This Frank Lloyd Wright masterpiece is simply one of the architectural wonders of the world. Completed in 1938 as a weekend retreat for the Kaufmanns, owners of a Pittsburgh department store, Fallingwater blends seamlessly with its natural setting, echoing and simultaneously threading its surroundings through its interior via terraces, ledges, cantilevering, circles and semi-circles. It's accessible only by guided tour, and reservations are recommended. The property also features 2000 acres of attractive forested grounds.
At a total of $155,000, Lloyd Wright's project was extremely over budget, although his commission was only $8000 (to give a sense of building costs at the time, master masons working on the home earned around 85¢ an hour). One of the home's most inventive features, which operates as a natural air conditioner, is the open stairway leading directly down to Bear Run stream. Photos can't do it justice – nor can they transmit the sounds of Fallingwater – and you'll likely need a return visit or two to really appreciate Wright's ingenuity and aesthetic vision.