For a state that has only been around since 1912, Arizona has been fortunate to have many talented architects who have contributed and defined residential neighborhoods throughout Phoenix. Among some of the most recognized architectural styles are those that were designed in the mid-century modern style and are commonly found in Arcadia, Paradise Valley, the Biltmore and South Scottsdale.
With the resurgence of the mid-century modern trend, these homes have become a coveted possession for homeowners who truly want to live in and own a piece of history. Three of the most renowned mid-century modern architects in Phoenix are Frank Lloyd Wright, Ralph Haver and Al Beadle – all with their own unique style and niche design features. Here’s a brief look at each architect and some of the features that made their style become iconic in Arizona.
Frank Lloyd Wright
One of the most renowned architects in Phoenix is Frank Lloyd Wright. With a street named after him and an architectural school in Scottsdale, his name and story are familiar to most locals. Though his architecture can be found throughout the country, only a handful of homes were built in Phoenix, where he and his wife spent their winters. Wright’s legacy extends beyond Phoenix and includes more than residential homes. Most notably is his design of the Guggenheim museum in New York. Wright’s homes were custom built and designed for an affluent clientele who could afford to purchase a one-of-a-kind home.
One of his most prominent homes in Phoenix is the David and Gladys Wright House, originally built for Wright’s son and daughter-in-law, and is located on two acres in Arcadia. The property fell into disrepair and was saved from demolition, only to become a controversial landmark in a coveted residential neighborhood, with a future that is yet to be decided. Its spectacular spiral design is considered to be one of Wright’s last residential masterpieces.
Homes developed by Ralph Haver in the mid-50’s – early-60’s were originally designed as tract homes and built by major home developers, such as Del Webb. Easy to spot, these homes have low pitched roofs, clerestory windows and enclosed patio carports designed to create an indoor-outdoor living space. Now lovingly referred to as Haverhoods, these abodes are sprinkled throughout Central Phoenix, Arcadia, South Scottsdale and within in a lesser known pocket neighborhood located at 40th street and McDowell called Town and Country. While tract homes aren’t typically a desirable term, Haver communities often command higher home prices because of their scarcity and unique characteristics that have become popular with those who like the clean lines and the simplicity of his designs.
Al Beadle’s multi-family and single-family dwellings are commonly referred to as Beadle Boxes because of their box-like rectangular shapes, built with block walls and floor to ceiling glass. The homes have a very modern look and can seem a little out of place in the desert, but it is this feature that makes them so distinct and eye catching. Custom homes built by Beadle can be found throughout the mountainside of Paradise Valley and can be identified by the addition of Superlite block used along the front façade of the homes and, of course, their long rectangular shape. One of his most prominent buildings, and his tallest, is the Executive Towers condos located on Central in Midtown. Additionally, his gated community in Arcadia called Bridgewood North and Roman Roads in Uptown are popular options when looking to buy in a sought-after neighborhood designed by an acclaimed architect.
Living and working in the Arcadia and Paradise Valley neighborhoods gives us a competitive advantage for buyers and sellers who want to live in distinctive, affluent neighborhoods. If you’re looking to buy or seller, modern or historic, we’re here to guide you through the process. Give us a call today to schedule a meeting. We’re always available.