|Mom and this crazy Marilyn statue.|
We knew this home was going to be pretty fabulous but we were truly blown away with this mid-century minimalist bit of perfection. Little did I know, Jennings' minimalist house from Sunday was practically an homage to Frey House II.
Albert Frey was a famous Palm Springs architect, specializing in commercial work including the iconic Tramway Gas Station in Palm Springs as well as the Palm Springs City Hall and numerous other buildings.
Mr. Frey built his first home, Frey House I on the desert floor, and used it as a study for his second house. For the second home, Frey went up the San Jacinto mountains above Palm Springs and constructed an incredibly optimized and beautiful abode.
The home is a model of efficiency and was originally 800 square feet consisting of a sleeping platform, sitting area, bathroom and a modest kitchen. Later he added (apparently for a lady friend), a 400-square foot guest room. The home is beautifully situated on the mountain with the rose concrete block color blending into the surrounding rock and boulders almost perfectly.
Frey lived in Frey House II until his death in 1998, leaving the house and its contents to the Palm Springs Art Museum. He gave specific instructions that the house was to be used only for architectural study as inspiration in the future. He did not desire that the home be available to the general public, but specified it could be made available by arrangement. Lucky us.
Frey was an avid swimmer and made sure a beautiful pool was also included in the design. A pool is honestly a necessity in Palm Springs with summer temperatures climbing well over a hundred most days.
Benches were built into the concrete for gazing out over the view. And enjoying a cocktail or too, one must assume.
Everything is tightly designed and ship shape. The home's furniture is designed in place and boulders are used strategically in a corner of the sleeping area. You can see a dimmer switch in the side of the boulder. Frey wired it for light and electricity.
Most of the furniture is built-in and fits the space perfectly.
How would you like to wake up to that view?
Talk about bringing the outside in. the house's every wall is a sheet of glass. The lines between outside and inside are very blurry in this cozy mountain top hideaway.
The kitchen is ship shape!
Here is the sitting area. Elegant, simple, comfortable.
Built in phonograph. Frey must have liked his tunes.
The globe is original and illuminated. All the fabric colors are Frey's, preserved in restoration. I only saw beige, blue and yellow. Turquoise Formica counter-tops are to die for and a wonderful contrast to the light wood cabinets.
LOVE that Frey selected a pink bathroom for himself! He painted the corrugated ceilings blue symbolically to match the blue skies of Palm Springs.
The house serves as a private residence for persons in the field of architecture. I doubt Mr. Frey used a Waterpik.
A spot used for architectural plan storage.
Frey used this as a work area. I didn't ask if the rope chairs were original. Maybe?
And, the guest quarters. Peek-a-boo.
And one final stop to see the view and a few more details before descending back down the hilltop.
|See Mom in the distance?|
Metal front door but of course. Frey liked the contrast of metal with concrete. Corrugated metal roof is a tough substance able to withstand the punishments of the desert.
Magnificent. Simply magnificent. I have toured a lot of homes in my day, but nothing quite like this.
More Palm Springs Modernism Week 2013 to come. The enthusiasm of the hosts combined with the beautiful architecture and landscape of Palm Springs, made this a perfect trip for modernist buffs. Or anyone who is a freak for houses. Like me.
Related #PSMW Posts
- PSMW 2013: Ten Tips for Visiting Palm Springs Modernism Week Next Year
- PSMW 2013: Bringing the Outdoors In
- PSMW 2013: Ten Decorating Tips from Marrakesh
- PSMW 2013: 1970s Time Capsule Marrakesh Home Tour
- PSMW 2013: Hedge Tour
- PSMW 2013: Garden Tour
- PSMW 2013: Palmer and Krisel House Tour
- PSMW 2013: Frey House II
- PSMW 2013: Liberace
- PSMW 2013: Desert One by Jim Jennings
- PSMW 2013: Margaret Joplin Glass Garden Lights