After purchasing a Frank Lloyd Wright-designed home in Phoenix for $1,677,500 last year—and transforming it into a design lover’s Airbnb—the owner is ready to part with the place
Listed for $7,950,000 with Deanna Peters of HomeSmart, the eye-catching, curvy property—there’s a reason it’s dubbed Circular Sun—features three bedrooms and three bathrooms.
Built in 1967 for Norman Lykes, it has the distinction of being Wright’s final design before his death, in 1959. It is on a 1.32-acre lot.
Peters notes that the home’s sale can include custom furniture, if a buyer so chooses.
Designed to blend into the surrounding desert mountains, the property sits near Arizona Biltmore—a luxe resort Wright consulted on—as well as the Phoenix Mountains Preserve.
Wright only designed 14 circular homes, including this one. The interiors measure in at around 3,100 square feet, with concentric circles that overlap, driving the design.
While the exterior is made of concrete block—with cutouts shaped like crescents, circles, and triangles—curved interior walls were crafted from Philippine mahogany, and the kitchen counters are wrapped in stainless steel.
Italian rose marble graces the master bathroom, and slate floors were sourced from India. Wright’s signature banquette seating wraps around the living room, which has a silo-shaped fireplace.
For entertaining outdoors, there’s a crescent-shaped pool with inlaid mother-of-pearl tile and a water feature. Numerous patios further celebrate the home’s design by showcasing another view.
After languishing on the market for three years—at its lowest, the asking price was $2.65 million—the seller bought the Wright-designed gem in November 2019 at a serious discount in an auction.
According to Peters, the owner proceeded on a campaign of renovations, adding Internet and cable as well as four air-conditioning units.
Much of the home has been well-preserved.
“There’s so much custom woodwork in that house,” says Peters.
The home’s top-floor office, with built-ins, would be ideal for working from home during the pandemic.
But the selling point are the vistas: Palm Canyon plus Phoenix’s glittering skyline at night.
“The views are so incredibly breathtaking,” says Peters. “There’s a view from every single window on that house.”
Who will be the next steward for Wright’s final design?
“It’s a second home for somebody, somebody who’s a Frank Lloyd Wright enthusiast or wants something unusual,” says Peters.
She says she has heard from potential buyers who would not be put off by the price, and she says she thinks the property is likely to sell fast, at close to the asking price.
“We have had calls from a few people who were also considering using it as a museum,” she adds.
Given concerns about historical preservation, it wouldn’t be a museum with hordes of people tromping through.
“Maybe it’s a museum on some days, and it can be a very selective group to see it,” she says.
But why is it back on the market so soon? The potential for a quick profit looms large in the desert.
“The owner of the property had the intention for an investment and uses it as an Airbnb, very selectively,” says Peters.
As an example of Wright’s work fetching high prices, she notes the 2019 sale for $18 million of the fully restored Ennis House in Los Angeles.
“I think that there’s a big demand for Wright’s work,” says Peters. “Being his final design, that makes it even more valuable.”