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Robie House

Witness the simple beauty of Frank Lloyd Wright’s designs in a Chicago house that epitomizes a popular American style of architecture.  

Frank Lloyd Wright’s famous “Prairie School” of architecture is best expressed in Chicago’s elegantly designed Robie House. This eye-catching landmark, located in the university district of Hyde Park, is one of the design highlights of a city famed for its diverse and cutting-edge buildings. Take a tour of this historic home to better appreciate Lloyd Wright’s aesthetic and for an insight into a uniquely American style of home. 

Robie House was created between 1909 and 1910 for businessman Frederick C. Robie, who was forced to sell it only a year after it was completed. Wander the halls of a building that, from the 1920s onward, had many different functions, including classrooms, a refectory, a dormitory and office space. It became a National Historic Landmark in the early 1960s. 

In the early 1900s, many architects were designing buildings in European styles such as Italianate or Gothic Revival. Lloyd Wright rebelled against these prevailing ideas as he considered them to be unfit for the flat plains of the U.S. Discover the result of his subsequent innovation, the Prairie School, known for its clean horizontal lines and natural materials. The exterior of Robie House demonstrates this beautifully, with cascading, flat levels of red brick and overhanging ceilings to protect the privacy of the residents. 

Head inside to see how the interior is spacious and free-flowing. The groundbreaking design of Robie House has led to its recognition as one of the most important works of architecture in the U.S. 

Large windows, lined with lead framing and with sections of colored glass, allow lots of light to stream into the building. Note that the interior is characterized by natural materials, too, with wooden ceilings and red-brick pillars punctuating the halls. 

All of the furniture and lighting inside was also designed by Lloyd Wright. 

Robie House is open for tours between Thursday and Monday, with some closures on public holidays. Drive here from central Chicago in about 15 minutes and use the limited street parking near the house. Alternatively, take a bus or metro train to one of the nearby stops.


Guide to Exploring around Robie House


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Best Lodging Options Near Robie House

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Hyatt Place Chicago-South/University Medical Center $135
Hyatt Place Chicago-South/University Medical Center

Hyatt Place Chicago-South/University Medical Center

5225 S Harper Ave, Chicago, IL
     
    3.0 out of 5.0 Stars

    Located in Hyde Park, this hotel is within 1 mi (2 km) of Robie House, Chicago Museum of Science and Industry, and University of Chicago. State Street is 2.2 mi (3.5 km) away. Chicago 51st-53rd Street Station (Hyde Park) is only a 3-minute walk and Chicago 55th-56th-57th Street Station is 11 minutes.

    Sophy Hyde Park $152
    Sophy Hyde Park

    Sophy Hyde Park

    1411 East 53rd Street, Chicago, IL
       
      4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

      Located in Hyde Park, this hotel is within 1 mi (2 km) of Robie House, Chicago Museum of Science and Industry, and University of Chicago. State Street is 2 mi (3.2 km) away. Chicago 51st-53rd Street Station (Hyde Park) is only a 5-minute walk and Chicago 55th-56th-57th Street Station is 12 minutes.

      Chicago Lake Shore Hotel $95
      Chicago Lake Shore Hotel

      Chicago Lake Shore Hotel

      4900 S Lake Shore Dr, Chicago, IL
         
        3.0 out of 5.0 Stars

        Located in Kenwood, this hotel is 1.2 mi (2 km) from Chicago Museum of Science and Industry and within 3 mi (5 km) of University of Chicago and University of Chicago Medicine. Soldier Field and John G. Shedd Aquarium are also within 6 mi (10 km). Chicago 51st-53rd Street Station (Hyde Park) is 11 minutes by foot and Chicago 47th Street Station (Kenwood) is 11 minutes.

        La Quinta Inn & Suites by Wyndham Chicago - Lake Shore
        La Quinta Inn & Suites by Wyndham Chicago - Lake Shore

        La Quinta Inn & Suites by Wyndham Chicago - Lake Shore

        4900A S. Lake Shore Drive, Chicago, IL
           
          3.0 out of 5.0 Stars

          Located in Kenwood, this hotel is 1.2 mi (1.9 km) from Chicago Museum of Science and Industry and within 3 mi (5 km) of University of Chicago and University of Chicago Medicine. Soldier Field and John G. Shedd Aquarium are also within 6 mi (10 km). Chicago 51st-53rd Street Station (Hyde Park) is 11 minutes by foot and Chicago 47th Street Station (Kenwood) is 12 minutes.

          Welcome Inn Manor
          Welcome Inn Manor

          Welcome Inn Manor

          4563 S Michigan Ave, Chicago, IL
             
            3.5 out of 5.0 Stars

            Located in Bronzeville, this historic bed & breakfast is within 3 mi (5 km) of State Street, University of Chicago, and Guaranteed Rate Field. Illinois Institute of Technology is 1.9 mi (3.1 km) away. 47th Station (Green Line) is 8 minutes by foot and 47th Station (Red Line) is 12 minutes.

            Villa Dubois Guest House $60
            Villa Dubois Guest House

            Villa Dubois Guest House

            3722 S Calumet Ave, Chicago, IL
               
              2.0 out of 5.0 Stars

              Located in Bronzeville, this guesthouse is within 2 mi (3 km) of State Street, McCormick Place, and Illinois Institute of Technology. Soldier Field and Guaranteed Rate Field are also within 3 mi (5 km). Indiana Station is 10 minutes by foot and 35th-Bronzeville-IIT Station is 13 minutes.

              Amber Inn $90
              Amber Inn

              Amber Inn

              3901 S. Michigan Ave., Chicago, IL
                 
                2.0 out of 5.0 Stars

                Located in Bronzeville, this hotel is within 2 mi (3 km) of State Street, Guaranteed Rate Field, and Illinois Institute of Technology. McCormick Place and Wintrust Arena are also within 3 mi (5 km). Indiana Station is only a 4-minute walk and 43rd Station is 14 minutes.

                Mccormick Place Guest House $50
                Mccormick Place Guest House

                Mccormick Place Guest House

                3643 South Indiana Avenue, Chicago, IL
                   
                  3.0 out of 5.0 Stars

                  Located in Bronzeville, this guesthouse is 1.9 mi (3.1 km) from McCormick Place and 2.9 mi (4.7 km) from Soldier Field. Grant Park and Millennium Park are also within 6 mi (10 km). 35th-Bronzeville-IIT Station is 8 minutes by foot and Indiana Station is 9 minutes.