Possibly one of the fastest to sell out events of Palm Springs Modernism Week every year, the Premiere Double Decker Architectural Bus Tour has been on my wishlist since I first learned about Modernism Week. So after years of forgetting to plan ahead, I managed to get my act together and take the tour!
Once on the bus, it became perfectly clear as to why this tour sells out so quickly. The high perch allowed for a view of Palm Springs like I've never experienced before, allowing us to peer over high walls and into some of the more iconic properties, such as Frank Sinatra's house, the Kaufmann House, and what was formerly Dinah Shore's house, for example. It also allowed us to appreciate signature architectural details so much more, such as butterfly, folded plate,and atomic-inspired rooflines, fountains, brise-soleil details, pattern and screen blocks, uniquely shaped pools, etc.
It also gave an incredible overview of how the city is laid out from a historical perspective, which I found absolutely fascinating. From the churches Eisenhower and JFK used to worship at, to the pool Marilyn Monroe was supposedly discovered at, to the final resting place of Albert Frey (my personal favorite new discovery - it's not too far from the Frey House II, actually), the tour was chock full of the kind of stories that fill my head with daydreams.
This tour was so rich with information and detail, from technical architectural insights to Old Hollywood romance, that I might even try and go again next year as I wanted to soak up every single detail!
Speaking of which, the schedule for Modernism Week 2018 just came out! If you're planning on going, I definitely recommend starting with this tour. It will definitely make you catch feelings for this magical city, that's for sure.
Photos by Nikko DeTranquilli