Hanna House

Wright, Frank Lloyd
Palo Alto
Building Type:
Frenchman’s Road, Palo Alto, California
Current Name:
Hanna House
Current Use:
Meeting and Event Space
Current Condition:
The Hanna House is an iconic Frank Lloyd Wright building on a hillside on the Stanford University campus in Palo Alto, California, his first work in the Bay Area. Designed in 1936 in a unique hexagonal or “honeycomb” design, it was created as a residence for Stanford Professor Paul Hanna and his young family. There are no right angles anywhere in the building floor plan, encouraging flow and movement throughout the house, and is an example of the architectural and design innovation for which Mr. Wright is well known; he claimed that it was the first house to use the 120-degree angle throughout. The building is considered significant and even pivotal in the architect’s career for several reasons: he was at last able to experiment with different types of geometry and break away from traditional rectangular design, which greatly informed his subsequent building designs, like the spiraling Guggenheim Museum in New York City; the design displays Wright’s newfound interest in designing affordable homes for average families in an effort to create a more civil society; and it utilized a construction system of repeated six-sided units that fit together to form a whole, making it possible to dismantle walls and re-assemble them in different parts of the house as family needs changed. It was restored in 1999 after heavy damage sustained in the 1989 Loma Prieta earthquake. The building is located on the campus of Stanford University.


Image credits:
Julie Fry



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