Modernism Week Takes to the High Seas! Get Your Passport Ready: Modernism Goes Mediterranean

First-Ever Modernism Week Cruise Will Provide Participants with Opportunities to See Stunning Mediterranean Modernist Structures 

Modernism Week announced that it has partnered with Oceania Cruises to offer the first-ever ModernismWeek@Sea educational excursion on Oceania’s Marina. This 7-day cruise, hosted by Modernism Week’s CEO Chris Mobley, will visit eight culturally significant Mediterranean ports that demonstrate how modern influences in architecture and design have been artfully folded into these sometimes ancient cities. The cruise participants will explore Spain, France and Monaco through special Modernism Week-curated tours and parties. ModernismWeek@Sea is an enriching custom-curated travel experience centered around midcentury modern design, architecture, art, and culture. It will depart Lisbon, Portugal on September 29, 2019 and end on October 6, 2019 in Barcelona, Spain. Anyone is welcome to join but must book into the group through TravelStore in order to participate in the exclusive events. For pricing and more information about this cruise, go to or click here.

Modernism Week has offered educational tours in previous years to Cuba and Mexico, but this is the first time the festival organizers will offer a Mediterranean trip on an elegant cruise ship. In addition to participating in a rich array of port excursions led by local architecture experts, ModernismWeek@Sea participants will be able to enjoy several private events especially organized for this group such as “Martinis Over Monaco,” “Lisbon Libations” and a “La Dolce Vita” dinner. Optional limited-participation opportunities include a “Mod Bites” cooking class that will showcase favorite midcentury cocktails and hors d’oeuvres of Monaco, France and Spain and an exclusive dinner limited to 24 guests in the extravagant La Reserve dining room hosted by Chris Mobley. This seven-course dinner experience is called “La Cuisine Bourgeoise” and was designed by the legendary Jacques Pepin, Oceania’s Executive Culinary Director. It will feature classic French dishes from the 1950’s and 1960’s, and each course will be dramatically served from gleaming silver trays and paired with expertly selected wines by Wine Spectator. 

“We are truly excited to offer this amazing experience to our worldwide Modernism Week attendees,” said Chris Mobley, Modernism Week CEO. “Education and preservation is core to the Modernism Week experience. While we offer a wide range of these experiences in Palm Springs, we have found that our attendees also desire excursions to other locations to observe how Modernism was interpreted in their region. We are particularly interested to offer these amazing opportunities for ModernismWeek@Sea participants to see how classic Mediterranean cities, known for their traditional architecture, also feature stunning examples of modern design.”

The specially curated port excursions for ModernismWeek@Sea participants will offer guided tours of hidden modernist treasures in three exciting Mediterranean cities. On October 2, the ModernismWeek@Sea group will visit the Alicante region of Spain and tour architect Ricardo Bofill’s La Muralla Roja (The Red Wall). Rising from the rocky cliffs, this stunning modernist structure is a complex of 50 apartments, built in 1973, featuring a modern take on classic Arab/Mediterranean design. 

In Monte Carlo, Monaco, modernists will journey to nearby Roquebrune-Cap Martin, where they will tour Residence E-1027, Eileen Gray’s incredible minimalist villa built on an isolated stretch of the French Riviera. Constructed between 1926 and 1929, the residence is prime example of a modern movement house, designed to interact with the natural elements and featuring an open and flexible design. They will also tour Le Corbusier’s simple holiday home, Le Cabanon. This tiny rustic residence sits on a slip of land between the sea and the railway, with views of sea and coast in both directions. For 18 years Le Corbusier spent every August here, where he designed his possibly most famous building, the chapel of Notre Dame du Haut in Ronchamp. While Le Cabanon looks simple and rustic, the structure is designed along Le Corbusier’s “modulor” principles.

On October 5, the group will visit Marseille, France where they will tour McCEM (Museum of European & Mediterranean Civilizations) before touring the adjacent Villa Mediterrane, one of several new buildings on Marseille’s waterfront. The striking structure is a cantilevered exhibition floor and an underwater conference suite that serves as an archive and research center, designed by Boeri Studio. The tour will also include Cite’ Radieuse, the first building in Le Corbusier’s influential Unité d’Habitation project, one of Le Corbusiers’s most famous works. All tours and events are subject to change.

“Oceania Cruises is proud to partner with Modernism Week to offer this exciting first-time ModernismWeek@Sea cruise experience,” said Michael von Wittenau, Regional Director of Sales and Marketing of Oceania Cruises. “Oceania is well-known for our intimate luxurious ships, more time in port and the finest cuisine at sea, but we also offer specifically tailored travel experiences to our partner groups, like Modernism Week. ModernismWeek@Sea participants will receive a rare, insiders-view of Mediterranean modernist architecture, and when they return to the ship, they will be able to enjoy Oceania’s lavish amenities, luxurious accommodations and choose to dine at our many onboard complimentary restaurants as they travel to their next destination.”

About Oceania Cruises

Featuring a fleet of intimately luxurious ships, Oceania Cruises offers an unrivaled experience renowned for the finest cuisine at sea™ and destination-rich itineraries spanning the globe. Seasoned world travelers are drawn to Oceania Cruises’ expertly crafted voyages, which call on more than 400 ports across Europe, Asia, Africa, Australia, New Zealand, the South Pacific and the Americas. Spacious and elegant accommodations aboard the 684-guest Regatta, Insignia, Nautica, and Sirena and the 1,250-guest Marina and Riviera invite guests to explore the world in unparalleled comfort and style.

About Modernism Week:

Modernism Week is a 501 (c) (3) charitable organization, providing scholarships to local Palm Springs students pursuing college educations in the fields of architecture and design; as well as giving grants to local and state organizations for their efforts to preserve modernist architecture throughout the state of California.

About David J Castello

David J Castello is the Editor-in-Chief and Chief Operating Officer for the Castello Cities Internet Network (,,, etc). His debut novel, The Diary of an Immortal (1945-1959) was published in 2016.

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