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Old March 6th, 2013, 10:39 AM
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Default Palm Springs Modernism Week Shatters Attendance Record!

Palm Springs Modernism Week Shatters Attendance Record - More Than 40,000 Mid-Century Design Lovers Converge on the Coachella Valley

Palm Springs, CA (March 6, 2013) – Officials for Palm Springs Modernism Week, which took place from February 14-24, 2013, say the event has surpassed previous attendance levels, with more than 40,000 people descending on the Coachella Valley during that 11-day period. Palm Springs Modernism Week, a non-profit organization that produces the annual festival, is a celebration of mid-century modern design, architecture and culture, and features more than 100 events including home tours, films, lectures, fashion, and sophisticated receptions at locations rarely-seen by the public. As the only such event in the country when it was launched in 2006, Palm Springs Modernism Week has helped fuel a robust national interest in the preservation and appreciation of modernism, and has grown quickly over the years, with estimated attendance reaching 35,000 last year. Palm Springs Modernism Week supports local and state preservation organizations in their efforts to preserve modernist architecture throughout the state of California. It also awards annual scholarships to high school students who have chosen career paths in architecture and design.

“We are absolutely thrilled about this year’s attendance, and it has become quite clear that Modernism Week is one of the hottest tickets in town each season,” says Jacques Caussin, Board Chairman of Modernism Week. “Uptown Design District stores like Just Modern and Raymond | Lawrence and nearby restaurants like Cheeky’s, Birba, Trio, and Jake’s reported some of their best numbers of the season, as there were many returning attendees and an impressive number of new visitors in town. While hotel occupancy statistics will not be available until the end of the month, early reports from Modernism Week's host hotel, the Palm Springs Hilton, along with sponsor hotels The Saguaro and Ace and other participants, indicate a significant increase over the previous year.”

“LuLu California Bistro was extremely busy, providing energy in the form of food and drinks for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and our late Happy Hour,” says restaurant owner Jerry Keller. “Our Acqua Pazza California Bistro at the River also nourished many of the ‘Moderners’ who stayed further east in the Valley. Modernism Week was a true ‘win’ for everybody!”

The 11-day extravaganza featured a diverse range of events, including the Modernism Show at the Palm Springs Convention Center. The PreFab Showcase was expanded this year to include several prefab structures that combined world-class architecture with green, eco-friendly, and sustainable construction. A new component of the Showcase was the Modern Living Expo, which featured exhibitors displaying smart living ideas in a thoroughly unique environment.

Also new this year was the Pan Am Exhibition, which offered a colorful array of memorabilia, uniforms, and nostalgic items from the now-defunct, iconic airline. Temple Isaiah offered tours of E. Stewart Williams’ 1952 hidden gem – their original sanctuary – plus a striking art display of the work of renowned Israeli artist Yaacov Agam, and a rare collection of photos and memorabilia.

“This year was by far the most popular for Palm Springs Art Museum events during Modernism Week,” said Bob Bogard, the Museum’s Director of Marketing Communications. “We expanded our Frey House tours to four days this year and they STILL sold out, indicating that there is a great demand for people to see this historic property. Our ‘Mad Men’ themed party at the building that will soon be the museum’s new Architecture and Design Center was a great success, and we were thrilled with attendance at our annual Architecture and Design Council symposium, which gathered the leaders of many significant public houses from around the world, including Sunnylands, Fallingwater, and other significant homes to discuss the challenges inherent in running a home while having it open to the public.”

One of Modernism Week’s most popular events continues to be the Double Decker Architectural Bus Tours, lead by a knowledgeable guide and offering a fascinating overview of Palm Springs’ world-famous mid-century modern architecture, some of the town’s notable architects, as well as an entertaining perspective of Palm Springs’ Hollywood-era history and the many celebrities who made it their personal playground.

The 9th Annual Palm Springs Modernism Week will take place from February 13-23, 2014, and organizers are promising some enhancements, including an improved web site. For more information and updates, visit www.modernismweek.com or “like” them on Facebook.
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