This past Saturday…

…I took a break from all the work and walked up the street to the ArchitectureChicago Open House, a city-wide event.

Of course, my sole architectural interests were a mere block and a half walk away!

The Emil Bach House Designed by Frank Lloyd Wright, 1915

The Emil Bach House
Designed by Frank Lloyd Wright, 1915

As much as I wanted to see inside, I passed by because there was no waiting line next door at the Cat’s Cradle Bed and Breakfast, another renovation financed a few years back by Col. J.N. Pritzker of Tawani Enterprises, Inc.

The Bach House sure looked great from the outside, though the renovation is not yet 100% complete!

The Bach House sure looked great from the outside, though the renovation is not yet 100% complete!

As I walked up the steps to Cat's Cradle, I looked back and took a shot of the looong line at the Bach House. It was a beautiful Autumn morning, and the plantings at both properties were spectacular! But, I quickly turned, and entered a structure I've been very, very curious about.

As I walked up the steps to Cat’s Cradle, I looked back and took a shot of the loooong line at the Bach House.
It was a beautiful Autumn morning, and the plantings at both properties were spectacular!
But, I quickly turned, and entered a structure I’ve been very, very curious about.

Love this door which I believe is the original from 1919, and knew I'd also love the interior!

LOVE this door which I believe is the original from 1919, and knew I’d also love the interior!

I almost felt as if I had somehow ‘gone back in time’, to a much gentler, more civilized era.

The Architect was a Mr. Newman, who drew much inspiration from FLW, as evidenced by the amount of fine woodworking, original wood flooring...

The architect was a Mr. Newman, who drew much inspiration from Frank Lloyd Wright, as evidenced by the amount of fine woodworking, original wood flooring…

...and decorative touches such as this lovely lamp atop the newel post.

…and decorative touches such as this lovely lamp atop the newel post.

Cat’s Cradle contains five bedrooms, each with the flavor of that bygone time, yet each is technologically up-to-date.

I’ll title them in the sequence I viewed them.

Bedroom #1

Bedroom #1

*

Bedroom #2

Bedroom #2

*

Bedroom #3

Bedroom #3

*

Bedroom #4

Bedroom #4

*

Bedroom #5

Bedroom #5

* * *

Because I’ve been so busy in the apartment, painting not only walls but also furniture, and doing some fall cleaning in between, I haven’t gotten around to processing any other images from this wonderful tour.

There’s just one ceiling area to give a third coat, and then only the studio remains…I’ll take my time and do that piecemeal, as it is small and requires a lot of shuffling things back and forth—and I’m pretty ‘pooped’ right now!

I did, however, have a fine chat with one of the Innkeepers, Wayde Cartwright, which was both informative and most enjoyable!

If you plan to visit Chicago on business or vacation, give Wayde or his fellow Innkeeper, Bruce Boyd, a call at 1.773.764.9851, or you can visit www.catscradlechicago.com.

The rates are extremely reasonable, especially when you consider the surroundings and all the amenities provided!

(Yes, that was pretty blatant advertising from me, but if I were visiting, I’d surely love staying here!)

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At the Emil Bach House parkway…

Leaves on the trees are yellowing...

…leaves on the trees are yellowing…

...the daisies lose color and petals in stages...

…the Daisies lose color and petals in stages…

...and the Hostas fade gracefully.

…and the Hostas fade gracefully.

As for the renovation of the 1915 Frank Lloyd Wright-designed house, the new layer of stucco is being applied, and I’m certain there is work going on inside as well.

Bach House Stucco-1

A closer look:

Bach House Stucco-2

It occurred to me the other day…

…while walking to the grocer’s, that I hadn’t kept you informed of the progress in the renovation of the Frank Lloyd Wright-designed Emil Bach House here on Sheridan Road in the Rogers Park neighborhood of Chicago.

The west and south facades

The west and south facades

Lots of building supplies clutter the front yard, and the scaffolding remains while the fascias are being strip-sanded and repainted, and the walls are being prepared for the application of a new layer of stucco.

The west facade

The west facade

A pile of rubble next to an already-full Dumpster is all that remains of the old roof–I don’t know if this was the original.

Mr. Wright did have a reputation for creating leaky roofs, such as those at the Johnson Wax Center in Racine, Wisconsin, and at the Annunciation Greek Orthodox Church in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.

The front Tulip garden

The front Tulip Garden

I’m not certain if the fabulous Tulip Garden will be brought back, but the garden will be smaller with the addition of about six feet of sod laid as a buffer between bushes and the rich-looking soil.

The deck and rear entryway

The deck and rear entryway

The former sunroom walls have been removed to expose the original deck, which at the time of construction (1915) overlooked the shore of Lake Michigan.

Sadly, the lake was filled in, and the rear of the Bach House is now a half-block west of the shoreline.

The backyard

The backyard

This was a complete and beautiful surprise!

A curving hand-laid stone pathway now surrounds a short retaining wall and flower beds.

This area was originally several feet high and quite ‘wild-looking’.

The structure on the right (a guest house?) is not original to the property–it was built, if I correctly recall, in 2008 and is attached to the two-car garage, which I also think is not original.

The building permit

The building permit

It’s posted on the temporary cyclone fence at the alleyway, and gives you a pretty good idea of what is being added/renovated By Tawani Enterprises, Inc., which is headed by billionaire J. N. Pritzker.

* * *
Tawani Enterprises also has bought the parking lot just north of my own building and the Shambhala Meditation Center just north of that.
Beginning October 1st, this building will be demolished--I don't look forward to the noise and dust right outside my living area window!

Beginning October 1st, this building will be demolished–I don’t look forward to the noise and dust right outside my living area window!

The corner will supposedly look something like this after construction of the Sheridan-Sherwin Parking Structure...except that this rendering is in very forced perspective--the length of the Sheridan Road footage is only about 160 feet +/-!

The corner will supposedly look something like this after construction of the four-story Sheridan-Sherwin Parking Structure…except that this rendering is in very forced perspective–the length of the Sheridan Road footage is only about 160 feet +/-!

That’s my building sticking up behind the structure–I hope I don’t lose my view !

Some really ‘good’ news!

From CNN:

Frank Lloyd Wright Home. Saved!

By APizm  |  Posted December 21, 2012

The David and Gladys Wright House designed by Frank Lloyd Wright

The David and Gladys Wright House designed by Frank Lloyd Wright  Photo: APizm

When the sun rises tomorrow we will know two things. One, the Mayans were wrong. Two, the David and Gladys Wright home, designed by Frank Lloyd Wright is SAVED. I am proud to announce that an anonymous buyer has purchased the house and has plans to preserve it.

 I have been inside the house a few times now and believe me, it takes a few times to notice all the tiny design details that Frank Lloyd Wright put into this house. I included a few images of those tiny details for you.

 Here is the write up from the Frank Lloyd Wright Building Conservancy website, SaveWright.org:
“Christmas came a little early this year. Culminating six months of intensive work and many ups and downs, we can finally announce that this unique and important Wright house is safe! The Conservancy has facilitated the purchase of the David and Gladys Wright House in Phoenix through an LLC owned by an anonymous benefactor. The transaction closed on December 20 for an undisclosed price. The property will be transferred to an Arizona not-for-profit organization responsible for the restoration, maintenance and operation of the David Wright House.”

(CNN PRODUCER NOTE     APizm is a photography instructor for the Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation at Taliesin West in Phoenix, Arizona, and has been following the story for a while. He first reported on it in early October, when the David and Gladys Wright house was facing demolition.)

 For more information see: www.savewright.org
For more images see: www.APizm.com

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I would love to know who the ‘anonymous’ purchaser is…could it be James N. Pritzker, the owner of the Emil Bach House just a block and a half north of my building here in Rogers Park?  Frank Lloyd Wright built the Bach House in 1915, and much to everyone’s surprise, it is undergoing a very heavy rehab, begun about two months ago.

The Emil Bach House, designed by Frank Lloyd Wright and built in 1915.

The Emil Bach House, designed by Frank Lloyd Wright and built in 1915.  Image taken 15DEC2012, copyright http://www.anotherthousandwords.wordpress.com

 

 

As you see, many of the windows have been removed.  When I spoke in 2007 with Mr. Pritzker’s secretary, who was occupying the house at the time, I was told that they hoped to re-do the windows, as they had obtained Mr. Wright’s original drawings for the Wrightian-style stained glass.  I hate to assume anything but, it does look as if the stained glass windows will be in place soon enough, as will other ‘original’ amenities and some new as well!

Kudos to Mr. Pritzker, who also owns the building at the left (The Cats Cradle Bed and Breakfast) and the tall building behind (The Farcroft, a 12+ story former apartment building which has been undergoing a total gut rehab for over a year now).

Not exactly Frank Lloyd Wright…

…but more likely designed by one of his devoted students.

The Prairie Style

The Rogers Park neighborhood of Chicago has a number of homes in Wright’s early 20th century style, but a REAL Wright design is just one block north of my building!

Emil Bach House

Yellow and orange and more yellow, oh my!

Two blocks to the north of my building is the Emil Bach house, designed by Frank Lloyd Wright and built in 1915.  In Spring, the front garden is a riot of tulips, but now it looks like this:

 

 

 

All images copyright 2012  http://www.anotherthousandwords.wordpress.com

Today’s walk…

…yielded so much beauty it will take two posts.  I began at the Emil Bach House, designed in 1915 by Frank Lloyd Wright, and now owned by James N. Pritzker, founder of the Pritzker Military Museum here in Chicago.  The annual tulip display is phenomenal, but they are coming to their end.

Last of the Bach House Tulips  Copyright 2012  http://www.anotherthousandwords.wordpress.com

Just next door, heading north, is another Wright-era house, also owned by Mr. Pritzker.  There is a grand tulip display, but these lovelies also abide here:

Bleeding Hearts and Dew  Copyright 2012  http://www.anotherthousandwords.wordpress.com

The morning fog left everything kind of dewy, including these Hosta in the parkway:

Dewy Hosta  Copyright 2012  http://www.anotherthousandwords.wordpress.com

As I crossed Rogers at Ashland Avenue, I noticed these purple iris getting ready to burst:

Purple Iris Buds  Copyright 2012  http://www.anotherthousandwords.wordpress.com

Thinking I was finished shooting, I crossed Rogers Avenue…and something bright caught my eye.  I almost could not believe…a poppy!in full bloomon the first of May!

First Poppy  Copyright 2012  http://www.anotherthousandwords.wordpress.com