While the Park Inn of Mason City, Iowa, the only Frank Lloyd Wright-designed hotel still standing, likely can’t be bought, especially after its lengthy and expensive restoration, a unique motel designed by one the the architect’s apprentices offers fans the chance to greet guests at a Wright-influenced structure just six miles from Taliesin.
Currently asking $664,900, The Usonian Inn, an 11-room motor lodge built in Spring Green, Wisconsin, in 1952, was designed by Taliesin apprentice Jesse C. Caraway in 1948. Originally called the Rest Haven Motel, the V-shaped building, commissioned by Mr. and Mrs. John Michels, was one of the first to use aluminum siding. Reynolds Metals provided the material free of charge as part of a promotional tool, and the building was at one time considered for a feature in Life magazine, but ultimately wasn't chosen. The building has been cited for its Usonian-style design, especially the cantilevered overhangs.
Currently listed on the State and National Register of Historic places, the Usonian Inn has undergone a series of renovations, including landscaping in 1992 and extensive upgrades by current owners Carolina and Theo Dursina, who added sustainable fixtures and double-glazed windows and replaced the roof. On and off the market for the last few years, it’s been a tough sell, but agent Jim Mohrbacher believes the location near Spring Green, Player’s Theater, and the Wisconsin River, as well as Taliesin, offer a unique opportunity to pick up a turn-key motel and owner’s residence with some historical significance.