Nerdy, I know.
The Hacienda del Sol, in Borrego Springs, CA
Dick Zerbe was the architect who designed most of the hotel's buildings. It was initially built in 1947, but most of the cool stuff was added when the second owner of the property hired Zerbe in the late 50s. At that point, the main building was remodeled and additional rooms were added.
I was told by someone at the hotel that the room numbers are original.
For more information on Borrego Springs and what it has to offer in terms of modern architecture, visit Borrego Modern.
Really high Coronet highball glass.
I'm normally not a barware guy, but I am into Paul Rand. I have no idea what I'm going to do with this.
David Cressey lamp
Soleri bell and a helmet.
Contrary to what you hear on the news, the holidays are not a good time for shopping--at least for anything worth buying.
Palm Springs City Hall by Albert Frey, 1952
Source: Julius Shulman, 1952 via SFMOMA
Former Palm Springs Boxing Club (originally the DMV). This is listed as an unknown architect?
How could this not be Albert Frey?? It's the same screen as City Hall and the corrugated aluminum is classic Frey.
Palm Springs Unified School District by E. Stewart Williams, 1962
Marion Toole Desert House by Rudolph Schindler, 1946-48
I'm not sure if the gate is original, but it's cool either way.
These days, most head to the Salton Sea to view the apocalyptic views of a town gone bust.
The boom period began in the late 1950s. Two Palm Springs businessmen; Ray Ryan, a Texas oil millionaire and Trav Rogers, a club and bar owner, were the money and visionary behind the North Shore Beach Estates. The project was coined “The Glamour Capital of the Salton Sea” and “The Salton Riviera”. Albert Frey was hired to design the yacht club. He also designed a housing project that was never built.
Source: Salton Sea Museum
Construction of the ship-themed North Beach Yacht Club was completed in 1959.
Source: Frey, by Gloria Koenig
Early on, the club was a success. Celebrities such as Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, and the Marx Brothers were regulars. At that point, Ryan and Rogers increased their land holdings and others invested in the area as well. Hotels and restaurants were built and all was good until pollution and salinity caused the lake's ecosystem to fail. The fish began to die, causing an odor that spreads for miles. Eventually, the water was deemed unsafe for swimming. Further complications came with flooding in the 1970s that caused damage to the club and it was shuttered. In the 1980s, after the water levels lowered,it was in use as a restaurant again. The building was abandoned and boarded up in the 1990s when the water levels became a problem again.
Source: Frey, by Gloria Koenig
The Yacht Club in 2008.
Source: James Black
In 2009, Riverside County supervisors received a grant of $3.35 million to restore the Yacht Club.
The restoration was competed in 2010.
The Salton Sea Museum was located in the building for a short time after it re-opened, but it now appears to be vacant.
The building looks great. The one thing I noticed that was missing is the pool. I'm sure liability and all that lame stuff got in the way.
Visit Save the Salton Sea to learn more about preservation efforts.
Salvation Mountain, Niland California
"Leonard Knight - the man, the mountain, the art"
Leonard started this project in 1984, after he failing to get his initial idea off the ground-- a hot air balloon with red letters spelling out the sinner's prayer (seen above in the heart). He started on a week-long project to build a small monument on the Niland site. That week turned into years and his monument is now Salvation Mountain.
The yellow brick road leads to the top of the mountain.
The view from the top.
There's a second smaller mountain that you can go inside.
Leonard may have failed at his hot air balloon, but the mountain is certainly a success.
Leonard is in his 80's now and lives in a retirement home. You can keep up with him on his Facebook page.