Modernism Week Announces Fall Preview 2019 Schedule!

Modernism Week’s 2019 Fall Preview will take place October 17-20 at various locations in the Coachella Valley. A full schedule of events featuring more than 50 events may be viewed online at starting July 25 and tickets will go on sale August 1, 2019 at 12 noon PST. The weekend’s events provide attendees with the opportunity to celebrate the midcentury modern architecture, lifestyle, and design and participate in the events and activities that are new and unique to this festival, returning favorites, and events that will also be offered during the annual 11-day festival in February 2020. Highlights of the October Fall Preview include a wide range of events including walking tours, Premier Double Decker Architectural Bus tours and Charles Phoenix-led bus tours, a tour showcasing homes across a range of neighborhoods, the Modernism Show and Sale-Fall Edition, educational events, and evening cocktail parties.

“Fall Preview is a wonderful opportunity for our attendees to experience new and exciting events offered exclusively during the four-day festival and also get a taste of what our 11-day festival in February will offer,” said Lisa Vossler Smith, Executive Director of Modernism Week. “Fall Preview offers an exciting array of entertaining tours, lectures, iconic architecture and parties. We invite all visitors to Palm Springs and local residents alike to come see what Modernism Week is all about.”

This year’s Fall Preview will feature several new events. On Thursday, participants will be able to Celebrate William Cody, Desert Bel-Air Estates and Indian Wells Historic Landmark in a new, inspiring, and entertaining three-part event. It celebrates the recent Landmark Designation by Indian Wells Historic Preservation Foundation of The Fillmore Crank-Beverly Garland House, 1961, designed by iconic architect, William F. Cody, AIA. Fastidiously restored and researched during 2017-19 by previous homeowners, the structure was discovered to be part of Desert Bel-Air Estates. The afternoon will feature a ‘Conversations about Cody’ photo and panel presentation, a self-driving site visit to the historic Crank-Garland house and an afternoon reception at Martyn Lawrence Bullard-designed Sands Hotel & Spa and Pink Cabana. City officials and special guests will be on hand to welcome guests. Tickets for the three events are $70.

On Friday and Saturday from 3-5 pm, a Midcentury Mixology demonstration will be presented at Mr. Lyon’s Steakhouse in Palm Springs. Participants will interact with legendary mixologists to learn how to make iconic, classic cocktails of the midcentury era while making their own for sampling. (Includes 3 drinks). Tickets are $62. 

A Midcentury Brunch will be offered at the acclaimed Essense restaurant at the newly redesigned Two Bunch Palms Resort & Spa in Desert Hot Springs. The menu will have a selection of five different entrees and includes a choice of a Mimosa, glass of Rosé, or one of the signature healing juices. The brunch will be on Sunday from 10 am – 2 pm. Tickets are $36 with start times 10 am – 2 pm on the half hour.

Grace Home and Dunn-Edwards have teamed up to offer Bold & Beautiful: Designing with Color in the Desert on Sunday from 11:30 am to 1 pm at Grace Home Furnishings, located at 1001 N. Palm Canyon Drive. Michael Ostrow, Interior Designer/Grace Home Furnishings, Sara McLean, Color Expert & Stylist for Dunn-Edwards, and Katy Carrier, Editor of Modern Luxury Palm Springs will present an engaging presentation and discussion on using color in the variety of design styles present in the Palm Springs area. Mimosas and light bites will be served. Tickets are $30.

Midcentury modern architect Hugh Kaptur will be honored with four events during Fall Preview, all organized by the Palm Springs Preservation Foundation, one of the Founding Partners of Modernism Week. 

On Friday, Oct. 18, the Palm Springs Preservation Foundation will present “Recognizing Modernist Architect Hugh Michael Kaptur” at Kaptur Plaza from 10 am to 12 pm. This free event will give an overview of Kaptur’s work in Palm Springs, with special emphasis on the newly protected complex Kaptur designed in 1974.  Kaptur will be present. Modernism Week Fall Preview attendees will have the rare opportunity to tour a newly refurbished Kaptur structure – Palm Springs Fire Station #4 in South Palm Springs. Free tours of the renovated structure and its new addition on Saturday will start at 10 am. Also on Saturday will be tours of the John & Bessie Macy Residence, designed by Kaptur in 1961 as a speculative venture utilizing wood post and beam construction. Tours will run from 12-3 pm and tickets are $30. On Sunday, Kaptur will be the focus of a talk called “The Architecture of Hugh Michael Kaptur,” taking place on Sunday from 11 am to 12 pm at the Palm Springs Cultural Center (formerly Camelot Theatres). Palm Springs Preservation Foundation board member Steven Keylon will give this free presentation.

A hallmark of Modernism Week events are the inspirational and educational tours of neighborhoods and homes. Tours this year include:

Fall Preview guests will have a rare opportunity to tour the iconic desert hideaway Hotel Lautner, designed by legendary architect John Lautner in 1947. Once known as the Desert Hot Springs, the property was reimagined as the award-winning Hotel Lautner in 2011.  Tours are Sunday from 2-4 pm and tickets are $60.

The Modernism Week Featured Home: Axiom Desert House debuted in February and by popular demand will return for Fall Preview. This stunning home by Turkel Design is a midcentury-inspired, systems-built jewel that is a testament to the modern prefab, celebrating desert design that is simple, elegant, and replicable. It features products by Ferguson Bath, Kitchen & Lighting Gallery, Corian Design, and Dunn-Edwards Paint. Tours are offered Friday, Saturday, and Sunday from 9 am – 1 pm.  Tickets are $30.

The Essentials of Palm Springs ONE-PS Home Tour will be offered on Saturday from 10 am – 2:30 pm. This sixth annual tour showcases significant homes in a variety of Palm Springs neighborhoods and is organized by ONE-PS. Tickets are $65.

Returning tours include the popular Cul-de-Sac Experience and Give Me Shelter home tours. The “Cul-de-Sac Experience” at Canyon View Estates #4 will take place on Sunday, October 22 at 10 am. This tour combines vintage automobiles artfully displayed on the driveways of six homes designed by William Krisel in a quaint cul-de-sac in South Palm Springs. Participants have access to all of the homes on the tour, and tickets are $75. The “Give Me Shelter” tour on Saturday, October 20 features a collection of modernist homes that blend a perfect symbiotic relationship between indoor and outdoor sheltered spaces. This self-guided tour takes participants through six iconic Palm Springs neighborhoods and inside homes seldom open to the public. The tour will conclude with a reception at the Palm Springs Animal Shelter –a unique midcentury heritage building design by architects Swatt & Meirs. The reception, exclusively for tour participants from 4 to 6 p.m., will feature a signature cocktail and tasty hors d’oeuvres. Tickets are $75.

What Modernism Week experience in Palm Springs would be complete without ending the day with a spectacular cocktail party at an architecturally significant home? This year, Fall Preview offers:

On Friday, October 18, Fall Preview attendees are invited to attend the festive Opening Night Party and Early Buying Preview Reception at the Modernism Show & Sale at the Palm Springs Convention Center. The popular Show and Sale, which offers important 20th and 21st century objects, furniture, art and textiles from more than 40+ premier national and international decorative and fine arts dealers, continues on Saturday and Sunday. The Friday night party is the prime opportunity for shopping direct from dealers before the show opens to the public on Saturday. Tickets are available in advance for $60 at or at the door for $75 and include daily re-entry to the show. Weekend show hours are Saturday from 10 a.m. – 6 p.m. and Sunday from 10 a.m. – 4 p.m.

On Saturday, the American Legion will host the Past Meets Present Party from 2-6 pm. Designed in 1948 by John Porter Clark and Albert Frey, this Class 1 Historic building has never before been open to the public for a Modernism Week event. Guests will enjoy cool cocktails and delicious appetizers as they dance away the afternoon to the sounds of Freddy Fender, Jr. and tour the Legion’s newly refurbished broadcast booth and radio station that at one time showcased popular national radio broadcasts. Tickets are $30.

Nod to Mod, a nightly evening experience produced by PS Underground, will showcase its new location during an upbeat retro immersive five course culinary and dining experience with live music and entertainment, limited to only 50 people per night from Thursday through Sunday from 7 – 10 pm. Admission, featuring a multi-course meal and open bar, is $195.

The Palm Springs Casual Concours classic car show returns this year at the Desert Princess Country Club in Cathedral City on Saturday from 10 am – 3 pm. This popular event will feature approximately 100 cars set in a relaxed resort environment with a dramatic backdrop of the mountains and palm trees. The show is organized by Great Autos of Yesteryear and proceeds from the event will benefit Sanctuary Palm Springs. Admission is $15.

Atomic Ranch returns this year with an exciting new educational program called Smart Remodeling + How to be a Good Modernist Neighbor at the Canyon Estates Clubhouse on Saturday from 2-4:30 pm. In this engaging talk, Atomic Ranch and their esteemed panel of experts will discus how to make midcentury modern renovation dreams a reality at the Charles DuBois-designed Canyon Estates. Participants will learn how to renovate a midcentury home the smart way and hear what happens when, like in this community, like-minded modernists learn from each other and improve their neighborhoods together. After, the talk, participants will enjoy cocktails and light bites, and be able to tour two homes. Tickets are $60.

Architectural enthusiast Gary Johns of the Palm Springs Preservation Foundation will reprise his popular Lost, Saved & Endangered presentation at the Palm Springs Woman’s Club on Sunday, October 21 at 9 am. This engaging and informative discussion details the many architectural treasures in the Coachella Valley that have been preserved, destroyed or that face an uncertain future. Admission to this popular presentation is free but participants must RSVP in advance.

The Best of Mod with a Twist returns to the Fall Preview this year with an encore performance of their audience favorites. These witty and insightful 10-minute presentations explore life and culture in Midcentury America, often with a humorous and wry alternative analysis of what was going on in the country in that period. Nightly events are $55 per person and take place at the Desert Star from 5:30-7 pm.

Modernism Week’s signature Premier Double Decker Architectural Bus Tour provides guests with a 2.5-hour overview of significant civic and commercial buildings, as well as residential properties. Daily tours depart from the parking lot of H3K Home, located at 501 South Palm Canyon Drive in downtown Palm Springs, where Modernism Week will have a box office where attendees may purchase tickets to Fall Preview events.  Legendary performer Charles Phoenix will conduct a version of this tour each day at 8:30 a.m. Tickets are $95 for the standard tour and $110 for the Charles Phoenix tour.

Other popular returning tours include the Sunnylands Historic House Tour, Frey House II tour and Frank Sinatra’s “Twin Palms” Estate Tour. 

Following the Fall Preview, Modernism Week’s signature 11-day festival celebrating its 15th year will take place February 13-23, 2020. Tickets will be available November 1 at 12 p.m. PST. To receive updates, visit

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.

Modernism Week’s Mission:
The mission of Modernism Week is to celebrate and foster appreciation of midcentury architecture and design, as well as contemporary thinking in these fields, by encouraging education, preservation and sustainable modern living as represented in Palm Springs.

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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