Hanna–Honeycomb House

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Hanna-Honeycomb House
Hanna House 10.JPG
Frank Lloyd Wright's Hanna House
Hanna–Honeycomb House is located in California
Hanna–Honeycomb House
Interactive map showing the Hanna-Honeycomb house
Nearest cityStanford, California, United States
Coordinates37°24′57.65″N 122°9′48.79″W / 37.4160139°N 122.1635528°W / 37.4160139; -122.1635528Coordinates: 37°24′57.65″N 122°9′48.79″W / 37.4160139°N 122.1635528°W / 37.4160139; -122.1635528
ArchitectFrank Lloyd Wright
NRHP reference No.78000780[1]
Significant dates
Added to NRHPNovember 7, 1978
Designated NHLJune 29, 1989[2]

The Hanna–Honeycomb House, also known as simply the Hanna House, located on the Stanford University campus in Stanford, California, United States, was Frank Lloyd Wright's first work in the Bay Area[3] and his first work with non-rectangular structures.[4] The house was chosen by the American Institute of Architects as one of seventeen buildings by the architect to be retained as an example of his contribution to American culture. It was recognized as a National Historic Landmark on June 29, 1989.


Begun in 1937 and expanded over 25 years, this is the first and best example of Wright's innovative hexagonal design.[2] A Usonian home patterned after the honeycomb of a bee, the 3,570 square foot house incorporates six-sided figures with 120-degree angles in its plan, in its numerous tiled terraces, and even in built-in furnishings. In American National Bibliography Frederick Ivor-Campbell wrote "(the) Honeycomb House showed how Wright's system of Polygonal modules could provide the openness that he associated with freedom of movement while gracefully integrating the house with its sloping topography. The hexagonal modules of the floor plan gave the appearance of a honeycomb; hence the name of the house."[3] There are no right angles on the floor plan.[5]

The Hanna-Honeycomb house was designed for Paul R. and Jean Hanna, both well-known educators and for many years associated with Stanford University. The project was begun while they were a young married couple with three children. The home thus had four bedrooms and three bathrooms. In the years following the departure of the children, the house was expanded and modified (with Wright's assistance) as the professional and personal needs of the Hannas changed.

Construction and restoration[edit]

The construction process was not without difficulty. Wright's initial plans called for flat terrain, but the lot the Hannas purchased was hilly. Cost overruns meant that the original $15,000 price tag ballooned to over $37,000 ($697,433 adjusted for inflation). Additionally, the Hannas discovered that their lot encompassed a portion of the San Andreas Fault. Wright, whose Imperial Hotel had survived the 1923 Great Kantō earthquake, was undaunted.[4] Unfortunately, the home was severely damaged by the 1989 Loma Prieta earthquake. Although that branch of the fault was inactive during the quake, the foundation and chimney were essentially unreinforced and likely would have collapsed if the earthquake had lasted longer.[4] A major 10-year restoration was completed in April 1999, this time with seismic reinforcement.


The house is one-story high with a central clerestory (an outside wall of a room or building that rises above an adjoining roof and contains windows) and is constructed of native redwood board[5] and batten, San Jose brick, concrete and plate glass. The house clings to and completes the hillside on which it was built as the floor and courtyard levels conform to the slope of this one and one-half acre site. The entire site includes the main house, a guesthouse, hobby shop, storage building, double carport, breezeway, and garden house with pools and water cascade. After living in the house for 38 years, the Hannas gave the property to Stanford University in 1974.

Current use[edit]

It is now owned by Stanford,[5] and is open for tours by reservation only. It is occasionally used for university functions such as seminars and receptions.

Picture Gallery[edit]



  1. ^ "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service. March 15, 2006.
  2. ^ a b "Hanna-Honeycomb House". National Historic Landmarks Program. National Park Service. Archived from the original on 2007-11-14. Retrieved 2008-05-29.
  3. ^ a b "Hanna-Honeycomb House". California's Historic Silicon Valley. National Park Service. Retrieved 2007-03-08.
  4. ^ a b c Ray, Elaine (April 1999). "Hanna House rises from rubble with Frank Lloyd Wright's vision preserved". Stanford Report. Retrieved 2007-03-13.
  5. ^ a b c Bleiberg, Larry (June 7, 2015). "10 Great: Frand Lloyd Wright Homes". USA Today.
  • Storrer, William Allin. The Frank Lloyd Wright Companion. University Of Chicago Press, 2006, ISBN 0-226-77621-2 (S.235)

Public Domain This article incorporates public domain material from websites or documents of the National Park Service.

External links[edit]