Discover Historic Midcentury Modern Homes with Preserve Orange County

May 18-19, 2019 - Tickets on Sale Now

Eichler Legacy in Orange County Beginning in the 1940s, Joseph Eichler engaged some of the era’s most progressive architects in developing Modernist housing for middle-income buyers in and around the San Fransisco Bay area. Between 1960 and 1964, Eichler brought his unique vision to Orange County, building over 350 homes in the developments of Fairhaven, Fairmeadow and Fairhills. Featuring designs by the firms of Anshen and Allen, Claude Oakland, and Jones & Emmons, the City of Orange recently designated the three tracts as local historic districts. Many of the homes are among the most intact and well preserved examples of postwar Midcentury Modern design in California. Historic district status provides protection for these distinctive houses and neighborhoods. It also presents an opportunity for future generations to experience a mid-20th century architectural vision.

Tour Weekend, May 18—19 For one special weekend in May, Preserve Orange County—in partnership with Better Living SoCal—is celebrating this preservation milestone with the general public. Armed with an informative booklet, visitors will take a self-guided tour to get a close-up look at the interiors and exteriors of homes in each tract. Some homes feature original materials and finishes, while others have been updated to reflect a contemporary lifestyle. All homes on the tour feature hallmarks of mid-century design, including atriums, floor-to-ceiling windows, and open floor plans that blur the line between indoor and outdoor living. You may purchase tickets here.

Cocktail Reception, May 18 Preserve Orange County will open one additional home to host a cocktail reception on Saturday, May 18 at 7 pm. Join us for fabulous food and music, and enjoy a lively panel discussion about the postwar bonanza that was Orange County at mid-century. We encourage guests to wear their favorite 1960s attire, but it’s not required!

The evening’s panel will include Chapman University literature professor and author, Tom Zoellner; architect and historian, Alan Hess; and preservation architect, Robert Imboden. Their conversation will be moderated by Trudi Sandmeier, Director of Graduate Heritage Conservation Programs at the University of Southern California School of Architecture. Find out more by clicking here.

Proceeds from the reception and tour benefit our mission of promoting conservation of the architectural and cultural heritage of the Orange County.

Family Day, May 19 Preserve Orange County has partnered with MaxLove Project to offer Family Day on the Sunday of tour weekend. Complimenting their mission to promote healthy living for children, MaxLove will provide free, child-friendly activities at Eichler homes along the tour route.

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Event Partners

Sponsorship Opportunities: Promote your service or product at this unique event. For more information, please go to our SPONSOR page by clicking here, call 949-482-0125 or email preserveoc@gmail.com.

Volunteer Opportunities: If you love architecture and believe in the value of historic preservation, help us make this event a big success. We are looking for volunteers who will provide information to visitors inside tour houses; register guests at Headquarters; or greet guests at the Cocktail Reception. Volunteers receive a free home tour ticket ($60 value) in exchange for their time. Sign up to volunteer for the Eichler Home Tour here.

Examples of Eichler houses in Orange, California. Photos courtesy of Kelly Laule, Better Living SoCal.