs

For the last couple of years we've been hearing more and more about Modernism Week in Palm Springs. Held each February since 2006, this week-long celebration of modern aesthetics has become the place to be for stir-crazy modernists.

The Palm Springs Visitor Center is located in a
super groovy gas station designed by Albert Frey.
Photo: Lydia Kremer
Sixth Annual Palm Springs Modernism Week
February 17 through 27, 2011

Today Palm Springs, California is a mecca of Mid-Century Modern architecture. In the postwar years this desert oasis attracted the Hollywood elite and became symbolic of the Rat Pack lifestyle. The annual Modernism Week celebrates this unique "desert modern" with art exhibits, architectural tours, lectures, and sales. What began as just a show and sale back in 2001 has evolved into a huge citywide happening that attracted over 9,000 visitors last year.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Aloft Hotel Opens in Tulsa

Aloft Tulsa Delivers Style at a Steal to Savvy Travelers

WHITE PLAINS, N.Y. -- Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. (NYSE: HOT), today announces the debut of its Aloft brand in Oklahoma with the opening of Aloft Tulsa. Owned by Anish Hotels Group and managed by LodgeWorks, L.P., this brand-new destination sensation features 136 spacious, open rooms, a tech-forward sensibility and a vibrant, social atmosphere.

Aloft Hotel in Tulsa, OklahomaAloft Tulsa is ideally located in south Tulsa, home to the city's best shops, restaurants, entertainment and commerce. The stylish, new hotel is just a few blocks from the 71st Street shopping and dining district, Woodland Hills Mall, historic downtown Tulsa, Oral Roberts University and the concerts and sporting events at BOK Center. Also nearby are Hard Rock Casino, River Spirit Casino and Tulsa's scenic RiverWalk. Offering more than 1,000 square feet of state-of-the-art meeting space, Aloft Tulsa is convenient to the offices of Cox Communications, Metlife Insurance and Hilti Corporation. Guests will enjoy fast and free hotel-wide WiFi and complimentary shuttle service within five miles of the hotel. Aloft Tulsa boasts atmospheric public spaces where guests can mix and mingle, read the paper, work on laptops, play a game of pool or grab a drink with friends at the re:mix(SM) communal lobby area and w xyz(SM) bar.

"Aloft Hotels introduces a dynamic mix of urban style and social interplay to south Tulsa, the city's top destination for dining and entertainment," said Brian McGuinness, Senior Vice President of Specialty Select Brands for Starwood. "With its bold design and forward-thinking technology, Aloft caters to savvy travelers who expect their lodging to reflect their constantly evolving lifestyle."

"We are delighted to partner with Starwood to introduce Aloft to Tulsa, an ideal choice for the expansion of this stylish new brand, which now boasts more than 40 global destinations," said Tony Isaac, President of LodgeWorks, L.P. "Aloft Tulsa caters to sophisticated travelers as well as area professionals with its eclectic and electric experience, lively re:mix (sm) lounge and w xyz (sm)bar."

Photo courtesy of Starwood Hotels


no one deals like we do!

Monday, November 15, 2010

Great New Look for Cheap Motels

DALLAS - ADDISONA couple of months ago we shared a news release from Motel 6 about their new prototype room designs. This new modern look was being applied to rooms in new construction as well as Motel 6 makeovers. This also coincides with the company's green initiative. In October 2009 the first LEED-certified economy hotel in the US opened in Nortlake, Texas.

The project is code named "Phoenix" and includes sustainable features like the use of technologically-advanced heating and cooling systems, native landscaping with drought-resistant plants, thermal solar water heating, flooring made from 80% post-consumer recycled material and a Fluorescent Light Bulb and Battery Recycling Program.

Modern new look for Motel 6Accor North America, the parent company of Motel 6, says...
Since its introduction in March 2008, the award-winning Motel 6 “Phoenix” room design has been incorporated into more than 70 of Motel 6’s existing corporate-owned and franchised locations in more than 20 U.S. markets. Guestroom features include a modern, Euro-chic design by Priestmangoode of London, 32” flat-screen TVs, wood-effect flooring, granite bathroom countertops, and a comfortable settee area conducive for eating, working, or watching TV. The design won Travel + Leisure magazine’s 2010 Design Award for “Best Large Hotel.”
We decided to try out this new modern look on a recent trip to Dallas. Our immediate reaction was "Wow." Such a clean and open floorplan is a radical departure from your typical motel fare that seems to stuff more furnishings into a room for "perceived value." The lack of sticky carpet was a most welcome relief.

While the amenities leave no doubt this is budget accommodations, the stay was virtually boutique.

Here's a short video look at our arrival in Addison, Texas...



Good job Motel 6!


Friday, March 19, 2010

State Tourism Office Gets Hip

Oklahoma's "official" online persona is pretty dry. Our state's home page could best be described as Welcome to Nineties. Which is an improvement over the previous version, that looked like something created using Windows 3.11.

But our tourism and recreation office has been a refreshing exception to that trend. A recent overhaul of TravelOK.com offers would-be visitors videos, blogs and articles about a variety of unique destinations that await them in the Sooner State. Yes, even Mid-Century Modern.

You know it's gone mainstream when you find an article titled Mid-Century Cool in Oklahoma City on the state travel website.

Seriously, it's a helpful article with a good list of notable buildings in The City.