The Ultimate Guide to the Best Showhouses for 2018

by | Feb 3, 2018 | Showhouses | 562 comments

painting of a countryside estate on normandy drive

From Atlanta to San Franciso the showhouse season is upon us. An entire vacation (we call them “Showcations”) could be built around visiting a showhouse venue from the Hamptons to Pasadena, California. And while we attend to see some of the best design has to offer, there is also a charitable component giving design aficionados an opportunity to support local charities. 

Inspiration abounds from floor to ceiling lacquered dining rooms to bedrooms fit for a queen, or a princess. Across the country, some of the finest homes and historic mansions open their doors for a few weeks every year to give us a tantalizing glimpse into the minds of some of the design industry’s most creative forces.

So, if you are looking for an opportunity to see some of the best design from around the country while also enjoying the areas they are located in, we have the list for you. Here is our round-up of not to miss Showhomes for 2018.

  1. Southeastern Designers Showhouse, Atlanta, GA  April 19-May, 13, 2018. Presented by Atlanta Homes & Lifestyles, past Showhouses have featured some of the South’s most notable designers, from Suzanne Kasler to John Oetgen along with rising design talent. The Showhouse is known for showcasing some of the best design the South has to offer. This year the Showhouse will be located at 2805 Normandy Drive. For more on Showhouses from previous years, visit here. Not sure what to do when you get here? Atlanta is home to one of the worlds largest aquariums, and if it’s Southern architecture you crave take a side trip to Madison, Georgia which boasts over 100 antebellum homes. For more on Atlanta, its food culture, world-class shopping, and venues visit here
  2. Lake Forest Showhouse & GardensPresented by the Lake Forest Chapter of the Infant Welfare Society, the Lake Forest Showhouse  & Gardens, showcases the mastery of local interior and garden designers in the Chicago area. Each year the Lake Forest IWS Chapter locates an unoccupied home of architectural significance and invites local interior and garden designers. So if you are craving a weekend in the Windy City, you won’t want to miss one of the top Showhouses in the Country. And if you are a gastronome Chicago is a cultural hub for some of the most delicious foods in the country. Find out more about activities and restaurants in the Chicago area visit here. Showhouse dates to be announced soon.
  3. Pasadena Showcase House April 22-May 20, 2018. Since 1948, Pasadena Showcase House for the arts has awarded over $21 million dollars to non-profit organizations, local symphonic, cultural and educational musically oriented programs for youth. Pasadena Showcase House is one of the oldest, largest and most successful house and garden tours in the country entering its 54th year. This year it will be located in “The Overlook,” a 12,277 square foot Mediterranean mansion situated on a 1.6-acre compound which includes a pool outdoor kitchen, veranda, and lush gardens. The interior of the home boasts a portico that leads to the front entry, oversized library, soaring ceilings, oversized Lindsey Adelman chandeliers and unique architectural details. And while you’re in Pasadena stroll through Old Town Pasadena or visit one of the largest collection of private art in the country at the Norton Simon Museum. For more on this hub of cultural activities visit here.
  4. San Francisco Decorator Showhouse   April 28-May 29, 2018. The 41st San Francisco Decorator Showhouse will be located in a 3 story home built in 1930 which will be transformed by some of Northern California’s top interior and landscape designers. The Showhouse will be across the street from the vibrant Marina Green and San Francisco Bay on one of the most coveted blocks of Marina Boulevard. Of course, while you’re in San Francisco take advantage of the sights and sounds of this memorable tourist destination from the city’s architecture, rolling hills, cable cars and world-renowned landmarks. 
  5. Symphony Designer Showcase House Kansas City– April 29-May 27, 2018. This year’s Showhouse benefitting the Kansas City Symphony Alliance will be located at the corner of 56th St. & Pennsylvania Avenue. The event attracts as many as 10,000 visitors a year to see the latest in design trends from some of the areas finest design and landscape talent.  Kansas City offers a “vibrant art scene, delicious dining and Midwest hospitality at its finest.” For more on things to do in Kansas City visit here.
  6. Bucks County Designer ShowhouseApril 29-May 27, 2018. The site of the 2018 Showhouse is Cedaridge Farm, established in 1791 as a Mennonite Dairy Farm and fruit tree orchard. It includes the main house, a gardeners house, a ranch house and a peg barn which was relocated from the Poconos. The proceeds from the 2018 Designer House will help fund capital and equipment needs for the new Center for Heart and Vascular Care. You can find out more about Bucks County, its rich cultural heritage and things to do when you visit here.
  7. Modernism ShowhouseFebruary 17, 2018. Named by The Hollywood Reporter as the “#1 Must-See Event of Modernism Week”! Traditional Home and California Home + Design magazines present The Christopher Kennedy Compound: Modernism Week Show House 2018. For the fifth consecutive year, Christopher brings together a dozen of the nation’s most prominent tastemakers to create unique rooms in this quintessential 1956’s home which will be transformed into the 2018 Decorator Showcase house. The house is set in the fashionable neighborhood of Deepwell — formerly home to “Dragnet” Star Jack Webb, Liberace, Elizabeth Taylor, Loretta Young, and Jerry Lewis. 
  8. The 2018 Designer Symphony ShowhouseMarch 14-April 15, 2018. The 2018 Showhouse is a beautiful stucco circa 1870 home located on historic Tradd St. in one of Charleston’s most exclusive residential areas. From a gated entrance to the front garden, this English style 3-story townhouse is the platform for some of the Low Country’s most talented designers. Of course, while you’re in Charleston enjoy the architectural sights, preserved plantations, open-air markets and good old Southern charm. For more about Charleston and places to visit when you’re in town for the Showhouse click here.
  9. St. Margarets Hospital Guild Decorators Showhouse April 28-May 13, 2018St. Margarets Hospital Guild presents it’s 57th Annual Decorators Showhouse & Gardens showcasing the talents of local designers and landscapers. Located in the Butler-Tarkington neighborhood in Indianapolis, this 92-year-old residence highlights various periods in Indianapolis history. Over the years the proceeds from the Decorators Showhouse and Gardens have funded countless programs for Eskenazi Health Services. While Indianapolis is home to the Indy 500, there are many exciting places visit ensuring to your “Showcation” is a memorable one. For more on Indianapolis click here.
  10. Cape May Designer ShowhouseApril 27-May 24, May 29-June 14, August 24-Sept. 6. and October 11-31. The 2018 Showhouse will be held in the historic John P. Forsyth House located at 1601 Beach Avenue in Cape May. The Forsythe House was a high point of the East Cape May project in the Early 1900’s making Beach Ave. one of the most elegant streets in Cape May. This magnificent home has undergone a multi-million dollar renovation, the rooms transformed by a dozen talented local and regional designers. The house will be open, April 27-May 24, May 29-June 14, August 24-Sept. 6 and October 11-31. There are many things to do in this charming seaside from walking the promenade to driving through the historical district of over 600 Victorian homes. For more on what to do in Cape May when you are planning your “Showcation” visit here.

A Note from the Editor: We’ll be updating this list as information becomes available, we will be running this list all year long and you can find it next week in its permanent spot on our sidebar to help you plan your next “Showcation!” 

Other Showhouses we’ll be adding when the dates are announced:

Kips Bay Decorators Showhouse

The Columbus Museum of Art Showhouse

O’More College of Design Showhouse in Nashville

The Junior League of Buffalo Decorators Showhouse

Hamptons Designer Showhouse

Dallas Designer Showhouse

West Palm Beach Designer Showhouse

Southern Style Now

Until next time,