Frank Lloyd Wright, the famous American architect, interior designer, writer and educator, who was recognized in 1991 by the American Institute of Architects as “the greatest American architect of all time” designed a ranch house in the southern edge of Los Banos (Merced County).
The house is the third-to-last California residence drawn by Frank Lloyd Wright, and one of only two currently on the market.
There is a large living room at the base looks onto the garden through a wall of windows and French doors and a row of bedrooms radiating outward on the north side, a kitchen and a play room on the south, and also a wonderful palm-shaded swimming pool.
The centerpiece of the family room is a 6-foot-high, 12-foot-wide fireplace. Built-in mahogany cabinetry and furniture accent corners and spaces throughout the home.
The Fawcett, the original owners, Randall and Harriet, met Wright while taking an architecture course at Stanford University.
Less than a decade later, the couple sought out the world famous architect to design their family home, with pictures of the proposed site.
Wright, that was 87 and still at the height of his fame, commented: “Not much beauty there”, but accepted and started works.
“He softened the whole effect of the place on that barren center of a valley by using the 120-degree angles,” said William Storrer, author of “The Frank Lloyd Wright Companion.”
“It just seemed to be right for the space.”
“It’s kind of the ultimate statement of his innovative idea of creating what he called a purely American-style architecture,” said Ron Scherubel, executive director of the Frank Lloyd Wright Building Conservancy in Chicago.
“This one is all angles and glass and concrete blocks. At the time, it was clearly an expression of ultra-modern design.”
The price tag alone , $2.7 million for a roughly 3,700-square-foot home in Los Banos , is likely to eliminate anyone who isn’t a full-fledged architecture buff.
“It’s not like a normal house,” Henry Whiting said. “It requires a lot of love and maintenance. We just want to see it get to somebody who really loves it, and I know that that’s what Mr. Fawcett wanted.”