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Opening Date Announced for Frank Lloyd Wright house

The Bachman-Wilson House on the grounds of Crystal Bridges Museum on Friday

The Bachman-Wilson House on the grounds of Crystal Bridges Museum on Friday

Big news here at Crystal Bridges today!

The Bachman-Wilson House on the grounds of Crystal Bridges Museum on Friday, August 14, 2015, in Bentonville, Arkansas.  The house was originally designed by Frank Lloyd Wright and built in Millstone, New Jersey, in 1954 for Abraham Wilson and his first wife, Gloria Bachman Photo by Beth Hall

Frank Lloyd Wright’s Bachman-Wilson House, Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art. Photo by Beth Hall.

We are thrilled to announce that Frank Lloyd Wright’s Bachman-Wilson house on Crystal Bridges’ grounds will open to the public at Crystal Bridges on 11-11-15: the fourth anniversary of the Museum’s opening. We will begin taking reservations for tickets on November 2.  Tickets may be reserved online or by calling 479-657-2335.

Museum Members will have an opportunity to preview the house beginning October 10, and can start reserving their tickets today by calling the Member Priority Line (479) 418-5728, or in person at the Museum. If you’re not a Member, you can join here.

Frank Lloyd Wright's Bachman-Wilson House, Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art. Photo by Beth Hall.

Frank Lloyd Wright’s Bachman-Wilson House, Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art.

If you would like to read more about the history of the house and the story of its deconstruction, move, and reconstruction, click here for the press release about the opening and links to other resources.

We are opening the Frank Lloyd Wright house in two tiers for a couple of reasons:  first, of course, it gives our more-than 9,000 Members an opportunity to view the house before it opens to the public; also, this preview period allows us to fine-tune our handling of traffic through the space, and gives our volunteer Tour Guides time to beta-test their tours.

We are expecting a high volume of visitors to the house when it opens to the public, so it’s important that we manage traffic as efficiently as possible, while still providing a quality experience for our guests and minimizing wear and tear on the structure itself. The house is not very big:  as I mentioned in an earlier post, the entire first-floor footprint of the Bachman-Wilson house fits comfortably inside the Museum’s Great Hall, and the hallways are quite narrow by today’s standards. For these reasons, we are currently estimating a capacity of only about ten visitors in the house at a time.

Here’s some skinny on what to expect:

Bachman-Wilson House 34

Frank Lloyd Wright’s Bachman-Wilson House, Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art. Photo by Beth Hall.

If you choose a self-guided tour, you will reserve an entry time, just as you would do for a high-volume temporary exhibition at the Museum. You will pick up a self-guided tour brochure and it will lead you through various highlights of the history and architecture of the house.

If you choose a guided tour, you will meet your Tour Guide in the lower lobby of the Museum and he or she will take you on an hour-long tour that will touch on several highlights of the house and grounds.

Once the house opens to the public on 11/11/15, guided tours will be available four times a day, five days a week (there will be no tours on Friday, or on Tuesday when the Museum is closed to the public).  The house will be open for self-guided tours during all Museum public hours:

Monday: 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Wednesday, Thursday, & Friday: 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Saturday & Sunday: 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Tuesday: Closed

The Bachman-Wilson House on the grounds of Crystal Bridges Museum on Friday, August 14, 2015, in Bentonville, Arkansas.  The house was originally designed by Frank Lloyd Wright and built in Millstone, New Jersey, in 1954 for Abraham Wilson and his first wife, Gloria Bachman Photo by Beth Hall

The Bachman-Wilson House on the grounds of Crystal Bridges Museum on Friday. Photo by Beth Hall

Please note that there is no photography permitted inside the Frank Lloyd Wright house. This is due partially to the limited space (we don’t want guests backing over a piece of furniture or into a window while trying to frame a photo), and partly to prevent traffic back-ups, as a lot of people will be moving through the house in the first weeks of opening.  Post cards with images of the house and its interior will be available for purchase in the Museum Store if you’d like to take home pictures. Exterior photos are permitted.

We are looking forward to welcoming our Members and guests to Frank Lloyd Wright’s Bachman-Wilson house at Crystal Bridges!

Linda DeBerry
Senior Copy Editor / Publications Manager

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