Oak Park rightfully claims fame as the birthplace of the world-renowned Prairie Style school of architecture because Chicago's first suburb (12 miles from the Loop) boasts the largest concentration of Frank Lloyd Wright-designed structures in the world.
One-hour guided tours of Frank Lloyd Wright’s Home and Studio cost $15 and describe how Wright's Prairie Style design aesthetic evolved. The 1889 home showcases Wright’s signature architectural touches, like nook fireplaces, built-in cabinets, open spaces, Roman bricks and geometric art glass windows. The most impressive rooms are the draftsmen studio with its chain-supported cathedral domed ceiling, the vaulted children's playroom, and the dining room graced with the original Wright-designed table and chairs.
It’s worth the extra hour to stroll the surrounding blocks of the Frank Lloyd Wright Prairie School of Architecture National Historic District. The 20-home audio tour covers 11 Wright-designed homes built between 1892 and 1908 and his Unity Temple. Palatial classic residences designed by Wright's contemporaries are also represented. For a comprehensive but manageable immersion into Wright's world, purchase the $25 combo ticket that includes both the home-studio guided tour and the self-guided historic district audio tour. Don’t forget to wear comfortable walking shoes.
Additionally, the Wright Plus house walk fund-raiser each spring allows visitors rare peeks inside landmark private homes.