Image courtesy AIACC
The conference will be held in the Julia Morgan–designed Merrill Hall.

Summer may be over, but architects, students, and design devotees can look forward to a camplike weekend of professional development, networking, and the great outdoors during this year’s Monterey Design Conference, to take place October 16 through 18 in Pacific Grove, California. Architectural Record is a media sponsor.

Image courtesy AIACC
The conference will feature keynote lectures by well-known architects, including Bernard Tschumi.

Since 1979, this biennial conference, organized by the American Institute of Architects,
 California Council, has given attendees the
opportunity to dine together, discuss issues, 
and rub shoulders with prominent architects at the rustic Julia Morgan–designed Asilomar campus overlooking a beautiful stretch of the Monterey Peninsula.

This year’s lineup features an array of international, national, and local speakers including Paris and New York–based architect Bernard Tschumi, Tokyo-based architect Junya Ishigami, Rand Elliott of Oklahoma, and Clive Wilkinson from California. Lectures and panel discussions will cover topics of both regional and national significance, including designing for arid climates, workplace trends, and the intersection of art and architecture.

To offset the intellectual stimulation, there will be special social gatherings (including an opening-night fete with s’mores and bluegrass music by architect Michael Holliday), behind-the-scenes architecture tours, and opportunities to explore 107 acres of beachfront dunes and pine forests.

“In my opinion, this is the preeminent design conference in the country, because of its location, the speakers, and the environment it all occurs in,” says William Leddy, principal at San Francisco–based firm Leddy Maytum Stacy Architects, who has been attending the conference for more than a decade. “It just has this level of intimacy that you can’t get at other conferences.”

The one downside? “It’s getting harder to get a seat,” he says.