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TWA Hotel: Rebirth of a Modern Icon

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Annenberg Theater, Palm Springs Art Museum, 101 Museum Drive, Palm Springs, CA 92262

$15, 9:00 a.m. - 10:00 a.m.

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Full Details

The TWA Flight Center, designed by Eero Saarinen & Associates for Trans World Airlines at JFK International Airport in New York, is one of the most significant examples of mid-century modern architecture in the world.  Completed in 1962, the Flight Center is a symbol of both the expressive idealism of the 1960s and of Saarinen’s innovative genius.

Vacant for nearly two decades, the restored Flight Center now serves as the lobby for the TWA Hotel. Two new 7-story hotel wings of 512 rooms, and a 46,000 SF subterranean event space have been newly constructed, arrayed around the historic terminal.  With six restaurants, a rooftop pool, retail shops and a health club, the hotel opened for business in May of 2019. The overarching design approach for the TWA Hotel project is to integrate contemporary technology and programmatic requirements while maintaining the character of the landmark structure.  The historic terminal underwent a full restoration including the Ambassador’s Club, the sunken seating lounge, and the ubiquitous penny tile on the floors, walls and soffits.  The new hotel buildings provide a foil to the terminal building, meeting contemporary hospitality standards while evoking a sense of 1960s elegance.

The presenters will discuss the significance of the TWA Flight Center, its fall into obsolescence, the search for an appropriate adaptive reuse, the restoration of the Saarinen Terminal, and the design of the new hotel and conference center inspired by the Modernist era. Presented by Richard W. Southwick FAIA, Partner and  Director of Historic Preservation for Beyer Blinder Belle Architects & Planner, LLP and Anne Marie Lubrano, R.A, AIA, principal of Lubrano Ciavarra Architects.     

This event qualifies for 1 AIA/CES Learning Units (LU).


Things to Know

This event is for ages 12 and older.
The stairs to the entrance of the Annenberg Theater are located behind the Annenberg Theater Box Office, adjacent to the Palm Springs Art Museum’s North Parking Lot.
There is ample free public parking in the city-owned garage directly across from the museum’s north parking lot.
Handicap parking is available., This event is wheelchair accessible.
The organizer of this event is Modernism Week.

Event Check-in Location

Annenberg Theater, Palm Springs Art Museum, 101 Museum Drive, Palm Springs, CA 92262

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Photo Credits: TWA Hotel/David Mitchell, Stefano Ukmar for The New York Times 

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