Friday, July 2, 2010

More than a surprise visual treat…

LSWNY’s summer day tour to FLW’s legacy in Buffalo

Life is a box of chocolates, you never know what you’re gonna get! This is one of my favorite quotes and recently I got my almond chocolate, my favorite kind at Wright’s Fontana Boat house. Almost two weeks ago, I was a part of FLW’s legacy tour in Buffalo with a group of 40 people. We were supposed to make a short photo stop at this Boathouse, but to our surprise we were able to get an inside- out tour of this place. It was one of those lucky days!

It’s hard to express how this building was and how much more I am a fan of FLW. I would like to say that I am not only his fan but also an air- conditioner (Please it’s a joke, Don’t take it seriously and think what an immigrant would know of the nuances of English language). A building, which was conceived over 100 years ago in 1905, is still applicable in today’s context. It’s hard to imagine how much forward looking he was, to design a building, which is timeless and is still integrated in this millennium. FLW considered this building to be one of his best designs, which he originally designed for University of Wisconsin’s rowing club. Almost after 95 years later, the rights of FLW’s design were bought and now this boathouse is home to West Side Rowing Club. To get more details you can visit
This boathouse sat like a jewel on the river with its long free flowing cantilevered slab roof, leaded glass ribbon windows (FLW’s trade mark) and straight lines. The interiors too were also very typical of Wright with wooden floors, intricate details and geometrically designed light fixtures. What a treat this surprise stop was!

The other stops on the tour included Darwin Martin complex, Roycroft inn in East Aurora and Graycliff. I am unstoppable when I start writing about Wright, but I was a part of this tour last year as well, so if you are interested to learn more about these places, you can see my thoughts in our blog archives of June 2009.
Overall it was a great tour and on behalf of Landmark Society, I would like to thank all or tourgoers! We look forward to having you on some more of our tours. To learn more about our tours, you can visit

Posted by Nimisha Thakur, ex- preservation associate