Explore Buffalo, New York, a Master Class in Architecture

Frank Lloyd Wright, Louis Sullivan, H.H. Richardson, and Frederick Law Olmsted: When you think of the greats of American architecture, these names come to mind. Buffalo has repurposed and restored masterworks by all of them, and is a textbook example of how preservation help to build stronger communities. Make an architectural getaway to Buffalo, the city the New York Times called “a textbook for a course in modern American buildings.”

  1. Couple sits on bench outside Frank Lloyd Wright's Martin House in Buffalo, New York.

    Photo By: Rhea Anna

    Frank Lloyd Wright's Darwin Martin House

    This National Historic Landmark that Frank Lloyd Wright once called a “well-nigh perfect composition” exemplifies the architect's famous Prairie style. Constructed between 1903 and 1905 for Darwin and Isabelle Martin, the one-acre campus is wrapping up a 25-year restoration in summer 2019.

  2. Frank Lloyd Wright's Graycliff aerial shot in Buffalo, New York.

    Photo By: Buffalo Aerial Pictures

    Frank Lloyd Wright's Graycliff

    Built between 1926 and 1931 by Frank Lloyd Wright, Graycliff served as the Martin summer home. The complex of three buildings set amidst 8.5 acres of rolling lawns and gardens along Lake Erie finished a 20-year restoration in fall 2018.

  3. Tudor-style sitting room at the Roycroft Inn in Buffalo, New York, with fireplace, chairs, table, and comfortable sofas.

    Photo By: Roycroft Inn

    Roycroft Inn and Campus

    A visit to the National Historic Landmark Roycroft Inn and Campus promises the rediscovery of the practices of Elbert Hubbard and the Roycrofters during the early 1900s Arts & Crafts Movement. Regularly scheduled, guided outdoor/indoor walking tours are available, along with exquisite accommodations at the inn.

  4. Kayakers on the water in front of a grain elevator at Silo City in Buffalo, New York.

    Photo By: Brad Hahn

    Silo City

    The grain elevators at Silo City, one of the world’s largest grain elevator collections, are a living reminder of the Queen City’s industrial heritage. These silos have been repurposed as a gathering place for festivals, literary readings, concerts, and more.

  5. Guaranty Building facade.

    Photo By: Drew Brown

    Guaranty Building

    From architects Louis Sullivan and Dankmar Adler, the Guaranty Building was built between 1895 and 1896. One of Sullivan’s most mature works, the skyscraper’s terra cotta facade and clean vertical lines are nothing short of breathtaking.

  6. Exterior of Buffalo City Hall with tour group.

    Photo By: Eric Frick

    Buffalo City Hall

    Buffalo City Hall was built between 1929 and 1931 by architects George J. Dietel and John J. Wade. This Art Deco masterpiece includes outstanding murals that depict the city’s history and industry. Take the elevator to the 25th floor and walk up three flights of stairs to reach the observation tower, which gives a spectacular view of the city.

  7. Exterior of Kleinhan's Music Hall, pond, trees, and castle in Buffalo, New York.

    Photo By: K.C. Kratt

    Kleinhans Music Hall

    Designed by architects Eliel & Eero Saarinen between 1938 and 1940, the home of the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra is internationally acclaimed for its acoustic excellence, gracefully curved lines, and detailed interior spaces.

  8. Exterior of Richardson Campus building in Buffalo, New York.

    Photo By: Ed Healy

    Richardson Olmsted Campus/Hotel Henry

    Designed by Henry Hobson Richardson, the Richardson Olmsted Campus was completed in the late 1800s as the Buffalo State Asylum for the Insane. The buildings and grounds deteriorated until 2006 when the Richardson Center Corporation saved the buildings and brought the campus back to life. One campus gem is the 88-room boutique Hotel Henry, which makes efficient use of Richardson’s original design.

This story was created in collaboration with Visit Buffalo Niagara.

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