“Granny flat chic” is headlining the ninth annual L.A. Design Festival’s home tour on June 22 — and showcasing some stunning examples of innovative design.
The tour allows visitors behind backyard fencing to see for themselves how far accessory dwelling units — more commonly called ADUs, or granny flats — have come. Organizers said they also hope to encourage conversation and awareness around state and local housing challenges.
L.A. Design Festival founder Haily Zaki said the theme for this year’s schedule of events, running June 19 through June 23, is “design with a purpose,” making the focus on ADUs a perfect fit.
“We’ve been hearing a lot of buzz about ADUs,” said Zaki, who credited recent changes in statewide residential permitting laws for encouraging and enabling the backyard builds. “Architects and designers are really embracing it, and now that they see there is an official market for ADUs, people are doing some interesting design and we wanted to showcase that.”
The tour takes guests into six ADUs, located in downtown Los Angeles, Highland Park, Echo Park and Mid-City neighborhoods. The dwellings represent a variety of building styles and are the work of Oasys by Stereobot, Bunch ADU, Cover, 5+ Design and LA Más architectural firms.
“People know them as granny flats, mother-in-law units, garage apartments,” said Zaki, “and may think of them as sort of slapped together, under-the-radar type of things, but these are beautiful, architectural and super efficient modern structures.”
The Oasys by Stereobot ADU, located on the main retail drag at ROW DTLA, will remain open for three months after the festival to serve as a pop-up showroom and resource center.
“We’re coming at this as supporters of good design,” Zaki said. “We want people to come away from it inspired and a little bit more informed.”
When: 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., Saturday, June 22
Where: ROW DTLA at 777 Alameda St. in Los Angeles is the first stop on the self-guided tour; that’s where ticket holders will pick up maps and directions.
Bonnie McCarthy contributes to the Los Angeles Times as a home and lifestyle design writer. She enjoys scouting for directional trends and reporting on what’s new and next. Follow her on Twitter @ThsAmericanHome