Architecture is an important part of travel. It is the postcard out your window that lets you know you are here. You’ve arrived. You know you are in Russia when surrounded by onion domes, New York when you can only see skyscrapers and Seattle when you can’t see anything because there is rain in your eyes. That’s the role of architecture, and to a lesser extent, weather.
Here is a group of ten fantastic, incredible and weirdly, wonderful buildings in the U.S. that are worthy of a visit if you are on vacation or just happen to be in the neighborhood. More than one of them make me think of Star Wars.
1. Let’s start with my favorite which is found in Newark, Ohio, the picnic basket aka Longaberger corporate headquarters. This fanciful creation was the dream of the Longaberger Basket company’s founder Dave Longaberger. It is said, most people (employees, bankers, architects and builders) didn’t take him seriously at the time. I wonder why.
2. This was designed by Dimensional Innovations and it camouflages the parking garage. The fantastic book titles were suggested by Kansas City residents. See the building and read the classics! Photo courtesy of: ChicagoEye.
3. This award winning home in Lubbock, Texas took 28 years to complete and is designed by Robert Bruno. It doesn’t really say “come in and take your shoes off,” though, does it? But it is engaging and I do want a peek inside.
5. Kettle House, in Galveston, Texas – I wonder, when the wind comes sweeping ‘cross the plains, does it whistle?
6. Shoe House in Hallam, Pennsylvania was not built by an old woman but was built by a shoe millionaire and it is a real house. No word on the number of children, if any, that reside in it.
7. This chapel falls into the wonderful category. Its stark beauty could soothe a soldier’s soul. It is located in the US Air Force Academy in Colorado.
8. This awesome futuristic building is the corporate headquarters for Oakley. What do you think? I love the description, “Oakley’s design bunker is where inventions are conceived, developed, perfected and manufactured. In addition to the hidden catacombs of research labs and proving grounds, the architectural design of Oakley President Colin Baden includes an NBA basketball court, a 400-seat amphitheater, and absolutely no adult supervision.” I wonder if they’re hiring.
10. My final choice from all the weirdness of American architecture is Coit Tower in the beautiful city of San Francisco. They say this San Francisco icon isn’t a fire hose nozzle, but those of us who know the story think otherwise. The story is told a need-to-know basis. Beautiful photo courtesy of http2007.
So what did you think? Pretty cool, right? If you have any weirdly, wonderful buildings that you think we should add to our travel itineraries, let us know. Just leave a suggestion in the comments.