From an aerial perspective, it looks like an exoskeletal creature trapped amidst desert rocks. Which would make sense if you didn’t come close to realize it’s actually a house. “The whole idea of organic architecture is that you leave the site better off than you found it,” says Kendrick Bangs Kellogg. Safe to say the architect may have succeeded in leaving that impression behind but organic or not, the home is reminiscent of a sci-fi lair inside out.
Owned by Jay Doolittle, who started building the house in 1987 with his wife, Bev, the home has interior and exterior waterfalls adding to its unusual lair-scape besides 26 concrete piers, each supported by bedrock beneath the house. Situated on 10 acres, it has ponds and a spa, and windows set at unconventional angles to fill in the irregular gaps. Rising from the floor, some windows continue without interruption into the ceiling. Streaming in ample sunlight, they help accentuate an array of one-of-a-kind objects, all handmade by John Vugrin.
So if a freestanding bronze sink outside the master bath serves as a functional sculpture, pebble water basins and countertops inlaid with shells and starfish incorporate nature into the house. The flooring, surprisingly, is also natural stone, much like the steep entrance pathway to the house. Completed in 1993, this 4,643 square foot 3 bedroom 3.5 bathroom estate is on sale for the first time, which is no wonder since maintenance, after all, must be tough. For Jay and Bev especially, who in Jay’s own words “are getting old!” Still, life in that desert house must’ve been one fantastical ride. With the Joshua Tree National Park as its neighbor, $3 million is the asking price.