Glass House, a National Trust Historic Site in New Canaan, Connecticut.

photo by: Carol Highsmith

Historic Sites

The Glass House

  • Constructed: 1949
  • Architect: Philip Johnson
  • Location: New Canaan, Connecticut

The Glass House, built between 1949 and 1995 by famed architect Philip Johnson, is one of the nation’s greatest modern architectural landmarks. Inspired by Mies van der Rohe's Farnsworth House, the Glass House’s exterior walls are made of glass with no interior walls, a radical departure from houses of the time. The pastoral 49-acre landscape comprises fourteen structures, including the Glass House (1949), and features a permanent collection of renowned 20th century painting and sculpture, along with temporary exhibitions.

“...The only house in the world where you can see the sunset and the moonrise at the same time, standing in the same place.”

Philip Johnson
Glass House

photo by: Robin Hill

Philip Johnson was a singular tastemaker, influencing architecture, art, and design during the second-half of the twentieth century. The Glass House was a remarkable achievement when it was completed. Invisible from the road, the house sits on a promontory overlooking a pond with views towards the woods beyond. The house, which ushered the International Style into residential American architecture, is iconic because of its innovative use of materials and its seamless integration into the landscape. It began an odyssey of architectural experimentation in forms, materials, and ideas through the addition of many new "pavilions" -- Guest House, Lake Pavilion, Painting Gallery, Sculpture Gallery, Ghost House, Studio, and Visitors Pavilion -- and the methodical sculpting of the surrounding landscape. Today, the campus is an example of the successful preservation and interpretation of modern architecture, landscape, and art.

Tours of the Glass House are available in May through November and include self guided tours and expanded educational opportunities for local communities.

The Glass House is owned and operated by the National Trust for Historic Preservation.

The Glass House is also a member of the National Trust's Distinctive Destinations program.

National Trust for Historic Preservation Member Discount

$15 discount on all public tours: one adult for individual Members; two adults and all children under 18 years of age in the immediate family for all other Members. Discount does not apply to other programs and cannot be combined with other offers. National Trust members who purchase tour tickets online can receive a refund for their discount by presenting proof of membership at the Glass House Visitor Center.

To receive discount, valid membership card must be presented at time of visit. Please contact site directly to ensure that discount is available on date of planned visit and for specific tour desired.

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