Ever wonder what it would be like to stay overnight and tour one of the largest Frank Lloyd Wright Usonian Homes? Now, you can find out! Experience the wonder and fascination of Frank Lloyd Wright in this beautiful home which features 5 bedrooms, 6 bathrooms, 3 floor to ceiling fireplaces, two living rooms with soaring ceilings, cantilevered balcony, terrazzo and slate flooring, slate patio outside the guest entrance, over 100 windows, over 100 light fixtures all set in the ceiling, rare white cypress wood, massive limestone piers and stonework comparable to that of Taliesin East, the home of Frank Lloyd Wright.
The 820 square foot Guest House suite has one bedroom and sleeps two comfortably. The guest bedroom has a queen sized bed, in-suite bath room including separate shower and bath tub and walk-in closet. The guest quarters also include a living room and kitchen. The living room has a private entrance, dining area and Satellite TV. Free Wi-Fi access is available. The kitchen includes microwave, toaster, dishwasher, refrigerator, coffee maker, pots, pans, china and flatware. There is also a futon and an air mattress available which can be set up in the guest bedroom or the living room for 3 additional guests. Enjoy relaxing in the privacy and quiet of the Elam House guest quarters.
Videos and magazines on the life of Frank Lloyd Wright and his designs will be available for our guest perusal. Surf the Internet while enjoying a cup of tea or coffee near the fireplace. Play a board game or watch a movie on Direct TV or from our collection of classic movies. Some of the original plans for the Elam House are on display in the gallery for our guest's viewing pleasure. A pocket door in the middle of the 60 foot long gallery/hallway separates the guest rental area from the residence and will be closed and locked before and after the tour of the entire house to ensure the privacy of our guests.
Tours of the entire house are available only to our rental guests between the hours of 5 - 7 pm. There may be some variability on weekends, so please confirm with Peter Plunkett when your tour will take place. Guests are free to walk around the grounds of the entire lot and through the entire guest area at any time during their stay.
You might enjoy examining the Webster Electric 'Teletalk' intercom system that is hardwired throughout the entire house. There are 3 base stations, one at the head of the stairs, one in the master bedroom and one in the guest living room. All of the bedrooms and the garage have an intercom as well. Although not operational at this time, we plan to renovate the system in the future.
The house was designed only for floor heat, however, that was not acceptable to Mr. Elam who demanded that a forced air heating system be added as well. The large 'Kewanee' boilers (there are two of them) and the huge air circulation system are really something to see. The original Hammond organ installed by Elam still remains in the main living room and will be restored as well. Of course, we are sure you will be 'Wowed' by the three floor to ceiling fireplaces that are in the house. Frank Lloyd Wright always liked a good fireplace that the family could relax and unwind by. As much as possible, we are striving to restore our beautiful home to its original splendor. We hope you enjoy staying in it as much as we enjoy living in it!
Welcome guests. I am Pete Plunkett, the Innkeeper for the Elam House. I live in the Elam House with my son, Daran. I was born 5 months after my father Warren Plunkett, purchased the home in March, 1959 from S.P. 'Pearl' Elam. I grew up in the Elam House, went to school and graduated from Austin High School, obtained a BA degree in Business Management from St. Thomas College and a JD degree from William Mitchell College of Law in 1985. I have practicing law in Austin, Minnesota since 1985. In 1987, I purchased a home across the street from the Elam House and lived there until 2006 when I moved back into the Elam House.
I am also a slalom water skier competing in local, regional and national tournaments; a competition control-line model airplane pilot; an instrument rated private pilot; an Amateur Extra Class radio operator; an ice hockey player and coach; and an avid duck and pheasant hunter. I have lived in the Twin Cities, and Oklahoma City, but have spent the majority of my life in Austin. I know the Elam House very well and look forward to telling you about it and introducing you to Austin, Minnesota if you have never visited here before.
Pete Plunkett purchased this house in 1959
This is our family home. We enjoy the home very much and since it is the second largest Usonian home by Frank Lloyd Wright, we wanted to allow other people interested in Wright designs to stay overnight and experience the home in a more intimate manner. Wright drew plans for over 1000 homes. 532 of these designs were built and approximately 400 remain. 13 of these homes are in Minnesota and 4 are in Southern Minnesota. The Elam House is a rare treasure indeed!
Enjoy the fantastic views from either living room. Both living rooms have large windows that create one full wall of glass. Some of the windows in the main living room are Nine feet tall and three and a half feet wide. The three floor to ceiling fireplaces are a hallmark of Frank Lloyd Wright. The soaring ceilings in the living rooms are outstanding and give the effect of the room exploding upwards upon entrance. The rare cypress wood lining the ceilings and walls and the meticulous limestone work are wonderful to view and examine. Of course, there is nothing better than relaxing in the house during a thunderstorm. The rain hitting the stone coated steel roof and watching the storm roll by through the windows, it's almost as if you are out in the storm. Wright had the special gift of being able to bring the outdoors inside his homes and the Elam house is no exception.
We had a wonderful time at Elam House over the 4th of July, 2016. It was just the two of us so it fit us well and was a very peaceful and relaxing place to stay.
The home itself is incredibly dramatic in appearance and layout. Sitting in the guest living room was serene and the view was gorgeous. Sitting outside on the patio was also lovely with the sounds of the birds and giant trees. The current owner, Peter, is working at maintaining the house while also keeping it as original as possible. So that means it still runs on the 1950's functioning plumbing, air and boilers and has a lot of the original furniture.
Before going, we were a bit nervous about sharing the house with the owners during our stay, but the guest portion of the house is really a completely separate area of the home separated by a long (60ft!) hallway with a door that is locked at all times except during the main house tour. It wasn’t an issue at all.
I really enjoyed getting to learn all the back-story to the house and how it was built despite some of the road blocks the original owners encountered from FLW during the design phase. Peter has put together a book of the correspondence between the Elams and Wright’s team that really shows what it was like to work with him on a project. It’s definitely a bonus read for any fan of the architect.
This was a wonderfully peaceful getaway and an extra special treat if you enjoy the work of Frank Lloyd Wright, so I will be telling all my friends and family about this place for years to come.
My husband and I stayed at the Elam House over the 4th of July weekend to celebrate our 24th Wedding Anniversary. We thoroughly loved the experience. Peter, the owner was a gracious host and provided a wonderful tour of the main house. We loved hearing about his life growing up in the Elam House. The guest space was beautiful and peaceful. We enjoyed walking throughout the neighborhood and enjoyed a wonderful dinner at the Old Mill Restaurant (Peter's suggestion). This is such a unique and special opportunity to be surrounded by FLW architecture, not to be missed!
We had a great trip. We didn't know what to expect and we were suprised at every turn. I would recommend the house to fans of Frank Lloyd Wright's homes or anyone else looking for something special and timeless.
We had the thrill of a lifetime when we stayed overnight in the Elam House in Austin Minnesota. Peter and his young son were perfect hosts. We visited with Peter in the living room of the home while enjoying a fire in the huge fireplace and the lights of the family Christmas tree. Peter shared many stories about growing up in the home and the tour he gave us of the house was very informative. The guest space was very comfortable and you have got to love all the windows and built-ins. The guest bathroom is original and the faucets are really unique. There were many books and videos about FLW available for us to enjoy and the letters from the original homeowners to FLW were most interesting. I'd highly recommend staying here. Peter also recommended that we try the Old Mill Restaurant and we weren't disappointed.
Every year for my husband’s birthday I take him on a FLW adventure striving to stay overnight in a FLW design. I was excited to learn about the Elam home as it is just a short drive from our home. We thoroughly enjoyed staying in the Elam House and meeting Peter, a very gracious host. The home is in excellent condition on a beautiful property. The guest quarters were much bigger than I expected, very comfortable and welcoming. We have stayed in many FLW designs and have never had the opportunity to speak to the owner or anyone that had lived in the home directly before – this made it a much more enriching experience. FLW fans will not be disappointed. We look forward to returning!
Our stay at the Elam House was a great experience. It's not the first of his houses we've stayed in, but each is unique. The living room area is large, with a typically huge fireplace. The bedroom is also large, as is the bathroom (which brings back memories of the 50's). The kitchen is small but with everything that is needed. There is a nice patio area to enjoy if the weather is nice. And when Peter opens the hallway door that connects to the main house, it's amazing! His tour of the main house adds so much to the stay. We saw everything, including the original furnace. It is great to talk with someone who grew up in the house. I'd recommend a night here to all Frank Lloyd Wright fans.
The Elam House, designed by Frank Lloyd Wright, is located in Austin, Minnesota, Home of the world famous Hormel Foods Corporation.
SPAM Museum (closed while moving to new location until Sept. 2016) - Guests are encouraged to Tour the world famous SPAM Museum. The SPAM Museum features audios, videos and displays depicting the rich 123 year history of the Hormel Foods Corporation. The self-guided museum tour is free, interactive, educational and fun for all ages.
Hormel Historic Home - In addition to the SPAM Museum, tour the Hormel Historic Home which will open a window into the life of the George A. Hormel family. The 1871 home is where Hormel lived with his wife and son when he founded Hormel Foods, Inc. Now restored to early 1900s decor, the 14-room home is open for self-guided tours.
J.C. Hormel Nature Center - Cross Country Ski or enjoy the wildlife at the J. C. Hormel Nature Center. This is a 507 acre center which features hardwoods, restored prairie, ponds, pine forests and Dobbins Creek. Ten miles of hiking and cross country ski trials, as well as a one-third mile paved trail. There is also a three story observation tower, canoe rentals and cross country ski rentals available for use on site.
Shooting Star Bike Trail - Go for a bike ride on the Shooting Star Bike Trail.
Belle Paddle Boat - Go for a boat ride on East Side Lake on the 'Belle' paddle boat.
Paramount Theatre - Take in a movie or a play at the Historic Paramount Theatre. The Paramount Theatre is listed on the National Register of Historic Places, originally opened September 14, 1929 and was designed for stage theatre and first run movies. It is just one of a few Atmospheric Theatres remaining in Minnesota. The Theatre was designed to represent being in the courtyard of a quaint Spanish village with twinkling stars and rolling clouds overhead.
Sola Fide Observatory - Enjoy star gazing at the Sola Fide Observatory. This observatory is located on three acres of land, donated to Austin by a local doctor in 1991. Inside the 12 foot ash dome is a 10-inch refractor telescope with a five-inch refractor mounted on the top. The facility is open to the public when volunteers are available to show visitors constellations and other celestial bodies.
Ice Skating - Go ice skating on our backyard rink or at Riverside or Packer arena or one of the many outdoor rinks in town.
Feel free to take a walk, bike or roller blade in our quiet residential neighborhood. If you bring a canoe, you could launch it nearby (about a block away) and paddle down turtle creek.
These are just a few of the attractions/activities that Austin has to offer. However, the main attraction for our guests, of course, is staying at the Elam Guest House! Lounge in the guest living room and take in a video on Frank Lloyd Wright. Or just read a book or a magazine while having a cup of tea or coffee by the fireplace. Cook your own meal in our fully equipped kitchen or dine out at one of Austin's fine restaurants. Don't forget that we provide a tour of the entire house in addition to the guest area as part of your stay. We hope you will enjoy looking at every nook and cranny of our beautiful home.
|Rate Period||Nightly||Weekend Night||Weekly||Monthly||Event|
Fall & Winter 3
Jan 3 2017 - Mar 1 2017
1 night minimum stay
My Standard Rate
1 night minimum stay
Rates are subject to change without notice until confirmed. 2 night minimum for holidays. Holiday rates in the summer season $300.00 To make a reservation, please visit our website at www.theelamhouse.com. To purchase a GIFT CERTIFICATE, send Peter an email at firstname.lastname@example.org. If you have any questions, please call Peter at 507-438-9503. We do not accept credit cards. Thank you!