Now owned by an artist but made famous by beloved California broadcaster Huell Howser, this modern vacation rental in Twentynine Palms shares his love and appreciation for all things California and is a fitting tribute to his passion and enthusiasm of classic mid-century style.
Set within a vast spread of almost 80 acres, the property is adjacent to Joshua Tree National Park, with spectacular uninterrupted views of the desert and mountains.
Improving on the existing single story layout without disturbing the original design, Howser sought to create a communal, creative environment with an airy, indoor/outdoor flow.
The light-filled living spaces feature pieces created by the owner, including a triptych on plywood, a unique wood-based tripod lamp, and a sunset-hued tree light and classic designs by Eames.
The gourmet kitchen includes the original 1950s era stove along with gleaming modern amenities, and a breakfast nook, with an adjacent indoor dining room that opens out to the zero-scaped patio.
Each of the two minimalist-inspired bedrooms feature big picture windows and sliding glass doors leading to the pool area. The en-suite master includes a daybed and there is a media room with a sleeper sofa, with room for a total of seven guests. The shared bath still has the cool 50s tile and fixtures.
The outdoor areas have a magical quality, with Howser’s industrial installations remaining decades later, each piece thoughtfully laid in the ground at the same angle as the mountains beyond, creating the feeling of a modern sculpture garden. A Corten steel paneled fence surrounds the perimeter, and the back patio opens to a full-length swimming pool and outdoor spa surrounded by chaise-lounge chairs and a vintage two-seat swing. Designed for entertaining, there is a large dining table (which converts into a professional ping-pong table), a BBQ grill and an indoor/outdoor stereo system to complete the ultimate high-desert experience.
Gated secure entry. Optional catering available, housekeeping and laundry facilities. Wifi throughout, widescreen HD monitors for cable TV, Netflix, DVDs games, indoor/outdoor stereo system with phone/iPod connectivity and CDs.
Both Joshua Tree National Park and the breathtaking Indian Cove are a short drive from the house. There are miles of outdoor desert adventure in the area as well as several unique attractions and interesting local museums and art venues to visit. These include the Noah Purifoy Outdoor Desert Art Museum, and the famed Integratron as well as historic Pioneertown. A kitschy Hollywood relic founded in the 1940s as an authentic frontier town movie set, today there are a few shops, cafes and galleries to visit including the famous Pappy and Harriets Pioneertown Palace.
Further afield, the San Jacinto mountains rise above the desert floor and are lined with miles of hiking trails at a cooler elevation. Indian Canyon and Palm Springs are also within driving distance of the house for the rural getaways in the Coachella Valley area.
Twentynine Palms, California. Nearest airport: Palm Springs International (50 miles)
BEST TIME TO VISIT: Summers are hot but the California deserts are fascinating year round.
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