Palm Spring Historical Sites - Building and Land Markers

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Historic Sites

Ship of the Desert

Map1995 South Camino Monte
Palm Springs, CA 92264
  • Historic Site Marker

Marker Details

Private Residence - Historic Marker Missing or Hidden Architects: Erle Webster & Adrian Wilson (a 1936 example of Streamline Moderne) The new house was christened "Ship of the Desert" on the cover of the October 1937 Sunset magazine. It is obvious why. The cover photo shows what appears to be a handsome streamlined vessel, its decks lined with trim pipe railings, its leading edge appearing to plow through an ocean of sagebrush and sand. The master bedroom, windows flung open to the fresh air, looks like a ship's bridge. Perched partway up the mountain like a grounded Noah's Ark, the house must have looked like it was waiting for prehistoric Lake Cahuilla to refill the Coachella Valley basin so that it could set sail. --Alan Hess, in the Feb. 2002 Palm Springs Life, p. 24.