Saturday-Thursday, February 17-22, 2024
There's no other place in America like Palm Springs with thousands of Modernist houses so perfectly preserved and updated. February is the best week to go - when the town opens up and shares its crazy fun Modernist heritage, from houses to art to furnishings to lifestyles to fashion to food. It's like the Superbowl for mid-century Modernist design!
If you're into mid-century Modernist architecture, you don't want to miss Modapalooza, USModernist's glamourous new series of wildly exciting house tours, parties, and special events. You'll get exclusive access to some of the best midcentury Modernist houses. Take a leisurely daytime tour, or visit in the late afternoon for a wonderful sunset cocktail party. Or stop by the Martini Whisperer for advice on preparing your next cocktail.
And for those who can't get enough events, do everything with the Golden Glam Ticket!
Proceeds benefit the award-winning documentation, preservation, and promotion work of USModernist, a 501C3 nonprofit educational archive, the largest in the world for midcentury modern houses, including thousand in Palm Springs. Modapalooza is generously sponsored by:
Shaken vs. Stirred: The Martini Whisperer Classes
Saturday-Monday, February 17-19
The man, the myth, the legend: Australian Phillip Jones IS the Martini Whisperer, and he's coming to Palm Springs all the way from the capitol of Australia, Canberra, to teach how to make the perfect martini. Do you prefer gin or vodka? He'll give expert guidance on both, provided by the artisanal distillery Vermont Spirits. You'll learn about glassware, mixers, and of course the critical queston of shaken versus stirred. 90-minute group classes are held at the USModernist Compound, aka the swanky 60's Hotel Skylark, 1466 North Palm Canyon, at convenient midday times Saturday to Monday.
The 1954 Kirk and Anne Douglas Estate Tour
Sunday, February 18, 10am to 4pm
Tour the iconic 1954 Kirk and Anne Douglas Estate, designed by Donald Wexler. Extensively and thoughtfully restored starting in 2016, the immaculate house is a tribute to the career and family of actor Kirk Douglas. The house is steeped in Hollywood lore and was the site of countless parties and dinners. According to the Desert Sun Katharine Hepburn and Spencer Tracy carried on an affair there. Frank Sinatra occasionally cooked meals in the kitchen. When the house behind it belonged to Dinah Shore, the families installed a gate between their properties so they and their guests could travel back and forth and play tennis. In back, beyond the gorgeous pool, is a pavilion with posters from all the Kirk Douglas movies. The former Dinah Shore Estate is now owned by Leonardo DiCaprio. Tours run every 40 minutes, 10am to 4pm.
The 1968 Palevsky House Tour
Monday, February 19, 10am to 4pm
Explore the charming neighborhood of Little Tuscany as you get an exclusive visit to the Max Palevsky House, designed by Craig Ellwood. Palevsky was a Russian-born billionaire who co-founded the computer company Scientific Data Systems in 1961. He and Ellwood belonged to the same tennis club, and the two became friends. Palevsky sold the company and invested in Intel. Smart move! Ellwood designed the steel-frame Palevsky House around the owner's large art collection, including an original Calder sculpture that's still there. Palevsky took Ellwood to Morocco on a design scouting trip, and Ellwood translated what he saw into a Modernist steel and glass marvel on a truly beautiful site. Tours run every 40 minutes, 10am to 4pm.
The 1968 Palevsky House Sunset Cocktail Party
Monday, February 19, 430pm-630pm
What could be better than spending a beautiful sunset sipping a drink and a carefully created appetizer poolside at one of the most important houses in Palm Springs, the rarely open Max Palevsky House, designed by Craig Ellwood? You'll meet production designer Erin Ellwood, Craig Ellwood's daughter, who has worked on projects for Sony, Target, Disney, Mercedes, both Coke and Pepsi, Levi Strauss, AMEX, and FedEx. She's working on a documentary about Craig Ellwood's remarkable life and career; you'll also meet George Smart, host of USModernist Radio, Michela O'Connor-Abrams, former CEO of DWELL and USModernist's Chief Advancement Officer, and other special guests.
The 1954 Kirk and Anne Douglas Estate Sunset Cocktail Party
Wednesday, February 21, 5-7pm
USModernist's annual swanky benefit cocktail party at the Kirk and Anne Douglas Estate, designed by Donald Wexler. For this, you'll want to get dressed up a little.Tour this iconic house, swing to the music of the Purple Room's Rose Mallett, and enjoy the featured house drink, Spartacus, poolside with delicious appetizers. You'll meet special guest Jake Gorst, one of the most prolific, highly-regarded architecture documentary directors who produced films on Albert Frey, E. Stewart Williams, Donald Wexler, Andrew Geller, and more including Desert Utopia, Modern Ruin,Visions of Utopia, and his new film which will debut at Modernism Week, New England Modernism. You'll also meet George Smart, host of USModernist Radio and CEO of USModernist, Michela O'Connor-Abrams, former CEO of DWELL and currently USModernist's Chief Advancement Officer, and other special guests.
The Christopher Kennedy Forever Home Tour
Thursday, February 22, 10am-4pm
Combining Jet-Set nostalgia with California Modernism, Christopher Kennedy is one of Palm Springs leading interior designers whose work and products have been featured in publications around the globe. This prolific designer has a growing product brand that exemplifies the modern California lifestyle. Christopher’s collections include upholstery and casegoods, an artwork collection for Wendover Art Group, candles, and bedding. Christopher is the author of two design books: 2015’s California Modern and 2017’s Making Midcentury Modern. He's famous for completely transforming Palm Springs houses, bringing them back to their original midcentury glory with modern and sustainable materials. Born in San Francisco and raised on California’s Central Coast, Christopher brings a synthesis of big-city style and relaxed resort living to his work. Tours run every 40 minutes, 10am to 4pm.
The Christopher Kennedy Forever Home Sunset Cocktail Party
Thursday, February 22, 430-6pm
What's better than visiting an amazing restoration of a midcentury Modernist house in Palm Springs? It's meeting the crown prince of California Modernism, Christopher Kennedy, and sip cocktails by his pool, or stroll into the well-appointed kitchen, along with yummy appetizers and jazz entertainment from the John Armato Trio featuring Lucy Wijnands. You'll meet interior designer Christopher Kennedy, his partner David Clark, and get an up close and personal experience of their landmark style as the sun sets over Palm Springs. You'll also meet George Smart, host of USModernist Radio and CEO of USModernist,Michela O'Connor-Abrams, former CEO of DWELL and currently USModernist's Chief Advancement Officer, and other special guests.
The Golden Glam VIP Ticket
Want to saunter (or perhaps sashay, amble, or stroll) on in like a glamourous VIP, night after night?
The Golden Glam VIP Ticket gets you VIP early admission to the Palevsky House Party on Monday, an exclusive Tuesday 12n Martini Whisperer class at the USModernist Compound, VIP early admission to the Kirk and Anne Douglas House Party on Wednesday, and early VIP admission to the Christopher Kennedy Forever Home Party on Thursday. Only 20 tickets available. Everyone gets a special VIP gift bag!
Terms and Conditions
By purchasing tickets, you are agreeing to our Terms and Conditions.
USModernist is not affiliated with Modernism Week. We like them a lot, but as the saying goes, they are just not that into us.
There are no service or processing fees to buy Modapalooza tickets.
There are no physical or digital tickets; your name will be on a list at registration.
You should get a receipt from Modernist Archive Inc. at PayPal (our credit card processor) within an hour for the entire amount of your purchase.
You do not need a PayPal account to buy tickets on your credit card.
Once payment is made, there are no refunds for any reason except for event cancellation. Events occur rain or shine.
Architects can get self-reported CEU hours if arranged in advance with the AIA.
Adults 21 and over only. There is no smoking, tobacco products, or outside alcohol/drinks/food of any kind at any event location.
Proceeds benefit the award-winning documentation, preservation, and promotion work of USModernist, a 501C3 nonprofit educational archive, the largest in the world for midcentury modern houses, including thousands in Palm Springs.